The Macintel Report

WinXP a Real Alternative to PPC Apps on Macintel, Intel Launches Pro PC Brand, and More

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2006.04.27

This Week's Macintel News

Windows, Windows everywhere, while Universal Binaries are taking a back seat. Creative Mac finds that Adobe apps on Windows can be much faster than Mac apps when run on Macintel hardware, which could make Boot Camp or Parallels Workstation useful tools in the graphics arsenal.

Speaking of Photoshop, it should be native for Macintel in 2007.

In other developments, Gateway has a 12" widescreen laptop with a very slow (1.06 GHz) Intel Core Solo. You can bet Apple would never release a MacBook as slow as that!

PowerBook, iBook, and other portable computing news is covered in The 'Book Review. General Apple and Mac desktop news is covered in The Mac News Review. iPod news is covered in The iNews Review.

WinXP on Mac

The Macintel Transition

Intel News

WinXP on Mac

Windows an Option when PowerPC Apps Also Available for Windows

Creative Mac's Dave Nagel says:

"I suppose it's appropriate that the first time I use Windows XP it be on a Mac. Weird, but appropriate. But a man has to do what a man has to do, and my task is to see how well creative software runs on the Apple MacBook Pro in the Windows environment. The results were surprising. I expected it to be fast, seeing how native Mac software is so fast on this notebook, but I never expected it to be this fast - surpassing, in some cases, desktop systems running on G5, Xeon and Opteron chips.

"The significance of this speed is two-fold. As we've seen from some previous benchmarks, non-native applications running in Mac OS X can, at times, be cripplingly slow - After Effects, LightWave, Maya, etc. And so, for those adopting the Intel-based Mac platform before these applications run natively in Mac OS X on Intel hardware, there's a need for an interim solution. While working in Windows may not be the ideal solution (to put it mildly), it is a solution.

"The second significance is for those who already work on multiple platforms and are considering using the MacBook as the one-stop solution to their needs. It used to be that if you worked on multiple platforms (Mac and Windows), you had to buy two separate machines. Now, with Intel-based Mac systems and Apple's Boot Camp technology, you can accomplish it all on one piece of hardware - and without a sacrifice in performance, unlike the days of VirtualPC and other stop-gap solutions.

"So what kind of performance can you expect to see when you're running Windows on the high-end MacBook? In a word: impressive...."

Link: Benchmarks: Windows XP on the MacBook Pro Adobe After Effects, Photoshop and Illustrator Performance Tests

Can Boot Camp Really Give Windows the Boot?

AppleMatters' Chris Howard says:

"Recently Chris Seibold in his excellent article No Magic Bullet for the Mac, discussed Boot Camp and other developments of late, and their likely affect on the Mac's personal computer market-share. I want to go a little further and asked the question, just what is the Mac's maximum market-share? Can Windows be booted altogether?

"Whenever Apple comes out with a new product or direction, we Appleites salivate at the prospect of wiping Windows off the face of the Earth. Of course, we know that's not possible. The only company that can rid us of Windows is Microsoft - either by catastrophic failure or replacing it with a new operating system.

"When Boot Camp was released, I spoke to a few of my former peers from my days as an IT manager in a corporate Windows environment. The big question of course was, 'Would the release of Boot Camp make you consider Macs running Windows?' Unanimously, they said no. The interesting thing though was it wasn't just because there is no vendor support for Windows on Macs, but also because they are Macs. There is a wall, conscious or not, up against Macs among my former peers. And I suspect it pervades the whole industry."

Link: Can Boot Camp Really Give Windows the Boot?

Mac Resellers Extend WinXP Installs to New MacBook

TechWeb.com's Gregg Keizer reports:

"Several resellers started taking orders late Monday for Apple Computer Inc.'s new 17-inch MacBook Pro with Windows XP pre-installed for as little as $55 extra, following moves last week to offer buyers a dual-boot notebook out of the box....

"In a check of several Macintosh reseller sites late Monday, TechWeb found numerous package deals that included Windows XP Home or Professional pre-loaded, or options that let buyers add the second OS to the MacBook Pro."

Link: Mac Resellers Extend XP Pre-Installs to New MacBook

A Switcher's Guide to Windows/OS X

ExtremeTech's Jason Cross reports:

"It seems like every other blog, forum, or tech enthusiast site is talking about Apple's new Boot Camp beta, which makes it extremely easy to dual-boot to Windows XP on Intel-based Macs. There are tons of opinion pieces about what this means for the industry, what it means for Apple or Microsoft, how it's going to impact game developers - you name it. It seems as though more and more users are making the switch - the most vocal are the Windows users buying Macs for the first time (or the first time in years) now that they can easily run all their Windows apps. Less vocal, but definitely out there, are the Mac users making a Windows partition to gain access to that handful of programs their Windows-using buddies are always talking about.

"Trying out a new OS can be a bit confusing, at first. Both OS X and Windows XP are mature, well-aged systems with their share of quirks and extremely well-established software libraries. Though they are similar in many ways, there are some fundamental differences in how each OS is designed to operate. And of course, with any new OS installation, there are some must-have applications that simply make life easier.

"So you've got your shiny new Intel-based Mac up and running, you ran the Boot Camp app and have Windows XP installed . . . now what? Where do you start? How does the 'other side' function differently than the one you're used to? What apps do you need? Certainly, entire books could be written trying to answer these questions, but we think we can give you a good head start in your journey to that other operating system. Whether you're a Mac user delving into Windows XP or a Windows user trying out your first Mac, our guide will help you get started. We'll try not to bog you down with too many little details; after all, exploring is half the fun...."

Link: A Switcher's Guide to Windows/OS X

A Few Safety Tips for Using Apple's Beta Boot Camp

Scripps Howard News Service's James Derk says:

"A small bit of hell froze over recently when Apple released 'Boot Camp,' a tidy piece of free software that allows Windows XP to run on Intel-based Apple PCs.

"After decades of fighting with Microsoft, there had to be a bit of 'if you can't beat 'em, join 'em' in this decision, which boosted Apple's stock price and sent thousands of people to the stores to buy Apple laptops and desktops.

"But there are a couple of things to keep in mind.

"First, Boot Camp is beta software, meaning Apple is not going to support it....

"Second, you have to have one of the new Apple PCs with the Intel processors. Boot Camp won't run on the older Power PC machines (some of which are still being sold by Apple)....

"Third, keep in mind that installing Boot Camp will change the configuration of your hard drive....

"Fourth, installing Boot Camp doesn't give you Windows XP. You need to provide your own full version (not an upgrade version) of Windows XP Service Pack 2, which will run you about $100 to $200 depending on where you buy it ...."

Link: A Few Safety Tips for Using Apple's Beta Boot Camp

Gartner on Boot Camp: A 'Hypervisor' Would Have Been Better

IT Enquirer reports:

"Boot Camp should meet the needs of users who are occasionally required to run Windows applications. Users who often need to run both Windows and Mac OS X applications would have to reboot repeatedly to switch between the two operating systems. Gartner believes this is not the experience that most users seek, and that they are more likely to want to run the Windows applications natively on the Mac OS X.

"In addition, says Gartner, to enable the dual boot environment, users need to acquire a full copy of Windows XP. Reusing a disk from a Windows PC that they already own would violate the terms of their license....

Link: Gartner on Apple Boot Camp: A Hypervisor Would Have Been Better

Microsoft Finds Apple Move Hard to Swallow

The Post-Gazette's David Radin says:

"Posturing is important in the tech world, where 'coopertition' - cooperating with your competition - is just as important and widely practiced as competition itself. That may explain why Apple suddenly is vocal about a Mac that runs Windows and Microsoft is silent about the same subject.

"As we had predicted, in recent weeks the new Intel-based Macintosh computers have been shown to run Windows - not just in one way, but in three different ways. Smart techies, competing for cash prizes, proved that almost anybody with a Windows XP license could load it on a new Mac. Then two commercial solutions arose. Parallels Software International created a program that can run both operating systems simultaneously; and Apple released 'Boot Camp,' its official software to let Windows run on a new Mac.

"The Apple solution requires users to reboot their systems to change from Windows to Mac OS and vice versa; and the company says it's for two types of users - those who want a Mac but need an occasional Windows application, and for those who are afraid to leave Windows behind when they switch over to a Mac computer.

"If Parallels works the kinks out of its solution, it will probably be a solution of choice for those who truly want to switch between Windows and Mac OS whenever they desire. But the Apple solution is an 'official' solution so lots of users will buy it."

Link: Connected: Microsoft Finds Apple Move Hard to Swallow

Parallels Workstation Brings 'Virtual Machines' to the Mac

Macworld's Rob Griffiths reports:

"The past month has been a heady time for Mac users looking to live in a cross-platform world. First, hackers came up with a method that let Mac users install and boot Windows XP on an Intel-based Mac. Then, Apple got into the act with Boot Camp, software that allows Intel-based Macs to boot into Windows XP but without a lot of the hurdles associated with the hacked method.

"Shortly after Boot Camp arrived, Parallels unveiled its Parallels Workstation, a new 'virtual machine' solution for Intel-based Macs. As Macworld's resident lab rat, I volunteered to once again put up my Mac mini Core Duo in an experiment to see just how Parallels Workstation performs.

"Before we dive in any deeper, though, I thought I'd spend a few minutes talking about just what a virtual machine is, and why it's not the same thing as Virtual PC, as easy as it may be to make that mental comparison. After that, I'll discuss my experiences with Parallels Workstation."

Link: Parallels Workstation Brings 'Virtual Machines' to the Mac

Improve VM Performance, Save Disk Space with VM Compactor

PR: Parallels announces the beta release of Parallels VM Compactor 1.0, a powerful, easy to use virtual hard disk management tool that optimizes performance of any Parallels, VMware, or Microsoft virtual machine running Windows 2000, 2003, or XP by compacting its hard drive by up to 80%. Compacted hard disks help optimize virtual machine performance and more efficiently use real disk space.

Works with any virtual machine from Parallels, VMware, and Microsoft

No matter which virtualization solution you use, Parallels VM Compactor can help you improve virtual machine performance and better manage physical and virtual disk space. The product works seamlessly with any virtual machines built with:

Parallels Workstation 2.1 for Windows, Linux or Mac OS X VMware Workstation

  • VMware GSX Server
  • VMware Server
  • Microsoft Virtual PC
  • Microsoft Virtual Server

Get your free 30-day copy of Parallels VM Compactor now.

Let us know your thoughts on VM Compactor. Share your thoughts on VM Compactor. Share thoughts, bugs, suggestions, and comments through our online form.

Link: Parallels VM Compactor 1.0 Beta

The Macintel Transition

Photoshop Coming to Intel Macs in 2007

digitmag.co.uk reports:

"A Universal Binary version of Adobe's flagship Photoshop software that will run on Mac computers based on either the legacy PowerPC or new Intel platform will be available in the first half of next year, the company's CEO has said.

"The software is one of the highest profile titles that has not yet been released in the Universal Binary format that Apple. is encouraging software makers to use. The format allows programs to run on both PowerPC and Intel-based Macintosh computers. The latest version of Photoshop Elements, version 4.0, came out in February and wasn't in Universal Binary because of time constraints, Adobe said at the time."

Link: Photoshop Coming to Intel Macs Next Year

Intel News

New Gateway Laptop Sports Unannounced Intel CPU

The Register's Tony Smith reports:

"Gateway has begun shipping its latest 'ultra-portable' notebook, the E-100M. It said the machine was less than an inch thick and weighs just 1.4 kg (3.2 lbs) and sports a processor Intel hasn't launched yet. The Core Solo U1300 first appeared on Intel roadmaps in November 2005 with a Q2 2006 debut.

"The E-100M is based around a 12.1in, 1,280 x 800 widescreen display driven by the Intel chipset's GMA 950 graphics engine. It's powered by a single-core Intel Core Solo ultra-low voltage processor running at 1.06 GHz and sports the chip maker's 802.11a/b/g Wi-Fi adaptor, so it's a Centrino-class laptop."

Link: Gateway 12.1in Laptop Sports Unannounced Intel CPU

Date Looms for AMD-Intel Antitrust Trial

eWeek's John G. Spooner says:

"Advanced Micro Devices is considering a 2008 trial date for its antitrust lawsuit against rival Intel-a suit that claims Intel used its position to influence PC makers to limit their purchases of AMD chips.

"Intel, which was served with the suit on June 28, 2005, has other ideas."

Link: Date Looms for AMD-Intel Antitrust Trial

Intel Launches Pro PC Brand

Team Register reports:

"Intel's marketing department has added the finishing touches to the vendor's revamped business PC strategy.

"The vendor revealed yesterday that it will target IT managers under the Intel vPro moniker. The vendor will be pushing security, manageability and energy saving when it markets the platform, which is centred on its dual core 64 bit Intel Core processor."

Link: Intel Launches Pro PC Brand - Rebadging the Business Desktop

Intel Unveils Game-Changing Direction for Business PCs

PR: Intel vPro Technology Delivers Strengthened Security, Cost Reduction and Energy-Efficient Performance

The way the world views and uses business PCs is about to change with the introduction of Intel Corporation's new Intel vPro technology, a revolutionary shift in desktop PC security and manageability along with remarkable energy-saving computing performance.

Businesses today are plagued by increasing economic and security threats such as malicious viruses, spyware and identity theft, while IT managers are driven to improve processes and customer service models. Intel vPro technology will offer businesses and IT a competitive edge with breakthrough innovations and technologies to help get the most out of resources and shrinking IT budgets.

The company today outlined how Intel vPro technology will deliver these benefits later this year through broad collaborations with industry-leading software leaders and IT service companies, and support from PC system manufacturers around the world. Intel vPro brand is the newest addition to Intel's brand portfolio, and its first targeting businesses and IT customers.

"Like Intel(R) Centrino mobile technology and Intel Viiv technology, Intel vPro technology will bring together world-class innovations throughout the processor, chipsets, networking and software," said William A. Swope, Intel vice president and director of Digital Enterprise Brand Management. "This technology significantly advances desktop PCs and will quite simply offer businesses security and manageability like never before - all on one of the most powerful and energy-efficient PCs in the market."

At the heart of the first Intel vPro-based PCs will be an Intel Core microarchitecture dual-core processor. This next-generation, 64-bit microarchitecture bestows significant gains in performance and reductions in power-consumption improving responsiveness and productivity.

Intel vPro technology also includes the second-generation of Intel(R) Active Management Technology (Intel AMT) and Intel Virtualization Technology (Intel VT). Intel VT will be integrated into the dual-core processor while the next-generation Intel AMT will be integrated into the new platform chipset. These hardware innovations, when combined with industry-enabled software solutions, represent the superior manageability and strengthened security behind the Intel vPro brand.

Offering businesses avenues to reduce PC support costs, Intel AMT helps manage, inventory, diagnose and repair PCs even when systems are turned off or have crashed operating systems or hard drives. The second generation of Intel AMT offers the ability to isolate infected PCs before they impact the network and alert IT when threats are removed.

Further strengthening PC security, Intel VT allows for separate independent hardware-based environments inside a single PC so IT managers can create a dedicated, tamper-resistant service environment - or partition - where particular tasks or activities can run independently, invisible to and isolated from PC users.

Demonstrating the industry support for Intel vPro technology, Symantec(1), an IT-trusted industry leader, today announced plans to work with Intel to build security solutions creating an isolated environment outside of the main PC operating system for the purpose of managing security threats. This tamper-resistant virtualized environment will deliver stronger control and protection in the data infrastructure.

Support for Intel vPro technology is also evident from new applications and solutions that will be available over the next year from global software vendors, including Adobe, Altiris, Avocent, Check Point, Cisco, Computer Associates, Hitachi JP1, HP OpenView, Kaspersky Lab, LANDesk, Lenovo, Lockdown Networks, Microsoft, Novell, Panorama SW, SAP, Skype, StarSoftComm, SyAM Software, Symantec and Zenith.

Leaders in the IT services industry are also benefiting from the built-in manageability capabilities of Intel vPro technology. Global technology services companies, including Atos Origin, EDS and Siemens AG have all achieved IT costs reductions through Intel AMT and have published papers outlining the time and cost saving benefits of Intel AMT-based platforms.

Intel vPro-based PCs will also include Intel's latest integrated graphics providing performance for mainstream business applications and being capable of delivering the full array of graphics interface features in Microsoft's upcoming Windows Vista(1) operating system.

Intel vPro technology will be part of the Intel Stable Image Platform program, which offers predictable transitions and promises that the Intel software stack and drivers will be available and unchanged for five quarters from the time of the product launch. In its fourth year, this program allows businesses to qualify a system once, instead of being forced to requalify the system due to software or hardware changes.

Intel vPro technology will usher in this new era for business computing starting in the second half of the year and will be identified by a new logo on PCs from major system manufacturers and channel resellers worldwide.

Link: Intel

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