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Is Snow Leopard The New XP?

Posted by tomwiles at 11:18 PM on August 31, 2011

Like a lot of people, I purchased the Lion upgrade on the first day of availability from the Apple App store.

I upgraded two late-model Mac Minis along with an older 17” MacBook Pro. The Lion upgrade solved a freezing problem on the Mac Mini I use as an HD-DVR. However, it created a number of serious problems on the MacBook Pro – Lion would not work with my Verizon USB aircard, it would not back up to my HP Windows Home Server, and it would not work properly with the Ubercaster podcast recording application.

After living with these Lion-induced problems for more than a month on the MacBook Pro, I downgraded it back to a prior (and fully functional) Snow Leopard backup image. Everything is now back to normal, with everything once again functioning the way it should.

My MacBook Pro is no slouch, yet it seemed a bit sluggish running Lion compared to Snow Leopard.

If you have a Mac that’s more than a couple of years old, and/or you are running a variety of software and hardware that Lion likely won’t support and/or that may never be updated to run properly on Lion, I would strongly suggest skipping the Lion upgrade.

I found the Lion interface changes mostly annoying. On a computer (as opposed to an iPod), I prefer normal scroll bars. In Lion you can turn the scroll bars so that they remain on, but they are thin little gray lines that I have a hard time seeing and grabbing with the mouse. I don’t like the changes Apple made to the Finder in Lion, nor do I like the changes they made to the Spotlight Search functionality. I found the changes to the Mail program to be of dubious value, as well as the cosmetic changes to the Address Book adding no functionality.

Snow Leopard runs perfectly well and just might be the new XP.

3 Comments

  1. From ramfrancisuk at 11:43 pm on August 31, 2011

    Hi Todd

    Maybe Mac OS, is becoming more like Windows, in had you only run the OS that shipped with the Computer. Invariably there is always performance problems – in that the new OS is designed to run on new hardware.

  2. From Nolan at 3:55 am on September 1, 2011

    Love your article title. I agree with the premise that Snow Leopard runs perfectly well. In my opinion it was by far top of the class in OS land. Just now upgrading to Lion on one machine. We will see.

  3. From John Knights at 12:28 am on September 5, 2011

    Lion running fine on my iMac but I held of upgrading my MBP as this is the machine I mostly use for work and I did some prior research to see that if all 3rd party software was ready for it yet (it wasn’t) so I am holding off for the time being.

    So really, as with any new release of an operating system there are going to be issues, everybody knows this so why not use due diligence and do a little research first?

    SL is still brilliant and just an all round “near enough to perfect” product. I must say I do like what they have done with Lion though, the logic works for me…