Sunday, December 6, 2009

Feature Face-Off: Windows 7 Meets Snow Leopard

Neither Windows 7 nor Snow Leopard is a game changer in the eternal struggle of Apple vs. Microsoft, but here’s a quick run-down of how the two latest combat units in the OS wars match up.

FILE MANAGEMENT: Both Snow Leopard’s Finder and Windows 7’s Explorer have
quick-search fields in the upper-right corner, path bars, and sidebars for easy access to common locations on your computer.

SMART FOLDERS VS. LIBRARIES: Nothing in Snow Leopard corresponds to Windows’ libraries. OS X offers saved searches (as does Windows 7); but a saved search gathers files based on search criteria, not location, so you can’t create a smart folder containing all the photos from two other folders. On the other hand, you can’t combine Windows 7 libraries with saved search results.

QUICK ACCESS VIA DOCK OR TASKBAR: Mac OS X’s Dock has had features similar to Windows 7’s jump lists for years. Some OS X apps use the Dock’s pop-up menus to display app-specific information and to offer easy access to frequently used commands.

THE DOCK AND STACKS: Snow Leopard has no feature exactly like the jump list’s pinning feature. Instead, Mac owners can use stacks in the Dock to provide quick access to folders and files (drag any folder to the Dock to create a stack).

BOLSTERED OS X INLINE PREVIEWS: To augment Leopard’s preview features, Apple added an enhanced inline preview to the Finder’s icon view in Snow Leopard. When you view a folder that uses icons of 64 by 64 pixels or larger, mousing over your files will display preview/playback controls. Windows 7 has an optional preview pane in Explorer, but its previews are basic.

EXPOSÉ VS. AERO PEEK: Part of Mac OS X since 2003, Exposé lets you view thumbnails of all open windows, or of open windows for one app, with a keystroke or mouse click. Windows 7 will show you thumbnails of open windows for individual apps when you click an app’s taskbar icon; when you mouse over a window’s thumbnail, the Aero Peek feature will hide all other windows. But in Win 7 you can’t see thumbnails of all open windows side-by-side, as in Exposé.

Source of Information : PC World November 2009

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