5 Flaws Apple Still Hasn’t Fixed in OS X Mountain Lion

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Stephen Lam / Reuters

Apple’s newest OS X cat, Mountain Lion, is finally here, halo-dropped onto the Mac App Store at the last minute by a company that increasingly treats its products as if they were smartphones, teasing form and function but withholding release dates until they’re hours away. Planning for Day One adoption of Apple products can feel like trying to calculate the future passing distance of Near-Earth Objects.

The good news: Mountain Lion is a solid bargain as a $20 update to OS X, bringing to Lion the same sense of roundedness Snow Leopard did Leopard. It’s classic second-pass Cupertino, the company strategically applying another layer of gloss to its traditional computing lineup — in this case adding more iOS highlights — while folding in scads of incremental feature upgrades.

(REVIEW: Apple OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion Review: The Mac’s Lion Adventure Continues)

But longtime Mac users may find a modicum of reasons to grumble about the things Mountain Lion still fails to address here, some of those introduced with Lion, some longstanding nuisances from earlier versions of OS X. Here’s a rundown of five that make the least sense to me.

There’s no way to hide Launchpad clutter. Launchpad is Apple’s second attempt at an iOS-style app repository (the first, not so much iOS-related, was to slap an ‘Applications folder’ shortcut near the trashcan in the Dock). In the Lion version of Launchpad, Apple divided Apple apps from third-party ones, placing stuff like iWork or Logic Pro in a screen at far left and everything else in screens further to the right (think iOS with a buffer zone). In Mountain Lion, the company’s just jammed everything together, first come, first serve, and added a search bar at top to “help” you sort the mess.

Whatever you think of that, Launchpad still picks up all sort of odd, decidedly un-iOS-like detritus: uninstall shortcuts, odd aggregation folders (see Office 11 and certain Adobe products), and subsidiary apps you don’t need to see here. And unlike iOS, where — one app, one shortcut — you can remove anything save the core Apple apps, with Launchpad it’s all or nothing. The only apps you can remove through Launchpad are those installed through the Mac App Store. And by “removal,” I really mean uninstall — Apple seems to view Launchpad as a weird hybrid shortcut and install/uninstall space.

There is a third-party utility that lets you grapple with Launchpad’s chaos called Launchpad-Control. For some reason it stopped working in my over-the-top Mountain Lion upgrade, but after a clean install, it’s functioning properly again.

Why didn’t Apple add a “show/don’t show” checkbox panel in Mountain Lion? Who knows. I’ve been wracking my brain, trying to come up with the reality distortion field marketing angle on Launchpad, as-is, and all I’ve got is that it’s an attempt to foist iOS’s interface on OS X users (only without iOS’s redeeming one-icon-per-app restriction).

You have to eject external drives before pulling cables. Pro or con? I go back and forth on this one. Macs have long required that you first eject an externally connected storage device before yanking out the cable. Withdraw that cable without first ejecting your device and you get an ugly error message warning that you might have damaged your data. That’s because OS X could be writing or caching data to the drive, and with Spotlight ticking away in the background, you can’t always tell when that is or isn’t happening.

Given those activities, eject-first is probably a good idea, protecting our not-entirely-plug-and-play devices from overanxious fingers. So why don’t we have to do this in Windows? There is a way to, using a little utility that lives in the system tray. Some would argue that’s actually the safest route, but I’m betting most people don’t even know it exists. I’m aware of it, still don’t use it, and yet I’ve yet to lose or corrupt any data or louse up the file system of a storage device.

In any case, shouldn’t we have file copying and caching routines in place by now that can dynamically release a drive without (potentially) damaging it? That can finish up any critical business OS X was doing when the drive was disconnected, after it’s been reconnected?

Safari bookmarks can’t be sorted alphabetically. Other browsers have this feature, so why not Safari? I’m talking about the option to enable alphabetization across the board or right-click in “Show all bookmarks” view to get a “Sort alphabetically” option. For a long time I used Bookdog (for OS X post-10.4, it’s now called BookMacster) but now settle for organizing my bookmarks manually. This is one of those fiddly things we’ll probably never see, but that still feels like an oversight, given how simple its inclusion would be.

Applications remain open after the last window’s closed. In Mountain Lion, the murky glow that used to sit beneath your Dock’s open applications has been replaced with a solid white dash, making it easier to see what’s open and what’s not — two thumbs up for that, Apple. But I’m still waiting for a window-based kill switch that shuts an application down when the final window closes — something that doesn’t require the extra step of hitting command-q on the keyboard, or right-clicking the app in the Dock and selecting “quit.”

I know, Apple’s erring on the side of caution here, but with all the emphasis in Lion and Mountain Lion on gestures and navigating without hotkeys, you’d think Apple might have found a way by now — perhaps even a gestural one — to streamline quitting an app.

Uninstalling OS X apps is a confusing mess. Blame Apple, blame the developers, it doesn’t really matter: Properly removing apps in OS X feels more like a scavenger hunt. Take Apple’s own Logic Pro, which deposits its many apps, music loops, receipts, instrument settings and so forth in multifarious locations. How to remove everything? Good luck! Search engines often turn up user-proposed solutions, but that’s always a gamble, and in any event, is this the best Apple can do? Asking that we manually delete apps from the Applications folder, then play Sherlock to find and zap trace remnants elsewhere? Forcing us to root through search engines and message boards for answers to what ought to, by now, be a managed process, with or without the Mac App Store?

And that’s all I’ve got. What about you? What’s on your OS X “annoyances” list?

MORE: What Would You Do with a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro?

75 comments
IFv6
IFv6

Yeah, having the apps stay open is a good thing when you're actually doing work. Can't agree with that at all.


And uninstalling apps on mac literally couldn't be easier 90% of the time. If you're really worried about a settings file somewhere, try appcleaner or MacCleanse.


...  And you're really complaining you have to eject a drive?


I agree with some other points though, such as alphabetizing the bookmarks would be handy, but there are extensions that can handle this. And launchpad is a bit of a huge mess. Just spotlight to open any apps not in your dock and ignore launchpad until it matures. 

IrmaGen
IrmaGen

You have to eject drives on Linux and Windows as well.  Simply unplugging a device on those will give you an error too, warning of potential harm.  You can actually destroy a USB stick just unplugging it without ejecting it first, if you do it at the wrong time.


Not closing the application when all windows are closed is something I consider a feature.  If I want the application closed I'll close it as a separate action.

mil0oo
mil0oo

2 points on here are so silly.

Applications stay open? --> this isnt windows so hush. I like my apps to stay open when closing different documents and opening new ones. 

Needing to eject? --> as far as i can remember you are adviced to eject on all kinds of operating systems. not a lack of feature but a feature. 

LesLegato
LesLegato

"In any case, shouldn’t we have file copying and caching routines in place by now that can dynamically release a drive without (potentially) damaging it?"

No, now go back to Windoze.

kiljoy616
kiljoy616

Uninstalling OS X apps is a confusing mess

Now of all the things this one does not make sense why Apple has not fixed it. How hard would it be for Apple to have created something like AppZapper for these needs. Well I for one am not to worry as long as AppZapper and Co. are around but it does mire the well though out OS. 

Casey Nicholson
Casey Nicholson

Much more annoying than not alphabetizing Safari bookmarks is the fact that there are no favicons in the bookmarks bar.  Favicons are the little icons at the beginning of a web address.  In other browsers like Firefox, they display the favicons so that you can then "rename" the bookmark to have a blank "name" (i.e. it becomes nameless) and then you only have the favicon in the bookmark bar and you can fit a ton of your favorite websites up there.  Safari offers no such option.

Also, it pains me that Safari's "Top Sites" feature relies on a webpage snapshot instead of the favicon.  What would be easier to see quickly and click on it?  A miniature webpage that the print is tiny on and is only vaguely recognizable?  Or a favicon?  Seems to me that the answer is obvious.

Peter Cole
Peter Cole

Point 1, Launchpad clutter. Yep, it's a mess. Point 2, Ejecting external drives before pulling cables. Agreed, Apple could do more here, but it would take some serious coding to make an OS completely happy with drives being pulled mid-write. Point 3. Safari bookmarks. This is an application request, not OS, so not relevant. Your point may be valid, but it's not valid to criticise Mountain Lion for this. Point 4. Applications remain open. This shows a clear misunderstanding of the Macintosh paradigm. In MS Windows, the window is the superset – everything (except the desktop) exists within a window, and menu bars are always within a window. Close that window and whatever is within (e.g. an application) closes. In Mac OS X the application is the superset, and its windows hold that app's open files as a subset. Except for instances where an application can only have one window open at a time (e.g. iPhoto) closing an app's a window is only closing a file. This is not a hard thing to learn, and can make for better productivity. You can argue the toss, but the Macintosh way makes sense to plenty of us. Point 5. Uninstalling apps. The key difference here is that Windows modifies the OS (think Registry and DLLs) when you install applications. Mac OS X does not. While perhaps not very 'pure' what is left behind is usually (if not almost always) benign and has no performance or stability effect on a Mac. So this shouldn't be a serious issue. There have to be other things that are more of a worry.

RaziHassan
RaziHassan

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This app turns your iPhone or iPad into a Handy Scanner, Fax, File Storage or an Air Printer in your pocket. It lets you scan high quality multi-page documents, print it to any AirPrint capable printer in your wifi network, email it or save it to a document folder on your device, post it to Google Docs or fax it to any fax number, directly from your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. 

A highly useful app designed for individual or businesses use. 

Download Link : http://itunes.apple.com/us/app...

RaziHassan
RaziHassan

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By combining notes and voice, SoundNote easily captures your meetings, lectures, or study sessions.Need to review the discussion about your next project or conversation with a client ? Trying to remember what the teacher said about a key point during lecture ? 

With the convenience of the iPad or iPhone, you can use SoundNote anywhere: class lectures, meetings, interviews, conferences, study sessions. Even use it to record memos to yourself as you think new ideas! 

Download Link : http://itunes.apple.com/us/app...

James
James

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Dennis McElroy
Dennis McElroy

Easy to uninstall apps and make sure all the stuff is gone. I use "Clean My Mac." As for having to eject a drive before removing it...what's the big deal? Continuing whatever was happening after it is plugged back in is just lunacy. What about what happens when you use the drive on another machine in between those times? As a long time Mac user its not brain surgery to remember to right-click on the drive and eject it before unplugging. Just as Windows users are used to having an app quit when the last window is closed, I'm used to...and depend on that app remaining open even when nothing is open. Its a time saver whenever I want to open  a doc in that program. 

Bob A Gare Sr.
Bob A Gare Sr.

Not so funny but we gave up on PC's and especially Windows 2 years ago because of these kinds of  issues.

Bob A Gare Sr.
Bob A Gare Sr.

You missed one of the biggest flaw.  Just like Lion a good number of users keep dropping the internet.  It happened after installing Lion and is even worse in Mountain Lion.  We have 2 macbooks side by side.  Only one machine does it after upgrading to Lion.  I hoped Mountain Lion would fix it but it got worse.  I've chosen not to update our other macbook until I hope Apple finally addresses the issue.  Bets are no they will keep pretending there is an issue.

David Alexander Harrison
David Alexander Harrison

I would suggest the simplest and most intuitive option for a kill-app-process-from-window gesture would be to grab the window, and then drag the mouse pointer to the trash, just like how you can already eject a disk / drive by dragging its icon to the trash.

dis666
dis666

Windows warns about disconnecting any drive that is not hot-swappable, just like Mac OS. Where did you get the idea it is different? As for disabling caching / indexing in Windows, one can also do this in Mac OS to reduce the chance of data loss after pulling a mounted drive, but why is this even annoying? Just drag it to the trash and wait three cotton-picking seconds.

There are plenty of free and cheap uninstallers for Mac OS. Also, one can perfectly map out the files that were uninstalled by right-clicking the apps installer package file, "Show Package Contents", navigate to the "Archive.pax.gz", drag-copy it to a folder on the desktop, double-click this copy of Archive.pax.gz and wait a minute. It will expand into "Archive.pax" and then into a folder called "Archive". In that Archive folder you see where everything went, with Library, etc or other folders created as part of the expansion. The folder acts as a containment space for the expansion of the installer to let you observe what it does.

A "quit app kill switch"? That's called command Q. Not quitting when I close documents is wonderful for me. I hate it when Windows decides to quit an app just because I closed the document. Windows forces you to minimize a mess along the taskbar. The reason Windows MUST quit an app when you close all documents is because it has no menu bar. All documents have their own (and ugly, real estate-wasting) menu bar. Open five documents in Windows and you get five menu bars. Yuck!

LaunchPad isn't taken seriously by most long-time Mac users. "Launcher" was its name in OS 7-9 (Classic) and it was ignored then also.

Please don't whine for Mac OS to be more Windows-like. Apple is already leaning much too far in that direction already, with no drive volume icons on the desktop by default and full-screen browser (no web page I know needs to be 20" wide on my 22" screen, and all movie sites have a built-in full-screen button).

EastAce67
EastAce67

It sure would be nice if you could "cut" files from one folder and then paste them into another one, rather than dragging them to the folder. Yeah, it keeps you from "cutting" and then somehow losing them, but it would be nicer to not have to have two Finder windows open to move files.

Tech Marketer
Tech Marketer

There is no doubt that this new Mountain Lion OS looks cool. But I was reading an article today which says that this new OS also has high threats from Malware and virus attacks. I always wonder why Mac user don't think about installing a virtual desktop. Because Virus outbreaks are no longer a headache in hosted virtual desktops since you operate in a virtual environment which is 10 times more secured and there are no threats of any malware or virus attacks,

Here is a useful resource for Mac users, explaining what else a virtual desktop can do for Mac OS:

http://www.dincloud.com/run-vi...

AhmadZainiChia
AhmadZainiChia

Agree with 5, finds 1, 3 and 4 not-so-significant, and totally disagree with 2. Making sure the user ejects first prevents damage, ie, if the user is too used to pulling the damn thing out just like that all the time, he/she might make the mistake of doing that even when the computer is reading/writing to the drive.

Eric
Eric

As a Unix system, Macs are constantly defragging the hard drive so that data stays organized and together on the drive. This allows a Mac's hard drive to be partitioned while running the operating system on that drive.  With Windows you can disconnect an external drive without ejecting because it is not moving data around at random times, but there is no way you can partition the drive that Windows is running on.  Mac wins...

Louis Wheeler
Louis Wheeler

Mr. Peckham, computers seem to be moving toward decentralization. In a few years, we will have cheap dedicated file servers, so there will be no need to unplug anything. Desktop and laptop computers will be confined to a niche. The organization of your desktop screen will be highly customizable, but I expect that voice control to have a heavy hand here.

I agree with the commenters who said that you are Windows centric. Apple has always done things its own way. Apple spent millions on user interface design. It was first to popularize a GUI, so it could patent actions and behaviors. Its patterns are not flaws; Microsoft was legally forced to deviate from Apple’s "look and feel." That "look and feel" will deviate further from Windows as Apple charts its own way. Windows 8 is a major departure from Microsoft tradition; current XP users may find it strange.

The OS wars are over; Apple has won, temporarily. Within ten years, the majority of computer users will be on a tablet. Many new users who came from the iPad will not have your biases. They won’t have the biases of us old time Mac users either. This is not necessarily a bad thing.

David McElroy
David McElroy

This is a useless article because the writer fails to understand some of what he's criticizing. For instance, there are frequently reasons that I WANT to leave an application running (for easier access when I need it again, for instance) after I've closed its last open window. The fact that Windows happens to do it the other way (which would be problematic for some things in my workflow) doesn't mean that's something to change. If this is the best he can find to criticize, he's not thinking very deeply about the way real users work.

romano71
romano71

I am the proud user of Mac OS and love every minute of it. But it doesn't cease to amaze me that you get more violent debates between Mac/Android/Windows users than on any political or even religious topic. People, keep things in perspective, PLEASE!!! Also, to the author's point, once I transitioned from Windows, the hardest thing for me was to deal with open apps after I had closed the window and the uninstall feature. I agree with him. To his critics: Mac OS is not perfect, deal with it! To Android users: you are all wanna-be's! To Windows users: your time has passed, you are never going to have the epic head start you once had. No cell phone with Windows will ever take off. See? That was easy!

Marcos Duran
Marcos Duran

Who is this person and how is he writing about technology of any sort?!?! I have 12 GB of RAM, there are apps I always keep running to avoid the launch process. If working with multiple documents why close the app completely if I will continue to use it. If you want to kill the app hit COMMAND-Q and skip the window closing part... see? One step. The external drive thing? I am just in awe of your methodology. It is like saying I run red lights all the time and I have yet to get hit by a truck!

Uninstall an app? Delete it from your apps folder and then check your login items for any startup files it may include and turn it off. Everything else can remain where it is they are either documents you don't want to throw away or settings files that take up very little space.

Gary Dauphin
Gary Dauphin

How how fixing basic things?  1) SMB file sharing still is totally hit or miss.  If my Mac is supposed to "just work," please make it so!  Otherwise, remove the "feature" from the OS.  

2) Unix based OSes are supposed to be built so that if one App crashes, it doesn't bring down the whole system.  I can't tell you how many times I have the Finder or some other App hang, only to have to force restart my system and lose open documents.

Nate Gay
Nate Gay

The drive doesn't sustain damage when you yank it out, but there is a possibility the data might be damaged if writes are occurring. There is no operating system on the planet that can prevent this. The warning message on the Mac is usually not a real issue but rather an attempt at behavior modification.

Brian Jones
Brian Jones

The author should not confuse "Flaws" with "Enhancements"

A Flaw is my view is a bug, something broken with the application

Enhancements on the other hand are improvements ......

iMakary
iMakary

My two cents....

The launchpad clutter problem: what i do is put all the apps that i want to hide in a group and drag them to another page. Make a folder, name it "random" or something and put everything in there and put it on another page. I love the five-finger pinch in gesture, i'm glad i don't have to go to finder or the application folder on the dock to access a program. gestures > buttons

Ejecting external drives: it's a slight inconvenience but nothing that i would chalk against mountain lion. Also your solution about having to finish any operation after the drive was reconnected would need some kind of identification system to know if this is the drive was doing the operation on or is it a different one.

Bookmarks: i kind of agree, but having the latest bookmark on the top is a convenience too, my brain has learned to think that way and accept that.

closing application: i agree with you on this. after migrating to a mac this was the most frustrating thing i found. what i do is hover the mouse over the application in the dock, drag four fingers down, the window appears, i then click on it and quit that window.... i can't stand right-clicking on a mac for some reason.

uninstalling apps: i think it's that way to make people more inclined to DL apps from the mac app store... (just a guess) and yes i realize that the logic pro app is an apple app and it still has this problem.... i agree with you, i just never really encountered an app that gave me a hard time to uninstall.

what i don't like about mountain lion is when u want to see mission control, you don't see the windows that are non active.... you only see the active windows

noneedforaname
noneedforaname

"Applications remain open after the last window’s closed"

What? I would be pissed if they ended that. It annoys me to no end that this ISN'T the case when I am using PCs at work.

that being said, having used Macs for 20+ years, it is pretty well ingrained to use Cmd-W and Cmd-Q when I know which I want to do.

Couldn't agree more on the other issues, although as I don't use Safari anywas, that one doesn't really bother me.

OldSchoolMacGuy
OldSchoolMacGuy

I too question the value of this article? EJECT the USB or Firewire device before pulling the cable, Mac or PC. You've been lucky if you haven't experienced and file or directory corruption.  Launchpad? Someone actually uses Launchpad.  You're the first person I've heard using Launchpad. And yes, just Quit the app and the windows will close and the app will quit.

grayscale00
grayscale00

Those are hardly flaws, more like feature requests XD

Tech Marketer
Tech Marketer

There is no doubt that this new Mountain Lion OS looks cool. But I was reading an article today which says that this new OS also has high threats from Malware, viruses and trojan attacks. I always wonder why Mac user don't think about installing a virtual desktop. Because Virus outbreaks are no longer a headache in hosted virtual desktops since you operate in a virtual environment which is 10 times more secured and there are no threats of any malware or virus attacks,

Here is a useful resource for Mac users, explaining what else a virtual desktop can do for Mac OS:

http://www.dincloud.com/run-vi...

qvoraw
qvoraw

Mostly useless article -- this 'journalist' may be a Windows convert.  Guess what: there are many times I'm done with a document but not an application... for the moment.  Wait for an Adobe product to take its many seconds to reload into RAM in between docs?   No thanks.   Done with that doc but not Word?   Fine, Word can idle ('though MS coders do seem to know how to code zippier Mac apps than anyone other than Apple).   There's a reason closing a doc doesn't kill the app, thanks.

Pulling external drives just with the cable?   Both Mac and Windows data recovery folks laugh at you -- go ahead, we need the work.   Yes, the directories may need to be updated properly before you yank that cable on either OS.  It is behind the WHY that both Apple and MS recommend proper ejection techniques.   You may be lazy, Peckham, and you are clearly no coder, but there is housekeeping done by the OS prior to the eject.   There will always be folks like you who failed to close an open doc, failed to save your last revision, and pull that cord.   Good habit -- keep it up, 'cuz you'll be paying us in the future regardless of your lucky history.

How useful would alphabetizing bookmarks be?  Since bookmarks are all about user organization, and many are titled from clueless web developers without concise meaningful labels (taken from the Title tag, such as 'Home Page'), there is little purpose to auto arrange.  The solution remains drag and drop (and rename).  Once this custom ordering is in place, how does one return to it after accidentally 'alphabetizing' gets hit.  Hardly a must-have feature in an OS, BTW -- that is an Application request.

Dragging an application package to the trash from the Apps folder is, with the exception of some horrid Adobe funk, the correct way to uninstall.  Some detris may remain in the preferences or application support folder in the library -- and there is often good reason not to automatically destroy these user preference files in case of reinstall -- but its on the order of a few Mb at best.   Tell me how that differs from the leftovers in a Windows 8 install/uninstall of apps?

Why did I bother to read this article and expect something useful?

budRogers
budRogers

@James Your best friend's mom is a cheap date.

budRogers
budRogers

@Bob A Gare Sr. Cannot replicate your problem here. Check your network settings.

jonbren
jonbren

I have never had this issue...with Lion or Mountain Lion. What you may want to consider is cloning your MAC address to your router. I used to have this issue all the time on Leopard, turned out it was my ISP blocking my router because it did not recognize the Mac address.

So, basically by cloning my MAC address...Comcast sees my router as my computer not a router. Worked like a charm haven't dropped an internet connection since.

immovableobject
immovableobject

It can be done! While not obvious, it's simple --once you know the trick:   Copy as usual, but hold the option key down when pasting.  The Edit menu associated with command-V changes from "Paste Item" to "Move Item Here".  I'm not sure when this was added, but it works this way in Lion.

dis666
dis666

UNIX has nothing to do with auto-defrag. It is just the way HFS+ works. Other UNIX systems with other file systems may or may not have defrag features.

dis666
dis666

Microsoft / Windows is not forced to deviate. The court ruled in 1994 (Apple Computer, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation, 35 F.3d 1435) that MS can copy the look and feel of Mac OS... and they surely do. After each major release of Mac OS, MS gets busy copying such things as Widgets and calling it Gadgets. Always have, always will. MS-Apple is like China-U.S.: Watch while the technology is developed, and then copy it. Samsung does the same on the iPhone.

whydoyoumakemeregister
whydoyoumakemeregister

Well as of Lion, the system will recognize applications that are still open and not being used. It will automatically suspend them if the system needs the resources

IrmaGen
IrmaGen

@Nate Gay  It is technically possible to destroy a flash drive by just pulling it out while in use.

jonbren
jonbren

"I can't stand right clicking on a Mac..."

If you are on a trackpad thats real simple...two fingers resting on the pad and a tap of the thumb, quite smooth I think. And if you have a mouse, just open system preferences and enable secondary click. (you may already know this..but some people do not...got into an debate with a die hard windows fan, his argument you cant even right click on a Mac)

jonbren
jonbren

I second whydoyoumakemeregister...Safari is my main Browser again. Goodbye Firefox 11, 12, 13....not sure what version it is now seems to change every couple of weeks.

whydoyoumakemeregister
whydoyoumakemeregister

I'd really recommend giving the new version of Safari a chance. Some great improvements were made.

Won Word
Won Word

"How useful would alphabetizing bookmarks be?"

As useful as any other sorting scheme, such as "date added" or "none." some folks like to be organized, whereas others ... Not so much.

In either case, I'll stick to Firefox or Chrome for the speed and extensions. Safari is a step up from IE, just as floating corn chunklette is a step up from a pile of fecal material.

mknopp
mknopp

I have to agree with nearly everything that you said. This felt more like a rant about why Apple didn't make Mountain Lion more like Windows (circa XP).

The only point that I agree completely with Mr. Peckham about is the Launchpad. I never use it because it is such a disaster. Then again, I open 99.9% of may apps from the dock or spotlight. Both are far quicker, in my opinion, than browsing launchpad, and for that remaining 0.1% I simply click on the Applications quick link in the Finder. Simple as that.

As for the uninstall. Mr. Peckham has picked a single instance to hold up as his beef with the uninstall. And I have to agree with him about uninstalling applications that are not installed properly (i.e. as a package in the Applications folder). I shudder every time I have to run an installer program. That isn't the Mac way, and bad on Apple for not following their own rules with Logic Pro. That however, isn't an indictment of the OS as a whole. It is an indictment on the programmers to write their Apps correctly.

Galactic72
Galactic72

"Why did I bother to read this article and expect something useful?"

No one held a gun to your head and forced you to read it.

Most people I know expect the app to completely shut down when the close the window. They're really not concerned with efficient RAM utilization.

Alphabetically sorting bookmarks is a simple option to include, and if you don't want it, then don't use it.

Matt Peckham
Matt Peckham

Broad article mischaracterizations in this comment...

Quitting apps: I didn't ask that Apple replace the current system with a kill-all-by-default one. I'd just like something GUI or gestural-level as a complementary option.

Pulling drives: Ignores most of my point. I understand as well as anyone why it's safer to eject first (and always do, on my Mac). My desire is for a future mechanism, be it hardware or software-based (or both), that would eliminate the possibility of data corruption or loss.

Alphabetization: Much too dismissive of what would be a simple, optional context menu command. A simple "undo" option would address your only concern.

Install/uninstall: Drop 50GB of Logic Pro data on your hard drive, then try to uninstall it your way, i.e. drag and drop apps from the Apps folder. Let me know how that goes! :)

JamesR624
JamesR624

And if you DO want to uninstall COMPLETELY. If you're THAT worried about it, I have found CleanMyMac (free) to work great. It completely uninstalls apps with no fuss, you can see EVERY file it will delete before it actually uninstalls and it has other useful functions like regular disk cleanup just to save a bit more space and make your computer a little zippier.

IrmaGen
IrmaGen

@dis666  Not true.  Nothing is really done with the file until it is pasted somewhere.

Louis Wheeler
Louis Wheeler

Somehow my reply to this was never posted, so I’ll try to recreate my thoughts.

Microsoft and Apple did borrow features from each other, especially after Steve Jobs came back in 1997, but this was not true in the beginning. 

Apple CEO John Sculley made mistakes in licensing and divulging source code to help Microsoft’s implementation of MS Office. He was surprised when MS applied that code and “the Macintosh look and feel” to Windows 2.0 and 3.0. Even with the “borrowing” Microsoft used diverging keyboard actions which became the norm when MS Windows became the standard for businesses. 

Many people converting from Windows have had complaints about this divergence even though MS Windows’ actions are more effort and less intuitive. As a practical matter neither side presents enough of a difference to be conclusive.

Microsoft had had a repeating pattern of waiting until Apple was 50 - 60% finished with a new application and then rushing out a barely working and buggy place holder application to get bragging rights. This led to Apple’s obsessive compartmentalization and secrecy. 

My argument was that these disagreements will become moot as Apple gains an ever growing percentage of the computer market place though iOS devises. Windows and OSX devises will become a niche.

Louis Wheeler
Louis Wheeler

Then why did MS get so many things ass backwards, if it had permission to copy? 

Why do many people who learned on Windows assume that this is the way things should be done? Those same people have difficulty learning the Mac, but then, once they do, they hate to use Windows, because it isn’t intuitive.The above court case was Sculley’s fault. Right? NeXT was forced to do a different look and feel, because NeXT never had a contract with Apple. That caused problems later in adapting NeXTstep to the Mac.Apple responded to the above court case by becoming obsessively secretive. MS stopped having the ability to rush out a barely working placeholder to get PR talking points.

I don’t think Apple cares what MS does any more.

budRogers
budRogers

@Won Word Your choice of metaphorical images is unfortunate. You've diminished the impact of your comment with a lame attempt at humor. Stick to the facts and your experience and the world will better accept your logic. Leave poetry to poets.

JT Parsons
JT Parsons

 I use launchpad all the time. I find it pretty easy to swipe the trackpad and select an app. It doesn't matter where the cursor is, I can get to it quickly. For open apps, I use command+tab.

MXBrando
MXBrando

Windows users are accustomed to apps quitting when no document window is open. Mac users are not. In both cases, developers can easily override the defaults. Nothing in the OS needs to change. Even some Apple apps auto quit. One example is Disk Utility.

In Mountain Lion, Launchpad is basically broken beyond repair. Mail has produced some head-scratchers. That said, the new OS features (iCloud integration, sweet, wonderful Dictation) are worth the dot-oh release irritants.

Phil Regnauld
Phil Regnauld

Being able to eliminate the possibility of data corruption doesn't make sense. That amounts to predicting the future: how will the OS know - or you, for that matter - that the picture you're currently editing is not sitting on the volume you're about to unplug ? You can minimize corruption to the metadata structures, but it's an all or nothing approach for the file data itself: either the data was written or it wasn't. Best case, you lose all changes. Worst case, the file is gone. Alternatively you could have some form of journaling on another non-removable volume that checkpoints all changes made for all blocks on the filesystems that are currently active - very, very non trivial. Either way, that wouldn't change the fact that buffering is active and whatever application you're using would perform like a dog as the OS would force every write to be done to the journal before it could be applied to the open file. 

As to "quit the application after the last window goes", that's a base principle of the Apple UI guidelines from years ago (one of the few that didn't get mutilated, to be honest). So calling it a flaw is like saying manual gearboxes are a flaw on modern cars :)

Ioan Wigmore
Ioan Wigmore

Right, so how is pulling drives a genuine issue to complain about, if no OS actually has a safe way of removing drives without ejecting first, and the solution probably would require improved hardware?

This isn't something to lay blame on OS X for not fixing.

Matt Peckham
Matt Peckham

Sure, and I've used some of those utilities in the past (with varying degrees of success, however). Would still like to see Apple take charge of this, since it's an app-OS level interaction.

kiljoy616
kiljoy616

@Louis Wheeler Then why did MS get so many things ass backwards, if it had permission to copy?

Marketing and because people use what ever their employer tells them to use and then can't find it in them to change. Though with iOS that has changed a bit with people bringing their iPad to work. A lot of this is also IT, MS Windows is job security.

Yuoraanis
Yuoraanis

In Windows, there is absolutely no penalty to pulling an external drive without warning the OS.  Absolutely NEVER have had an issue with that in ANY version from XP to 7. 

If the drive is internal, then yeah, you should...but again, not going to hurt you, and won't be a data recovery issue unless you are actively accessing/writing to the drive.  And that depends on what exactly you're doing.

Again, externals...those connected with USB cables, just make sure that the light isn't flashing from your last transfer of data, and you can pull it and reconnect it any number of times, without ill-effect and without the OS taking issue. 

But if you do decide to remove it during a data transfer, you'll get a warning that the location doesn't exist, and you'll simply have to plug it back in and re-initiate the transfer.  If you do this enough times during a transfer, windows will ask if you want to scan the drive or continue without scanning.  The process takes about 30 seconds on a 120 gb drive.

Having just done this several times, I have lost no data, and have had no issues re-attaching and using the drive, so far more than ten times.  I have scanned it once, at the behest...not the demand...of the OS.

ctxppc
ctxppc

And here I want to return to the first comment… What if the user didn't close the document and hasn't saved changes? You're screwed. Also: every OS does a few important things when disconnecting drives, especially on Mac OS X where the file system does a whole lot more than just read and write, especially when considering technologies like FileVault and journaling (and of course, caching).

CGJack
CGJack

The situation on OS X is identical t that on Windows. OS X just gets more annoyed at it.

Phil Regnauld
Phil Regnauld

http://lifehacker.com/5863810/... 

Even if the write cache were reliably disabled (which, by the way, many devices lie about, including ATA drives), then it STILL doesn't solve the issue that you might be editing a document in Word or other, not realizing it's a copy off of the USB. Now, while the OS may write immediately to the storage device when told to, the application might not save all the time... Manually ejecting is also a mental safeguard: the OS will tell you: uh, sorry, that document is open - really want to eject ?

Think about it...

Eric
Eric

Actually, in Windows you can very easily disable caching to safely unplug devices without ejecting them. It's your choice, and it just works.

Your two options are 1) Quick Removal (default) or 2) Better performance. Can be set on a device by device basis if you really want the speed and security.

So can we blame apple now?

Gary Dauphin
Gary Dauphin

I like this!  How about the OS has a daemon running that looks for an executable file being dragged to the Trash, and then automatically asks if the users want to drag the associated files to the trash as well.  If the user answers Yes, run a utility like CleanMyMac for that specific App.  Seems relatively simple to me.