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  • no Registry required

    I've been happily using my Intel Mac Mini for over two years now. When I want to uninstall a program, I merely drag its icon to the trash, and smile. If I need to delve into The Registry for some arcane reason, I wake up in a cold sweat from the nightmare.

    Why doesn't a Mac have a registry? Or more to the point, why does a PC need one?
    Allan Ostling

  • #2
    I think the registry was put in place so everyone but you could manage your PC. Unix systems, including the Mac, have left that to the individual or organization, not the vendors, to control. I love Unix - it pays for all my stuff

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    • #3
      I wasnt aware Mac didnt have a system reg. Very nice.. Wish I could afford a mac, too much software invested in pc..

      I miss the days when there was just config.sys, autoexec.bat, win.ini and system.ini. Seemed like everything was easy to find in those four lil files... JR
      My old yahoo group. Bridgeport Mill Group

      https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...port_mill/info

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      • #4
        Macs have always been so the software is one piece, or at least all in one folder. No scattered files thoughout the system.

        In OS X you application is actually a package with a bunch more files internally. If you right click on a application and "show package contents" you can see whats inside the application.

        Macs really are not any more expensive than a store bought name-brand PC. Plus using boot-camp you can install windows if you choose. There are also virtualization software out there that will allow you to run a guest OS on top of the Mac OS. I use Parallels and run Win XP Home under it and it runs very fast. And its totally seamless. Programs run just like another open window, just the look like windows style.

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        • #5
          Properly written applications for Windows don't use the registry at all. On my servers I run Mercury Mail Transport, Xitami web and FTP server, Analog log analyzer, and a number of utilities as well as FPROT DOS antivirus to check email. Each of those applications keep everything they need to run in their own directory and backing up the server is as simple as making a copy of each directory on an alternate server.

          Programs that don't do so for two main reasons; lazy programmers and/or intentionally making the program hard to copy.
          Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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          • #6
            BILL GATES DID IT.. he wants to "know" what you are doing with his computer. Works better to screw you out of your money with "spin off" target marketing advertising and directions in which to invest. IT also allows "them" to look at stolen software and piracy.

            Even more interesting is the remote file storage option available for years on the programming software he has sold. Makes it easier to "pinch" code snippets you might use.. everyone knows a code programmer is only as good as his toolbox.. stolen or concieved.
            Excuse me, I farted.

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            • #7
              Macs have gotten really cheap these days. Low end notebooks can be had under a grand and the mini can be found for half of that if you look to refurbs. If you need bigger drives or more memory, buy it elsewhere for less and do your own upgrade -- you will save a bundle.

              My life is *NIX and fixing computer problems all day long. My wife thought I was nuts for being that much of a computer person and not having a windows box at home. The real issue though is that it just works. I hate having to tinker with a computer at home when I do it all day long already. Bought my last one in 2002, so I'm probably due another sometime this year.

              Like all tools though, remember the saying: "Cheap, fast, good, pick any two." I had been building PCs to run Linux in the $140-$350 range for years, but seem to only be able to pull a year or so of life out of them before they need more help than it is worth to keep them ticking.

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              • #8
                The Windows registry is just a giant config file. All operating systems have the equivalent information, but in Linux and MACH/BSD Unix (i.e., Mac OS X), the config files are distributed.

                Unix's usually have the hardware configuration files in /etc, /usr/sbin, etc. The Linux (Red Hat) "packages" are the closest analog to the Microsoft installation mechanism -- where you have a single executable which copies all it's necessary files into the correct directories, and auto-updates the necessary system config files.

                So on OS X, when you drag an application into the trash bin, the OS is running the un-install scripts from the package. The difference is that in OS X and Linux, it works

                Seriously, most of the time that un-installation doesn't work on Microsoft OS's is because the application vendor botched the installation script, or intentionally leaves crap in the registry in the hopes that you'll reconsider someday. If you're not comfortable manually cleaning the registry, an easy way to "try" software without getting your registry all crufty is to set a Windows "Restoration Point" before you install the software.
                "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by 2ManyHobbies
                  Macs have gotten really cheap these days. Low end notebooks can be had under a grand and the mini can be found for half of that if you look to refurbs. If you need bigger drives or more memory, buy it elsewhere for less and do your own upgrade -- you will save a bundle.

                  My life is *NIX and fixing computer problems all day long. My wife thought I was nuts for being that much of a computer person and not having a windows box at home. The real issue though is that it just works. I hate having to tinker with a computer at home when I do it all day long already. Bought my last one in 2002, so I'm probably due another sometime this year.

                  Like all tools though, remember the saying: "Cheap, fast, good, pick any two." I had been building PCs to run Linux in the $140-$350 range for years, but seem to only be able to pull a year or so of life out of them before they need more help than it is worth to keep them ticking.
                  Back when I was in bonded servitude to a large corporation, I always hated Macs because my old boss liked them. That was enough reason for me to stay away from them. I guess they're OK but I'd never, ever buy one.

                  I've had a long line of PC's now. Presently I have two Dells, a laptop and a Desktop. Both have been true "turnkey" computers. I've yet to open the case on either one.

                  The argument regarding which is better, Mac or PC has been done many, many times and it still rages. There's no solving it. Like I said, every time I think about buying a Mac, I remember my old boss and that's the end of it.

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                  • #10
                    I mostly moved away from Windows about eight years ago. I ran Linux for about six years (works great but a little aggravating to do multi-media with) with no real problems but switched to a macbook pro two years ago and really like it. I still have one windows machine in the shop for cam software, and a windows xp virtual machine that I use occasionally, but I really try to keep the windows boxes off of the network. We did buy a new laptop for the girls this spring and it came with vista and it only reinforced my view about how bad windows is.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Evan
                      Properly written applications for Windows don't use the registry at all.
                      I think that Paint Shop Pro is one of those.
                      I'm a big fan of PSP, and still using an 'old' version 7. I've changed PC's twice since I got this, but unfortunately damaged the installation disk after the first time I used it.

                      Not a problem with PSP though, just cut the entire program folder from the original install, and pasted it into the program files folder in windows, click on the launch icon and away it goes.

                      Wish everything was that simple.

                      Peter

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                      • #12
                        PSP does use the registry but if it's entries are missing it just recreates them at default values. It doesn't depend on the registry settings to run like most programs do.

                        Incidentally, PSP7 is "officially" abandonware since Corel bought out JASC. They didn't want it, don't support it other than making old patches available and don't care. You can find it on the net as a complete download. I still use PSP7. It's the last truly stable release that JASC brought to market. I have PSP8 (crash a minute) and PSP9 (crash every 2 minutes) but rarely use them. I tried the latest Corel release and it's no different except for some lipstick.
                        Last edited by Evan; 06-03-2008, 02:44 PM.
                        Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Evan
                          Properly written applications for Windows don't use the registry at all.
                          Hear, hear. Thank you, Evan. Well said. I couldn't have put it better. Ditto. What he said. Precisely. I completely agree.

                          Even seasoned programmers writing everything from device drivers to high-level apps hate dealing with the registry. I know I do. Somewhere in Redmond, someone must have once thought it was a good idea. I can't imagine why, but I'd be curious to hear.

                          Count me as another vote for Linux. I regret that Windows has developed so much inertia, forcing many of us to use it for that very reason.

                          -Mark
                          The curse of having precise measuring tools is being able to actually see how imperfect everything is.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by lazlo
                            The Windows registry is just a giant config file.
                            It is actually a database file and has all the problems a database file can suffer if something bad happens while writing to it, and unfortunately, it seems something is always writing to it. Unix systems depend on text files and there are certainly things that can go wrong with them, but the recovery is often a matter of deleting it, replacing it, or editing it with a text editor. Rarely does corruption result in a system that cannot boot. One area where this can occur is in the /kernel directory where driver configurations are kept, and corrupt driver software will prevent booting. Even when this happens it is still possible to boot from cd, net, thumb drive, or usb drive, tweak the failed file, and reboot.

                            Corrupt file systems are another problem entirely and regardless of the OS these can be fatal. Most recently in my case, my Mac laptop drive shat the bed and I could not recover. Sadly, I had just upgraded to the new Leopard OS and had not yet done a full backup as I didn't have room. I'd begun clearing out space, though, and according to Murphy's law, the disk failed just about the time my backup disk had space to make a backup. Everything not duplicated on my wife's Mac Mini was lost . I've since added a terrabyte of storage just for home backups and a second tape drive.

                            For the last several years I'd been juggling nearly a petabyte of data for the company I worked for. This was scattered across several SAN storage array cabinets from various vendors and much of it duplicated in England for disaster recovery. Over that time a lot of disks were lost to failure but we never lost data. Can't say the same for the Windows side of the house where data was lost on a regular basis.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dp
                              It is actually a database file and has all the problems a database file can suffer if something bad happens while writing to it, and unfortunately, it seems something is always writing to it.
                              LOL! Before Windows '95, Microsoft used separate .ini files -- text files, that were scattered all over. It was a disaster keeping track of .ini changes all over the place.

                              Having a centralized registry allows the OS to keep everything in one place, and keep track of changes. It's also a clean way to segregate the hardware configuration (HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE) from the user configurations (HKEY_USERS).

                              Bottom line: any OS has to keep the same registry data somewhere, so pick your poison: separate config files in /usr/etc or one giant config file: the registry.

                              Unix systems depend on text files and there are certainly things that can go wrong with them, but the recovery is often a matter of deleting it, replacing it, or editing it with a text editor.
                              Depends on the Unix. Mac OS X is built on the NextStep object-oriented framework that's layered on top of the Mach (BSD) kernel. Mac OS keeps the registry data in object-oriented databases called "PropertyLists" or PLists. For you Mac users out there: do a file search on the .plist extension.
                              Last edited by lazlo; 06-03-2008, 04:58 PM.
                              "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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