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MacBook Pro is the best performing Windows laptop

The MacBook Pro was judged to be the "best performing" Windows laptop, according to a new study by PC services company Soluto. Soluto used "frustration analytics" to make the determination, according to Brooke Crothers at CNet.

"Frustration analytics," in this case, tracks the crapware that PC makers put on machines fresh from the factory. Apple doesn't make new MacBook owners jump through hoops to have a useable machine, so the MacBook Pro wins.

Soluto feels their comparison is valid because it looks at computers used in the field, as opposed to how they can optimally be set up to run. Other "frustration metrics" measured by Soluto include crashes per week, hangs per week, average boot time, and frequency of "Blue Screens of Death."

Getting Windows working on the Mac takes some extra steps, though - installing Boot Camp or virtualization software and a fresh copy of Windows, for example. Soluto also dings Apple for possible driver issues.

Do you use Windows on a Mac? Are you doing it with Boot Camp or virtualization software? How's your experience, compared to a regular PC laptop?

  • Who cares.. MacBooks are over priced, underpowered piles of garbage!
  • Somewhat down to opinion though, do you not think? Most Mac owners are beyond happy with their performance
  • It is completely opinion. I will say this though - my last Mac lasted me almost 7 years. I was going through PCs every 2 to 3. Add the cost up, and it's worth it. Factoring in software is also a whole other ball game. Mac updates - $29 (not to mention they happen more regularly than Windows), Windows > $100, then office apps, MS Office is stupid expensive, yeah I can get it for Mac but Pages, Keynote, and Numbers are cheaper, save in Office formats, and get the job done. I don't know, I've always found myself spending less on software with a Mac and doing a lot less hardware upgrades due to not needing them (I've upgraded RAM in my Pro on my own because Apple's RAM prices are like highway robbery). Other than that, they've run like champs until I'm ready to upgrade. iMac and MBP. I also don't need to renew virus protection every year and pay for that type of additional software. Sure I can go buy a cheap PC, but it's going to cost me more in the long run than putting the money down for a Mac. There are people out there that just prefer Windows, and that's perfectly okay. But the people that argue Macs aren't worth the money, it's not even an argument anymore. Preferences are preferences. Find a way to back yours up without the cost argument, it's beating a dead horse and a moot point these days.
  • I have a 2007 Core 2 Duo iMac that is still performing quite well, compared to my friends i7 Dell tower. Sure, his i7 is faster at quite a variety of number crunching tasks (gaming, video encoding, etc), but the overall snappyness and performance of day-to-day stuff just seems lackluster on his system compared to my iMac. That being said, a custom, hand built part-by-part PC will run circles around most Macs, but not everyone is going to be able to do that themselves. Apple systems are built for quality, Dell/HP/IBM are built for sheer quantity (the cheaper the parts used, the more can be produced).
  • Allyson, agree 100%. The only reason i finally upgrade my iMac or MacBook is desire for new - not a need based analysis as it was when i owned PCs.
  • I've always built my own PCs from off the shelf parts I selected for the particular build or purpose. Never had virus or performance issues that I can remember. And it generally cost me less than a Mac or mass produced PC. Now having said that I also have a 13" MacBook Air with Pages, Numbers, & Keynote installed & it goes with me everywhere. I'm not in a "Post PC" world yet but I can certainly see merits from both camps. Choice is different for everybody.
  • Windows 8 update was $39. If you are going to compare non-office alternatives then you can use open office and it's free. As for anti-virus, well you can use the one from Microsoft which is also free.
  • My 2009 MacBook Pro has never had a single problem and still looks brand new. My 2011 HP EliteBook 8440p...I've had to replace a faulty LCD screen, the aluminum trim by the trackpad is loosing on the edges, one USB port does not work, and you can see the wear on the keyboard. The HP was more expensive than the MacBook, looks cheap because it's made primarily of plastic, and yet it weighs more. When I purchased the MacBook, I didn't have to spend an afternoon reformatting the HD and reinstalling the OS just to get rid of all the bloatware that came 'pre-installed' like I did with the HP...
  • "Who cares.. MacBooks are over priced, underpowered piles of garbage!" You know, I can never figure out why people like you take the time to surf an Apple-centric site and then post these rants. I mean, don't you have better things to do with your time?! I know, I know, "don't feed the troll," but I really would like this person to respond with their motivation for coming here.
  • All I know is my personal experience. Every two years, I would spend around $3200 on a PC laptop, top of the line. It usually worked great for the first 6 months and things would go downhill. I would have to reboot at least 5 times a day and I would have to reformat the harddrive every 3 months. I bought a macbook pro for the same money and it worked circles around it. In fact, it has saved me money because now I don't need to buy a new laptop until every 3 to 4 years saving me thousands of dollars. I run windows on parallels and have less problems with that than I did with my old PC laptops from before. No I'm not a fanboy, I am only a fan of what works. As soon as a better computer comes along, I will be there. But for me, better means less problems and more stability.
  • Have you ever tried one? Seriously, I have a late 2011 MB Pro 15", i7, 16GB ram that has given me 0 problems verses a HP Pavillion DV7 17", i7, 8GB ram that has never been right since day one! After 3 OS reinstalls, and one trip in for warranty repairs the HP still gives me the "Blue Screen of Death" at least once a week and the sound garbles no matter what form of media you are playing. I know an argument can be made for the difference in ram but there is no way any computer with more than 4GB of ram should be locking up by just having a couple of Word documents open, music playing, and 4-5 tabs open on any internet browser. I have to say that this HP is not the first problem Windows PC I have had. Macs run smoother, don't get junked up, and are so much less prone to problems. I make a living using a computer all day long and 0 down time is is worth the money for a Mac.
  • My mbp is over 2 years old and runs like new. It's also outlived any windows computer I ever had
  • underpowered? how is 3.1ghz quad core i7 with 8gb of memory and a 500gb SSD (oh and sandy bridge processor) underpowered? yeah i paid over $1500 for my computer. the fact of the matter is Macs are expensive. you get what you paid for. Brilliant architecture housed in a beautiful case. But if you can't afford something dont be sullen about it
  • I use parallels to run windows. I had too much trouble with drivers using bootcamp. Parallels was super easy to setup and I can run windows programs inside of Mac without having to reboot so that's a plus.
  • You do know they supply you with the full driver package for all the hardware yeah?
  • And these drivers are rarely updated by apple. Windows 8 has been out for almost 7 months and the boot camp drivers still are not working well. You can't open the bootcamp Control panel while on an administrators account (says you don't have the correct privilegeds). So far the only workaround is to make a second non-admin account and edit the preferences through there (really annoying).
  • I used to run boot camp on my mbp. It worked great, faster than a windows laptop i had at the time. I used it for a bit of gaming, and also for office. Only issues I ever had were with the track pad and single mouse button. Some times right clicking wouldn't work etc. I never use it anymore, I built my own pc which (obviously) runs a lot smoother. I think the best thing about macs running windows is simply no bloat ware. Most bloat-free os's are always praised though...
  • This all sounds very unscientific and tbh a bit biased. Not sure what these hoops to jump through on a Windows PC are, I've been using Windows since the early 90's and don't know of them. They're referenced along with bloatware. Is it "jumping through hoops" to go to Computer and select Uninstall or Change a program? I feel like the pain of setting up boot camp and installing windows and having potential driver issues is quite a bit worse than having to uninstall wild tangent games, but that's just my opinion.
  • Uninstalling bloatware is apparently a bigger deal then buying a copy of Windows and installing it on a Mac. My guess is the crowd having issues with the former isn't going to understand the concept of the latter.
  • No, it's more than that. I've bought several Windows computers over the years (HP and a Sony Vaio). Each one of the computers (even one that was "custom") had a bunch of bloat installed, and not just trial programs. The manufacturer had completely integrated Windows-native functions with their own clunky software (media playback, burning, readers, etc). I had to spend a couple of hours uninstalling all of this crap from my computer and ended up "breaking" something because another program was associated with previous installed software that appeared unrelated. I then had to hunt around and figure out what I uninstalled and tried to reinstall it using the 'backup' software HP gives. In addition to their software, they also had things for other companies, like Best Buy, Yahoo, etc. Eventually I quit going through this process and just started buying new Windows licenses and did fresh installs from the get-go. It's ridiculous that someone has to spend hours removing software before they can fully utilize their new computer. Sony is the worst of them though, in my experience. They have literal junk on the computers (or they did, maybe they don't anymore).
  • So the absolute worst case is you do the same thing as you'd do on a mac: install a clean version of Windows. At least you get the license when you buy a PC.
  • You don't get the license for a fresh install when you buy a PC. You get the license for the version that comes pre-installed on the computer, which comes with the bloatware baked in at some point during the installation. Again, this is HP and Sony. Maybe other companies back their computers differently. The process on a Mac is actually NOT the same. You don't have to wipe out your hard drive or do any kind of partitioning. With Parallels, you pop in the OS image (or disc) and install. That's it. Done in minutes. If you are down the road and decide you don't want Parallels anymore, you simply uninstall everything like a standard application on Mac. Toss it in the Trash.
  • "You don't get the license when you buy a PC."...
    HP allows you to create recovery discs. Other vendors vary: "With Parallels, you pop in the OS image (or disc) and install."
    What disc are you referring to? Parallels is $99 on top of the Windows cost. I imagine Boot Camp (the free option) is a different installation story.
  • I didn't say you didn't get a backup/recovery. I said they don't give you a fresh install license. You only get a license to reinstall the OS as it was purchased - bloatware and all. Maybe this has changed on some systems, but not in my experience. Parallels is $80, and $50 if you're upgrading. But yes, you do need to purchase Parallels with a Windows license if you go that route. But Parallels isn't the only option out there, that's just what I use. Boot Camp isn't the only option either. But this isn't about what process to use, it's about the fact that (for me and most Mac users) - it's cleaner and more efficient to run Windows on a Mac with minimal additional work unless you have custom-built a PC with a clean version of Windows, or the manufacturer doesn't bloat their systems out of the box. Other factor to consider, when after a clean install on a PC, you need to hunt around for manufacturer specific drivers and then install those. That could be another hour or more depending on the amount of drivers, or how large they are. None of this is necessary with Parallels, except taking 2 minutes to install the program and then the time to install the OS. Straight forward.
  • I have never bought a PC with a reinstall-with bloatware disk. Every PC I have purchased, from multiple different manufacturers, has come with a disk to install a clean version of Windows. That said, I'm now Mac at home, mostly Linux at work, and windows only in virtual machines, and not looking back.
  • This is completely inaccurate. You can easily remove any and/or all bloatware from a pc if it's included. I have a sony laptop and you can even order them with a clean windows install if you want when you do a custom order. If you buy from bestbuy or something it will have bloatware on it. Furthermore any pc you buy, you can 100% do a wipe and clean install with the licence that you are given.
  • THAT is completely inaccurate. Not every PC gives you a clean install license of Windows, but rather the recovery of what was on the system when you bought it. I have purchased two computers directly from HP. There is no option to remove the bloatware, only the choice not to have trials of virus software and Office. Sony might be different, but when it's purchased from a retailer -- it's certainly bloated as well. My brother-in-law's Samsung was too.
  • You are referring to 2 different things. Yes the rescue disks that you would have got with or created on your hp or whatever manufacturer are designed to re-install the computer back to the way you bought it with all the garbage on it. However you can put in a windows dvd in and do a clean install using the windows licence that was given to you. I have done it many times on a variety of different brands of pcs including hp.
  • Where do you get the Windows dvd? My laptops have never come with one, and the manufacturers I've dealt with only ship you recovery discs, for like $15. Either way though, this kind of validates the problem with many Windows computers. You either have to spend a bunch of time uninstalling tons of bloat, or, if you have access to it, use a clean copy of Windows to wipe out and partition the drive and reinstall Windows. None of this is the case with a Mac install, except the obvious part of installing the OS once. I don't know why this topic is being discussed anyway. Seems kind of... pointless. Obviously a Windows user is going to scoff at the notion that a Mac might operate Windows better, and a Mac user is going to scoff at the idea of Windows over all. :P
  • You can download it from microsoft for free. We are discussing this because the topic was windows running on a mac. It's not really a problem because either way you are doing one clean install whether on a mac or pc if you choose to do so. Many don't even bother and it's not really harder on one or the other.
  • That's assuming you're OK with the performance hit and additional cost of Parallels vs Boot Camp. Your other arguments are vendor-specific. If you don't want bloatware, buy from a vendor that doesn't install it or do exactly what you'd do with a Mac with Boot Camp. Choice is paramount when buying a PC.
  • When I first made the move to Mac many years ago I used parallels but after a month or two I realized I wasn't using Windows anymore so I removed both to recover the space and never looked back.
  • Bit of an outdated view, but I've run XP on a 2008 MB on VM Ware Fusion and found it capable, but slow to get up and running. For graphic intensive Windows programs (in my case ArcGIS), I would say you're almost always better off with a higher spec'd PC at the same price of an entry level Macbook. The price premium for discrete graphics and higher-than-base guts in a Mac are just unreasonable.
  • "Getting Windows working on the Mac takes some extra steps, though - installing Boot Camp or virtualization software and a fresh copy of Windows, for example." Umm....yeah. Apparently it's only a very tiny inconvenience that Macbook Pros *don't come with a copy of Windows!* Minor point, there.
  • As anyone who has tried to do windows 8 gestures on a MBP knows, the article is complete BS.
  • What gestures? I have not noticed anything unusual that can't be done on my MBP or desktop Mac.
  • Swipe up. Swipe down. Most of what is described here:
  • I don't know what you're utilizing to run Windows 8 - but I'm running the retail version in Parallels 8 and all those gestures just worked when I tested them out. Thanks for the link though. I didn't know I could do those things. :)
  • I run Parallels 8 and it operates flawlessly, and seamlessly with a Windows 8 install. Not a single hiccup or drag on the system. I have had no problems with any drivers or applications. Coherence mode is pretty sweet when I don't want to see Windows and just want to use the applications.
  • I am running it in Bootcamp. I installed trackpad++ and got most of that functionality working but it does not work nearly as smooth as gestures in OSX.
  • I've done Boot Camp on all the Macs I've owned except for my 1st Mac (iBook G4). Boot Camp is the goods. Though my current MacBook Pro is almost 3 years old, I boot into Windows at least once per week or so to play PC games. Battlefield 3 works great. I don't care about "frame rates" or whatever, I just wanna play and Windows 7 Ultimate works GREAT on my 15" MBP (high-res display helps). Even using VMWare Fusion to access the Boot Camp partition works great. Running Windows natively is fast on a modern MacBook Pro. I can attest that a Mac truly is the best machine to run Windows.
  • I own a macbook pro, the 2012 non-retina model, and it's the best laptop I've ever owned.
    I use both Windows and OSX a lot, but I started to get the impression that windows is just sluggish, no matter how much juice does the computer have. I compared my macbook with an Alienware laptop, with same specs, and there wasn't any visual difference in performance.
    And the thing is, I run windows with Parallels, so my laptop was running 2 OSs when I compared the 2, but still not difference....
  • Windows on a Mac? That's crazy talk! ;-)
  • Except Mac has no touch, and windows 8 needs touch, and I'm not talking about a trackpad.
  • Windows 8 doesn't *need* touch.
  • Windows 8 is much nicer with touch.
  • The funny part of this article is a craptastic $499 Acer notebook is right up there with the Macbook Pro.
    I also like this part in the article "The report went on to admit that it might be more fair to compare a cleanly installed MacBook Pro with a cleanly installed PC from Acer or Dell." ugh.
  • "Apple doesn't make new MacBook owners jump through hoops to have a useable machine" Uh, wouldn't having to install Windows on a MacBook be the definition of "jump through hoops"? I'm pretty sure that no matter how you try to frame the argument, a clean install of Windows on a PC is going to be easier than on a MacBook. There are no go betweens like bootcamp on the PC that you need to deal with...
  • I use Parallels to run Windows 8 on my MBP. It is for the most part seamless when run in coherence mode. I haven't had any problems at all.
  • Got a 2 year old Asus laptop running windows 7. Never had ANY problems. It's fast and does everything. Don't see the need to spend double the price on a mac then spend more money and effort getting windows on it.
  • These guys are idiots just trying to get in the news. I guess it works. Yes I agree PC manufactures have a huge problem trying to boast their profit margins by including other companies crap on a clean install. With that said, most manufactures include a "Clean Install" on their recover partition and even if they didn't you could reinstall Windows clean with less effort that you could install on a Mac, not to mention performance would be better.
  • I used Boot camp on MBP and ran Windows XP PRO WITH NO PROBLEMS Next desktop will Mac with Win XP PRO and Parallels and should be a GREAT combination
  • I'm a die-hard Windows fan but that doesn't mean that I don't appreciate what Apple has to offer. Apple certainly makes one of the best hardware, no doubt about that. Let's get it straight - Apple wins because they create a limited set of hardware with their operating system in mind for best performance offered. People call their hardware expensive, but for what you're getting at that price, it's worth it. Microsoft on the other hand offers an Operating System that targets every hardware out there which may or may not offer the best performance the OS can offer and thus lingers. Where it fails badly is in trying to provide a cheaper solution with a poorer experience. Perhaps if Windows were made intelligent enough to automatically adjust to hardware capabilities... I have a Quad-Core desktop in my office running Windows 8 right now. It's almost 2 years of age, but unfortunately, the performance that it offers with various applications makes it seem much older. The reason? 'Coz when i purchased that, i got the low-end processor, the low-end motherboard, and so on. I have an old HP laptop that's almost 4.5 years old (or older). It's not a Quad-Core but a Core2Duo CPU... and that one, surprisingly works awesome to this day even! Yes, it potentially does not run some of the newest software as well (like Adobe CS6) as my current laptop but it works well with most of everything - especially in comparison to the Quad core computer. Currently I'm using a Dell XPS 15 (i7 Sandy) laptop that i've had for almost 2 years. To this day it hasn't caused me problems so far and I love the design and performance it offers. So... When Apple is dedicated to providing the top hardware to its customers, obviously that translates to the best performing windows laptop as well. Doesn't mean that there aren't other better choices out there for Windows but probably not cheaper.
  • Sorry to ask a newbie question here, but it seems to fit. Our house is full of pc's so I'm a little unsure of what I do/don't know, but we do have itouchs etc. Anyway, our daughter is going to college and has the opportunity to choose between a pc (dell) and a macbook pro . . to me the choice is obvious (mbp), but the tech said something about needing to choose software, the choices of course are the pages/etc mac stuff or a 4 year license to office 360. What confused me is he recommended the office360 license since many professors have pc's, but I thought you could save mac stuff to a "word" format? Also, if she is used to word is it much of an adjustment to use pages?
    Would love to get her the mbp (esp since her employer basically said pick a laptop for college and they'll pay for it :) ) I just want to make sure I do it right for her in terms of setting up software, etc.
  • I haven't really used Mac myself but know of a few people who have and they've barely ever complained about lack of Software. Sure there is a, seemingly, larger market for PC but when it comes to Software of actual usage, most are available across platforms and today if you get Mac and end up requiring to run a software that only supports Windows, you can get Parallels and a license of Windows Operating System to run Windows simultaneously (Without exiting out of iOS) and run the necessary applications needed - i.e. the best of both worlds really. As for office, the salesmane may not be properly informed or might have a higher commission rate against the PC laptop sale as Software such as Pages, Numbers, and Keynote, etc. are cheaper on Mac and save in MS Office format as well. So even if your daughter's professors use PC, she should have no issues with submitting stuff to them. MBP is expensive compared to PC devices, but it does over a high-end device for the cost. I personally use a Windows laptop and love my XPS machine and don't see myself switching to Mac unless work related. If it's a high-end (proper specifications, etc.) Windows 8 laptop with a touch screen and all, then perhaps I might incline towards that as I love those ;) In short... Let her choose what she loves best and I'm sure it'll work out best for her. If the software that she sees herself using mostly exists (or alternates exist) on each iOS and Windows, then it's just a matter of preference really... So have her try out her hands at both and see what she likes. Good luck!
  • I use a Mac with school. My University also offered me a deal to get 4 years of Office 365 for like $50, so I snatched it up. This gives you a copy for Mac and a copy for Windows. There is supposed to be a Mac version of the latest edition of Office coming out at some point (365 is the original 2011 version for Mac). I have never had any problems with getting the software required for school. Anything that they have required has been available for my MBP. If something wasn't available, I found a copy of Windows 7 online (legit) for $70 a couple of years ago on Amazon that I installed a while back with Parallels. Of course, my University gave me a free copy of Windows 8 Pro, so I have that running on Parallels now as well. You really can't go wrong getting her the MBP.
  • Thanks . . MBP is ordered and processing =)
  • Office 365 grants you a license to the Mac version of Office, Office for Mac 2011.
  • IMO, choose the MBP and buy your daughter MS Office for Mac. That should do the job =)
  • I was a hard core Windows guy... forever... and I've been an IT guy for over 20 years now... almost exclusively on Windows and or UNIX machines. I had some experience from time to time with Macs as part of my job. About 6 months ago, work gave me a new laptop... an MacBook Pro 15". Took me about half a day to adjust and I really don't have any regrets. The build quality of the machine is amazing. I run Windows 7 using the free VirtualBox software from Oracle when I need to do something Windows specific. Windows 7 running as a VM on my Mac works terrific. Very fast and responsive. I now have the best of both worlds. Yes, it does cost a bit more but from my experience so far, the quality of the machine and the flexibility... makes up for it.
  • The problem is not really with Microsoft or the computer manufacturers per se. Although they do use cheap materials and getting servicing can be a nightmare. However the real problem is that neither the manufacturers or most users know how to setup a computer properly. At the company I work for I am in charge of 80-100 Windows computers and they crash or lock up very rarely. I have also used Windows for over 15 years now and I have never had a computer that was ever frustrating or constantly locked up or crashed. I use both OSes daily and I like each one for different reasons. I never did get this whole them or us thing but I have experienced it so much I just ignore it all together. I ignore the generalized comments that one is slower, crappier, over priced. Personally I have used Windows on my Mac in parallel through VMware Fusion for years. Now instead it's awesome but I use Windows through Remote Desktop which allows me to use my Mac's full power and still be able to use Windows full power. The downside is not a lot of people will be able to run this type of setup because it requires one of each machine.
  • I have just bought my MBP less than 3 weeks ago and I'm loving it. Initially I wanted to install Windows on it but on second thought the reason I need Windows is because we are using Excel and Word in office so I said lets just buy Microsoft Office for Mac and leave Windows behind. So far so good. Actually, I can do my office work WAY FASTER on OSX than on Windows.