The days of Apple products are behind me. I had been developing on a Macbook for over twelve years, but now, I’ve switched to an ever trending setup: OpenBSD on a Thinkpad.
The new platform is a winner. Everything is
clean, quick, and configurable. When I
ps uaxww, I’m not hogging ‘gigs’ of RAM
just to have things up and running. There’s
no black magic that derails me at every turn.
In short, my sanity has been long restored.
What I miss
Nothing is better than a fast web browser. In Mac, this ‘OS within the OS’ was a mean beast. It certainly ran fast, but the Chromium package for OpenBSD isn’t all that bad.
That magnet power interface was a real win with the Apple laptops. I miss that, in addition to speakers that could be maxed out to their potential.
On the other hand…
There’s a healthy list of things I will forever be glad to never have to deal with again:
- the omnipresent ‘Dock’ (never used it once)
- the omnipresent ‘Finder’
- ‘.DS_Store’ files
- black magic in the ‘Terminal.app’
- Notifications (and its omnipresent menu hamburger icon)
- App store
- start-up chord
I’ve noticed that with every passing year, the peripheral interface ports are dwindling. On an older Macbook, I still had some options (SD card reader, USB2, etc.). But lately, it’s out of control.
On this middle-of-the-road Thinkpad, I have an SD card reader, HDMI, scads of USB ports, RJ-45 — I’m never going to need a dongle, or say the word dongle, ever again now that Apple is out of my life.
My memory is pretty good. And I recall when I got my first Mac product: it was because there was no other decent option for having a development laptop, but one where Microsoft Windows wasn’t a requirement.
Many times I tried duct-taping a Linux install on my various Macs, but things were ‘just not there.’ There was always an issue with this or that, and it was truly painful.
I think I lost the scent of the trail. OpenBSD works so well, I wonder how many years I could have been using this great OS outside of just the server world.
Of course, this setup isn’t for all. If you’re green on the UNIX front, or can’t read a manual, you’d be foolish to do it. For the others, it certainly is a viable solution, to say the least.
I can honestly predict that I can see myself using this setup for twenty-five more years. It’s like coming home to a quiet, orderly house.
Open your heart to OpenBSD on Thinkpad at your first opportunity.