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Windows or Mac for Programming: Which Is the Best Option?

Are you stuck on which operating system should run on your computer? If you are using it for coding, you should focus on the ideal features for programming. Windows and Mac are the most popular operating systems for coding; each has a good and ugly side. 

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While experienced programmers give convincing reasons for sticking to either side, newbies are left with a dilemma on which way to go. Not anymore. This article will analyze both options and make it easier for you to make the best decision. 

Are MacBooks Good For Programming?

Macbooks, a powerful laptop made by Apple and runs on macOS, offers more than just a fashion statement; they are considered developer-friendly laptops because they lean toward a super solid command-line environment. Here are more reasons that make MacBooks a darling to many programmers.   

UNIX-Based Operating System

Both Windows and UNIX are excellent operating systems for coding and programming. However, UNIX has the upper hand, considering it offers a lot of flexibility and stability.  UNIX has thousands of commands that blend to deliver a complex and super powerful command. That is not all; it also allows users to create new commands in line with their coding needs. 

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UNIX also offers stability because it allows users to handle complex programming projects without hiccups. The stability feature explains why most websites run under a UNIX-based environment. 

Offers Security

macOS have inbuilt state-of-the-art antivirus software that protects your device from malicious attacks, a worthy assurance for programmers who spend a lot of time online. Also, technologies such as System Integrity Protection(SIP) and Execute Disable(ED) make it difficult, if not impossible, for malware to harm your files and ensure processes do not change critical system files. Although windows are also secure, it’s completely vulnerable compared to macOS. 


macOS offers undisputed compatibility, which is a plus for programmers. It allows users to install Windows or even Linux in a virtual environment. The Apple devices come with a hard drive partition that supports a secondary operating system, which is unavailable in windows.  

For instance, windows have exclusive tools you may need for your project. MacBook’s cross-platform compatibility feature allows you to switch between the two operating systems without any issues.  

Mac Drawbacks

After pointing out the good side of MacBooks, it’s time to look at its ugly side to help you make a more informed decision. Here are some of its disadvantages

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  1. Costly. Apple products are costly. However, they are a good value for your money.
  2. It is complicated to use, especially for beginners. The user interface is not intuitive and can be confusing when using macOS for the first time.
  3. Not ideal for video games
  4. Not easy to upgrade

Is Windows Good For Programming?

Windows is the most used operating system in the world. This superiority means it comes with goodies for programmers as well. Here are some of its advantages. 

Easy To Upgrade

Windows should be your best bet if you want to switch to another computer with the newest features, such as a bigger screen or specific display. Several companies such as HP, Samsung, Lenovo, and Dell release computers that run on the Windows operating systems every other day.

The feature allows users to switch to a more convenient brand without changing the OS. On the other hand, Apple is the only company that develops macOS. Therefore, you are stuck with one design as you do not have much choice, which could delay your coding goals. 

Ideal For Animation and Video Games 

The ideal operating system for coding and programming is based on the user’s development style. When you choose animation and video games, think of the windows platform as it is built primarily for this. Microsoft has shown a keen interest in the gaming market and has tailored its OS specifically for gaming programmers.  

For instance, the OS offers excellent tools such as OpenGL APIs and Direct3D that are useful for game development. The OS supports many input devices, high-end audio, and video hardware.

Intuitive and Straightforward to Use

Windows is known as a simple and easy-to-use OS. It provides the users with a friendly and consistent user interface and eliminates the need to learn a different interface every other time. It also provides a drop-down menu, graphics, and other tools that make coding easy, fast, and fun.  

Supports a Huge Number of Programming Languages

With Windows OS, you can code almost all languages. The windows store has numerous scripted programming languages you can install and start coding immediately with ease. 

Windows Setbacks

Windows, too, has a fair share of its shortcomings. They include;

  1. Do not offer enough security and is prone to malware
  2. Its interface can not be configured
  3. Poor when coding command-line programs. 

Windows or Mac for Programing: The Final Verdict

As mentioned earlier, the choice of an operating system for coding falls back on the user development style. If you want an OS to develop iOS applications and work with servers, go for macOS because it offers security, flexibility, and stability.  Also, macOS offers cross-platform compatibility if you like coding and experimenting with different operating systems. 

On the other hand, Windows OS is recommended if you want to specialize in graphics programs and video games. The bottom line, a definitive answer on which operating system is ideal depends on the program you want to develop and the features you want to prioritize. 

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George Philip
George Philip
George is a tech-savvy professional and enthusiast. He writes content that gives you the insights and information you need to understand how tech is impacting your life, workplace, and world. You may contact him via his email - [email protected]


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