What are the good software installs I should be looking for in OSX Lion after switching from Windows 7?

William Malave September 5, 2012
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For sometime, I have consider myself affluent in Windows XP and 7 (vista was a tragedy spelled out in tears). Spending my time trying and testing software that I would personally endorse to my friends and family.

Having the itch to try different OSs, I dabbled into Ubuntu and now I have purchased a Macbook Pro. To best understand this system, I am reaching out to experienced veterans to get the most of this system.

Open suggestions for an Individual Business Owner, Military member, Movie enthusiast, and Family man are greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

  1. susendeep dutta
    September 7, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Firstly,there's no harm in trying out free and opensource softwares as present in the link below -


    Next,for commercial softwares,

    MS Office,Parallels(for virtualization),

    video converter master

  2. Gerhard Tinned
    September 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    I think the List here from MakeUseOf is a very good start.


    If you search something else usualy the AppStore and the Store from Bodega (http://appbodega.com/) are good sources to find Apps.

  3. Rajaa Chowdhury
    September 6, 2012 at 2:02 am

    First is the OS X Lion or Mountain Lion. If you are on Lion, I shall request you to upgrade to the latest Mountain Lion. It is available at the MAC App Store at $19.99 .

    Secondly, if you tell the category of the software applications you want to test, it will be easier to suggest names. Why don't you login to the Apps Store via iTunes and then, you can check out all the application availavble for your Macintosh and you can search for paid or free and also categorywise the applications. Believe me, it is more fun finding new applications on the app store rather than asking. :) . However suggesting a few applications to get you going : iLife
    iBooks Author,
    Final Cut Pro,
    Logic Pro,
    Remote Desktop

  4. Tim Brookes
    September 6, 2012 at 2:02 am


    There's a good chance a lot of the software you used on Windows 7 has a Mac version, particularly the big software packages. I'm talking about things like browsers, media players and serious creative software. Some things you can get in both flavours include:

    Chrome (IMO the best web browser out there)
    VLC (ditto, but for media players)
    Adobe's Creative Suite
    Steam (with a limited catalogue, I might add)

    However some things you won't be able to run, and will have to find substitutes - like:

    µTorrent - no Mac version, use Transmission instead
    Paint.NET - no Mac version, still personally not found a good alternative but web tools like Pixlr do the job. Also XnConvert for simple conversion tasks.
    WinRAR - no Mac version, use something like The Unarchiver instead.

    You have probably noticed this, but iLife (the suite of apps installed on your Mac when you got it) is quite a comprehensive list of software. You will find iPhoto is ideal for organising and performing quick edits of your photos. iMovie is a simple but fairly powerful video editor, which takes much of the pain out of splicing together clips (and it's nice to use even if you're a veteran of Final Cut/Premier), GarageBand is fun for the kids but also has a few real world uses and can provide hours play.

    As a recent switcher myself (a few months now) let me share two things that are very useful to a new OS X user:

    Command+Space opens Spotlight, the Mac's powerful search function. Want an app? Cmd+Space then start typing its name. Enter launches it. Super fast app launching!

    Command+~ (tilde) switches between an application's currently open windows. On a Windows PC, this is achieved using just Alt+Tab, but on a Mac Cmd+Tab just cycles through different apps. If you've got two Chrome windows open and you want to switch to the other than Cmd+~ is the combination.

    If you want any specific software then I'd recommend having a peruse of the Mac App Store. It's by no means a comprehensive list at the moment, but there should be more and more apps being added all the time since Gatekeeper was introduced with Mountain Lion.