Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC

Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC

Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC

Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC

The best Windows ever

Be more productive and creative with 3D tools, cross-device experiences, and more.
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Windows 10 Home

Rated 2.5 out of 5 stars


There are 314 reviews314
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Best for personal or household use.

  • Fast start-up and Windows Hello for password free sign-ins [1]
  • Windows Mixed Reality for exploring new worlds, going to top destinations, and playing immersive games [2]
  • My People for easy access to key contacts, drag and drop sharing and sending animated emojis
  • Windows Ink for creating lists, sticky notes and drawings, writing directly on your screen, and working smarter on Office documents [3][5]
  • 4K gaming, DirectX 12 graphics, Mixer broadcasting, and a more intuitive Game mode [4]
  • Paint 3D and Remix 3D for seeing 3D creations in your world, or enhancing photos, videos and Office documents [5]
  • The reimagined Photos app for creating videos with soundtrack, transitions, 3D effects, and Windows Ink
  • Microsoft Edge for longer battery life, 4K Ultra HD and Dolby Audio, and organizing the web your way
  • Cortana, your personal digital assistant [6]

Windows 10 Pro

Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars


There are 219 reviews219
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Best for small businesses or users needing enhanced functionality.

All of the features of Windows 10 Home, plus:
  • Get built-in protection from security threats at no extra cost with BitLocker, Windows Defender Antivirus and more
  • Access all your files, folders and apps from virtually anywhere on any device with remote desktop
  • Choose deferred updates so you can decide when and how to update your devices
  • Connect to your school, business, or corporate network via the cloud with Azure Active Directory
  • Create and run virtual machines with Hyper-V [7]
  • Make use of powerful management tools for single sign on and more control over your devices

Windows 10 Pro for Workstations

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Best for advanced users and small businesses that want enhanced functionality with the ability to compute intensive workloads.

All of the features of Windows 10 Pro plus:
  • Resilient File System (ReFS) designed for high fault tolerance and handling large data volumes
  • Persistent memory to access files fast - at the speed of your computer’s main memory
  • Faster file sharing with features that offer increased throughput with low latency and low CPU utilization
  • Ability to run high performance device configurations with expanded hardware support

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The best PC for Windows gaming

PC gaming is better than more social than ever on Windows 10, with 4K gaming, Mixer broadcasting, and DirectX 12 graphics.


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Windows 10

Get the new and improved Windows when you upgrade to Windows 10. You'll soon discover that it is familiar to Windows users, but a more personalized experience that takes everything you already love about prior versions like Windows 7 and 8 to the next level.
Windows 10 delivers an even better Start Menu, expanding the possibilities and bringing over your favorite apps and pins so they're easily accessible. Not only does it make multitasking easier than ever, it also interoperates well with software and hardware you already have, allowing you to stay productive whenever you need to get to work. Specifically, you can view up to four apps and all open tasks at one time.
When you upgrade to Windows 10, your apps will work great in all modes, on all Windows enabled devices. Browse Microsoft Store and you'll find plenty of amazing devices that are designed to work perfectly with the latest version of Windows.
Whether you want to work or play, Windows 10 helps you interact with your devices in the perfect way. Amazing apps like Mail, Calendar, Music, Video, Maps, and more come standard with Windows 10 and can use OneDrive to back up your information. And the gamer in you will love how your Windows 10 device can sync with Xbox Live, letting you record gameplay in seconds, stream games from your Xbox One console to your device anywhere at home, and more. Buy Windows 10 and you'll get more flexibility than ever before.
If you're already a Windows user, download a Windows 10 upgrade so you can experience the latest in Windows technology.
If you work with big data, create large graphics, edit video, or need CAD (Computer Aided Design), Windows 10 Pro for Workstations is for you. It's designed for researchers, engineers, video editors, graphic artists, and teams that work with big data. It stores and transfers files faster, and even finds and repairs data faults, plus has the speed, resilience, and power to run on the next generation of PC hardware for server-grade data protection and performance.
[1] Requires specialized hardware, including fingerprint reader, illuminated IR sensor or other biometric sensors and capable devices.
[2] Windows Mixed Reality requires a compatible Windows 10 PC and headset, plus the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update; PC hardware requirements may vary for available apps, features and content.
[3] Touch-capable PC required, pen accessory may be sold separately.
[4] 4K hardware and supported games required.
[5] Office sold separately.
[6] Cortana available in select markets; experience may vary by region and device.
[7] Client Hyper-V requires a 64-bit system with second-level address translation (SLAT) capabilities and an additional 2GB of RAM.
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, Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC

10 of the best laptops for Windows 10

There's a Windows 10 laptop for everybody — yes, even die-hard Apple fans.
All products featured here are independently selected by our editors and writers.If you buy something through links on our site, Mashable may earn an affiliate commission.
By Rudie Obias

Although MacBooks have grown in popularity over the past decade, Microsoft is making a bit of a comeback among consumers with the release of Windows 10 a few years ago. In fact, there are some benefits of using Windows 10 over MacOS X, such as functionality, ease of use, and touch-ability. Believe it or not, you can actually use many Windows 10 laptops like tablets.

SEE ALSO: Up your game: 7 of the best gaming laptops to make you 'PC Master Race'

Moreover, Windows-based laptops are catching up with MacBooks in terms of design and looks. PC laptops have always gotten a bad name since they have historically prioritized function over style thanks to cheap materials and awful looking displays. Apple computers, on the other hand, integrate form and style into one beautiful machine. 

Manufacturers like Huawei and Lenovo have taken it upon themselves to create great looking PC laptops that are made with premium materials like aluminum and glass, while Microsoft also started to take cues from Apple. The computer company has started to make their own laptops that are specifically built for Windows 10 for the best possible user experience.

Windows 10 is much cleaner and intuitive to use with more power and options than Apple could ever offer with their laptops. In addition, Windows is better for gaming than Apple overall, with more powerful machines that can handle just about any graphically intense video game out there. 

Does Apple offer 4K or touchscreen displays? Nope. Can you get 32GB of memory in a MacBook Pro? No again. PC laptops are built for a wide range of people, from casual users to hardcore video editors and gamers. There's a Windows 10 laptop for everybody — yes, even diehard Apple fans.

Although there is a bit of a learning curve if you're switching from Mac to Windows, the transition takes a few days to relearn how to use a computer. But once you're acclimated to Windows 10, you might not ever return to MacOS X again.  

Here are the best laptops running Windows 10:

Sleek and sexy design • Radiant display • Easy-to-type keyboard • Fantastic performance
Unflattering webcam • No SD slot • The laptop fans can get loud • Average battery life
The Huawei MateBook X Pro is one of the best, if not the best, Windows 10 laptops on the market today. This laptop is a great alternative to the Apple MacBook Pro thanks to its brilliant display and performance.

1. Huawei MateBook X Pro

It heavily copies what makes the Apple MacBook Pro great and is a legit MacOS alternative for Windows 10 users.
  • Storage: 512GB SSD
  • Memory: 8GB/16GB
  • Features: one USB 3.0, one USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), one USB-C 3.1, HDMI port, VGA port, 13.9-inch 3K 3,000 x 2,000 LED with touch panel display, Intel Core i7-8550U, Intel UHD Graphics 620, Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics
The Huawei MateBook X Pro is such a great Windows laptop that it might actually make devoted Apple fans blush and consider making the switch from Mac to PC. Why is that, you might ask? Well, the laptop is powerful with its Intel Core i7-8550U processor and Intel UHD Graphics 620 and Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics card working together to deliver fantastic performance again and again. 
The laptop runs Windows 10 Signature Edition, so there’s no bloatware or free trial software slowing you down with annoying pop-ups and clutter. In fact, the Huawei MateBook X Pro gives you the best and cleanest Windows 10 experience yet, which makes it ideal for people thinking about making the switch.
Not to mention the laptop’s sleek and sexy design that looks pretty familiar. There’s no doubt about it, Huawei designed the MateBook X Pro to mimic the Apple MacBook Pro, which explains its name and design. In fact, the laptop even comes in Space Gray, as a possible way to attract Apple users to make the leap to Windows 10. 
However, the MateBook X Pro’s design is also functional thanks to the laptop’s impressive, near bezel-less display, which is also a touchscreen. Huawei achieves a massive 91% screen-to-body ratio with a clever design by eliminating the laptop’s webcam placement. Believe it or not, but the webcam is hidden as a handy pop-out in the keyboard itself. This design choice works to give more screen real estate to the display and to keep the webcam covered when not in use. (So there’s no need for unsightly tape to cover it up.) Although it’s already hidden and out of the way, it does give unflattering views when it’s on, which might get annoying if you’re always in video meetings or conference calls.
The laptop is compact and lightweight too, weighing just under 3 lbs. The Huawei MateBook X Pro is perfect for commuting and traveling, while the laptop has fantastic usability with an assortment of ports, such as one USB 3.0, one USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), one USB-C 3.1, an HDMI port, and a VGA port. While the laptop is a winner in most categories, the MateBook X Pro features a ho-hum battery life with an average of eight hours of use on a single charge. Overall, while there are some minor flaws, the Huawei MateBook X Pro is designed to impress and built for work and entertainment, as a brilliant Windows 10 laptop.
Although it heavily copies what makes the Apple MacBook Pro great, the Huawei MateBook X Pro is a legit MacOS alternative for Windows 10 users. With its sleek and sexy build and design, the laptop will turn heads, while also considered one of the best PC machines out there.
The Huawei MateBook X Pro starts at $1,199.99 on Amazon.
Lightweight and ultra portable • Strong performance • Comfortable keyboard and touchpad • Easy login • Long battery life
Webcam placement is awkward • Touchscreen is not standard • Not as premium as the price suggests
With different configurations, the Dell XPS 13 is built as a great Windows laptop, whether you work from home, the office, or on the road. The laptop is refined for ease of use, durability, and outstanding performance.

2. Dell XPS 13

The Dell XPS 13 is a powerful laptop that’s designed to show off the very best of Windows 10. Armed with a brilliant display and a powerful processor, the ultrabook is built for portability and business.
  • Storage: 256GB PCIe SSD
  • Memory: 8GB/16GB
  • Features: two USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), one USB-C 3.1, microSD slot, 13.3-inch, Ultra HD 3,840 x 2,160 UltraSharp InfinityEdge display, Intel Core i5-8250U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
In 2015, Dell started a trend in ultrabooks with the original Dell XPS 13. The computer company offered near bezel-less screens to highlight what Windows 10 can do better than MacOS, which is deliver amazing looking applications on brilliant and vibrant displays with an Ultra HD and UltraSharp "InfinityEdge." 
Today, Dell has packed more real estate to the 13-inch display at a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 with an option to go full 4K. They achieve this feat with a unique placement of the webcam. Instead of living at the center top of the display, it lives at the center bottom. While this might lend to some awkward video calls with the webcam pointing up towards you, it gives more room to showcase the true power of Windows 10. 
REVIEW: Dell's new XPS 13 is a good alternative if the MacBook Pros make you angry
Trust us when we say that this is the best Windows 10 has ever looked on a laptop. But Dell didn’t just include a brilliant display on the XPS 13. The company also packed the ultrabook with an Intel Core i5-8250U processor and Intel UHD Graphics 620 graphic card that work together to deliver fantastic performance with a top-notch Windows 10 experience — the Pro Edition of the operating system is included out of the box. This means the laptop is built for productivity, with almost 22 hours of battery life and an assortment of workhorse applications like Microsoft Office 365 included.
The laptop also features a wide range of specs, including two USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), one USB-C 3.1, and a microSD slot for additional storage. 
Amazon customer Gregory Reiber writes:
"Great laptop at the right price. Fast processor (even though it's not 8th Gen), great display, and I love the touch screen. It's almost as light as the 12 inch MacBook, about the same size, just a little thicker and it has more external connections which makes it more user friendly. Does run a bit hot, so a laptop cooling pad is recommended."
Read our full review here.
Powerful performance in either laptop or tablet mode • Amazing battery life • Top-notch fanless design
Expensive • Surface Pen 3 not included • Display wobbles in kiosk mode
If you want the best Windows 10 experience imaginable and money is no object, then the Microsoft Surface Book 2 is the perfect ultrabook for you. The laptop is one of the most powerful with high-end specs and features. The Microsoft Surface Book 2 is the most ideal way to showcase everything Windows 10 can do for you.

3. Microsoft Surface Book 2

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 is the refined version of the original ultrabook to go along with the new refined version of Windows 10.
  • Storage: 256GB/1TB
  • Memory: 8GB/16GB
  • Features: two USB 3.1, one USB-C, SD slot, two Surface Connect ports, 13.5-inch 3,000 x 2,000 “PixelSense” touchscreen display, Intel Core i5/i7, Intel HD Graphics 620 – Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050
In 2015, Microsoft started to make their own laptops and tablets to fully showcase what Windows 10 could do with hardware specifically made for the operating system. Years later, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 is the refined version of the original ultrabook to go along with Windows 10. 
Microsoft was like John Hammond from Jurassic Park when designing the Surface Book 2; the computer company “spared no expense” to bring it to market (only the laptop won’t turn on you and try to eat you). The mighty 2-in-1 features impressive Intel Core i5 processor in its base model and Intel HD Graphics 620 graphics for creatives and gamers alike, while the "PixelSense" touch display with a resolution of 3,000 x 2,000 is perfectly compatible with the Surface Pen 3 (not included). 
REVIEW: Microsoft’s Surface Book 2 really is a beautiful beast
Although this laptop is one of the most powerful Windows machines out there, you’ll never hear it push its limits with the Surface Book 2’s fanless design. Believe it or not, this powerful laptop is completely silent, so you could focus on your work and daily tasks with a whopping 17 hours of battery life. The laptop also features an assortment of ports, such as two USB 3.1, one USB-C, and full SD slot reader, which is pretty rare in today’s ultrabooks.
One of the few downsides with the Microsoft Surface Book 2 is its hefty price tag starting at $1,499.00 for the base model. While Microsoft spared no expense designing the Surface Book 2, they passed on the price to the consumer. But if you want the best of what Windows 10 can offer, then you should experience the operating system on the Microsoft Surface Book 2. 
Amazon customer RN writes:
"I have had this gem for about 6 weeks. I am a heavy computer user with between 8-10 hours daily for work. I have owned several computers from various companies. This is by far my favorite! Quick loading even with multiple programs and browsers open. The battery will last me all day even with heavy use. And it’s lightweight! Love it!
5 month update - still going strong. I have not found anything that I dislike about this computer. By far the best I have owned. I feel like I have the microsoft equivalent of another brand without the learning curve that a new operating system would require. Battery will still last all day with heavy use and multiple programs. Purchased the docking station and a 27 inch screen to connect and have a great home office."
The base model of the Microsoft Surface Book 2, which includes a 13.5-inch display, is going for $1,499.00 on Amazon. Read our full review here.
So much power • Surprisingly affordable • Outstanding refresh rate
Runs hot at times • Very loud fans • Average sound
The Acer Predator Helios 300 is a powerful workhorse and fantastic dedicated gaming laptop for a little more than $1,000. Rest assured, you’ll have no problem playing graphically intense and demanding games on this machine.

4. Acer Predator Helios 300

The Acer Predator Helios 300 is a mighty powerful gaming laptop at an affordable price. While it might run a little hot after hours of use, the laptop is one of the most powerful machines with a seamless refresh rate for flawless gaming mechanics.
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Features: one USB-C 3.1, two USB 2.0, HDMI port, SD slot reader, 15.6-inch FHD 1,920 x 1,080 ComfyView IPS display, Intel Core i7-8750H, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 and Intel UHD Graphics 630
For under $1,100, the Acer Predator Helios 300 is one of the best gaming laptops, but at an affordable price. Armed with 8th generation 6-core Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia GTX 1060 graphics card with Intel UHD Graphics 630 at 16GB of RAM, the gaming laptop can handle just about any graphically intense and demanding video game out there with ease — yes, even Project Cars and Metro: Last Light Redux.
The laptop features an impressive 15.6-inch FHD "ComfyView" IPS display with a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 to bring out the best color and performance in any video game with an impressive refresh rate of 144Hz. Needless to say, the Acer Predator Helios 300 is a powerful beast with the specs and ports to prove it, such as one USB-C 3.1, two USB 2.0, an HDMI port, and a full SD slot reader. And when you consider the gaming laptop’s affordable price point, it’s really easy to see how the Acer Predator Helios 300 gives gamers the best bang for their gaming buck.
SEE ALSO: Best gaming laptops for the 'PC Master Race'
While Acer did cut a few corners to get the gaming laptop’s price down, like its tinny and subpar speakers and its dual-fan cooling system that makes the machine run hot after a few hours of use, the Acer Predator Helios 300 is comparable to more high-end gaming laptops (like the MSI GS65 Stealth, which starts at $1,879.00), but at a fraction of the cost. We fully recommend picking up a good desk fan and headphones when purchasing the Acer Predator Helios 300 to make up for its shortcomings. But at $1,099.99, you can’t do any better with how much power the Acer Predator Helios 300 can deliver.
Amazon customer Kyser P. writes:
"So far I have had little to no issues, I bought a 1tb firecuda hard drive along with it and use it mainly for gaming, I run most the games on high or ultra, people on reviews might complain about the screen but I actually think it looks great. Keyboard is nice, the laptop does get a lil warm, 80c but after changing a battery from high performance to balanced it stays around 73 with same high settings. But they say laptops are meant to get warmer so nothing really to worry and that's after a good gaming sesh. Overall I love it for the price. Def get a gaming mouse and hard drive though because the 256 ssd just isn't a whole lot. Don't forget to update bios and drivers!"
The Acer Predator Helios 300 gaming laptop retails for $1,099.99 on Amazon.
Powerful and durable • Bright and brilliant 4K HDR display • Comes with a webcam privacy shutter and ThinkPad Active Pen
Average battery life • Expensive • Requires proprietary dongle for Ethernet
While the laptop is pricey, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga packs a punch when it comes to computing power and extremely high end display, which is perfect for work and watching movies.

5. Lenovo ThinkPad X1

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is a powerful 2-in-1 hybrid that perfectly runs Windows 10, whether it’s in laptop or tablet mode, which works very well with the included ThinkPad Active Pen.
  • Storage: 256GB/512GB SSD
  • Memory: 8GB/16BG
  • Features: two USB-C, two USB 3.0, HDMI port, microSD slot, micro-SIM card slot, 14-inch 2,560 x 1,440 resolution IPS display, Intel Core i5 8250U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
Although the laptop comes with a hefty price tag starting at $1,649.00, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is one of the most powerful laptop/tablet hybrid machines running Windows 10. Under the hood, the laptop runs an eighth generation Intel Core i5 8250U processor working with an Intel UHD Graphics 620 graphics card for optimized performance for business use. 
Along with 14-inch IPS display at a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga also features support for Dolby Vision HDR and 4K for movie lovers as well. Avengers: Infinity War never looked so good. In addition, the hybrid includes one of the best hinges among 2-in-1s, as the laptop is capable of being folded back to be used as a tablet, or in tent or kiosk mode for some amazing viewing angles.
Although the laptop comes with an assortment of ports and expansion options, such as two USB-C, two USB 3.0, an HDMI port, a microSD slot, and a micro-SIM card slot, Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is pretty expensive with its premium features, which goes through battery life pretty quickly. The laptop only averages about eight hours on one charge, which is pretty ho-hum considering its price. However, Lenovo included a quick charge feature that gives the laptop about 80% of power with just an hour of charge.
With a superb design and high-end build, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is a fierce workhorse, even with a hefty price tag. Considering that the laptop will last you for a few years, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is an investment for the future and an assurance that your work and entertainment needs will be met, whether your at home, at the office, or on the road. It's also so versatile that you probably won't even think of it as a laptop.
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga starts at $1,649.00 on Amazon. Read the PC Mag review here.
Very good build quality • Great value • Brilliant display
Tricky hinge • Not good for gaming • Underpowered for Adobe Creative Suite
For less than $450, the Acer Switch 3 is a great budget laptop for getting basic tasks and work. If you want something better than a Chromebook, but less expensive than a MacBook or Microsoft Surface Book 2, then the Acer Switch 3 is your best option.

6. Acer Switch 3

The Acer Switch 3 is not going to turn heads, but for the price the laptop and tablet hybrid is one of the best budget Windows 10 machines out there.
  • Storage: 64GB/128GB eMMC
  • Memory: 4GB
  • Features: one USB-C 3.1, one USB 3.1, microSD slot reader, 12.2-inch 1920 x 1200 IPS LCD touchscreen display, Intel Pentium Quad Core N4200 - Intel Core i3 7100U, Intel HD Graphics 505
If you’re looking for a great Windows 10 laptop and tablet combo at the fraction of the cost of the Microsoft Surface Book 2 or the Huawei MateBook X Pro, then look no further than the Acer Switch 3. While the hybrid is underpowered for graphically demanding jobs like gaming and photo/video editing, the Windows 10 machine is very adequate at everyday tasks with its the Intel Pentium Quad Core N4200 Intel Core i3 7100U and Intel HD Graphics 505 graphics. These chips are perfect for word processing, spreadsheets, internet research, and entertainment consumption.
But no matter what you do with the laptop, the Acer Switch 3 makes everything look good with its brilliant 12.2-inch IPS LCD touchscreen display with a resolution of 1,920 x 1,200. Running Windows 10 on the Acer Switch 3 is a joy because the touch-enabled laptop comes with the Acer Active Pen and keyboard cover. Most 2-in-1 machines with this kind of performance don’t include a stylus or keyboard, but the Acer Switch 3 does, even with its budget price point of less than $450.
It’s true. The laptop is underpowered with its selection of processor and graphics card, but the Acer Switch 3 makes it up with its aggressive price, included peripherals, and an assortment of ports, like one USB-C 3.1, one USB 3.1, and a microSD slot reader for additional storage. The hybrid also works well for less intense use and light computing. But make no mistake about the Acer Switch 3, it’s no chump. If your computer needs are on the basic side, then this laptop is a really good option for avid and novice Windows 10 users alike.
Amazon customer Sylvie Jouan-Meyers writes:
"I recently ordered this wonderful tablet, and am in love. It took me a little while to get adjusted to the pen, and we are now best friends. I am back to typing at high speed, enjoying how easy and user friendly this is. When I change computer, I am always a little hesitant, but this one took no time. It travels well, streams splendidly. Just love it!"
The Acer Switch 3 retails for $449.99 on Amazon.
Outstanding performance • Crazy battery life • Very good integration of hardware and software
Mushy keyboard • Underwhelming audio • No touchscreen
The Samsung Notebook 9 is the perfect compliment to the Samsung Galaxy S9 or Samsung Note9 with the laptop’s integrated functions between Windows 10 and Android.

7. Samsung Notebook 9

While it’s not one of the most attractive laptops out there, the Samsung Notebook 9 is one of the best Windows 10 machines for its amazing performance and brilliant display.
  • Storage: 256GB/512GB SSD
  • Memory: 8GB/16GB
  • Features: one USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), two USB 3.0, one USB 2.0, HDMI port, 3-in-1 card reader, 15-inch 1,920 x 1,080 LED display, Intel i7-8550U, Nvidia GeForce MX150
While the Samsung Notebook 9 might not turn heads with its bulky design, the laptop is surprisingly ultra portable and lightweight at just 2.84 pounds and powerful with its 8th generation Intel i7-8550U and Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics card with an amazing 12-hour battery life. The laptop is a strong workhorse for creative and business professionals, while powerful enough for gamers too.
Everything on its 15-inch LED display looks fantastic, especially with its 1,920 x 1,080 resolution. That said, this laptop is crafted for what’s under its hood instead of its exterior. Despite its appearance, the laptop has an aluminum frame to mimic Apple’s MacBook Pro. In fact, the  Samsung Notebook 9 is more powerful than a standard MacBook Pro with its assortment of killer specs and ports, including one USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), two USB 3.0, one USB 2.0, HDMI port, and a 3-in-1 card reader. The MacBook Pro only has two USB-C (Thunderbolt 3) ports.
REVIEW: Samsung's svelte 15-inch Notebook 9 is one mighty Windows 10 laptop
In addition, if you’re a Samsung mobile device user, then the Samsung Notebook 9 is the perfect addition to the Samsung Galaxy S9 or Samsung Note9. You know how MacBook Pro can "talk" to iPhones and iPads? Well, Samsung laptops and devices can do the same thing. The laptop even perfectly syncs with most Samsung mobile devices in a fantastic integration between Windows 10 and Android with features like “SideSync,” which can reproduce your Samsung mobile device’s home screen on the laptop, and “WiFi Camera,” which can let you use your device’s shooter instead of the laptop’s webcam.
While the ultrabook has some minor flaws like a mushy keyboard and lackluster audio, the Samsung Notebook 9 is one of the best laptops you can buy from Samsung. 
Walmart customer MER73 writes:
"After much research, I've decided to buy the 15" Samsung Notebook 9 for my business. This model is fast, super light, and has amazing, crisp resolution. I'm very impressed with the long battery life and security features. It's also nice to sync my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 to my laptop. This is a great laptop for business use. Although this is a pricey laptop, I feel it's still an overall excellent value."
The Samsung Notebook 9 retails for $1,397.99 at Walmart. Read our full review here.
Includes HP Pen • Amazing audio • Insane battery life
Awkward keyboard layout • Flimsy hinge • Runs hot at times
For less than $1,300, the HP Spectre x360 is a premium laptop/tablet hybrid from HP. The machine features the latest and greatest from Windows 10, while the laptop is comfortable to use, no matter how you use it.

8. HP Spectre x360

The HP Spectre x360 is a trusty Windows 10 machine that will keep users surprised with how much it can do at a reasonable price point for an ultrabook. The laptop comes with the HP Pen, a dongle for Ethernet, and a professional carrying case.
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Memory: 8GB
  • Features: two USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), one USB 3.0, microSD slot reader, 13.3-inch FHD 1,920 x 1,080 WLED and IPS Gorilla Glass touch panel, display, Intel Core i7-8550U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
There’s a lot to love with the HP Spectre x360. The laptop is a speedy machine that’s a complete workhorse with its Intel Core i7-8550U processor and Intel UHD Graphics 620 graphics card working together to deliver a great Windows 10 experience. The hybrid features a 13.3-inch FHD WLED and IPS touch panel at a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 with additional durability from Corning’s Gorilla Glass, so it won’t shatter if it falls from a table to the floor.
With an amazing battery life of over 16.5 hours, the HP Spectre x360 is more than capable of lasting throughout the day with moderate workflow and entertainment use. Out of the box, the laptop comes with the highly rated HP Pen for drawing and taking notes on the fly. The laptop also comes with a stylish pleather sleeve for portability at the office and on the go. It also features a wide range of ports, including two USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), one USB 3.0, and a microSD slot reader, along with a quick fingerprint sensor on its side for additional security.
The HP Spectre x360 includes an excellent pair of Bang & Olufsen audio speakers, so you don’t need to cover it up with a pair of headphones to listen to music, while the laptop also includes one of the best keyboards on a Windows 10-based ultrabook. It’s just comfortable to use with very good travel and not at all mushy. This machine is full of surprises that will always keep you interested during everyday use.
Amazon customer Max H writes:
"I've done some serious research and wasn't willing to fork over $1000+ to Apple for a moderately speed computer. The i7 processor is snappy, and although it can get warm sometimes, I can play Skyrim on low graphics with a laptop cooling pad no problems. It is a little on the heavy side, but that's expected with the full aluminium build. I get looks from people with macbooks often mistaking it for an apple computer. The 1080p (non Qhd) is more than adequate in terms of clarity and color accuracy, and doesn't kill battery as much (normally charge once every two days for schoolwork and the occasional video). Overall awesome laptop!!"
The HP Spectre x360 starts at $1,099.99.
Outstanding gaming performance • Surprisingly good battery life • Customizable LED lights
Ridiculously heavy • Bulky • Boring design
Gamers rejoice! The Alienware 17 R5 offers high-frame rate gaming on an amazing near-4K display.

9. Alienware 17 R5

The Alienware 17 R5 is a premium gaming laptop that can handle almost any graphically intense video game, while the massive machine is also good enough for everyday use like watching YouTube and using Microsoft Office 365.
  • Storage: 256GB PCIe SSD/1TB HHD
  • Memory: 8GB (Upgradable up to 32GB)
  • Features: wo USB 3.0, one USB-C 3.0, one USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), HDMI port, Mini DisplayPort, 17.3-inch, QHD 2,560 x 1,440 display, Intel Core i7-8750H Hexa-core, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 OC
The Alienware 17 R5 is no joke. The gaming laptop is armed with the blazing-fast Intel Core i7-8750H Hexa-core processor with an overclocked Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 OC graphics card to deliver gamers seamless high-frame rate gaming in a laptop with a brilliant Ultra HD QHD display at a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440. 
This machine isn’t messing around here. Starting at $1,699.99, the Alienware 17 R5 is configurable and upgradable for Intel Core i9-8950HK processor and up to a whopping 32GB for a hefty price tag of more than $3,700.00. The gaming laptop features an assortment of ports, such as two USB 3.0, one USB-C 3.0, one USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), an HDMI port, and a Mini DisplayPort. The workhorse machine takes gamers to the next level of performance for even the most graphically demanding and intense games, including Final Fantasy XV, Battlefield 1, and Kingdom Come: Deliverance.
The laptop is also excellent for everyday use, as it runs Windows 10 Home Edition with a 256GB SSD (upgradeable to 1TB). However, we don’t recommend you take this laptop to the office or your local Starbucks. It’s pretty much a portable desktop, weighing in at a whopping 10.3 lbs. But overall, the Alienware 17 R5 is a real heavy hitter (no pun intended) and one of the best gaming laptops around. 
Amazon customer Penguin writes:
"The laptop works great and I'm planning to add in another stick of ram just to make it easier to multitask. I'm very satisfied with this purchase. The price was great for what it's worth and this laptop is great for gaming. If you're looking for more of a work laptop then I would say look elsewhere. I do both, but I game a lot more so this suits my needs. Love the LEDs by the way. 10/10 would recommend!"
The Alienware 17 R5 VR-ready gaming laptop starts at $1,665.99.
Very good battery life • Fast fingerprint reader • Brilliant display with small bezels • Affordable
Chintzy touchpad • Glossy body will make it hard to clean • USB-C is not Thunderbolt 3 compatible
With its compact build and brilliant display, the Asus ZenBook 13 is a solid mid-range laptop for casual Windows 10 users. The laptop is more than capable of completing daily tasks for work, but just don’t ask it to take on graphically demanding games and video editing.

10. Asus ZenBook 13

A well built (and conservatively priced) Windows 10 laptop that’s ultra portable, compact, and can handle gaming.
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Memory: 4GB/8GB
  • Features: two USB 3.0, one USB-C 3.1, HDMI port, microSD card reader, 13.3-inch, FHD 1,920 x 1,080 wide view touch display, Intel Core i5 8250U, NVIDIA GeForce MX150, Intel UHD Graphics 620
While it might not be the fastest or most stylish laptop out there, the Asus ZenBook 13 features one of the best graphics cards thanks to the NVIDIA GeForce MX150 and Intel UHD Graphics 620, which makes it a stealth gaming laptop. It can expertly handle moderately demanding video games like Grid Autosport and Borderlands 2, while it also has a full HD with a 13.3-inch wide view touch display at a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080. In addition, the laptop is near bezel-less, which creates the illusion of a bigger display on a compact laptop.
Armed with an Intel Core i5 8250U processor, the Asus ZenBook 13 has buttery smooth performance with a comfortable keyboard and a easy-to-use trackpad. The laptop features a wide range of ports, including two USB 3.0, one USB-C 3.1, an HDMI port, and a microSD card reader for expansion in a super compact presentation.
The Asus ZenBook 13 is just a solid ultrabook running Windows 10. It’s not going to blow anyone away with its raw power or high end all-around specs. However, Asus was smart to include some premium materials like its world-class display with very small bezels, super fast fingerprint reader, and an intense graphics card when it could. For less than $1,000, the Asus ZenBook 13 is a well built Windows 10 mid-range laptop that’s ultra portable and compact.
The Asus ZenBook 13 retails for $987.99 on Amazon.
Topics: laptops, Mashable Deals, Tech
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Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC


This article is about the current Apple operating system for Mac computers. For pre-2001 versions, see Classic Mac OS.
Operating system for Apple computers
DeveloperApple Inc.
Written in
OS familyUnix, Macintosh
Working stateCurrent
Source modelClosed source (with open source components)
Initial releaseMarch 24, 2001; 19 years ago (2001-03-24)
Latest release10.15.6 (Supplemental Update)[3] (19G2021)[4] (August 12, 2020; 34 days ago (2020-08-12)) [±]
Latest preview11.0 beta 6[5] (20A5364e)[6] (September 3, 2020; 12 days ago (2020-09-03)) [±]
Marketing targetPersonal computing
Available in39 languages[7]
[as of macOS Catalina]: Arabic, Catalan, Croatian, Chinese (Hong Kong), Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, English (Australia), English (United Kingdom), English (United States), Finnish, French (Canada), French (France), German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese (Brazil), Portuguese (Portugal), Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Spanish (Latin America), Spanish (Spain), Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese
Update method
Kernel typeHybrid (XNU)
Default user interfaceAqua (Graphical)
LicenseCommercial software, proprietary software
Preceded byClassic Mac OS, NeXTSTEP
Support status

macOS (/ˌmækoʊˈɛs/;[8] previously Mac OS X and later OS X) is a series of proprietarygraphicaloperating systems developed and marketed by Apple Inc. since 2001. It is the primary operating system for Apple's Mac computers. Within the market of desktop, laptop and home computers, and by web usage, it is the second most widely used desktop OS, after Microsoft Windows.[9][10]

macOS is the second major series of Macintosh operating systems. The first is colloquially called the classic Mac OS, introduced in 1984, the final release of which was Mac OS 9 in 1999. The first desktop version, Mac OS X 10.0, was released in March 2001, with its first update, 10.1, arriving later that year. After this, Apple began naming its releases after big cats, which lasted until OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. Since OS X 10.9 Mavericks, releases have been named after locations in California.[11] Apple shortened the name to "OS X" in 2012 and then changed it to "macOS" in 2016, adopting the nomenclature that they were using for their other operating systems, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS. The latest version is macOS Catalina, which was publicly released in October 2019.

macOS is based on the Unix operating system and on technologies developed between 1985 and 1997 at NeXT, a company that Apple co-founder Steve Jobs created after leaving Apple in 1985. The "X" in Mac OS X and OS X is the Roman numeral for the number 10 and is pronounced as such. The X was a prominent part of the operating system's brand identity and marketing in its early years, but gradually receded in prominence since the release of Snow Leopard in 2009. In 2020, Apple incremented the major version number to 11 in macOS Big Sur, although it retains the same base as the previous versions of macOS. UNIX 03 certification was achieved for the Intel version of Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard[12] and all releases from Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard up to the current version also have UNIX 03 certification.[13] macOS shares its Unix-based core, named Darwin, and many of its frameworks with Apple's other operating systems.[14]

Releases of Mac OS X from 1999 to 2005 ran on the PowerPC-based Macs of that period. After Apple announced that they were switching to Intel CPUs from 2006 onwards, versions were released for Intel-based Macs with 32-bit and currently 64-bit processors. Versions from macOS 11 (2020) will support both 64-bit Intel and future Macs running 64-bit ARM processors.



Simplified history of Unix-like operating systems

The heritage of what would become macOS had originated at NeXT, a company founded by Steve Jobs following his departure from Apple in 1985. There, the Unix-likeNeXTSTEP operating system was developed, and then launched in 1989. The kernel of NeXTSTEP is based upon the Mach kernel, which was originally developed at Carnegie Mellon University, with additional kernel layers and low-level user space code derived from parts of BSD.[15] Its graphical user interface was built on top of an object-orientedGUI toolkit using the Objective-C programming language.

Throughout the early 1990s, Apple had tried to create a "next-generation" OS to succeed its classic Mac OS through the Taligent, Copland and Gershwin projects, but all were eventually abandoned.[16] This led Apple to purchase NeXT in 1996, allowing NeXTSTEP, then called OPENSTEP, to serve as the basis for Apple's next generation operating system.[17] This purchase also led to Steve Jobs returning to Apple as an interim, and then the permanent CEO, shepherding the transformation of the programmer-friendly OPENSTEP into a system that would be adopted by Apple's primary market of home users and creative professionals. The project was first code named "Rhapsody" and then officially named Mac OS X.[18][19]

Mac OS X

Launch of Mac OS X

Mac OS X was originally presented as the tenth major version of Apple's operating system for Macintosh computers; current versions of macOS retain the major version number "10". Previous Macintosh operating systems (versions of the classic Mac OS) were named using Arabic numerals, as with Mac OS 8 and Mac OS 9. The letter "X" in Mac OS X's name refers to the number 10, a Roman numeral, and Apple has stated that it should be pronounced "ten" in this context.[20][21] However, it is also commonly pronounced like the letter "X".[21][22]

The first version of Mac OS X, Mac OS X Server 1.0, was a transitional product, featuring an interface resembling the classic Mac OS, though it was not compatible with software designed for the older system. Consumer releases of Mac OS X included more backward compatibility. Mac OS applications could be rewritten to run natively via the Carbon API; many could also be run directly through the Classic Environment with a reduction in performance.

The consumer version of Mac OS X was launched in 2001 with Mac OS X 10.0. Reviews were variable, with extensive praise for its sophisticated, glossy Aqua interface, but criticizing it for sluggish performance.[23] With Apple's popularity at a low, the makers of several classic Mac applications such as FrameMaker and PageMaker declined to develop new versions of their software for Mac OS X.[24]Ars Technica columnist John Siracusa, who reviewed every major OS X release up to 10.10, described the early releases in retrospect as 'dog-slow, feature poor' and Aqua as 'unbearably slow and a huge resource hog'.[23][25][26]

Following releases

Apple rapidly developed several new releases of Mac OS X.[27] Siracusa's review of version 10.3, Panther, noted "It's strange to have gone from years of uncertainty and vaporware to a steady annual supply of major new operating system releases."[28] Version 10.4, Tiger, reportedly shocked executives at Microsoft by offering a number of features, such as fast file searching and improved graphics processing, that Microsoft had spent several years struggling to add to Windows with acceptable performance.[29]

As the operating system evolved, it moved away from the classic Mac OS, with applications being added and removed.[30] Considering music to be a key market, Apple developed the iPod music player and music software for the Mac, including iTunes and GarageBand.[31] Targeting the consumer and media markets, Apple emphasized its new "digital lifestyle" applications such as the iLife suite, integrated home entertainment through the Front Row media center and the Safari web browser. With increasing popularity of the internet, Apple offered additional online services, including the .Mac, MobileMe and most recently iCloud products. It later began selling third-party applications through the Mac App Store.

Newer versions of Mac OS X also included modifications to the general interface, moving away from the striped gloss and transparency of the initial versions. Some applications began to use a brushed metal appearance, or non-pinstriped title bar appearance in version 10.4.[32] In Leopard, Apple announced a unification of the interface, with a standardized gray-gradient window style.[33][34]

In 2006, the first Intel Macs released used a specialized version of Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger.[35]

A key development for the system was the announcement and release of the iPhone from 2007 onwards. While Apple's previous iPod media players used a minimal operating system, the iPhone used an operating system based on Mac OS X, which would later be called "iPhone OS" and then iOS. The simultaneous release of two operating systems based on the same frameworks placed tension on Apple, which cited the iPhone as forcing it to delay Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard.[36] However, after Apple opened the iPhone to third-party developers its commercial success drew attention to Mac OS X, with many iPhone software developers showing interest in Mac development.[37]

In 2007, Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard was the sole release with universal binary components, allowing installation on both Intel Macs and select PowerPC Macs.[38] It is also the final release with PowerPC Mac support. Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard was the first version of OS X to be built exclusively for Intel Macs, and the final release with 32-bit Intel Mac support.[39] The name was intended to signal its status as an iteration of Leopard, focusing on technical and performance improvements rather than user-facing features; indeed it was explicitly branded to developers as being a 'no new features' release.[40] Since its release, several OS X or macOS releases (namely OS X Mountain Lion, OS X El Capitan and macOS High Sierra) follow this pattern, with a name derived from its predecessor, similar to the 'tick-tock model' used by Intel.

In two succeeding versions, Lion and Mountain Lion, Apple moved some applications to a highly skeuomorphic style of design inspired by contemporary versions of iOS while simplifying some elements by making controls such as scroll bars fade out when not in use.[25] This direction was, like brushed metal interfaces, unpopular with some users, although it continued a trend of greater animation and variety in the interface previously seen in design aspects such as the Time Machinebackup utility, which presented past file versions against a swirling nebula, and the glossy translucent dock of Leopard and Snow Leopard.[41] In addition, with Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, Apple ceased to release separate server versions of Mac OS X, selling server tools as a separate downloadable application through the Mac App Store. A review described the trend in the server products as becoming "cheaper and simpler... shifting its focus from large businesses to small ones."[42]


In 2012, with the release of OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, the name of the system was shortened from Mac OS X to OS X. That year, Apple removed the head of OS X development, Scott Forstall, and design was changed towards a more minimal direction.[43] Apple's new user interface design, using deep color saturation, text-only buttons and a minimal, 'flat' interface, was debuted with iOS 7 in 2013. With OS X engineers reportedly working on iOS 7, the version released in 2013, OS X 10.9 Mavericks, was something of a transitional release, with some of the skeuomorphic design removed, while most of the general interface of Mavericks remained unchanged.[44] The next version, OS X 10.10 Yosemite, adopted a design similar to iOS 7 but with greater complexity suitable for an interface controlled with a mouse.[45]

From 2012 onwards, the system has shifted to an annual release schedule similar to that of iOS. It also steadily cut the cost of updates from Snow Leopard onwards, before removing upgrade fees altogether from 2013 onwards.[46] Some journalists and third-party software developers have suggested that this decision, while allowing more rapid feature release, meant less opportunity to focus on stability, with no version of OS X recommendable for users requiring stability and performance above new features.[47] Apple's 2015 update, OS X 10.11 El Capitan, was announced to focus specifically on stability and performance improvements.[48]


In 2016, with the release of macOS 10.12 Sierra, the name was changed from OS X to macOS to streamline it with the branding of Apple's other primary operating systems: iOS, watchOS, and tvOS.[49] macOS 10.12 Sierra's main features are the introduction of Siri to macOS, Optimized Storage, improvements to included applications, and greater integration with Apple's iPhone and Apple Watch. The Apple File System (APFS) was announced at Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2016 as a replacement for HFS+, a highly criticized file system.[50]

Apple previewed macOS 10.13 High Sierra at WWDC 2017, before releasing it later that year.[51] When running on solid state drives, it uses APFS, rather than HFS+.[52] Its successor, macOS 10.14 Mojave, was released in 2018, adding a dark user interface option and a dynamic wallpaper setting.[53] It was succeeded by macOS 10.15 Catalina in 2019, which replaces iTunes with separate apps for different types of media, and introduces the Catalyst system for porting iOS apps.[54]

In 2020, Apple previewed macOS 11.0 Big Sur at the WWDC 2020. This was the first increment in the primary version number of macOS since the release of Mac OS X Public Beta in 2000. Big Sur brought major changes to the UI and was the first version to run on the ARM instruction set. [55]


At macOS's core is a POSIX-compliant operating system built on top of the XNUkernel, [56] with standard Unix facilities available from the command line interface. Apple has released this family of software as a free and open source operating system named Darwin. On top of Darwin, Apple layered a number of components, including the Aqua interface and the Finder, to complete the GUI-based operating system which is macOS.[57]

With its original introduction as Mac OS X, the system brought a number of new capabilities to provide a more stable and reliable platform than its predecessor, the classic Mac OS. For example, pre-emptive multitasking and memory protection improved the system's ability to run multiple applications simultaneously without them interrupting or corrupting each other. Many aspects of macOS's architecture are derived from OPENSTEP, which was designed to be portable, to ease the transition from one platform to another. For example, NeXTSTEP was ported from the original 68k-based NeXT workstations to x86 and other architectures before NeXT was purchased by Apple,[58] and OPENSTEP was later ported to the PowerPC architecture as part of the Rhapsody project.

Prior to macOS High Sierra, and on drives other than solid state drives (SSDs), the default file system is HFS+, which it inherited from the classic Mac OS. Operating system designer Linus Torvalds has criticized HFS+, saying it is "probably the worst file system ever", whose design is "actively corrupting user data". He criticized the case insensitivity of file names, a design made worse when Apple extended the file system to support Unicode.[59][60]

The Darwin subsystem in macOS manages the file system, which includes the Unix permissions layer. In 2003 and 2005, two Macworld editors expressed criticism of the permission scheme; Ted Landau called misconfigured permissions "the most common frustration" in macOS, while Rob Griffiths suggested that some users may even have to reset permissions every day, a process which can take up to 15 minutes.[61] More recently, another Macworld editor, Dan Frakes, called the procedure of repairing permissions vastly overused.[62] He argues that macOS typically handles permissions properly without user interference, and resetting permissions should only be tried when problems emerge.[63]

The architecture of macOS incorporates a layered design:[64] the layered frameworks aid rapid development of applications by providing existing code for common tasks.[65] Apple provides its own software development tools, most prominently an integrated development environment called Xcode. Xcode provides interfaces to compilers that support several programming languages including C, C++, Objective-C, and Swift. For the Mac transition to Intel processors, it was modified so that developers could build their applications as a universal binary, which provides compatibility with both the Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh lines.[66] First and third-party applications can be controlled programmatically using the AppleScript framework,[67] retained from the classic Mac OS,[68] or using the newer Automator application that offers pre-written tasks that do not require programming knowledge.[69]

Software compatibility

  1. ^Messages 8.0bArchived April 17, 2017, at the Wayback Machine was a beta release that only functioned from February 16 to December 12, 2012. Afterwards, users could either revert to iChat or upgrade to a newer version of OS X (10.8 "Mountain Lion" for US$19.99, or 10.9 "Mavericks" or newer for free) to continue using Messages.
  2. ^Keynote 1.0 is the only iLife program that is compatible with Mac OS X 10.2 "Jaguar". Two minor updates, 1.1 and 1.1.1, can be applied to this version.
  3. ^iTunes 2.0.4 can only run if Classic is installed. Otherwise, Mac OS X 10.0 can only run iTunes 1.1.1 natively.

Apple offered two main APIs to develop software natively for macOS: Cocoa and Carbon. Cocoa was a descendant of APIs inherited from OPENSTEP with no ancestry from the classic Mac OS, while Carbon was an adaptation of classic Mac OS APIs, allowing Mac software to be minimally rewritten to run natively on Mac OS X.[19]

The Cocoa API was created as the result of a 1993 collaboration between NeXT Computer and Sun Microsystems. This heritage is highly visible for Cocoa developers, since the "NS" prefix is ubiquitous in the framework, standing variously for NeXTSTEP or NeXT/Sun. The official OPENSTEP API, published in September 1994, was the first to split the API between Foundation and ApplicationKit and the first to use the "NS" prefix.[58] Traditionally, Cocoa programs have been mostly written in Objective-C, with Java as an alternative. However, on July 11, 2005, Apple announced that "features added to Cocoa in Mac OS X versions later than 10.4 will not be added to the Cocoa-Java programming interface."[79] macOS also used to support the Java Platform as a "preferred software package"—in practice this means that applications written in Java fit as neatly into the operating system as possible while still being cross-platform compatible, and that graphical user interfaces written in Swing look almost exactly like native Cocoa interfaces. Since 2014, Apple has promoted its new programming language Swift as the preferred language for software development on Apple platforms.

Apple's original plan with macOS was to require all developers to rewrite their software into the Cocoa APIs. This caused much outcry among existing Mac developers, who threatened to abandon the platform rather than invest in a costly rewrite, and the idea was shelved.[19][80] To permit a smooth transition from Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X, the CarbonApplication Programming Interface (API) was created.[19] Applications written with Carbon were initially able to run natively on both classic Mac OS and Mac OS X, although this ability was later dropped as Mac OS X developed. Carbon was not included in the first product sold as Mac OS X: the little-used original release of Mac OS X Server 1.0, which also did not include the Aqua interface.[81] Apple limited further development of Carbon from the release of Leopard onwards and announced that Carbon applications would not run at 64-bit.[80][19] A number of macOS applications continued to use Carbon for some time afterwards, especially ones with heritage dating back to the classic Mac OS and for which updates would be difficult, uneconomic or not necessary. This included Microsoft Office up to Office 2016, and Photoshop up to CS5.[82][80] Early versions of macOS could also run some classic Mac OS applications through the Classic Environment with performance limitations; this feature was removed from 10.5 onwards and all Macs using Intel processors.

Because macOS is POSIX compliant, many software packages written for the other Unix-like systems including Linux can be recompiled to run on it, including much scientific and technical software.[83] Third-party projects such as Homebrew, Fink, MacPorts and pkgsrc provide pre-compiled or pre-formatted packages. Apple and others have provided versions of the X Window System graphical interface which can allow these applications to run with an approximation of the macOS look-and-feel.[84][85][86] The current Apple-endorsed method is the open-source XQuartz project; earlier versions could use the X11 application provided by Apple, or before that the XDarwin project.[87]

Applications can be distributed to Macs and installed by the user from any source and by any method such as downloading (with or without code signing, available via an Apple developer account) or through the Mac App Store, a marketplace of software maintained by Apple through a process requiring the company's approval. Apps installed through the Mac App Store run within a sandbox, restricting their ability to exchange information with other applications or modify the core operating system and its features. This has been cited as an advantage, by allowing users to install apps with confidence that they should not be able to damage their system, but also as a disadvantage due to blocking the Mac App Store's use for professional applications that require elevated privileges.[88][89] Applications without any code signature cannot be run by default except from a computer's administrator account.[90][91]

Apple produces macOS applications. Some are included with macOS and some sold separately. This includes iWork, Final Cut Pro, Logic Pro, iLife, and the database application FileMaker. Numerous other developers also offer software for macOS.

In 2018 Apple introduced an application layer, reportedly codenamed Marzipan, to port iOS apps to macOS.[92][93] macOS Mojave included ports of four first-party iOS apps including Home and News, and it was announced that the API would be available for third-party developers to use from 2019.[94][95][96]

Hardware compatibility

Operating system Supported systems[97]RAM requirement
  • MacBook (2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (2013 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (Late 2013 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2014 or newer)
  • iMac (2014 or newer)
  • iMac Pro (2017)
  • Mac Pro (2013 or newer)
4 GB
  • MacBook (Early 2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Mid 2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (Mid 2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Late 2012 or newer)
  • iMac (Late 2012 or newer)
  • iMac Pro (2017)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013 or newer)
  • MacBook (Early 2015 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Mid 2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (Mid 2012 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Late 2012 or newer)
  • iMac (Late 2012 or newer)
  • iMac Pro (2017)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013; Mid 2010 and Mid 2012 models
    with recommended Metal-capable graphics cards[98])
2 GB
10.12 – 10.13
  • MacBook (Late 2009 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2010 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Mid 2010 or newer)
  • iMac (Late 2009 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Mid 2010 or newer)
10.8 – 10.11
  • MacBook (Early 2015) (Only 10.10 and 10.11)
  • MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminum, or Early 2009 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (Mid/Late 2007 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)
  • Mac mini (Early 2009 or newer)
  • iMac (Mid 2007 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)
  • Xserve (Early 2009)
10.7Intel Macs (64-bit)[99]
Rosetta support dropped from 10.7 and newer.
10.6Intel Macs (32-bit or 64-bit)[99]1 GB
10.5G4, G5 and Intel Macs (32-bit or 64-bit) at 867 MHz or faster
Classic support dropped from 10.5 and newer.
512 MB
10.4Macs with built-in FireWire and either a New World ROM or Intel processor 256 MB
10.3Macs with a New World ROM[100]128 MB
10.0 – 10.2G3, G4 and G5 iBook and PowerBook, Power Mac and iMac
(except PowerBook G3 "Kanga")

Tools such as XPostFacto and patches applied to the installation media have been developed by third parties to enable installation of newer versions of macOS on systems not officially supported by Apple. This includes a number of pre-G3 Power Macintosh systems that can be made to run up to and including Mac OS X 10.2 Jaguar, all G3-based Macs which can run up to and including Tiger, and sub-867 MHz G4 Macs can run Leopard by removing the restriction from the installation DVD or entering a command in the Mac's Open Firmware interface to tell the Leopard Installer that it has a clock rate of 867 MHz or greater. Except for features requiring specific hardware such as graphics acceleration or DVD writing, the operating system offers the same functionality on all supported hardware.

As most Mac hardware components, or components similar to those, since the Intel transition are available for purchase,[101] some technology-capable groups have developed software to install macOS on non-Apple computers. These are referred to as Hackintoshes, a portmanteau of the words "hack" and "Macintosh". This violates Apple's EULA (and is therefore unsupported by Apple technical support, warranties etc.), but communities that cater to personal users, who do not install for resale and profit, have generally been ignored by Apple.[102][103][104] These self-made computers allow more flexibility and customization of hardware, but at a cost of leaving the user more responsible for their own machine, such as on matter of data integrity or security.[105]Psystar, a business that attempted to profit from selling macOS on non-Apple certified hardware, was sued by Apple in 2008.[106]

PowerPC–Intel transition

Steve Jobs talks about the transition to Intel processors.

In April 2002, eWeek announced a rumor that Apple had a version of Mac OS X code-named Marklar, which ran on Intel x86 processors. The idea behind Marklar was to keep Mac OS X running on an alternative platform should Apple become dissatisfied with the progress of the PowerPC platform.[107] These rumors subsided until late in May 2005, when various media outlets, such as The Wall Street Journal[108] and CNET,[109] announced that Apple would unveil Marklar in the coming months.[110][111][112]

On June 6, 2005, Steve Jobs announced in his keynote address at WWDC that Apple would be making the transition from PowerPC to Intel processors over the following two years, and that Mac OS X would support both platforms during the transition. Jobs also confirmed rumors that Apple had versions of Mac OS X running on Intel processors for most of its developmental life. Intel-based Macs would run a new recompiled version of OS X along with Rosetta, a binary translation layer which enables software compiled for PowerPC Mac OS X to run on Intel Mac OS X machines.[113] The system was included with Mac OS X versions up to version 10.6.8.[114] Apple dropped support for Classic mode on the new Intel Macs. Third party emulation software such as Mini vMac, Basilisk II and SheepShaver provided support for some early versions of Mac OS. A new version of Xcode and the underlying command-line compilers supported building universal binaries that would run on either architecture.[115]

PowerPC-only software is supported with Apple's official emulation software, Rosetta, though applications eventually had to be rewritten to run properly on the newer versions released for Intel processors. Apple initially encouraged developers to produce universal binaries with support for both PowerPC and Intel.[116] PowerPC binaries suffer a performance penalty when run on Intel Macs through Rosetta. Moreover, some PowerPC software, such as kernel extensions and System Preferences plugins, are not supported on Intel Macs at all. Some PowerPC applications would not run on macOS at all. Plugins for Safari need to be compiled for the same platform as Safari, so when Safari is running on Intel, it requires plug-ins that have been compiled as Intel-only or universal binaries, so PowerPC-only plug-ins will not work.[117] While Intel Macs can run PowerPC, Intel, and universal binaries, PowerPC Macs support only universal and PowerPC builds.

Support for the PowerPC platform was dropped following the transition. In 2009, Apple announced at WWDC that Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard would drop support for PowerPC processors and be Intel-only.[118] Rosetta continued to be offered as an optional download or installation choice in Snow Leopard before it was discontinued with Mac OS X 10.7 Lion.[119][119] In addition, new versions of Mac OS X first- and third-party software increasingly required Intel processors, including new versions of iLife, iWork, Aperture and Logic Pro.

Intel–ARM transition

Rumors of Apple shifting Macs to the ARM processors used by iOS devices began circulating as early as 2011,[120] and ebbed and flowed throughout the 2010s.[121] Rumors intensified in 2020, when numerous reports announced that the company would announce its shift to its custom processors at WWDC.[122]

Apple officially announced its shift to processors designed in-house on June 22, 2020 at WWDC 2020, with the transition planned to last for two years.[123] The first release of macOS to support ARM will be macOS Big Sur.


Aqua user interface

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What’s New in the Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC?

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System Requirements for Best Gifts For PC Gamers Windows {32/64bit} Laptop & MAC

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