There are still three barriers standing between me and moving onto a Mac. Two are rapidly disappearing. (I was a Mac guy for years and shifted to a PC in the mid-’90s during Apple’s slump years, when the unreliability of the Mac OS and Mac hardware had me losing more data than I could stand.)
One is the availability of a true lightweight Apple laptop. Rumor has it that’s coming; it’s time for a Mac laptop that is slim, elegant and three pounds heavy, like the IBM/Lenovo X-class laptops I’ve been using forever. I’m sure Apple knows this and I can’t imagine waiting too much longer for such a device.
Second is the availability of a Quicken for the Mac that’s as good as Quicken for the PC. It seems plain that Intuit is never going to make this happen.
Third is that, for the moment at least, I’m still running my life and work with Ecco Pro, and it’s an old Windows app. There are modern Mac apps that do some of what Ecco does better than it does, but I’ve found none that does everything that Ecco does as well as it does, and it pains me to think of abandoning it.
In the age of Intel-based Macs it’s now quite easy to run Windows in parallel to your OS X. But Apple’s Boot Camp requires a reboot each time you want to go to your Windows app, and that’s a royal pain; Parallels doesn’t. But both approaches require that you spend $300 on another copy of Windows, and that’s an extraordinary amount to pay.
Last night I downloaded and tried out Crossover Mac, an application (based on the WINE project) that lets you run individual Windows apps from inside OS X (on an Intel-based Mac) without needing to install a second OS. The good news is that Crossover Mac worked apparently hitchlessly on Quicken 2005, which is one of a bevy of apps that Crossover officially supports. (I haven’t really pounded on it, and maybe heavy usage will uncover problems, but I’m impressed so far.)
So what I’m now wrestling with is: how to get Ecco Pro running under Crossover? The app is not officially supported (no surprise there!) and my “let’s give it a try anyway” install failed. Ecco is a solid Win32 application but it dates back to the mid-’90s so there might simply be too many archaic calls or idiosyncracies. I’d probably give up hope — but there are screenshots on the Crossover site of Ecco running successfully under Crossover/Linux. So I think there ought to be some hope here. I’m posting this largely as a beacon: Ecco Pro users! Crossover users! Can anything be done here?
I’m also pondering trying the Parallels route by using a Windows license from an older, diisused version of XP or Windows 2000; either of those runs Ecco perfectly. If I experiment with Parallels using this approach I’ll report on it.
[tags]ecco pro, crossover, parallels, windows on mac[/tags]
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