Welcome to the world of the MAC. Few years ago I made the switch, and realized that it opened up my eyes even wider for appreciation of the technology that is out there. I am not one of those tech people that push specific type of OS (MAC VS Windows VS Linux), I currently use all three. I give you informative choices and you make the decision. I already put together a little page for Windows users for maintaining and cleaning, so now this is my MAC page on it.
First off, if you new to MAC, you will want to check out this page from Apple and also here is the general overview of WHY MAC?. This will provide you with a base from moving the Microsoft world to the Apple world. In most cases (almost all), you will see that the Apple way is a lot faster and more efficient. Please see this document for the overall guide of when your looking at a MAC desktop screen for the first time.
Here are the APPs (applications) that use and found to be worth buying or at least trying the trial before purchasing.
(hint = $ means paid program for full version)
(*** = highly recommend for all common users)
AirFoil $ = Stream audio from Itunes to multiple sources from your MAC or IOS device, without needing an Airport Express.
Aperature $ = Apple’s premier photo editor, but kind of unnecessary to ordinary users, as IPHOTO comes with every MAC now
AppCleaner *** = The real uninstaller program for MACs
Audio Hijack Pro $ = Need to grab audio from a web source, DVD or browser?
Burn = A better CD/DVD Burner utility
CarbonCopyCloner = If your going to backup your hard drive, you need this free utility in which I recommend donating to.
ClamXAv ***= Free MAC OS Virus Scanner. Highly Recommend.
CCleaner ***= Best cleaning utility now available for MAC users. I cannot recommend this program enough, and its free for both WIN/MAC.
GetCloak $ = Cloak is a great free utility (for 200MB) for MAC/IOS to hide your Ip address from spying eyes on a public network.
Desktop Utility = Free utility that allows you quick unhide hidden files, force empty stubborn trash files, etc. Again, Highly Recommend to have it around.
Evernote = Note taking that syncs across multiple devices including MACs, iPhones, Ipads etc.
Handbrake = Rip DVDs to .mp4, .avi, My favorite ripping utility for MAC/WINDOWS and its free.
Hide My Ip = Proxy avoidance Tool
iNet $ = Network scanner. I like it so much I bought for MAC and my IOS devices. Can email results, save to .PDF, and AIRPORT MONITOR built in to watch traffic on all Airport Devices.
iStat Menus $ *** = Love this application, I use it to view system memory being used, network speeds and quick access to my internal and external IP addresses. I will not own a MAC without it installed.
Kismac = Wireless scanner
Office for Mac $ = I only recommend this if people must use Microsoft Office, otherwise, I use Open Office below.
OpenOffice = Full fledged packed tight Office program. Best alternative for most users.
MyTunesRSS $ = MyTunesRSS allows you to access the music, movies and TV-shows from your iTunes library, photos from your iPhoto library or any simple watch folder over a local network or even the internet.
OmniGraffle $$$ = Very expensive program to make diagrams, quick page layout and many other functions. Its an alternative to and more powerful than Microsoft Visio. Can import and export to Visio also.
Onyx = OnyX is an all-in-one system maintenance tool and optimizer. It is a very simple and light application that comes with a variety of maintenance tools that can be run to make sure that you are enjoying your system at its fullest.
PhotoSync $ = This is purchased on the APP STORE to wirelessly sync photos between your IOS devices, or between your MAC. I also like it because it uploads to Dropbox, Flickr, Facebook, etc., better than the native apps for it.
Picasa by Google *** = FREE basic photo editor, also includes making photo collages very easily. Has built in crop, effects and tuning, making it easier to manage photos than iPHOTO.
Pixelmator $ = This is often compared to Adobe Photoshop, although the price is $29, do not over look it. This is what most people want out of a photo editor, its easy to use but very powerful. It is not a Photoshop replacement, but the things I was using Photoshop for, this does. If iPhoto is not enough, but Photoshop is out of the question, I recommend this.
Private Eye This is a free app that will show you all the applications that are incoming or outgoing on your network. This is a great app.
Rar Expander = RAR extractor, because a lot of MAC users use this archiver.
VLC ***= Best Video Player for all platforms.
VirtualBox = You dont need to pay money for virtual machine programs, take 30 minutes to read tutorials and your good to go. This works great for running full versions of Windows and Linux in a virtual machine on your MAC. Cross platform also.
Wireshark = Wireshark is a network protocol analyzer for Unix and Windows