Experiences: Is Leopard worth it?

What describes your MAC OS X situation best?

  • I am still on Tiger and have decided not to upgrade.
  • I am still on Tiger, thinking about going on Leopard one day.
  • I am new on Leopard, can’t say much.
  • I am on Leopard for a while and I am happy with it.
  • I am on Leopard for a while and I am extremely happy with it.
  • I am on Leopard for a while, but I regret the step.
  • I was on Leopard, but now I am back on Tiger.
  • I use neither Tiger nor Leopard.

0 voters

I am still on Tiger. Having switched from Windows to the Mac not long ago, I was too happy having a computer that simply worked to be willing to run any risk. Plus, there was much disencouraging media resonance after the launch of Leopard, giving more or less the impression that Leopard might be Apples VISTA… So, I decided to wait.

But one can’t possibly wait forever. In order to make up my mind about what to do, I’ve set up this little poll and would be happy about your participation.

I’ve been on Leopard since it came out and no real regrets, apart from inability to use Adobe CS1, which I only need periodically and I’m looking for alternatives to InDesign — see the iStudio thread — and I now use LightRoom and/or LightZone instead of Photoshop, and have other alternatives for very quick jobs. Otherwise really happy. I haven’t had any problems with 10.5.6 either. Fully recommend the switch.


I agree with Mark. I use an Intel Macbook. Leopard is faster, its functionality as well as the functionality of certain apps that depend on it is more extensive, and it is much easier on the eye. Comparisons that were made with Vista, which I have also used, were entirely misplaced.


I agree. I am now running both systems for development purposes, but I never log into Tiger unless I absolutely have to for testing.

I use some but not all of the new features in Leopard, but the main difference for me is that Leopard runs faster and looks nicer.

Going back to Tiger definitely feels like a backward step.

I used Leopard on my iMac Core Duo from day 1. The first few weeks were a mixed bag - a few glitches here and there, Stacks was impractical … but by 10.5.3 latest everything was fine. The little interface refinements and the overall speed made Tiger on my iBook look dated.

Just a few days ago I upgraded to a Macbook, and I’m glad to have Leopard everywhere now. I think it’s worth the investment of money and time.

But Snow Leopard might be just around the corner … on the other hand, it will probably have those few glitches in the beginning, whereas Leopard is rock solid and compatible now …

Yes. Leopard is worth the effort. But, I would suggest waiting for Snow.

I upgraded from Tiger purely because my new MacBook came with Leopard pre-installed. And after three weeks, I still can’t see anything particularly special in Leopard, as far as my use of it is concerned. Some default things are downright irritating, like the pointlessly arty dock reflections. And I’m not sure what Time Machine has to offer a laptop user. Stacks and Spaces don’t do what I hoped they would. In fact, I haven’t come across a single Leopard feature that I would deem single out for recommendation. It all works fine, of course, and there’s nothing to object to, either – but that doesn’t seem like a great reason to upgrade.

For me, the main positive thing about upgrading to Leopard is that I no longer feel guilty about making poor old application developers support a superseded OS!

I waited a couple of months after Leopard’s intro to upgrade - - let the first .point upgrade appear. It does seem faster than Tiger, and certainly as stable. I don’t use many of the new features other than Time Machine, which works well on my MBPro to a 1TB FW800 drive.

Since upgrading, there have been several programs - and updates to programs - I use that require 10.5.x, so I’m happy I made the move. If you’re at all interested in upgrading iLife or iWork, the Mac Box coming out in a few weeks seems like a great opportunity for upgrading to Leo.

Thanks for your replies so far. In the moment 17:4 for Leopard, and almost half of all voters are extremely happy: This sounds really encouraging.

(One of my projects for 2009 is to reorganize my workspace. I’ll start with the installation of the last mssing shelf, then, after deleting all rubbish I no longer need, I’ll reformat the paper stuff - reference books, correspondance, notebooks etc. -, upgrade my organisational workflow… And I thought about upgrading my iMac to Leopard as a kind of reward for all this chore. Your answers will in fact encourage me while wiping my shelves and drawers… :slight_smile: )

Two things in Leopard I love and rely upon: TimeMachine - I once “lost” a screenplay I was writing on because I didn’t do regularly backups at that time. Afterwards I copied my stuff to CD, networked volumes and so on; but it’s been not the best of all solutions. Now my MacBook does all the work, as it should do, copying everything I change every hour to my backupvolume which happens to be a 1 TB HD, attached yia USB to my Airport base.

The second thing is the much better integrated Mail-Addressbook-iCal combination, while in itself being 3 different applications, they do work together better as they did in Tiger.

Well, that’s it.

Time Machine is a really great thing for me.

Quick Look I use a lot as well.

There are many niceties and improvements with Leopard.

I think it seemed faster — it’s so long since I booted into Tiger I can’t really remember — but when it comes to the new features:
I have my dock on the right anyway, with much smaller icons, and hidden as I am far less likely to take my mouse over there and thus keep having it pop up when I don’t want it. I had it like that on Tiger so not much difference there.
Spaces I tried for a while, but I don’t really run that many apps and I just found it confusing. I’m sure there are others who lead a much more complex cyber-life than me — like the person who complained quite some time ago that OmniWeb, version 4.x I think, was a bit slow and heavy on memory usage but admitted that he had 128 tabs permanently open!— will find it useful.
Stacks on the other hand I do find useful to a degree. I have it set to column, but only have the two, default Documents and Downloads folders on the dock. I hardly ever access documents this way, preferring more traditional methods or Spotlight, but I find it very useful for the downloads folder.
For the rest, I just found it much more comfortable from the start, and on the occasions when I have rebooted in Tiger, my immediate reaction has been how glad I am to have upgraded.
Oh, Back to my Mac: I have this enabled on both my machines and have used it. I have found myself wishing I could use it when I’m out and about with the MBA and discover a file I want is on the MBP at home, but sad to say, I have yet to find an environment in this Windoze dominated world, where the wireless network is compatible … oh well, one day!


I use space quite a bit and am very happy with it. Maybe it is because I only expected the same type of thing I get with multi-desktop solaris setups. I did some tweaking (like turning off the automatic bounce back) but now it is a stock part of what I do.

Also, I can finally integrate with my office exchange platform well enough to not use the VM. only thing that doesn’t work well is iCal. Hence my anxious wait for Snow.

That reminds me… I hate iCal in Leopard. You have to double-click on an event to display its details in a balloon, and then if you want to edit the details, you have to click on an Edit button to switch the fields to a suitable state. I liked the drawer-thing in the Tiger version, because you could see all the information at once, and amend it easily, and I can’t find out how to replicate this in Leopard. But perhaps I am just being dim.

Mind you, there is a definite bug in iCal’s To Do list implementation: it picks up the To Do tasks from Mail app, which is great, but can’t be relied on to pick up their status. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t.

I’ve used OS X since the first beta. 10.5 Leopard was one of the worst "upgrades’ I’ve seen.
Having said that, by 10.5.4 it got much better and various bugs have been fixed.
I don’t think that the data loss bug has been fixed, but that’s even older than Leopard.

I kept a Tiger partition, and will have to use it for quite a bit of my work. Tiger with shareware programs (e.g., WorkStrip, CodeTek VirtualDesktop Pro, etc.) enabled me to be more productive than with Leopard. Again, by 10.5.4 i began to like it.

But today I was seriously considering buying a PC Laptop since a few programs will not run on my PPC G5.

Reminded me (again) of theonion.com/content/video/a … olutionary at 2:27 approximately :smiley:

I’ve used Leopard since day one of its release and found it a big improvement over Tiger. I don’t use Time Machine or Spaces, but Quick Look is outstanding and so are Airport, Mail, Safari, and Spotlight. In my view, Spotlight alone is worth the price of admission. To find an old file: Cmd-F, and up comes a window, Searching. Choose This Mac or your root folder for Contents or File Name. A file list appears, sortable by Name, Kind, or Last Opened. Refine the search by adding other parameters, or save the search. Select a file, press spacebar, and you see a Quick Look image. Make a copy or alias of the file, or drag it to the Desktop; you have as much control over it as in the Finder. This kind of search capability turns my file system into a cloud, where I find what I want quickly. (The menu bar version of Spotlight is also good, but I like the Cmd-F searching better.)

For a list of the new features, see apple.com/macosx/features/300.html

If you use Spotlight regularly, check out Houdah Spot:

Other options:
I gave Foxtrot Search a try but support is awful and searches are not always accurate. Speed is impressive. For certain files I use Devon Think Pro Office with great results.

A agree with Eddie: until 10.5.4 Leopard wasn’t that great.Nowadays I’d say that if you have an Intel machine Leopard is worth it. If not, don’t bother.

Things I like: :smiley:

  • QuickLook (the best)
  • Finder window
  • Speedier Spotlight (although for serious searches I use LaunchBar and HoudahSpot)
  • Screensharing (when it works)

So-so things: :neutral_face:

  • Mail (overcrowded: to-dos? Rss?..)
  • Time Machine (I suppose it’s useful, but I don’t use it)

Bads: :frowning:

  • Damn Help window always in front (no way to send it to back)
  • iCal
  • Still more bugs than the last releases of Tiger