Crazy Idea: Does Apple make iTunes for windows slow on purpose?

Discussion in 'Operating Systems' started by rei1574, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. rei1574

    rei1574 Gawd

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    I was just fiddling around with my iTunes and I went to go toggle the "Genius" mode, where apparently Apple makes playlist/song suggestions based on your music library. I thought it would be an easy thing to activate, however once this started it basically locked up my computer to the brink of crashing. As far as hardware, I have a i7 920 overclocked to 4.0ghz and 6gb of ram, so it's not like I have some rinky dink system here. Is there any reason why a simple application that shares music should not be able to run on that hardware?!

    But anyways, as far as my theory - I think Apple makes iTunes for windows incredibly slow on purpose as a marketing tool. Whenever I complain about iTunes, people always say "well it runs better on a mac". Why should Apple be able to get away with this stuff? If you serve customers who use two different operating systems, you should make the program equally good for both platforms.

    If you think about it - an iPod / iPhone are popular pieces of hardware that just about every windows user has. Hell, I hate Apple, but I have a 160gb iPod, therefore I have to use the iTunes program. It's almost as if iTunes is a common program that windows users operate and it basically allows Apple to tap into windows users.
     
  2. XOR != OR

    XOR != OR [H]ardForum Junkie

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    It's probably not intentional. Like they have a loop in the code called, "Upgrade" that they deincrement every time someone complains ( this is more common then most people realize ).

    Now, I wouldn't be surprised to learn that the project team in charge of the windows client doesn't get as many resources as the mac team, or is hamstringed in some other way. That would have the same effect, yet wouldn't look intentional ( or is at least forgivable ).
     
  3. bigdogchris

    bigdogchris [H]ard as it Gets

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    Doesn't Genius automatically organize your music? If it's been off this entire time then you enable it, there could be a huge hit as it indexes/organizes your entire collection. It may just not be programed to limit resource usage.
     
  4. rei1574

    rei1574 Gawd

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    Yep - this is exactly what I'm talking about.

    I think Apple could easily fix these types of problems, but they just choose not to.
     
  5. willyspuddle

    willyspuddle Limp Gawd

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    Try and install ITunes64 for Win7. Craps out. Turns out you need to remove the default install folder program files(x86) to just program files and it works perfectly. They crap on there biggest supporter.

    Cheers!
     
  6. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    I think Apple is just retarded at programming for anything except for their own stuff. Whether intentional or not, they obviously do not put forward the most effort.

    I have no idea how iTunes and Quicktime can suck so hard on Windows and yet run so smoothly on OSX...makes no sense. It really is not about the OS at all, it is about how they code the program. But people blame the OS in the end :rolleyes:
     
  7. rei1574

    rei1574 Gawd

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    Exactly - they bitch and moan about how windows crashes all the time.

    Whats a better way to show that than to code a godawful application that crashes even on a crazy overclocked Core i7 920.
     
  8. akotlar

    akotlar Guest

    Whatever they're doing, Apple needs to change their strategy with regards to Ipod/Iphone integration. They're losing customers due to this. Itunes is a pain to use, and the "feature-lockdown" hardware model they're selling is causing a lot of dissatisfaction (can't do TV out with my Iphone unless I purchase a $50 cable, no kidding). As soon as a great open alternative comes into existence, they will see their sales growth dropping. Nexus one may not be that device yet ($529 w/o contract, no 3G on AT&T), but something along those lines.

    Of course it is intentional - in a way. Their focus is on the wrong thing, on making a marketing-heavy, Apple controlled experience, and that is at odds with creating light, fast interfaces. I'm sure they would like both light & Apple marketing heavy, but that isn't really possible. They're going to have to cut some of their "features" to speed up the process. How about starting with letting me play OGG, FLAC, WMA, MPEG2, H.264, and about a billion other formats.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 30, 2009
  9. VitaminTee

    VitaminTee [H]Lite

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    I think it runs so slow because it runs through some kind of osx emulation layer, I have no idea if this is the case although the 80mb (or whatever it is) download has to be something other than a shinny UI. I guess it runs well on a mac because its integrated into the os like how EI is integrated into explorer.

    I personally can't stand to use iTunes its the biggest bloated piece of crap software I've ever used! Its not even remotely intuitive! Why can't I just drag and drop stuff on/off of my phone? iTunes personifies the snug nature of mac users... "we do it differently".... what can't you just do it the way that work!?
     
  10. Unknown-One

    Unknown-One [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I have my own set of issues with the UI...

    They keep the OSX look even when the app is running on Windows. What's with the double standard? "We'll make it match our OS, but it wont fit in at all with the UX specifications of your OS". It's BS, and it just looks plain wrong on a Windows desktop the way it is now.

    I went ahead and roughly applied the Windows UX specifications to iTunes, just to see what would happen. I know this isn't 100% up to code, but it's a hell of a lot closer than the current iteration of iTunes for Windows.

    [​IMG]

    I would be so much happier with it if it were to look something like that...
     
  11. MisterSparkle

    MisterSparkle [H]ard|Gawd

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    Hmmm..... :p
     
  12. akotlar

    akotlar Guest

    Haha good catch :p
     
  13. sap

    sap Limp Gawd

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    It's really a shame to see all the rampant speculation from you guys. I thought this place was "hard". This guy is pretty close though.

    The reason it's so large and so slow are all the frameworks that have to be ported from OS X to Windows. Have you ever noticed that the font smoothing doesn't match the rest of your environment?
     
  14. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    BINGO. We have a winner :D

    Seriously that quote sums it up. I can't think of a single peice of software they have on both platforms that's actually equivalent to the version they run on OS X.

    iTunes just plain sucks to start with, but on Windows it's a malware (anything that gets installed without my consent is malware) infested software. At least folks are starting to see through it- even non-tech-savvy folks I talk to are hating iTunes nowadays and want something different.

    This is also, FWIW- why I love DAPs like Cowon... You don't have to have software to run it. Or if you do- you can choose whatever the heck you want to use. WMP, iTunes, Media Monkey- whatever you want.
     
  15. Arainach

    Arainach 2[H]4U

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    I'm convinced their programmers just suck - heck, look at their Windows drivers for their hardware. They're miserable. I'm half surprised Microsoft doesn't give in, reverse engineer their own stuff and write decent drivers so that Mac owners don't get the mistaken impression that Windows sucks.
     
  16. Jerec

    Jerec [H]Lite

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    QuickTime and Safari never run very well on Windows compared to their Mac versions.
     
  17. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Or it could mean Windows+Mac sucks... Apple is trying to use something (Bootcamp on Mac) Windows wasn't intended for... So Mac sucks unless it runs OS X. Would that be a train of thought as well?

    IDK. But then again most Mac users don't have such critical thinking skills to get that far :p

    I mean, theoretically... Macs should never crash. Apple controls the hardware. Apple controls the drivers. Apple controls the OS. But they crash just as much (if not more- since Windows 7) than Windows. So... go figure. Chalk that up to sucky programming on their own stuff as well. I think it'd be safe to say not that "Apple can only write for their own stuff" but rather "Apple writes especially bad software for Windows".

    :eek: I didn't even think about Safari... But yea- very good example :D
     
  18. Harb

    Harb Limp Gawd

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    iTunes has never really given me performance/crashing issues and I've been using it since I bought my first 40gb iPod back when they had greyscale displays and a blue backlight.

    That being said, my biggest gripe with it is the fact that when you install iTunes, it also installs FOUR OTHER PROGRAMS. Quicktime, Bonjour, Apple Software Update, and one other thing that I can't recall the name of... AND, when ASU runs, it tries to install Safari every goddamn time.

    Reminds me of the Realplayer days :mad:
     
  19. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Exactly- It's more like malware than legitimate software.
     
  20. msny

    msny 2[H]4U

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    Like iTunes, but when I went to win 7, I made sure "genius"
    got turned it off.
     
  21. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    I have been messing with foobar lately and quite like the theme I made with columns UI (plugin).

    Works like itunes, which frankly I kinda like the layout of, and is very customizable of course since it is foobar. Still does not sync my ipod, but it is awesome for on PC playback. It even sounds a bit better IMO. Plus it properly monitors folders, has proper acceptance of tagging standards, plays just about anything, and is SUPER lightweight.

    [​IMG]
     
  22. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    It is sad, I mean you look at the Windows platforms that MS designs from start to finish with OEMs (not very many, but there are some) and they are extremely stable. Apple's advantage always has been this, but for how much control they have it should be better.

    Bootcamp should run windows just fine and perfectly. Most of the components are the same and equivalent to things Windows already runs on (look at the hackintosh community). In fact the Macbook pretty much is just another Core 2 Duo laptop these days. Apple just cannot write code for Windows....
     
  23. Eva_Unit_0

    Eva_Unit_0 [H]ard|Gawd

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    I find all the tinfoil hat conspiracies in here to be very amusing. Really, it shouldn't be a huge surprise that their program is better tailored and performs better for their own system. They're not malicious (at least not any more so than any other capitalist ventures), it's just that, believe it or not, it's easier to write fast programs for the OS that you yourself wrote, and not someone else's OS. And it's their product...if they want it to look like OSX even on windows, then they have every right to do so.

    Also, they are not the only ones that this applies to. MS Office on the mac is horribly slow, as were the now-defunct Internet Explorer versions for the mac. Does this mean Microsoft is evil and trying to sabotage apple? No, it's more likely that they just had a harder time writing for someone else's OS.
     
  24. XOR != OR

    XOR != OR [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Harder or easier doesn't really enter in to the equation when you are writing applications like office or itunes. A programmer is a programmer, what framework they are using doesn't really matter as long as they are familiar with it.

    I stand by my assumption; that it's a question of resource allocation within the company.
     
  25. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    Office 2008 is actually quite fast on OSX. It also has a completely redesigned interface to fit in with what Mac users are used to (it fits into the GUI, it uses separate window blocks like Mac users like, etc.).

    In fact Office 2008 is proof that MS can code for OSX just fine.
     
  26. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Older versions, yea... I mean, Microsoft knew it, too. Even considered dropping Office for Mac at one point.
    But instead they decided to put some effort into it and released 2008- which another poster commented: works great.

    Proof that if you actually try (or are competant) you can write good software. Apple does neither.
     
  27. phide

    phide [H]ard as it Gets

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    To preface the impending quote/reply assault: yeah, iTunes sucks. It does seem to work much better on 7, but it's still not up to par with iTunes on OS X. I don't think there's any real conspiracy, but I do think Apple's not throwing enough resources at it and most certainly not adhering to Windows UI standards. Hopefully that's eventually resolved as it was (for the most part) with Safari.

    Why would you install a 64-bit program to Program Files (x86)?

    If I recall correctly, the installer is fairly clear about what it installs. It tells you that it includes QuickTime as well as Apple Software Update. If you proceed with the installation, you're consenting that you're okay with those being installed.

    You must miss being able to insult Mac users in the news section, don't you Techie? The pickings in the other subforums are far slimmer, I'm afraid.

    Apple doesn't control third-party software vendors, however, and that's typically the source of crashes in OS X. I don't recall having had a Mac crash on me when I'm browsing through Finder, but crashes in Pro Tools, for example, do happen occasionally.

    Do they?
     
  28. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yes- it "tells me" that it includes Quicktime but I can't opt-out of it. It's a forced install. Apple Software Update is the only thing I can actually opt out of.

    Show me the checkbox for Bounjour service.

    Oh- didn't find it? OK then.

    Really? Cuz the default apps plus iWork or iLife... (All of which Apple has written) crash once per day- if not more. Whereas you take all other 80 Windows machines in the office and I could count on one hand the number of BSODs I've had to deal with.

    One could also argue since Apple controlls EVERYTHING other than the software- they could make the system stable enough that one application crashing won't bring the whole system down. Microsoft's taken great strides in this area with Windows 7. I honestly can't remember the last time I've had an application take down Windows, unless it's been driver related.
     
  29. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    You can say the exact same thing about Windows.

    Windows is rock solid without shitty 3rd party stuff installed. I have servers that have the minimal install of 3rd party items on them, and well written ones, and they have been running for close to a decade with little issue.
     
  30. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Well, actually, Windows machines are quite predictable in the way they behave.
    Outside of video drivers, I can't remember the last time I've had Windows ever crash.
    On a server- you don't need to run much more than built-in video drivers anyway. The first reason being you aren't going to try pushing anything high resolution or performance from the server. The second being is everything you'll do is remotely administered anyway. So the most problematic drivers are even less a problem on servers.

    The Macs will just crash at whatever time they please for various reasons. I mean- you admit it- software can crash OS X. The OS sucks at isolating this stuff. Vista did an awesome job at isolating that- and 7 built upon it.
     
  31. phide

    phide [H]ard as it Gets

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    There is no checkbox. Like I said, it's been a while since I've installed iTunes, but I believe they're all mentioned. I'll run an install later and see if I'm mistaken. If it's mentioned, then you're consenting to it when you hit "install".

    You have office employees running iLife apps...and they all crash once per day?

    All operating systems are pretty stable if you don't use third-party software. That sort of goes without saying.
     
  32. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Don't bother, I already did before I posted that.
    Again- you're wrong. Software that installs other crap without my consent is more akin to malware than legitimate software, it's as simple as that.

    And there's no redeeming factor to iTunes to even make it "worth it"... Most folks are forced to use it because of Apple's death-grip need to control everything.

    If that. Some are stock. Depending what they're being used for, not unusual to see a machine crash twice a day.

    Search around the internet- there's tons of folks that have their Macs crash due to Apple software. I even found one that crashed because the crash reporter had crashed. Go figure that one out.

    Unless you use a Mac.





    When you don't have third-party stuff there's really zero reason your product shouldn't work. The massive Zune outage last year due to the new year? Totally inexcusable and 100% Microsoft's fault. Everyone knew it was, and Microsoft didn't hide from the fact they screwed up. They didn't point a finger at Apple and say "Well, Apple's DAP is worse because ____". Nope- admitted to the problem, gave a resolution, learned from the mistake, and released the best DAP known to man: Zune HD.
    That's really what just drives me crazy more than anything. Instead of putting your resources into improving your product- you spend it on marketing trying to make your competitors look worse :rolleyes:

    Another good classic example: Apple ships viruses on their iPods. Do they admit to the mistake, fix the problem, and move on? Nope. They blame Microsoft because some people write viruses for Windows :rolleyes:
     
  33. devil22

    devil22 2[H]4U

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    That's pretty nice unknown-one, I wish it looked like that too. Although I like pin-stripes (alternating colors for lines of text) I think all apps should have that option..
     
  34. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    I missed this post before... :D

    WMP pretty much already is exactly what you posted (and in a smaller, pre-installed state), so why can't Apple just break off the need to use iTunes with their iPods? I mean- what downside would that have? If anything, you'd have more people using iPods because it's easier and more compatible with everything.
     
  35. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    They dont get the chance to shove the itunes store down your throat...that would be the biggy.
     
  36. TechieSooner

    TechieSooner [H]ardness Supreme

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    Ahh yea... That's true. People would opt for easier to use services- heaven forbid they allow their customers to do that.
     
  37. Grentz

    Grentz [H]ard as it Gets

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    To be fair the itunes store is very easy to use, especially for non-power computer users. It is point and click easy as can be.

    But it is also a no choice, locked down (unless you pay out the nose for it), crazy little Apple world :p
     
  38. phide

    phide [H]ard as it Gets

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    For reasons which are unknown to me, I don't entirely trust your objective evaluation of the installer :)

    I've never claimed that OS X doesn't crash. My beef is with your claim that OS X crashes as often or more often than Windows, which has not been my experience. I don't use my mini nearly as often as I do my Windows 7 PC, but my experience with the mini is that it's a very stable albeit somewhat underpowered machine. Thus far, no system crashes/kernel panics.

    You're just attempting to get a rise out of me at this point. A valiant effort, but uninteresting.

    As a Zune HD owner myself, I really can't agree with this claim in any way. It's a great DAP -- certainly better than many others on the market in its price range, which is why I bought it -- but it also boasts a poorly-designed UI (at least in comparison to the iPod touch) and lacks the iPod touch's massive application library. The Zune software itself is fairly nice, though I've experienced one crash using it and it lacks some of the finer tagging abilities of iTunes. I can't import artwork into an MP4 video, for instance, which is no issue for iTunes. Zune also doesn't support ID3v2.4 tagging, meaning I had to rewrite the tags on my MP3 library just to import them into the Zune library (no problem for iTunes). That fault carries over into Windows as well: no ID3v2.4 support to speak of.

    They also blame themselves:
    It's pretty typical Apple spin, but they do at least admit fault for not having caught it along with describing how to remedy the issue.
     
  39. Arainach

    Arainach 2[H]4U

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    In what way? The HD's interface is far and about the most intuitive DAP I've ever seen. I had to coach my GF through the simple act of finding a song on my 30G Zune and my 160GB iPod Classic; there was less coaching involved on an iPhone, but she still couldn't figure out anything past the absolute basics. The Zune HD? She has yet to ask any questions. I can even say things like "put it in shuffle mode" and she figures it out without questions.
     
  40. phide

    phide [H]ard as it Gets

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    My main gripes with the Zune HD's interface:

    The scroll speed limit is unnecessarily slow, which makes scrolling through artists or songs particularly tedious. A good solid flick on the touch really gets you rolling, whereas the Zune always stops you short. The ability to jump to letters helps a lot with the navigation, but that feature isn't presented as obviously as it is on the touch (I didn't learn of the feature for a long while), and it involves an extra screen tap. I have an obscene amount of songs that start with "A", for whatever reason, and it takes a particularly long time and a lot of flicking to scroll through them and find the track I'm looking for, which means I often end up browsing by artist or album and tapping through other screens to get to the song I want.

    There's no search function on the Zune, which is disappointing. The touch has Spotlight, which you can get to very quickly by swiping to the right on the home screen. Start entering letters, and the search results start drilling down, just like Spotlight/Windows search. This makes jumping to specific artists or songs much quicker.

    The Zune doesn't recall the last position of each of the browser screens like the iPod touch. If you scroll to an album in the "K"s and start playing it, then tap the home button to go back to the main menu, going back to the album browser dumps you back at the beginning rather than recalling that the last place you were was in the "K" section. Also simply pressing the back button dumps you back to the beginning of the album list (not back to the "K"s!), which is completely unintuitive and often results in more swiping/taps than necessary.

    The battery indicator isn't displayed unless you're on specific screens, whereas the battery indicator is displayed at all times on the iPod touch, as well as the clock and the wireless status indicator. The absence of the clock and wireless status I can understand, given that the Zune's a media player first and foremost, but the absence of the battery indicator on the majority of the screens doesn't seem to make much sense (especially considering there's plenty of room for it no matter where you are).

    There's no way to easily seek to certain parts of a track on the Zune that I'm aware of. That feature works for videos (as you'd expect), but not for songs. I have a few tracks that are longer than 30 minutes, and my only option is to fast forward if I want to jump to a particular section of a track. Basic tape deck/CD player functionality with that.

    The interface isn't horrible, though it's too basic for someone like me and often inconsistent. For someone with basic needs, it works well (and the pins feature is excellent -- something the touch desperately lacks) and is fairly intuitive, but the edges are annoyingly rough.

    It's an impressive DAP, though, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone who's looking for a thin, light, responsive and nicely designed DAP with a fantastic display, but I just wish MS would tighten things up a bit when it comes to the UI and add some sort of search function.