It’s just SO UNFAIR!

Earlier today, Apple took its store down for two hours to add a single product (see How to update your online store, the Apple way for more on that) and, when it returned, large, white cats were everywhere. Yes, Apple had announced that Mac OS X 10.6—Snow Leopard—will start shipping on August 28. And already, Mac users and journos are right behind the company, whining about various things, and so here are three helpful tips.

1. Calling Snow Leopard a ‘service pack’ makes you look stupid

Mac OS X 10.6 has few show-stopping features as far as end-users are concerned—there’s no Quick Look or Spotlight equivalent—but it has plenty to offer. Under the hood, huge chunks of the system have been gutted and rewritten. You’ll get several GB of hard drive space back (great for laptop users), a machine that’ll be faster (meaning this update is like getting a newer Mac for naff-all outlay), Exchange support, and great refinements, such as Dock Exposé.

This is a major upgrade, not a bug-fix, and I suspect only the fact most of the changes are transparent to end users stopped Apple charging full-whack for it.

2. Complaining about the ‘upgrade’ price makes you look stupid

Do you Tiger users really think Apple was going to let you leapfrog Leopard and update to Snow Leopard for £25/$29? If so, you really are crazy. [Update: Wired confirmed Snow Leopard will install right over Tiger, although this possibly breaches the EULA.] And for everyone whining about how Apple’s ‘forcing’ Tiger users to upgrade via a ‘hellishly expensive’ box-set that includes software they don’t need (the £129/$169 Mac Box Set bundles Snow Leopard, iLife and iWork), here’s a tip: buy Leopard instead.

Seriously—it really is that simple. Stop moaning about evil Apple, and nip over to Amazon and grab Leopard (at the time of writing, $93 in the USA and £69 in the UK) along with Snow Leopard, and you’ll be spared the horrors of the Mac Box Set, with all its iLife and iWork goodness, you poor dears.

3. Complaining that you just got a new Mac two days ago and so it’s SO UNFAIR that Apple’s releasing Snow Leopard right now and WAH WAH WAH WAH WAH makes you look stupid

Apple runs Up To Date, giving anyone who grabbed a Mac since June 8 the chance to upgrade for £7.95/$9.95, if they bother to fill in and send an order form within 90 days of buying their Mac. Moan about this and the Mac Box Set and call Snow Leopard a service pack and we hear Steve Jobs himself will come round to your house and punch you in the face—twice if you’re British and rattle on about exchange rate injustices.

This has been a Revert to Saved public service announcement. As you were.