Switching from OSX to Windows

Use Ninite to Get Up and Running

It can be difficult to adjust to a completely different OS with a radically different set of software available for it. Figuring out alternatives for the tools you use on your Mac could take a lengthy period of research, but using Ninite can speed the process up significantly.


Ninite compiles a host of basic software into one easy-to-use installer. Everything it offers comes highly recommended, and you won’t be targeted by any toolbars or other hassle as you install it on your system. Best of all, the software and the service is free.

If nothing else, it’s enough to get you started with the basics. You’ll likely have to search out specialist software on your own, but if you’re looking for standards like messaging tools, image editing utilities, and media players, you’ll find it all quickly with Ninite.

Make Full Use of Shortcuts

One of the biggest challenges for anyone making the transition from Mac to Windows or vice versa is getting accustomed with keyboard shortcuts. Swapping out the Apple Key for the Control Key will ease you into the basics, but some system-specific functionality will take a little longer to really get used to.

The all-encompassing Windows shortcut guide is a great way of getting to grips with everything you need to know. It may take time to learn these button combinations, but it will be well worth it in the long run. When you’re up to speed, you’ll be able to navigate around your PC using shortcuts alone.

  • Command + C: Ctrl + C (Copy)
  • Command + V: Ctrl + V (Paste)
  • Command + P: Alt + P: (Print)
  • Command + Tab: Alt + Tab (Jump between programs)
  • Command + Shift +3:Windows Key + Print Screen Key (Create screenshot, in Windows it will be sent to the Pictures folder)
  • Command + Mission Control: Windows Key + D (Show the desktop)
  • Command + Space: Windows + Q (Search, without Spotlight to search your computer, Cortana will find what you need from your PC)
  • Command + N: Windows + E (While you can’t jump to Finder with a single keyboard shortcut, Command + N opens a new finder window)
  • Command + W: Alt + F4 (Close window. This opens the Shutdown options window if you’re already viewing the desktop)
  • Command + Option + Esc: Ctrl + Shift + Esc (Opens Force Quit/Task Manager)
  • Control + Command + F: Windows Key + Up (Maximize a window to Full Screen)

How to Force Quit in Windows 10

1. Hold Control + Alt + Delete at the same time. Your keyboard may vary. If this does not work, try Control + Shift + Escape.

2. Select Task Manager.

3. Select the unresponsive app.

4. Tap End Task.


How to Format an External Drive in Windows

The instructions below are for Windows 10, but other versions of Windows from Windows 7 and up can also format an external drive as exFAT for use with Mac as well.

1. Connect the drive to your Windows PC.

2. Open the Disk Management tool. You can do that by typing “disk format” or “disk management” in Windows search or going to Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Create and format hard disk partitions.

windows disk management

3. Right-click on the external drive’s partition or unallocated space you want to format and choose New Simple Volume…

windows new volume

4. Follow the wizard to choose a volume size.

windows new volume size

5. Assign a drive letter.

windows new volume driveletter

6. Choose exFAT as the file system in the Format Partition screen.

windows new volume exfat

7. Give the volume a new name.

windows new volume name

8. Click Next.

9. Click Finish.

windows new volume finish