I didn't really need to get a Mac Pro, but I really wanted to get one. It was time to upgrade my Windows machine, and I thought it would be neat to migrate that machine to Windows running under VMware Fusion on a Mac Pro, and so far, my experience along these lines has been excellent (details below in §5.4). Since it includes UNIX-compatibility support, and since more and more major commercial applications (such as Microsoft Office and Adobe Acrobat) are being ported to the Mac, it is conceivable that OS-X can eventually replace both Windows and Linux for my needs. In the meantime, since OS-X now runs on Intel hardware, it is possible to boot up Windows, Linux, or Mac OS-X on the same hardware. However, for now, I'm using VMware Fusion to host Windows and Linux within the Mac OS X environment. I also run Linux on separate hardware (details below) to achieve maximum performance for music/audio systems work.
Since I started with Mac OS X, the percentage of my time spent on ``system administration'' has plummeted. (For Linux, I like to keep up with the Fedora releases and plug in new hardware, etc.--a sure recipe for plenty of sysadmin fun.) While I do enjoy duking it out with an ``unfinished'' system, I also enjoy having more hours for other things. For me, it's best to go back and forth, with the Mac always ready and stable for ``mission critical'' work, while my Linux boxes can lie in pieces for any amount of time. In this spirit, I tend to run the latest git versions of the main software distributions I use (not counting Fedora itself, where I avoid even the testing versions).