Having deployed several learning gateways based on SharePoint PS, WSS, LCS and Class Server, I’ve run into MACs in various forms several times. MACs are a fact of life in the academic world but in the grand scheme of things, they make up a very, very small percentage of Microsoft SharePoint user base.
The lack of support could be attributed to the dominace of Windows on the desktop or maybe the MAC and MS teams didnt work closely together enough. I suspect there are many reasons but as a result of them, MACs don’t work well in SharePoint environments.
For example, management functions dont work due to Java and ActiveX control support. Also, Safari doesnt support NTLM and some of script within the page – Netscape does though. The rendering of the HTML on MACs is inconsistent and sometimes down right unusable especially on old MACs. Also, the WSS collaboration does work very well and WEBDAV is non existant.
The best method for setting your clients expectation is to agree upon test cases (goal, tasks, pre-conditions and outcomes). Specifcally, create test cases for Administration functions on Windows and standard user functions on both Windows and MAC. Go through the testing and capture screen images of the results and write the specific results to a test case report. With this information, you can have an objective discussion with the client.
If you check Microsofts website, the supported clients and their supported functions are listed quite clearly.
The following are the recommended clients OS levels for SharePoint. I have tested these under controlled scenarios:
- Internet Explorer 6.x, Safari 2.0 and Netscape 7.x browsers are to be tested.
- The major platforms must be represented in the Portal project – XP SP2, Windows 2000 (SP4) and Mac OS 10.4.
Windows XP and Office 2003 must be used for Administration and Content Mgmt.