back to article Hackintosh maker gets legal greeting from Apple

As was inevitable, hackintosh vendor Psystar has found itself on Apple's legal to-do list. Apple has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the open hardware manufacturer, which began raising eyebrows by offering a $400 computer capable of running copies of Mac OS X. Psystar Open Computer The legal grievances were …


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  1. Andrew Tyler


    Apple really should have released a version of OS/X without the Mac lock in. Given Vista's woes, they could potentially have taken a pretty big bite. I imagine it's not that simple though what with all of the different hardware that would require support and whatnot.

    I hope Apple loses. I really do. I hope they set one of those precemadents.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Lime Smoothie
    Paris Hilton

    If only.....

    This should be fun, especially if Apple lose.

    Of course, there is a school of thought that Apple would be the predominant OS by now, if they had sold the OS separately. But of course, they were more interested in shipping zillions (or so they thought) of 'puters. And thus, it came to pass that evil Bill Gates took over the world.

    Paris, because even she has a business plan.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Anti Competative

    Microsoft got fined for having IE preinstalled on their flipping OS

    Apple forced Safari to be installed on Windows PCs via their Apple Software Update (Which im sure was purposly done).

    They also force you to have Quicktime when installing iTunes (When iTunes seems to run fine without).

    And as for forcing users to only run their OS on an Apple built machine, then thats even worse.

    One of my reasons why Hackintosh is a god.


  5. Steven Raith

    If Apple do lose...

    ...and lets face it, that's a big, and unlikely if - and are forced to allow OS X to run on non-apple hardware - how long before people start slagging OS Xs hardware compatability/reliability/etc as much as [insert your favourite OS here]?

    If it did go against Apple, seeing Mac fanboys on the defensive proper for once would be a laugh, and this will make for some interesting reading as it plays out, I suspect.

    Tux - because he and his chums have been fighting the hardware compatability/drivers stories for yeeeeears.

    Steven R

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Steve, he say 'namaste to Psystar'

    Show no mercy and destroy the infidels utterly. And then destroy them some more.

    Much love. Peace out.

  7. Richard Reeve
    Jobs Halo

    Nothing happening here, move along please

    As Steven Raith says, the reason why Macs just work is that they have less ambition than MS and only target a small range of hardware. If they win, that continues; if they lose, that continues: no-one is going to make them write drivers for other people's hardware, and they'll just say that this is the only supported hardware, use anything else at your own risk. Sane people will continue to use Apple hardware...

  8. Mat Child
    Jobs Horns

    What if

    Microsoft started shipping the next version of windows, but licenced it only for MS Branded machines with Intel processors, audio and Graphics chipsets.

    Leaving all other brands and H/W setup with Vista as the only legal option until such time as they pull the plug.

    The lawyers would be on it so fast you would be able to say 'anti-competative?'

  9. yeah, right.


    Apple does not have a de-facto monopoly. Therefore the usual anti-competition rules that have bitten Microsoft probably don't apply to Apple.

    That said, I still hope Apple loses, but it's unlikely they will.

  10. Matt Bradley
    Jobs Halo

    OS-X Ready

    Looking forward to seeing "OS-X Ready" on beige boxen in PC World sometime in 2010.

    What would happen then? If Apple OS-X became a hardware independent OS, it would put Apple RIGHT in Microsoft's gunsights. Not a nice place to be.

    Not to mention that then you'd have ubiquitous software platform that was being self installed by end lusers on inadequate hardware. This opens MacOs up to the Microsoft virus target / hardware support nightmare. I can't see Apple being able to cope with THAT anytime soon...

  11. Pierre

    @ Mark and AC

    I reckon Apple choice of tying their OS to their hardware can be discussed, but it's certainly not anti-competitive and it's the *bloody exact opposite* to what MS is being punished for. They merely did it to avoid having to support diverse hardware imho (avoiding a huge source of technical glitches that would have tarnished their shiny "it just works" mantra). Also, they are elitist twats relying on the delusional sentiment of superiority they give to their typical customer, and this doesn't work as well without the shiny fruity logo on the machine. Namely, MS is grounded for forcing it's crap onto virtually all cheap and shitty system around, whereas Apple tries to look cool by preventing people from installing their droppings on unworthy machines.Given that most people buy "a computer", not an OS, MS behaviour is uncompetitive whereas Apple strategy might at worst be considered as shooting their own shiny elvish feet.

  12. David Webb
    Jobs Horns

    Apple won't lose

    As much as Apple suck and prevent any competition in the Apple "market", they will not lose simply because of Microsoft. The EU will not look at Apple shutting any and all other vendors out of the Mac scene because they consider Apple a competitior to Microsoft so figure it shouldn't run by the same rules.

    Now if MS were to lock down XP/Vista so it wouldn't run on Apple hardware, the EU would be on them like a ton of bricks.... however, Apples TOS say it only needs to be "Apple labeled" not "Apple hardware".

  13. Pierre
    Jobs Horns


    I still hope Apple loses.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Would be awesome if Apple lost-the end of the EULA for all!!!

    Chances are Apple won't lose.

    If they did the precedent would be a positive one. It would pretty much invalidate all EULA. Microsoft and Apple and all those software companies with their restrictive EULA would not longer be able to push users around.

    I remember some Microsoft EULA stated you couldn't post anything negative about their products or post performance statistics! WHAT?

    AutoDesk claims you cannot resell their software.

    Apple claims you cannot try to install on non-Apple hardware.

    Most claim you cannot reverse engineer or make backup copies.

    All things that should fall well within a users right after paying good money for something.

  15. Jason

    Hardware Reliability

    I personally don't find it to be anticompetitive. Apple designed Mac OS. It's THEIR product. If they don't want to sell it to everyone they shouldn't have to, it's called FREE MARKET. However, if in some crazy judgement they do lose (I've long wanted Mac OS on PC), It will be good for the market in providing some alternative to windows that's relatively stable most of the time, and in doing so will only reaffirm why they have never opened it up to all hardware. Want the most stable Mac OS? Buy it on Apple hardware. Want cheap? Buy it on open hardware and pay for it in reliability.

    But even then it's still probably more solid than Windows...

  16. Alan
    Gates Halo

    Perhaps Bill Gates could fund Psystar's defence...

    Surely he could do it just for the malicious fun of seeing St. Steve squirm.

  17. Mark
    Jobs Halo

    Actually AC...

    "They also force you to have Quicktime when installing iTunes (When iTunes seems to run fine without)."

    Actually, no it won't work fine since quicktime is the playback engine for iTunes.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Andrew Tyler

    It would be quite possible to support wider hardware by providing a windows driver compatability support (something like ndiswrapper on Linux). Anything that has a Windows driver would then work on OSX too.

    The down side is of course that that Windows drivers are blamed for most of the Windows crashes and this would also be potentially provide a security hole you could drive a bus through.

  19. Anonymous Coward

    i totally agree

    I totally agree with this company. why do microsoft have to bend over backwards when Apple seem to get all the favours?

    Apple chose to convert OSX to run on pretty much standard PC components

    (okay, a few particular ones but nothing special from Cupertino!)

    I know a few people who are running OSX on other PCs that have the required

    hardware... some Dell systems aparently are quite good....

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    two points @ AC

    #1 Quicktime is indeed a dependency for iTunes

    Quicktime contains all the video and audio codecs which iTunes requires to decode audio and video files. It's a dependency, like those on Linux where you tick some piece of software you want installed and then it needs oodles of stuff you never knew you wanted, like if you wanted some commandline utility for some sysadmin task, all of a sudden the whole of Gnome with truckloads of graphics stuff and games has to be installed as for some unknown reason they are all a dependency you'd never have thought existed, but your utility uses some weird function from those libraries for some obscure task it could perhaps have been written to do in a different way, not requiring all those libraries, but that's life. Same with iTunes, it requires Quicktime, even though it could perhaps have been written to decode audio and video files using some other library or with embedded codecs, but hey, that's life.

    Do you want to make it illegal for software developers to use libraries of their choice? Only libraries on a government approved list are legal and using any other library is not?

    #2 Nobody forces Apple users to only run OSX

    Apple's license does not say anything about what other OSes an owner of Apple hardware can run. It only says something about what platform OSX is licensed to run on. Thus you have got it upside down. Apple doesn't force anybody to only run OSX on their Macs. They deny you the right to run OSX on something other than an Apple branded machine. Two different things.

    Did you actually read the EULA?

  21. Dave

    On Your Own Head

    I can see that if Apple lose, they'll just refuse to provide support to anything that isn't approved hardware, on the basis that they never guaranteed that their software would run on it. They're missing a trick here, I'm sure they could extract licence fees from other hardware manufacturers to have 'certified' hardware.

    Can we have a Jobs-with-egg-on-his-face icon?

  22. Franklin

    Minor inaccuracy in the article...

    The PsyStar computer isn't "capable of running off-the-shelf copies of Mac OS X." Their Web site is down right now, but last time I checked, it advised buyers not to try to install OS X on their own, because of the complexity of the procedure.

    I seem to recall that they'd pirated the firmware they were using in their boxes, as well.

    A lot of folks keep saying Apple should release OS X on its own. I suspect these folks have never run a business and never read any computer news over the last few decades. Everyone who has tried to release a commercial, non-open source operating system to compete with Windows--Be, NeXT, *everyone* without exception--has failed.

  23. Austin Modine (Written by Reg staff)

    @ Franklin

    Psystar states they don't support the installation of Leopard outside their facility, so obviously getting an off-the-shelf copy to run isn't the easiest thing in the world. However, they need to get the OS somewhere — and I doubt Apple is supplying OEM versions here.

    But seeing as you can't get a box running Leopard without the OS pre-installed in the first place (and I don't get paid by the word), I'll strike the off-the-shelf reference from the story.

  24. Rob Menke
    Dead Vulture

    If Psystar Wins, the Homebrew Cloners Lose

    If people think a Psystar win will force Apple to license MacOS X for beige boxes, think again.

    Apple will simply stop selling MacOS X starting with Snow Leopard. You get a box, the OS will be preloaded. System updates will work as usual. Want a new release? Take your machine into an Apple Store (or via mail) and for a nominal service charge (around $130, natch) they'll upgrade your machine. They'll probably make you sign a contract, too; no EULA problems there since you actively agreed. Obviously, they have the right to refuse to service a competitor's machine.

    That won't stop people from making and distributing images of a clean MacOS X drive, but since those will be patently illegal copies Apple won't care; they'll just sic the BSA on the distributors. Psystar will have no options open: Leopard will no longer be available via retail, and Snow Leopard won't be available period.

    Expect new machines to come with the TPM fully activated to limit the cloning. Also expect the MacMacs to vigorously defend the practice even though it sucks for everyone else, and the Freetards to claim "Well, now I'm switching to Linux!" even though Apple couldn't care less about them (which causes them to hate Apple more). Finally, with the death of the EULA, expect to be forced to sign a contract for ANY software since companies won't be able to enforce their terms any other way.

    Apple isn't going to slit their own throat to make the customer's life easier; nor should they. Most of their customers wouldn't upgrade anyway: the average consumer is content with the OS that comes with the machine.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Dude, you're getting a Dell

    Yeah, I'd love to be able to run OS X on a cheap and nasty plastic PC with PS/2 connectors, leaky capacitors and a power supply that self-destructs after 3 months.

    Oh, wait a minute....

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows driver compatibility - HAHAHA

    "It would be quite possible to support wider hardware by providing a windows driver compatability support (something like ndiswrapper on Linux). Anything that has a Windows driver would then work on OSX too."

    You obviously have not idea what you are talking about. The kernel architecture of Darwin is entirely different from that of Windows and Linux. The kernel API is solely based on embedded C++. You can't just write a wrapper around drivers for other OS kernels and expect it to work. Many hardware vendors have tried to just massage their existing drivers into becoming an OSX version and they learned the hard way that it doesn't work that way. You have to write a driver specifically for the OSX kernel API (called IOKit) and follow the rules of embedded C++ (a restrictive cut down version of C++ specifically for embedded devices, thus suitable for use in OS kernels). Yes, it has its downsides when it comes to porting drivers to OSX because you really have to rewrite your code from scratch, but it also does have upsides, I promise, once you've worked with IOKit, you'll find it rather painstaking to code drivers in the old fashioned way.

  27. nick

    OSX on generic PC hardware

    Yeah in an ideal world it would be great if they would allow OSX to run on an ordinary PC but they wont for 3 reasons..

    1. Apple hardware is more expensive the same way a BMW is. It doesn't make it better, its just a status thing.

    2. With a limited number of motherboards, graphics cards, memory, CPUs etc its possible to test much more extensively for bugs. It would be impossible to test windows for every combination of hardware that might end up in a PC.

    3. It enforces their DRM /itunes lockdown and helps them get deals with itunes. Apple is fighting MS & Sony to become the main outlet for online media. All 3 are trying to become the standard for streamed media and whoever has the most secure system will win the most licences from the RIAA/MPAA.

    I do hope that Apple fails and Psystar are allowed to sell OSX on their hardware if for no other reason than EULAs are evil and illegally strip us of our rights to use what we bought in the way we want.

  28. Graham Lockley

    Heres hoping...

    Apple get kicked in the nads on this one. Ok it aint gonna happen but are they then going to go after all the devs/admins etc. who are running OSX on VM's ? Or people like me who run OSX on a triple boot system ?

    Lost any sympathy for the fruity loops many years ago when they sued DR over GEM and crippled the one serious contender to Windows.

    On the other hand maybe they will lose and in turn all the other ridiculous EULAS will come under the microsope.

    Nah, TANJ !

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Richard Reeve

    If Apple is going to reach a serious piece of market share in the personal computer markets of Europe or North America, THEN AND ONLY THEN is it likely that they will be forced to sell their OS for use on non-Apple hardware. For as long as they stay well below the kind of market share that could be construed as market dominating, this won't happen.

    And should that ever happen, they still won't have to license their OS to run on every other hardware. They would be required to make a few deals with other hardware vendors and license their OS to those vendors. In other words, there would be one or more OEM versions of OSX and you'd still not be licensed to run such an OEM copy of OSX on any other hardware than that which it is licensed for.

    Also, Apple would either make it the responsibility of those vendors to sort out all the compatibility issues with drivers, even the development of drivers etc, or more likely, they'd charge the OEM partner for R&D and testing on that hardware. At the end of the day, this would probably increase the cost of the OEM version of OSX cause at the end of the day, there is no such thing as a free lunch.

    The economics of such an OEM deal would probably make it unviable for the likes of HP or DELL to license OSX. They would not want to have to incur the cost of compatibility R&D and QA for their entire portfolio of PCs but if they only license OSX for one or two models, then they'd face very serious penalties from Microsoft and lose discounts on their OEM versions of Windows.

    Instead, there would likely be a small number of hardware vendors who do not sell any Windows based hardware at all. In other words, companies which Microsoft cannot penalise on Windows OEM licensing. Only if Microsoft's dominating position is so significantly weakened by then that Microsoft lose their teeth and vendors no longer fear any reprisals, only then would the likes of HP and DELL license OSX on some of their lineup.

    On the other hand, if HP and DELL were to be in a situation where they'd have to choose either Microsoft or Apple as the supplier of their OEM operating system, then any forcing Apple into such OEM licensing would actually be more likely to create a new monopoly (with Apple and Microsoft exchanging places) than to further competition in the market for operating systems. The anti-trust agencies know this and they'd be thinking twice about taking any such action which most likely would only replace Microsoft monopoly with an Apple monopoly and in the process gain nothing.

  30. Webster Phreaky
    Jobs Horns

    Imagine a world with "Ready for OS X PC's" .... whoa is us ...

    Now WHY would anyone want to buy a PC that is "Ready for OS X" ????? Because THIS is just what you would be faced with everyday x 356 (and these are FACTS compliments of MacTard site, where the reports like these are DAILY!)

    TYPICAL Apple and Mac OS X bugs reported DAILY!

    1 - Calendar subscription problems and limitations with MobileMe

    2 - iPhone 3G/iPhone OS 2.0 troubleshooting roundup

    a - Restore and update your iPhone 3G to squash bugs

    b - Dozens of accessories don't work with the iPhone 3G

    c - Removing stubborn iPhone apps

    d - iPhone 3G battery draining too fast?

    e- Boosting iPhone 3G (weak) signal strength

    3 - iPhoto library cannot be found

    4 - iTunes 7.7 (#3): stalls with a spinning beach ball on iPod connection, missing GUI

    5 - Apple TV update 2.1 will not apply

    6 - iTunes 7.7 (#2): erased drive data, empty library, unexpected quits; more

    7 - Front Row failing to display iTunes content stored on external drives

    8 - iTunes 7.7: causing major iPod/iPhone connectivity problems, other issues

    9 - Menu items do not highlight with mouse hover

    10 - Trashed Time Machine "inprogress" files will not delete

    11 - Mac OS X 10.5.4 (#5): Adobe CS3 problems persist?; Random problem? Try re-applying the combo updater first; and MORE ...

    12 - Safari not displaying PDFs

    ( oh this one is precious!! he he he ):

    13 - Rebuilding Aperture library fixes stalled consistency checks

    Aperture users run consistency checks on their libraries to ensure, among other items, that photo contents match the previews associated with them. Some users have found that these routines and appear to stall out.

    (hmmmm, this never happens with Windows security updates!)

    14 - Security Update 2008-004 for Tiger (#2): system will not startup; applications won't launch!!!

    15 - Safari 3.1.2 for Tiger (#2): will not launch; problems installing

    16 - Mac OS X 10.5.4 (#4): Spotlight problems; random shutdowns; poor performance; more

    17 - Another potential fix for choppy playback in QuickTime 7.5

    18 - "syslogd" process taking 100% CPU under Mac OS X 10.5.4 (he he he he he!!)

    Oh wouldn't it a WONDERFUL WORLD with Apple and OS X on a " OS X Ready PC"!

    Wow! I just woke up from a HORRIBLE Nightmare! Stevie Gods took over the world and made OS X available for PC's!! OMG, I so glad that was just a Nighmare!!

    AppleTards. Bwah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ........

  31. Richard Thomas


    Couldn't they sell the machines whilst complying with the EULA by writing 'apple' on a sticker and putting that on the boxes?

    there isn't actually a definition of "Apple-labeled" in the Leopard EULA either (although "Apple" is 'Apple inc")

  32. James Butler

    @Rob Menke

    "..the Freetards to claim "Well, now I'm switching to Linux!" even though Apple couldn't care less about them (which causes them to hate Apple more)."

    You've got it backwards ... Freetards don't pay inflated prices for consumer-level gear. Mactards do that. And Mactards resent Freetards' ability to "think outside the box". Sit a Mactard and a Freetard down in front of a professional-level system, say, a Solaris or true BSD box, and let's see who has a prayer of being productive.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Perhaps I'm missing something

    If Apple spend time and money developing an operating system why *shouldn't* they be able to dictate the conditions on how it's used?

  34. Kev Beeley
    Thumb Down

    Honestly, what is the problem?

    In years gone by, I never recall much vitriol spewed out by Atari ST users, complaining that AmigaOS was tied exclusively to Commodore's own hardware and should be litigated against to make it compatible with their own hardware. That Sony should be FORCED to make their Playstation games compatible with Saturns. That Bentley should ensure that their engines fit quite happily in a Ferrari.

    Microsoft chose to sell their OS to whoever wished to install it and had compatible hardware. Linux and similar strive to make their OS as compatible as possible. Apple chose to tie their OS to their hardware and ensured that in the terms and conditions that it wasn't to be run on 3rd-party hardware.

    Does that really matter? Each was ultimately a concious decision made by its creators.

    Honestly, just use whichever damn operating system you want to. Don't like a company? Don't buy their products. End of story.

  35. duncan campbell


    What I can't figure is why Apple insists on bothering with this. OS-X is pretty

    much a rpiif of FBSD to begin with. They should sell a SERVICE contract with

    every one of their boxen that implements an up-to-date OS on that box. All the

    Open-Sauce fanbois will do is popularize the desktop at no charge. Apple will

    be in the same position IBM would have been had they not given away the

    PC OS for a blow-job: not having a monopoly can still make you rich, so who cares?


  36. stizzleswick

    Now where is...

    ... Webster Phreakey when one needs him?

    I'll leave the monopoly discussion aside -- it's really not pertinent here -- but unlike Microshaft's terms, Apple's have yet to be legally challenged successfully, so I would agree, it's rather unlikely that Apple will lose this one, seeing that the chosen court is inside the USA.

    The ramifications of a loss would be highly interesting, as I also agree with those who noted before that Apple would prefer to support a limited hardware base, as opposed to M$' attempt to take over the world which can be, I think, largely be regarded as failed due to lack of device drivers (I am using at least three intel-compatible computers at this time that contain hardware NOT supported by recent editions of Windows... runs nice on Linux though).

    Also, it would be interesting to see how the Darwin community would react -- after all, as an OSS project based on FreeBSD, they have access to the incredibly huge amount of drivers written for Linux. And just for those not remembering this: the proprietary bits of MacOS X run on top of Darwin.

  37. rasputinsDog
    Thumb Up

    Its not so complicated. . .

    all Apple need do is say install OSX on anything you like, but we will only support it on approved hardware. The hardware manufacturers can provide support for their own machines. Apple makes more money and pc customers get more choice, it's a win-win.

  38. heystoopid
    Paris Hilton


    Hmmm , for Pystar let me introduce you to our dear departed soul called "Franklin" who was born in the halcyon early days but departed quickly before the all in one handy dandy useful Mac 9" the best man made toilet paper hanger case arrived on the scene which is about all it ever was good for anyway from day one to it's better much improved G4/G5 sons of Franklin arrived much later on the scene as too little too late !

    As for the other problem me sees much smoke and mirrors with heavy fog clouds on the horizon ,since the largest bulk of the compiled central core of OSX and Snow Leopard is actually open source BSD Unix code as such and is freely available under GPL or copyleft so if the Cupertino pirates and control freaks win , will they go after the BSD fan club and steal all that juicy Unix/Linux copyleft material from under their very noses after that shoot down of Pystar 007 over the Florida Straights latest Oil field with all pipes sucking from the Cuban side of the fence !

  39. Dave

    Apple Label

    I can see an opening here for the Beatles record label to get their own back. Just lend their name (for a fee, of course) to a computer hardware manufacturer and it's all legal.

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    History Repeats Itself

    So Psystar pirated Apple's firmware to enable OS X to run on their own hardware?

    Wasn't there a Research Center in Palo Alto that developed a certain rodent-like device that someone decided to steal to build a computer with a GUI interface?

  41. Mike

    Be prepared for less than perfect

    Apple software and hardware works great. The main reason why this is, is because, as they blatently say in their commercial, they make it all (Both the hardware and the software). This means that they get to play god over every aspect of their products. So this means problems are rare, its all mostly (mostly) simple to use, and over all people are satisfied. This is what make them a great company, but dont get me wrong:

    Mac hardware is expensive.

    So i think it would be great if hackintosh wins over macintosh. BUT if they do, we have to be prepared for less then perfection, as they may not be the last to use apple software on non-apple hardware. So be prepared for less of the perfection that is generally associated with apple.

  42. Valan Chan

    Blame Apple don't blame us (HW vendor)

    Dear valued customer,

    Our sincerest condolences for your continued problems concerning the smooth running of your machine.

    Your problem, namely (insert problem) is due to the nature of Mac OSX. While we adhere to and strive to keep up with new developments in the hardware field Apple refuses to do likewise with OSX. As you agreed when purchasing your Slackintosh 5004 computer we, Sloppy Inc, are only responsible for the hardware and Apple are responsible for the OS. As you know, they offer no support to users such as yourself who choose to buy non Apple hardware. In fact they don't even recognise you as a user of their product. Please feel free to write to them to change this.

    If you do experience any fault in your hardware please feel free to consult us as to your cover status in our repair and replacement policy.

    Best of luck


    Sloppy Inc

  43. Chad Larson


    "I do hope that Apple fails and Psystar are allowed to sell OSX on their hardware if for no other reason than EULAs are evil and illegally strip us of our rights to use what we bought in the way we want."

    I just bought this keen new axe. I want to use it to chop down your front door. Still think people should be able to use things they bought any way they want?

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OSX drivers != FBSD drivers

    Yes, the OSX userland is based on FreeBSD, but the OSX kernel is based on CMU Mach. Not withstanding some FreeBSD kernel API calls added in for a basic level of system call compatibility, OSX' API for driver implementation, called IOKit could not be more different from that of FreeBSD, or any other OS for that matter. For starters, OSX drivers cannot be written in C, they must be written in embedded C++. Typically, a driver for OSX has to be rewritten from scratch.

    For the (seemingly typical) attention deficit suffering readers of this board that means:

    - The OSX kernel is NOT BASED ON FreeBSD.

    - Drivers for FreeBSD are incompatible with OSX.

    - OSX drivers cannot be derived from FreeBSD (nor any other OS).

    - OSX does not in any way benefit from the availability of drivers for FreeBSD.

    Of course, more likely than not, somebody will post here again that OSX can use FreeBSD drivers, because the internet is after all a place where millions of bozos spread nonsense based on hearsay without ever checking if what they say is actually based on any facts.

    The internet may as well be called HearsayNet, that would more accurately describe its most striking feature.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Never trust a computer geek with history

    "Wasn't there a Research Center in Palo Alto that developed a certain rodent-like device that someone decided to steal to build a computer with a GUI interface?"

    And you know this how? From hearsay?

    Apple paid 1 million USD to Xerox for the technology. The Xerox board was not interested in pursuing the technology on their own, they preferred to take Apple's money and let Apple pursue the ideas further on their own. Since Apple paid Xerox and Xerox accepted the payment, there is no theft.

    Anybody who says that Apple stole the GUI from Xerox is thus either an ignorant idiot (unknowingly spreading lies) or a nasty liar (knowingly spreading lies).

    A friend of mine collects used cooking oil from restaurants to make his own biodiesel. The restaurants give him the used cooking oil because they consider it of no further value to them. If he will become rich selling biodiesel, the same idiots will probably start spreading lies that he stole the cooking oil from all those restaurants creating the impression that he sneaked in at night to take it without permission. All those internet idiots will then repeat the story over and over and over again until it becomes "fact". Same principle, different industry.

  46. Jouni Leppajarvi


    >If Apple spend time and money developing an operating system why

    >*shouldn't* they be able to dictate the conditions on how it's used?

    They probably could, (to a point,) with an explicit license agreement between them and each customer.

    However, with EULAs in general it is my understanding that the provider of the software takes the stand that since they hold the copyright, anyone making copies must have a license from them to make copies of the software and this license is granted only when the terms of the EULA are met; since using a piece of PC software requires making copies of the same on the mass storage medium (installing) and RAM(/swap) (running), an EULA effectively applies to its use as well.

    To make an EULA work the provider of the software is relying on the protection of the copyright laws. This is where it gets interesting, however: for example here (*) the law explicitly allows for making the copies of a computer program that are necessary for running the same, which would seem to thoroughly wreck the legal foundation of an EULA as presented above.

    (*) Finland, the rest of EU is likely to be similar (?)

  47. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why doesn't anybody build their own OSX?

    I don't quite understand why all those people who mostly distrust corporations to a level that borders on corporation-phobia, why they so desperately want a corporation (Apple) to sell them OSX.

    Guys, if you want to build your own PCs (from existing components), you might as well build your own OSX (from existing components). The pieces are out there, ie. libfoundation, GNUstep and other projects, some BSD licensed, some GPL licensed!!! All available and all perfectly legal.

    Considering the low entry barrier for a reasonably funded small company to build their own OSX based on those already available open source components, it is puzzling that nobody has done so yet. Why are they all such lazy buggers?

    There are four types of ingredients needed: the core OS, drivers, the core foundation API, the Cocoa API.

    For the core OS, one might just use Apple's core OS, Darwin, cause it is open sourced already. Alternatively, one could use FreeBSD as the core OS (using the FreeBSD kernel instead of the Darwin kernel).

    For the drivers, some Darwin drivers are open source, some are not. If the FreeBSD kernel was used instead of Darwin, then one could just use FreeBSD drivers. Either way, a significant number of drivers would be available right away.

    For the core foundation API, there are several open source implementations, the most prominent ones are libfoundation (BSD licensed) and foundation classes from GNUstep (GPL licensed).

    For the Cocoa API, again there are several open source implementations, again BSD and GPL licensed ones. They lack some APIs which Apple has only recently added to Cocoa, but since all the APIs are documented, the projects can and do implement those APIs, just a matter of time and resources. A company wishing to sell their own OSX clone could support and fund those efforts to keep up with Apple's recent additions at a faster pace.

    Granted, the graphics of those open source implementations look outdated. But here again, a company wishing to sell their own OSX clone could just hire some talented graphic designers to create nice looking GUI controls and then marry that with one of the existing open source alternatives to Cocoa.

    This would be a little more effort than just taking Apple's installation DVD and hack it, but compared to re-engineering any other OS out there, the effort needed to roll one's own OSX is comparatively marginal. All that is needed is some integration and polishing work. The bulk of the work has already been done.

    Before this background, it seems to me that those hackintosh folks (companies and individuals who hack OSX install DVDs to run on generic hardware) are just lazy opportunists who are not willing to do any real work even if the effort is rather small. They should stop whining and instead support those projects which are maintaining and further developing open source alternatives to Cocoa.

    In fact, if all that effort spent on hacking Apple's install DVDs had instead been invested in projects such as libfoundation, GNUstep et al, the chance is there would already be a viable OSX clone OS available by now.

    STOP WHINING, STOP HACKING, get to work, support those projects.

    This is the only route we are ever going to get a legal and viable OSX clone OS.

  48. Jean-Paul

    history repeats itself

    Either everyone on here are teenagers or people have a very selective memory. Apple has been here before, there used to be licensed third party powerpc products with an oem version of apple's os.

    It did not sell too well then and it would not do it now. Sure there is an active scene making wintel platform images but that is such a tiny geek tech Market. An then people still talk about the expensive apple hardware. In like for like an true coat o ownership comparisons it is not more expensive than other tier 1 manufacturers. Compare like for like and you'll be surprised.

  49. Anonymous Coward

    easy life

    When developing code for the web it would be really nice if someone employed me and said, "code for this platform only because its ours and we made it, oh and here is everything you need to know about it".

    This is closed source at its extreme so why no benefit from it, they did build it up afterall. Any buggy implementation on non-apple hardware will make OS X look bad.

    For the record i'm a linux user, not apple, but their attitude does make commercial sense.

  50. Robert Long
    Jobs Horns

    @Mike Richards

    "If Apple spend time and money developing an operating system why *shouldn't* they be able to dictate the conditions on how it's used?"

    Because they don't own it. What the hell has the fact that someone spent time and money producing a (crap) consumer good got to do with what I or anyone else who PAYS for it does with it afterwards?! EVERYTHING you own was developed by someone spending time and money on it.

    There was a time when it was thought reasonable that companies should have more power than their customers and the result was constant abuse of those customers. So, against a great deal of resistance, consumer protection laws were brought in and our world is a far better place for it.

    Apple are stuck in the dark ages (in more way than one) and think that *they* still own *your* property after it leaves the shop. They can stick that idea, and their crappy unreliable over-priced tacky hardware where the sun doesn't shine.

  51. Rob Cooper
    Jobs Horns

    I hope they lose

    I hate to say it, but I hope Apple lose. People are so quick to poince on MS when they force ANYTHING on you, be it a browser, a "security" update or a freaking dialog box.

    Apple should be thankful to get more OSX users out there, they should be supporting these guys not trying to crush them with the fucking oversized ego. Its a compliment to your software Apple, yes, they are saying you're hardware is overpriced. But guess what, IT IS.

    Grow up Apple, you cant stay in this game thinking your perfect, people are getting better and better at demanding MORE. And quite frankly, your lame strategy will come around and bite you hard in the ass.

  52. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    The good old days

    I bought a Motorola Mac clone in 1998. Built like a tank, and it ran Mac OS 8.6 like a champ.

    It was ugly as sin though, so I had to hide it under the desk in shame.

    Paris, because she knows the value of having a well-designed box.

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    Am I the only one...

    old enough to remember the Mac clones of the 90's?

    Mac HAVE licensed the O/S and ROMs previously, but depending on which side of the fence you sit is the reason it ended. There is no doubt that it was Jobs that killed it.

    Mac version: The clones were unreliable and buggy, giving Apple a bad name.

    End User version: The likes of UMAX produced far superior machines for a lot less, thus creating a massive dent in Mac (sic) pockets.

    Reality: Somewhere inbetween the two answers

  54. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Don't use iTunes in Windows...

    ...when you can use WMP (any version) and MGTEK as an add-on. Works really well when synching to iPod: compresses to any bitrate you fancy, and much less hassle involved with getting cover art (should you be fussy like me).

    And then happily spurn Apple and iTunes and QuickTime, and their never-ending insistence that Safari should be installed/upgraded.

    Just a thought.

    Paris, coz she could insist on me any old time.

  55. Anonymous Coward


    Putting OSX on a PC is a bad idea, why, in common with most real unixes (HPUX, Solaris, etc), the hardware & software designers work together.

    This is why real unixes work, you pay for it, but you get reliability, reliability = profit, the alternatives are trying to be all things to all box's, and failing.

    Microsoft followed the wrong model, hard luck, should have been a bit cleverer.

    Linux is free, so it don't count.

  56. Anonymous Coward

    Re: Be prepared for less than perfect

    "Apple software and hardware works great. The main reason why this is, is because, as they blatently say in their commercial, they make it all (Both the hardware and the software). ", Apple dont' even make even vaguely close to all, since when have Apple made graphics cards, processors, motherboards, RAM, DVD writers, laptop batteries, etc?

    "So i think it would be great if hackintosh wins over macintosh. BUT if they do, we have to be prepared for less then perfection, as they may not be the last to use apple software on non-apple hardware."

    What is this Apple hardware you talk of then? We already get less than perfection from Apple anyway......just pay over the odds for it.

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Franklin

    "Everyone who has tried to release a commercial, non-open source operating system to compete with Windows--Be, NeXT, *everyone* without exception--has failed."

    But none of those started from where Apple is now. Apple has market share and corporate brand awareness, even cachet (justified or no, it's seen as a premium product). Surely the architecture can be hardened to cope with multifarious drivers and their evils.

    Given the market position, Apple don't have to produce drivers for *everything* on the market, just the "best of breed" gear, and they could even charge peripheral manufacturers for the "Apple Supported" logo. They wouldn't make as much per unit, but they'd move a lot of units.

  58. Steve


    "Apple are stuck in the dark ages (in more way than one) and think that *they* still own *your* property after it leaves the shop. They can stick that idea, and their crappy unreliable over-priced tacky hardware where the sun doesn't shine."

    No, Apple think that they still own the OS for which they have sold you a licence and they are right. If they only want to licence it for their own machines, then that's their business. If you don't like what they sell, don't buy it. I want more flexibility, so I don't buy Apple kit, but For some people Apple give them exactly what they need.

    You only own the *hardware* and can do whatever you want with it - just don't expect support from them if you try and install Windows and don't expect them to support hardware-specific software on any old bit of kit you feel like installing it on.

    You wouldn't call up Ford to complain that the Mondeo they sold you won't run on the English Channel "platform".

  59. Gerard Allwein
    Paris Hilton

    Apple vs Crapshoot

    It is amazing how many people wish Apple to relinquish a tried and proven business plan for the crapshoot of selling their OS so that a few jokers can run it on their generic PCs. Let's list some of the reasons why this is a bad idea:

    1. Generic PCs are buggy and Apple would have to spend enormous resources to cover all these wonderful architectures.

    2. Microsoft have the PC makers in their back pocket so Apple won't be allowed to strike any deals with them.

    3. Most people do not want to run OS X, just a few jokers who have Jobs-Envy.

    4. Microsoft survives by being a software company that sell much more malware than just a crappy OS, it has taken them years, but somehow Apple is supposed to drop its pants and sell only an OS and people, who have barely the wit to find the Start button, are going to buy OS X and flush the rest of their software apps down the toilet. Brilliant!


  60. jai

    windoze drones

    you people banging on about how apple should release OS X to run on non-apple hardware are missing the point. it isn't anti-competative behaviour

    apple users do not choose to run OS X, and therefore have to buy a mac. we choose to own macs because of the combined package of hardware+OS

    i wouldn't run OS X on a generic pc if it was possible because then i'd have all the same trouble as other pc users and OS X wouldn't be as reliable because it'd be bulked out with code to cope with every type of pc combination instead of just the hardware set up i have.

    lets face it - you lot are just gagging to be OS X users but your too proud to admit it. you're only apple-haters because your jealous :)

  61. David Webb
    Jobs Horns

    PC less reliable?

    You can buy every single Mac component off the shelf, the exact same model from the exact same companies that make the Mac hardware, its not some super beefed up version with a million and one differences from standard PC hardware.

    All Apple do is put it together in a shiny box and convince idiots that "hey, its better than a PC, even though it actually is a PC, but lets not dwell on that fact, lets bash Microsoft!"

  62. Chris Cheale

    even if...

    Even if Apple loose - they can't be forced to support running their OS on other hardware.

    They just need to say - "well, you can buy our OS to run on your hardware but if it all goes titsup then it's your problem mate".

  63. Mark Pardington

    Mac OS X is based on a PC OS anyway

    Someone mentioned above that Mac OS was designed by Apple,

    It was actually designed by another company owned by Steve Jobs at the time, and even then is was only the interface that was designed, underneath it is Linux, a free open source OS which can run reliably on any hardware that hasn't been released within the last month.

    This Linux, with its Fancy OS X front end should run ok well built PCs, and even non-well built PCs with a bit of tweaking (which come on, is half the fun of a PC anyway)

    I hope Apple Lose,

    I've tried almost every OS under the sun, except Mac, because I can't afford, and don't own their hardware,

    I'd love to compare it on a Core 2 Duo PC to windows, and shut up a lot of Mac fan boys who all seem to be in some form of SJ induced trance, where they believe all of Apples Marketing Hype!

  64. Dave

    @ David Webb

    Yay someone with a valid point in this mess.

    Apple do not make the hardware, they have created an OS that uses specific types of components, these components are then sourced by Foxconn and assembled in a shiny tin designed by Apple.

    When a friend was looking to upgrade their old G3 for a G5 i suggested they switch to a pc as the apps they used were available for it in a stable form. I got the specs down for the standard G5 then compared it to the cost of parts (and OS) that it would cost to build the equivelant pc.

    Even at retail prices (20-30% above trade cost...even more for bulk) the pc tower came in at over £300 less than the G5.

    Apple will never open OS X to the mass market simply because they would lose the exclusivity that helps them sell their current products.

  65. Tom Hawkins

    Deja vu all over again

    "Apple has been here before, there used to be licensed third party powerpc products with an oem version of apple's os. It did not sell too well then and it would not do it now."

    No, they *did* sell pretty well, but at the expense of Apple's own hardware sales rather than by expanding the market share for Mac OS. That's undoubtedly what would happen again if a Psystar win opened up the market, and it might lead to a magical Nirvana where Apple is transformed into a software-only company and half the world runs Mac OS X, or then again it might be the end of Apple - or at least the end of the Mac. My money would be on the latter. Of course, this is exactly what several people on this comment thread would love to see happen. I'm perpetually at a loss to understand why these individuals invest so much time and energy in heaping scorn on a computer they don't even use - any psychologists in the audience are welcome to contribute.

  66. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How would Apple support multiple platform OSX ?

    Ignoring the "mactard", "freetard", "wintard" childish banter that occupies every single Apple story on Reg these days, if Apple are forced to allow OSX on any platform, how could they be expected to support it? Right now Microsoft can barely support Windows running on anything outside of the HCL (Hardware Compatibility List) due to the number of hardware and accessory variations, and anyone running Linux is pretty much on their own, relying on forums of users to assist them in getting (hopefully) all of the drivers sorted out.

    No Operating System is perfect for everyone. Each vendor tries and cover as much hardware as they can. Microsoft charge you for developing Windows, and then leave you to get on with it. The Linux developers tell you to seek support from other users (i.e. you get what you pay for). Apple however develop an operating system for hardware they have "approved" and can support. What you pay for is the complete package, working without user intervention and without spending hours, days, weeks searching the internet for the correct drivers and updates.

    If Apple are told OSX should be available on third party hardware, so-be-it, but they don't have to support anything outside of their HCL. Does this then mean every operating system should not be hardware locked? Mobile phones, PDA's, Consoles etc.?

    Open Source operating systems are fantastic, I really do support them, but for many users they just want to take home a stylish new electronics device, plug it in and start working/playing, and not have to worry about what's going on under the bonnet. Why do you think laptops sell so well? The hardware stays the same, so the user does not have to worry about upgrades. They simply throw the thing away when they see a new operating system come out, or when it starts to run slow.

    RE the Apple price tag - get over it. People still buy BMW, Mercedes and Audi cars; Bang & Olufsen, and Sony electronics, and bloody Alienware PC's! Yet they all contain many of the same components found in a cheaper alternative. No matter what the difference, be it brand, style, or build quality etc., we call it freedom of choice.

  67. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mark Pardington

    Mac OS X is based on Linux is it?

    Are you 100% sure about that?

  68. Steve Mann

    @ Jason

    Er, no, actually. That's "restraint of trade".

    A free market is what the other guy is trying to establish. That's where Apple sell the OS and that's the end of their involvement (and, of course, their responsibiliy for making it work)

    Either way, who gives a toss? If you want "Unix-like" why not just acquire a real, free Unix? The woods are full of 'em. If you go Solaris, you even get their mucho spiffy dtrace utility, something every geek ought to see in action for g'tstself.

  69. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    More internet idiots here than is bearable

    "Someone mentioned above that Mac OS was designed by Apple,

    It was actually designed by another company owned by Steve Jobs at the time, and even then is was only the interface that was designed, underneath it is Linux ..."

    What a bunch of nonsense.

    That other company owned by Steve Jobs was NeXT Inc and their operating system was NextStep, later also called OpenStep. Neither NextStep nor OpenStep were based on Linux. Absolutely not.

    NextStep/OpenStep were based on the Mach kernel from CMU with a userland from BSD 4.2. Absolutely no Linux involved whatsoever.

    MacOSX is an evolution of NextStep/OpenStep, still based on the same Mach kernel but with a userland from FreeBSD instead of BSD 4.2. Still no Linux involved.

    Folks, we have clearly entered the age of totalitarian ignorantism. The Web 2.0 is a glorification of millions of idiots who have nothing better to do than post total nonsense all over the place. Have those people ever read any books I wonder. Have they ever switched their brains on before they speak/write, or is repeating hearsay without thinking all they are capable of doing?


  70. Anonymous Coward

    People who don't know the difference between Linux and BSD ...

    should just shut up and not post on this board, you are only making fools of yourselves. Thank you for your consideration.

  71. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "as an OSS project based on FreeBSD, they have access to the incredibly huge amount of drivers written for Linux"

    Absolutely not.

    "And just for those not remembering this: the proprietary bits of MacOS X run on top of Darwin."

    Yes, but Darwin is not based on FreeBSD. It is based on Mach and Mach does not run any Linux drivers.

  72. Alexis Vallance
    Jobs Halo

    Not quite

    "You can buy every single Mac component off the shelf, the exact same model from the exact same companies that make the Mac hardware, its not some super beefed up version with a million and one differences from standard PC hardware."

    Apart from the EFI. Which has to be emulated with a hacked version of OS X.

    "All Apple do is put it together in a shiny box and convince idiots that "hey, its better than a PC, even though it actually is a PC, but lets not dwell on that fact, lets bash Microsoft!

    Apple machines are nice pieces of hardware. They're not trying to hide the fact it's a PC - they splash Core 2 Duo all over the place. You may describe them as being in a 'shiny box' but that's the whole point. They are good quality bits of kit. People buy BMWs and Mercedes for a reason, even though any car will get you from A to B.

  73. Cody

    Yes, you did miss something

    "Perhaps I'm missing something -- Mike Richards

    If Apple spend time and money developing an operating system why *shouldn't* they be able to dictate the conditions on how it's used?"

    Yes, you are missing something.

    The law in the EC forbids people from telling you how to use things you have bought from them. Actually forbids it. Once you've bought your copy of OSX, Apple has no more right to tell you what to do with it than Sony has the right to tell you not to use your DVD player as a doorstop, or Spear and Jackson can tell you not to use that spade you just bought on your allotment. No, you have to use their special allotment spade for that. Cannot be done. Contracts which attempt to do that are not lawful, and not enforceable.

    See, they sold it. Now its yours. Its just like Spear and Jackson telling you how to use your computer, or Apple telling you how to use your spade. Once they have sold it, they no longer own it. Tough, but they need to get used to it.

  74. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "core of OSX and Snow Leopard is actually open source BSD Unix code as such and is freely available under GPL or copyleft"

    Utter nonsense.

    Linuxtards keep repeating this nonsense over and over and over again, but it is nonsense nevertheless. BSD is not GPL licensed nor is it copyleft.

    BSD is BSD licensed.

    If you don't know what that means, what the difference is, then go and look it up, but spare us your drivel because you really don't know what you are talking about.

  75. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "The law in the EC forbids people from telling you how to use things you have bought from them. Actually forbids it. Once you've bought your copy of OSX, ..."

    there's your error right there! You don't buy OSX. You buy the CD/DVD and the box in which it is packed, that's what you buy and own and indeed you can do with that CD/DVD/box whatever you want (provided you are not doing anything illegal such as using it as a weapon to assault somebody etc). But, you could burn the stuff and inhale the smoke from it and Apple would not have any say in whether you could or should do that or not. It's entirely up to you.

    As for the software on the disc(s), you are mistaken, you did not buy that software. The software is owned by Apple. The box and the booklet that comes with the disc(s) actually tells you that if you bother to look and read it. Now, since Apple are the owners of the software, they are the ones who have the sole right to determine how the software can be used. You don't own it, so you have no say, very simple!

    The only reason you can use the software at all is because Apple grants you a license to use. Read up what EU law says about licensing and you will find that it ain't the same thing you were talking about. You are making assumptions based on laymen's knowledge of the law which are simply incorrect. Go and ask a lawyer if you don't believe me, but don't believe the drivel people post all over the internet cause there is a lot of disinformation on the internet.

    Until you have informed yourself about ownership and licensing, do us the favour and spare us your drivel of disinformation. Thank you for your consideration.

  76. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Webster Phreaky

    "3 - iPhoto library cannot be found"

    Why did you move it?

  77. Jeffrey Nonken


    MacTards, FreeTards, SunTards, BSDTards, TardTards. I see the LabelTards are out in force today. These are puerile insults at best, ad hominem attacks at worst. They add nothing of value to the discussion.

    Bear with me a moment. Say you have a fluorescent fixture that burns out bulbs more quickly than normal. Who are most people likely to blame first? The fixture manufacturer? The ballast? Nope, they'll blame who they see most prominently -- the name on the light bulbs that keep burning out. Not everybody will, of course, but most people will.

    Keep that in mind for a minute.

    Apple can license their OS for only their hardware if they want. Obviously they want.

    Yes, you can built an Apple-like PC that will run it. That's called a "Hackintosh". Google it. I've never heard of Apple going after anybody involved personally in Hackintoshes. They probably don't care. They probably figure that anybody building a Hackintosh KNOWS they're not going to get support for it, that they're a few one-off cases and even if one of them is silly enough to call for support it's too small a group to worry about.

    Whereas Psystar has gone and done it as a business. Apple obviously has their reasons for not wanting to support non-Apple hardware, and we've all guessed at some of those reasons. Unwillingness to support a wide variety of hardware in order to limit the need for development and support, and as a result create a reputation for reliability. Desire to increase profits by selling the hardware as well as the software. Desire to create a certain image, a bit of snob appeal.

    Psystar threatens all of those. What's the most prominent name on the computer? Well, every time you power up, every time you look at your desktop, you see Apple logos. Sure, you know you bought a cheap knockoff, but any time anything goes wrong with the software the average person is likely to blame Apple first. And so every one of these systems degrades or at least potentially degrades the owner's perception of Apple in some way, subtle or not. And Apple either loses a sale, or gains a sale but loses a customer. It seems that Apple would rather lose a customer than gain a sale that degrades their reputation, and you know what? That's their choice.

    And please don't spout reasons of logic and rationality why people won't associate problems with Apple rather than Psystar. Not all customers will, of course, but people aren't on the whole rational. They tend to have knee-jerk responses to problems and blame the first thing they see. (Read some of the comments here if you don't believe that.) Apple has a certain marketing strategy and Psystar threatens that, so Apple wants them to stop. You don't have to agree with their strategy to understand that. And just because you don't like or agree with that strategy doesn't make it wrong. I'd like to see OS X on my cheap PC hardware too. Apple won't support that. Too bad. I'll just have to pick up the broken pieces of my shattered life and move on.

    P.S. Webster, you're just a reflection of all you hate the worst, a mirror image of the Apple fanbois you hold in so much contempt, a pathetic Microsoft zealot and a hypocritical fanatic. You claim the moral high ground as you founder in quicksand.

    Bugger off.

  78. A J Stiles

    @ AC @ Cody

    You are wrong.

    If you lawfully own the media on which the software is stored, then you have a statutory right -- by virtue of ownership -- to use the software for its rightful purpose. If using it for its rightful purpose involves incidentally making a copy, then that copy cannot be said to infringe copyright; otherwise, copyright law would be infringing your rights under consumer protection law.

    This is where EULAs fall down. You as a consumer already have certain statutory rights, granted by the Law of the Land. You do not need a licence to use software which you have acquired lawfully, for its rightful purpose. If the EULA includes wording to the effect "Your statutory rights are not affected" then, in addition to the permissions grudgingly handed out under the EULA, you still have your statutory rights including Fair Dealing under copyright law and the right to reverse-engineer the software. And if such wording is omitted, then the entire document is automatically invalid anyway, as it misrepresents the Law of the Land. Either way, you still get your statutory rights.

    It is even possible that the courts could order forfeiture of a copyright, if it is misused. Only time will tell; there is not yet a sufficient body of case law to determine whether copyrights may be generally subject to expropriation

    Incidentally, both the GPL and the BSD licence get this absolutely right. Neither seek to forbid anything you already have a statutory right to do; only conditionally to permit certain things for which the law demands proper permission be sought. The main difference (besides the political manifesto inextricably bound up in the text of the GPL) is that the GPL makes permission to copy conditional on your making the Source Code available, in order that downstream recipients also get both the right and the practical ability to inspect and modify the program; the BSD licence does not impose such a condition, allowing you to distribute a modified version of a BSD-licenced program in binary form only and thus denying users the practical ability -- and therefore indirectly the freedom -- to inspect or modify it. So while the BSD licence says "sharing is not theft", the GPL goes as far as to say "not sharing is theft".

  79. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    Granny Smith Speaks

    Apple offers the revolutionary Mac, the first computer capable of running the OSX operating system. For the first time ever, you can harness the amazing power of OSX using the completely new technology Apple has to offer. Psystar is pursuing an evolutionary path, which will never give the revolutionary experience that only a Mac can being to consumers. PsyStar's offerings are already too old for the incredible new technology of OSX Leopard, and the life-changing power of iLife.

  80. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @Jeffrey Nonken

    how dare you post rational reasoned comments. this is the register, you know!

  81. Anonymous Coward

    @David Webb

    >You can buy every single Mac component off the shelf, the exact same model >from the exact same companies that make the Mac hardware, its not some

    >super beefed up version with a million and one differences from standard PC >hardware.

    This is true, but the hardware design is Apple's

    Please define what you understand a PC to be?

    >All Apple do is put it together in a shiny box and convince idiots that "hey, its >better than a PC, even though it actually is a PC, but lets not dwell on that fact, >lets bash Microsoft!"

    No, they ensure that the hardware & software WORK TOGETHER.

  82. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Aimee @David Webb

    "This is true, but the hardware design is Apple's"

    The box you mean, nothing else, for example the Macbook Air was an Intel design.

    "Please define what you understand a PC to be?"

    In this instance i am sure he means a typical Windows/Linux personal computer

    "No, they ensure that the hardware & software WORK TOGETHER."

    Not exactly difficult with so little devices, overpriced ones at that now, is it?

  83. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ A J Stiles

    You are taking a very loose interpretation of the law which is nothing but a personal interpretation of yours, quite probably motivated by wishful thinking.

    What do you think is more likely? That you are some kind of undiscovered legal genius who will proof the legal establishment of the entire planet wrong or that the top notch law firms that companies like Apple hire to draft those EULAs have done their homework and covered their buttocks?

    Mind you, those law firms can be held liable for damages if they give improper advice to a client. Do you think they draft this stuff on the basis of "let's just see if we can get away with it, chance is that nobody is going to challenge our client in court over this anyway." Well, that's how software developers work, but its not how lawyers work. Unlike software developers, lawyers do not pass off beta versions as deliverables to their clients.

    Rest assured the law firm which delivered Apple's EULA has done their homework. Rest assured the law firm which was then hired to evaluate the draft and provide a second opinion has done their homework, too. Likewise, the law firm hired to study a possible case against Psystar, rest assured they have done their homework, too. If there is a reasonable chance that Apple's EULA violates any statutory rights as you allege, they would have been advised not to go to court. The fact that this is going to court should tell you that the chances of Apple losing this case are very minimal.

    The outcome of this case is almost certainly going to proof you wrong.

  84. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Consider three different coffee shops ...

    The first coffee shop ONLY sell take-away-coffee. They have no place for you to sit and consume your coffee on the premises. That's how they chose to operate. If you don't like this, don't buy coffee from them, very simple.

    The second coffee shop ONLY sell coffee in real coffee cups ONLY for consumption on the premises, you are not allowed to take their coffee cups off the premises. That's how they chose to operate. If you don't like this, don't buy coffee from them, very simple.

    The third coffee shop sell coffee both for take away and on-the-premises consumption. That's how they chose to operate. If you don't like this, don't buy coffee from them, very simple.

    Now, why on earth do people think they can demand that any of those coffee shops should change their business model? It's their business and they choose their business model. Unless you own shares in the company you have no say, nor should you, it's literally not your business!

    This may seem to make sense to most people when talking about coffee shops, but transpose the same into the realm of computers and all of a sudden the logic that businesses can chose for themselves how they want to sell their products is no longer accepted. Folks, you are being ridiculous.

  85. Mark Pardington

    To Anonymous Coward

    In Mac OS X, drop to a command prompt/console, cd to /var/logs and cat messages,

    Check the Kernel load up messages and compare it to say.. Ubuntu

    Every command you typed, the layout of the filesystem, the "Kernel" are all the same as Linux, which of course is a clone of Unix.

    The company jobs created the OS X GUI in, was called NeXT Software.. not so strangely NeXTs homepage now goes to

    Also, look up the XNU Kernel, and its references to BSD... which is, oh you guessed it, a flavour of Unix.

  86. Anonymous Coward

    OSX Logs

    in my log I see

    The Regents of the University of California


    for more info.

    HPUX, Solaris, OSX & Linux all if I remember correctly are derived from either BSD or System V.

    Apples derivations were around earlier than Linux I think.

    A lot of unix commands are similiar, that makes it nice.

    Linux is nothing special, just recent, bit of a youngster really.

    Now back to the thread, of anyone has pinched Apple's specific code, ie the boot up ROM for example than they shouldn't be surprised to get sued.

  87. A J Stiles

    @ AC

    Your analogy breaks down when your three coffee shops happen to be located in a country where the Law of the Land has long-since stated that no coffee shop is allowed to prevent customers from taking lawfully-purchased coffee off the premises for consumption elsewhere.

    In your example, coffee shop no. 2 could insist that *cups* not be removed from the premises; but there is nothing they can do to prevent customers from transferring their lawfully-purchased coffee to another vessel and then taking it away.

    They might even have a name for the law forbidding coffee shops to stipulate that customers may not remove lawfully-purchased coffee. Something like "Exhaustion of Rights" ?

  88. Tom Hawkins

    iPhoto library cannot be found

    I moved mine... still works

  89. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ A J Stiles

    the coffee shop analogy you responded to may not have been a perfectly fitting analogy (which analogies are ever perfectly fitting anyway?!) but your allegation that Apple's EULA violates statutory rights is nevertheless your personal opinion and the court case is most likely to proof that opinion wrong cause there have been some very expensive lawyers involved who are more qualified in these matters than you are.

  90. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Mark Pardington

    "Every command you typed, the layout of the filesystem, the "Kernel" are all the same as Linux, ..."

    Not really, no.

    Whilst there are many similarities (due to the common Unix heritage), neither the commands nor the filesystem layout nor the kernel are "all the same as Linux".

    Some commands are entirely different with different names and even if the commands share the same name, then it is not uncommon that the command options are different, which is one reason why the man pages for BSD and Linux are generally different.

    As for filesystems, Linux distros usually default to EXT3, whilst BSD usually defaults to UFS, Darwin uses HFS+ Extended these days. The filesystem hierarchy is also different between Linux and BSD, similar, but different enough not to be called "all the same".

    The kernels are not the same either. With the exception of MkLinux (probably now defunct) all Linux distros today use the Linux kernel which is why the OS is colloquially called Linux in the first place. The BSDs don't use the Linux kernel, they use kernels derived from the original University of Berkeley BSD kernel but each of the major BSDs have their own kernel now.

    some further clarifications ...

    "Also, look up the XNU Kernel, and its references to BSD ..."

    The XNU kernel is not derived from BSD, it is a further development of the Mach kernel, orginally developed at Carnegie Mellon University. Apple has since added a BSD system call compatibility API to it but that doesn't make it a BSD kernel.

    "The company jobs created the OS X GUI in, was called NeXT Software.. not so strangely NeXTs homepage now goes to"

    Apple acquired NeXT Inc. in 1996 or 1997. However, the OSX GUI was not developed by NeXT, it was developed by Apple after acquiring NeXT. Apple used the NeXT kernel (originally derived from Mach), replaced the NeXT userland (derived from BSD 4.2) with the FreeBSD userland, the combination of which then became Darwin. Apple then ported parts of their Macintosh Toolbox API, which they named Carbon, further they used the NeXT application API, which they named Cocoa. Darwin together with these two APIs and a newly developed GUI, called Aqua, was then released in 2000 as MacOSX. Since then various API calls have been added to the XNU kernel, Carbon and Cocoa.

  91. WT

    EULAs and statutory rights

    The whole argument that EULAs potentially violate statutory rights misses one crucial point. Those rights only apply to end users, not to resale businesses.

    If Apple was to go after some individual for modifying and installing his legally purchased MacOSX install disc on a non-Apple branded computer, then that individual might stand a chance to successfully defend himself in court.

    However, if a company is pre-installing Apple proprietary code on their non-Apple branded computers for resale, then they do not have any defense on the basis of statutory rights because they are not the end-user.

    Also to consider, there have been a number of cases by companies against eBay and other online resellers because they did not want their products to be sold through these channels and in every single case these companies have won.

    Apple certainly has the right to deny any company from reselling their products regardless of statutory rights by end users. Statutory rights for end-users do not apply to commercial resellers.

  92. A J Stiles

    @ Mark Pardington, Aimee and others

    The Linux kernel was written from scratch by Linus Torvalds. It was initially released under a restrictive licence which prevented any commercial use. RMS convinced Linus to re-licence it under the GPL.

    The "userland utilities" -- i.e. basic filesystem commands such as ls, cd, mv; simple applications such as the vi editor; the C compiler and the "bash" shell -- supplied with the Linux kernel are generally taken from the GNU project (an ongoing effort to create a complete Free Software alternative to Unix; which rapidly shifted its aim from seeking mere parity, to seeking to chew up and spit out). Hence the name GNU/Linux. The GNU utilities were generally modelled on System V (which at the time was not freely redistributable) but were rewritten from scratch by RMS and others. They are licenced under the "not sharing is theft" GPL -- basically the only thing you are not allowed to do is distribute binaries only without access to the Source Code.

    The BSD project, based at the University of California, also produced a kernel and userland utilities which were intended to be freely redistributable. Some parts were already in the public domain; others had to be rewritten from scratch to remove code on which AT&T had asserted copyright. The BSD project used their own, "sharing is not theft" licence which, *unlike* the GPL, *allows* derivative works to be distributed without Source Code.

    The commands work similarly between different implementations, but not absolutely identically; and the options can be very different.

    The name "Unix" is a trademark and before it can be applied to an OS, a licence is required from the holders of the trademark. They will happily grant such a licence to anyone who submits their OS for a worthiness test (which amounts to little more than "does it have the fork() system call?") -- and pays the appropriate fee, naturally. Those who have not paid for the label can only describe operating systems which might pass the relevant tests as "Unix-like", and we have all learned from an early age that "strawberry flavour" does not necessarily imply something that tastes very much like strawberries.

    As you might expect where things evolved separately in parallel, the history of the various "Unix-like" operating systems is very complex, with unexpected connections and twists and turns all over the place. Someone drew a really good diagram once. It's probably still on the Internet somewhere.

  93. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re: strawberry flavoured

    The UNIX trademark doesn't really mean anything from a technology point of view. You could obtain the mark for just about any operating system, Unix-like or not.

    Compliance with the POSIX standard is generally accepted as a proper test whether an operating system is a Unix system (in the technology sense, not the trademark sense). Today, most systems are POSIX compliant or near POSIX compliant (leaving out some optional POSIX specs which are not mandatory), including GNU/Linux, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, MacOS X and OpenSolaris.

  94. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    AT&T vs BSD

    "The BSD project, based at the University of California, also produced a kernel and userland utilities which were intended to be freely redistributable. Some parts were already in the public domain; others had to be rewritten from scratch to remove code on which AT&T had asserted copyright."

    Perhaps one should also note that when AT&T brought its lawsuit against the University of Berkeley over copyright violations in the BSD code, the outcome was rather embarrassing for AT&T because only very little code was found to be copied from AT&T whilst a much larger amount of code in AT&T's Unix code was found to have been copied from BSD without giving the necessary credit that the BSD license demands.

  95. janimal

    @ac 'proof'

    The word you are looking for is PROVE FFS!

    Mines the one with 'spelltard' on the back

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