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  Mac Hacks Allow OS X on PCs
Time: 10:24 EST/15:24 GMT | News Source: Wired | Posted By: Jonathan Tigner

Imagine if your next Mac cost you only $300, and ran faster than any G4 or G5 you've ever used.

That future may already be unfolding: Hackers have found a way to bypass a chip designed to prevent the Mac OS from running on non-Apple PCs, which are often cheaper than Macs.

Some of the hackers are running the tweaked version of the operating system on their PCs natively. Others are using the system with VMware, which allows the Mac OS to support more PC hardware.

Hackers and curious computer users this week have been downloading the tweaked Mac OS X for PCs, nicknamed "OSx86," from several websites connected to the BitTorrent file-distribution system.

OSx86 is designed to run on Apple Computer's next generation of hardware, which some call "MacIntels" and others "MacTels" because the machines will run on Intel microprocessors rather than the PowerPC processor used in current Macs. The hacked version of OSx86 is based on pirated software, which came from copies of the operating system sent to participants in the Apple Developer Connection. The ADC participants also received MacIntel computers for testing and development.

Now the hacked version of OSx86 is running on Dell laptops and other PCs with Intel and AMD microprocessors.

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#1 By 3 ( at 8/12/2005 11:01:46 AM
All i say is try it, chances are that a lot of people will like it!

#2 By 3653 ( at 8/12/2005 11:39:08 AM

#3 By 2960 ( at 8/12/2005 1:53:04 PM
Does anyone REALLY think this will survive into the final release?


#4 By 2960 ( at 8/12/2005 1:54:51 PM
Was ActiveDVD quitely retired?


#5 By 21203 ( at 8/12/2005 2:47:53 PM
Every time I hear this story pop up again, I keep thinking -- isn't this how Windows got started? Open piracy, let the OS grow through the underground?

Makes me put on my conspiracy hat and wonder if this was planned from the start.

#6 By 11888 ( at 8/12/2005 4:18:00 PM
#5, I think you're getting the same vibe I'm getting. This all feels like the beginning of Apple selling shrink-wrapped copies of OS X for anyone who wants it.

John Dvorak seems to think so too.,1895,1845259,00.asp

#7 By 2332 ( at 8/12/2005 5:19:45 PM
#6 - That's because Dvorak is an idiot.

OS X doesn't have a PRAYER of being sold to anybody who wants to run it on their PC for one big reason (aside from the fact Apple doesn't want to): hardware support.

OS X runs well on approved hardware. Apple has never had the need to create a complex HAL (hardware abstraction layer) for OS X because all of the hardware it would ever run on was Apple-approved.

If all of a sudden any Joe blow could load it up on his very not-approved PC, it will not be pretty.

People don't give Microsoft nearly enough credit for the incredible job they've done with hardware support. Their HAL is next to none.

#8 By 20505 ( at 8/12/2005 8:44:54 PM
I personally think that both #6 and #7 are right.

#9 By 1845 ( at 8/13/2005 11:34:29 AM
I'll follow Balmer's lead in betting and say that if Dvorak is dead on, I'll eat a CD (floppies are too out of date nowadays). The likelihood of Apple caputre 10-15% of the market in the near future (1-2 yrs or so) is about that of Microsoft releasing Office 2006 for Linux.

This post was edited by BobSmith on Saturday, August 13, 2005 at 11:34.

#10 By 3653 ( at 8/13/2005 4:42:26 PM
csmac = "Apple could probably get at least 10-15% of the market if they sold OS/X as a high-end alternative to Windows"

If that were true, you would already be able to buy OSX for Intel shrink wrapped at compusa.

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