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back to article Hackintosh maker rises from the dead

Psystar, the Florida-based Hackintosher that's been giving Apple fits for over a year, refuses to die. The Unofficial Apple Weblog (better known amongst fanbois as TUAW), published a copy of the upstart clonemaker's latest newsletter, which announces to its customers that not only is the company preparing to emerge from Chapter …

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compatible?

I hope that their hardware is more compatible than their webpage... their site had problems in both Safari and Firefox on OS X the first times I tried it. It did work properly the second go 'round, but it's not supposed to just crap out that way.

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On plagiarism and claiming credit for others' work.

The company's statement: 'The Open(7), according to the newsletter, also benefits from "our innovative three-layer sound-deadening side panels and front door" which make the tower the company's "most quiet computing configuration available."'

"our innovative [design]"? Really?

The reality: This is an off-the-shelf product, and even the words are stolen: http://www.antec.com/Believe_it/product.php?id=MTgwOA==

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Gates Horns

"Three Year Parts and Support"

Given their legal position, I'd have thought three months would be impressive. There's an intriguing double asterisk which isn't clarified, as far as I can see. Perhaps it says

" ** - or until we're forced to close. "

Also, is there any chance MS is bankrolling Psystar to damage Apple's public image by playing the 'plucky underdog ruthlessly and utterly destroyed by computing giant' angle?

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Anonymous Coward

No problem

Apple is still pointing their guns at them. Maybe the reborn Psystar will have the balls to show Apple where are they getting their money from. They used the Chapter 11 to dodge this question once but I doubt the courts will allow this to happen too many times.

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FAIL

Still wouldn't thanks!

Good luck to them but I wouldn't touch it for the simple reason that I know the minute it goes wrong, they will refuse to help me and so would Apple. I can imagine Psystar simply telling you to go to the forums and find and answer. Well in that case you might as well go with Linux, at least there will be more poeple working on Linux issues than OSX hackintosh ones!

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WTF?

Honestly, why bother?

MacOS looks cool, but it's not THAT good an OS anyway. Why allt he heartache, really?

DOI: sent from my Mac.

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Paris Hilton

I don't get it.

Surely Apple is a triumph of form over function. Why would anyone want a cheap knock off?

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Big Brother

Psystar sounds like amazing like Shyster

A shyster (pronounced /ˈʃaɪstər/) is someone who acts in a disreputable, unethical, or unscrupulous way, especially in the practice of law and politics

The word is derived from the German verb scheissen, "to defecate" and the English suffix -ster, "one who does". Shyster is an alteration of the German scheißer, which literally means "defecator" or an "incompetent worthless person

Away lad and invest your new and shiny sixpence in a Shyster Hackinabox 320G Ram 1 Zillion Zimbabwe Nano GigaFlops of Heisinger Principle of absolute [take it to the bank] certainty running the new improved CAD OXO OS

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Flame

Apple fanboi's screaming...

I love listening to teh apple fanbois scream. I demand the right to pay $1000 more for less of a product just because its apple crapintosh branded.

The case all comes down to installing the OS where apple doesnt want you too.

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Deckchair

Duh, well, because it's cheap! Get back to your coloured crayons ;-p

Everyone so far is knocking a bit of healthy competition. Is it sore that you overpaid Apple to the tune of $1000?

Thumbs up for Applesauce

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Badgers

Build one, don't buy one!

I built a Hackintosh around a year ago now, after flirting with the idea for about a year before that. The machine I built cost me around £400 (but I did salvage a case and some drives) and it, at the time, beat all MacPros hands down. It's still an awesome machine, and runs everything I can throw at it, including Photoshop, Final Cut, etc without a hitch. The challenge of building it was part of the satisfaction, and I would recommend anyone who wants to use a Hackintosh to go this route.

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@ Deckchair

"Apple is a triumph of form over function"

You're right ... you don't get it!

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Anonymous Coward

RE: compatibile?

AC wrote: "I hope that their hardware is more compatible than their webpage... their site had problems in both Safari and Firefox on OS X the first times I tried it."

Well, I had problems viewing anything other than their store.psystar.com page. All links failed to do anything other than redirect me back to that page...

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I'm on Apple's side...

Clearly, there's little to no business ethics here.

Anyone comfortable with speccing and building an Intel based rig can install MacOS X on it - it's become far easier than it used to be.

I hope Apple go at this guy all guns blazing, as it's clear he's cashing in on other people's hard work!

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Different approach...

They should sell Apple-compatible machines without OS. Sell OS in a box and give them nice manual how to install it. It's not hard anyway, if machines are fully Apple-compatible.

Then Apple wouldn't be able to sue them. They could sue customers, but I really doubt they would like all that fallout all over the Internet.

Is it so hard?

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Paris Hilton

Why dont they.......

Sell the hardware sans OS and let people put there own OS on?

Job done, Apple Stymied.

Just a thought.

And if MS tried to manipulate the market in this way there would be screams of "anti trust" yet Apple can control both this and the Iphone software stores etc etc and thats ok?

Paris, she doesnt get it either

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K
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@Deckchair

"Why would anyone want a cheap knock off?"

Lets tip thats on its head, why would anybody want an expensive rip off? I think Psystar has big cahoonas.

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jai
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@nsld

because then there'd be nothing to make Psystar any different from any other PC seller. the only reason people pay attention to them is because of all the publicity they get from this OS X controversity.

without that, people wouldn't know who they are

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Unhappy

RE: Why dont they.......

Umm ... the reason they don't sell the MacOS is that you can't legally buy it.

Mac only sell upgrades, i.e. you have to own a Mac, with a License to install MacOS, in order to install the software.

Anything else is, according to the software license, illegal and that is really what these guys are challenging in court.

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Jobs Horns

I think It's time the EU re-adjusted their sights

Apple have an unethical monopoly over supplying the hardware.

The reason this has gone unnoticed is that Apple used to supply bespoke machines, but that time has long gone. Once upon a time, an Apple computer was made by er, Apple.

What they are actually supplying now is a customised flavour of Linux, running on the same hardware that that every other PC compatible maker uses. And charging the earth for it.

We had a member of staff here that demanded she work only on Macs, so I looked up the specs.

I specced up a very mediocre system, and then saw the price!

After I'd finished laughing, I picked myself up off the floor, dried my eyes, and told her in no uncertain terms to take a long walk off a short peer.

Perhaps if one of Psystars offerings were around at the time, I might have considered it

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@JackHarrer

The OS has to be modified to run on non-Apple hardware. This is what the whole dispute is over.

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A shame Virtual Box doesn't directly supporty OS X

That's the way I'd like to run Snow Leopard.

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Boffin

@Psymon

No, it's not Linux, it's Darwin. Darwin is based on the FreeBSD kernel and som of the userspace tools IIRC.

I totally support what Psystar are doing, so long as they give credit where it's due to the hackers that made it possible.

I really don't see that Apple have much of a leg to stand on. Especially know that boot-132 makes it comparatively easy to install unmodified OS X media on a lot of machines, and they don't even have to hack the drivers or kernel. This can mean there is no distribution of modified code, on of Apple's objections.

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@Psymon

That is just so full of utter BS it warrants little more of a response than this.

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@Robert Simpson

There is a method to do this WITHOUT having to modify the OS, I read about in either the reg or slashdot - can't remember which but it uses a live linux kernel iirc to fool the OS to get it to install...

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Pirate

OSX on VM ??

Just out of curiosity (and being too lazy - errr busy to look it up) Does OSX run in any virtual environment ?

Guess someone here must have tried it

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Linux

@ Psymon

Lord Moynihan perhaps?

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WTF?

@Psymon

"What they are actually supplying now is a customised flavour of Linux" - erm, do you know something about Snow Leopard we don't ? Or, maybe, you're talking cobblers?

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Not A Monopoly.

Apple is a hardware company. That's where it's money's at.

The software, including OS X, is a vehicle to sell hardware. The same goes for App Store drives iPhone & Touch sales.

This is also why OS X and other Apple software such as iWork is so much cheaper than MS equivalents. Sell the software cheap, and the hardware at a premium.

Can you have a monopoly on your own product? No. You invented it. It's yours. If you can protect it, then you should.

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J Adams, you are quite right! Why cannot everyone see so clearly???

"By Jonathan Adams Posted Friday 3rd July 2009 10:33 GMT

"Umm ... the reason they don't sell the MacOS is that you can't legally buy it.

Mac only sell upgrades, i.e. you have to own a Mac, with a License to install MacOS, in order to install the software."

Yes, quite so.

That is why they ask you, when you go into a store on Tottenham Court Rd, to give proof that you own a Mac. They are anxious to avoid colluding in you committing a criminal offense by buying a retail copy of OSX without owning a Mac. If they helped you do that, both of you might end up in jail. Amazon is the same by the way. They will not sell you a copy of OSX without you supply the serial number of your machine, and they keep track of those serial numbers, so no serial number can be used more than once.

People don't realize this, they think you can just buy as many copies as you want. Well, you can't.

Not only that, but when you come to use your copy, it really is just an upgrade. You will find that it checks to see whether you have a valid copy of OSX on your hard drive. It will not boot and install onto a machine with a blank hard drive in it. No, no. See, if it were to do that, it would not be an upgrade at all, but a full retail copy. Which, as we know, it ain't.

This is proof that Psystar is abusing in some way, because look at it like this, they are buying lots of copies of OSX, which as shown above is a criminal offense. And then they are also installing these copies on blank machines, which is also criminal. So they will undoubtedly all go to jail. Along with their horrible customers.

I think this will be great. Apple is one of the greatest and most creative companies in the world, well it is the greatest actually, and it surely has the right to run its own business model how it wants, and governments all over the world should be helping it.

I like that their machines are so expensive too. The more they charge, the more profits they make, and the more they can pay Steve Jobs in stock options, which he richly deserves, and this is really, really good for us, it means more better Macs for us.

Of course there are people who do not understand this, they are ignorant and to be pitied for the most part, but there are also a few denialists, and these guys are traitors to the planet, and to humanity. No punishment is too dire for them. Psystar is the foremost of them, and there is a special circle of hell reserved for Psystar. Steve told us all about it in his Founders Message last week, but he asked us to keep the details confidential, so I will say no more.

Cheers.

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WTF?

@Matt 89

>> I hope Apple go at this guy all guns blazing, as it's clear he's cashing in on other people's hard work!

So you don't think an Intel CPU (that Apple used to scoff at) with a 'nix operating system is cashing in on other people's hard work then?

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@ Jonathan Adams

I'm looking at a box which seems to contain OS X 10.5 discs... hmm, yes it does! I seem to recall buying it from Amazon... hmm, there's the receipt! Amazon didn't ask me any questions about what machine I planned to install it on. They just sold me the box. I'm looking at another box, which seems to contain OS X 10.4 discs... hmm, yes it does! I seem to recall buying that one over the counter at the Apple Store in Wellington Green here in Palm Beach County... hmm, don't have the receipt handy, that was a few years back, but I _know_ that the Apple Store _still_ carries OS X boxes, just at a higher price than Amazon which is why I bought 10.5 from Amazon.

I'm looking at a computer system which is running OS X 10.5 over in the corner of this room... and instead of an apple logo, it seems to have a big HP on the front. Why, yes it does. Gee. How is that possible? Could it be that I installed OS X on non-Apple hardware? Why yes I did. Does Apple give a damn? No they don't... 'cause I'm not _selling_ the result. If I were to try to put that HP box up for sale with OS X on it, Apple's lawyers _would_ land on me from a great height... and rightly, too. Apple isn't suing HP, despite the fact that many HP boxes can run OS X without problems, because HP _doesn't advertise those boxes for sale as OS X machines_. They are suing Pustar precisely because they _are_ advertising their boxes for sale as OS X machines.

You _do_ see the distinction, don't you? A private individual can do whatever they damn please, Apple will neither know nor care. A company can sell OS X-compatible boxes, Apple will not care... unless they advertise them as OS X compatible and sell 'em with OS X installed. Then they care. If Pustar stopped shipping boxes with OS X and stopped advertising their systems as OS X-compatible, Apple's case would evaporate. But this will never happen, as Pustar's whole business plan is to get a ride on the back of Apple's (and many others, mostly in the free/open software community) work. If they just made a box which would work fine as a Hackintosh but didn't sell it with OS X, no-one would know they existed.

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@Kev K

If you look in certain places you can download pre created VM's of OS X10.5

Apparently.

I've never tested them though as virtualising OS X on OS X seems a smidgen pointless to me as i'm not a developer.

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@James O'Shea

Actually Apple probably do give a damn as you've violated the Terms and Conditions (that bit you didn't read - like many don't)

The only accurate part is that, Apple don't know.... they certainly would care if they did know! What they'd actually do about it, is anyone's guess!

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@Cody

*cough* bullshit *cough*

Like James O'Shea I bought leopard from Amazon no questions asked.

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So OSX is much more expensive that Windows XP/Vista/7 then?

Because you have to buy an artificially expensive machine to run it on?

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FAIL

Microsoft is the backer of Paystar...

I bet that MS is the backer. With billions in cash and as ruthless as MS has been over the years I have no doubt that they are trying to kick apple in the jimmy.

MS has pissed me off more this week, trying to roll out 64 bit machines for our engineers:

*) Mortals cannot un-install outlook express

*) Mortals cannot un-install MSN Messenger

*) Mortals cannot delete any default microsoft screen saver

*) Mortals cannot disk clone a Windows computer with out a unique sid

*) Any version of .NET requires version 3.5 sp1 patch at 300 megabytes

*) Mortals(non-administrative users) still cannot defrag the disk

*) Home users cannot remove ie 6, 7 or 8(corporate america is the only group that should use ie)

*) Termianl server clients do not accelerate directx or OpenGL graphics

WTH is up with 32 bit windows? Hell the last current cpu that was 32 bit only was the P-III or some of the crappy P4 variants. AMD has been making 64 bit processors since April 2003 and htey announced it in 2000. Why keep allowing the developers to make only 32 bit drivers, force them to update to 64 bit so the users have no choice. If you have enough poop to run Vista or Vista 7 you already have a 64 bit cpu.

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@Cody

>>They are anxious to avoid colluding in you committing a criminal offense by buying a retail copy of OSX without owning a Mac ..... And then they are also installing these copies on blank machines, which is also criminal. So they will undoubtedly all go to jail

At the risk of feeding a troll, let me just say, I think you need to learn the difference between criminal law and civil law.

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@Joe Greer

The original Core Duo was 32bit only, and that was big for a large section of 2006. I seriously doubt if it means there are more 32bit machines likely to end up with Windows 7 on them than 64bit machines though.

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@Scott Mckenzie

If Apple actually cared about individuals running OS X on non-Apple hardware they'd work harder at stepping on the various Hackintosh websites which give step-by-step instructions on how to get 10.5 to run on generic hardware.

If you're not selling it, they don't give a damn. Only a few hardcore geeks would go to the trouble of doing all that, and either they already got a sale from them (I've got multiple Macs, so they definitely got sales from me) or they'd _never_ get sales from them. Either way, the lost revenue is miniscule and they simply don't care.

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Anonymous Coward

@Gordon 10

I suggest that you read your T's and C's mate. Just because you can buy it boxed on Amazon doesn't make it legal. Seeing as a Mac (Not MAC - Media Access Control) is a prerequisite for purchasing a boxed copy, or upgrade, for OS X it is assumed that you are being an honest consumer and that you do indeed own an Apple badged product. When you load the software you have to agreed to the wordy bit, you are legally bound to adhere to a set of term and conditions of use. It's called "a contract". Part of those terms is that you will not install a copy of OS X on to any non-Apple branded devices. No. A sticker doesn't count. This is where a contract is broken and therefore a *civil* law is breached. Psystar are in breach of this, as well as possible other infractions of the DMCA, amongst others. It really is that black and white.

Generally it's the same for all those Windows OEM licenses that appear on Amazon, which in the strictest terms, are not legal copies.

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@cody

i agree. can i have yor baybeez? yu shurlee arr clevre.

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Gates Halo

@Mei Lewis

OS X costs the price of the hardware, yes. A few grand for free software.

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Linux

Apples should eaten & not heard!

...and people pay for this? Oh bewilderment, thou hast made a mockery of mine thoughts. That thou wouldst pay the pretty price for a pretty box that runs... Apple. This would be the aversion to Windoze that creates such passion. Passion is good, Windoze bad! True but this doesn't automatically mean that Apples are good.

Nice box, says it runs much better than M$. Everything does, so no biggy here. I thought MSux was the major "buy something that has no guarantee it works", whereas Apple is more of a "buy something that someone else created & they put it in a nice box".

I'll make my own box & run Linux. M$ sux, Apple, who cares about Apple. They're only this big bcoz people are starting to realise that M$ hate crappy software.

Linux is coming Apple & you know you won't last.

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Boffin

@Joe Greer

I'm not one to jump to Microsoft's defence, but I'm really quite happy that our 'mortals' cannot mess with their desktops in the way in which you desire.

Firstly if you are rolling out lots of machines and are having to uninstall the same software from them manually and this is a problem, you are doing it wrong. You mention regular users cannot disk clone without a unique SID..? Check out sysprep. If you don't want to use sysprep then use NewSID (however it would be a Very Bad Idea to allow non-administrative users to be able to mess with the low level NTFS security of files- you might as well give them admin accounts.

Secondly if you need regular users to be able to do tasks that require admin privs then you should checkout the runas command with the /savecred switch - similar to sudo with a sudoers file. For example you can give users a shortcut icon to defrag the disk which just needs to be setup once by an admin.

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@Joe Greer

I despair for your engineers -

* Mortals cannot un-install outlook express - why would you want to, but Group Policy will block access to it negating the need to remove it

* Mortals cannot un-install MSN Messenger - why would you want to, but Group Policy will block access to it negating the need to remove it

* Mortals cannot delete any default microsoft screen saver - why would you want to, but Group Policy will force a screensaver negating the need to remove it

* Mortals cannot disk clone a Windows computer with out a unique sid - Genius. You duplicate a disk and it has the same SID as the source. Maybe it should have read your mind and modified the SID for you.

* Any version of .NET requires version 3.5 sp1 patch at 300 megabytes - shite. v3.5 needs 3.5 SP1 as the title of the update suggests. Install v2 and see if it needs 3.5 SP1, it doesn't as they are side-by-side. You are being offered it via Windows Update because it is 'important' or 'recommended', whichever it may be

* Mortals(non-administrative users) still cannot defrag the disk - can't see this as a major problem myself, but you can have it. Haven't defragged my personal machine since about 2000, so whatever floats your boat

* Home users cannot remove ie 6, 7 or 8(corporate america is the only group that should use ie) - why would you actually want to? Does it upset you that much that it is installed?

* Termianl server clients do not accelerate directx or OpenGL graphics - erm, the feasible alternatives are what now? And anyway, this is mainly due to the difference in speed between a physical graphics bus and a physical network, which is pretty sizeable. Hardly the fault of Microsoft you will surely agree

I'm afraid you are exactly what it wrong with a large part of the general IT support world, and perhaps this is Microsofts fault - their software can be deceptively easy to use, giving people that don't know what they are doing plenty of rope to hang themselves with. Never heard of Group Policy, WDS / RIS or at a push Ghost. What about WSUS? No, I didn't think so - you'll just keep thrashing away and blame the software for your shortcomings, spreading piss and wind along the way.

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Then again..

@Psymon Posted Friday 3rd July 2009 10:47 GMT

"Apple have an unethical monopoly over supplying the hardware."

No they don't - they are a hardware company who also make and sell the OS and software to run on it. Apple's business model is to make "the whole widget". This is not illegal, unethical and certainly not a monopoly.

"What they are actually supplying now is a customised flavour of Linux..."

Wrong again, it is a modified version of BSD (Darwin) and related support applications with Apple's own GUI (Aqua). Apple take onboard improvements made by the open source community and fold their own improvements back into the community's work. Apple take but they also give back.

"...Once upon a time, an Apple computer was made by er, Apple..."

And Apple computers are still made by Apple, in so much as IBMs are made by IBM, Dells are made by Dell and HPs are made by HP.

"...running on the same hardware that that every other PC compatible maker uses...

No, wrong again. Outward appearances show a similarity to generic computers. But it is the attention to detail, build quality, materials used, selection of quality components, and minimalist, stylish aesthetics which sets Apple hardware apart from the crowd. People who don't get this need to check their prejudice at the door and actually inspect a Mac in detail.

"...And charging the earth for it."

Spec a Dell or HP to match a Mac and that argument completely falls apart. And only Apple can offer OS X. So you get a better built machine with an OS which is light-years ahead of the competition. In the end, you get what you pay for. I'd rather pay for quality and usability.

"We had a member of staff here that demanded she work only on Macs, so I looked up the specs. I specced up a very mediocre system, and then saw the price!

After I'd finished laughing, I picked myself up off the floor, dried my eyes, and told her in no uncertain terms to take a long walk off a short peer."

Referring to my previous remark, I doubt you seriously made an honest comparison. You certainly were approaching it with a prejudiced attitude. Staff should be given the most appropriate tools for the job to extract the most productivity from a person. But it is amazing the number of companies, well IT Departments, which will cut off their nose to spite their face.

"Perhaps if one of Psystars offerings were around at the time, I might have considered it."

And perhaps your IT department would have had a BLIND FIT that you bought an unsupported computer with unsupported OS from a fly-by-night company of dubious reputation and heritage which is engaged in highly questionable legal shenanigans and has a very uncertain future. Yes, that would certainly endear you to the IT Department.

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Am I missing the point

apple release software user pays for software and gets it installed on non mac hardware. How can that be a problem or should we allow movie producers to say this dvd can only be played on a sony player.

apple you took a free os gave nothing back and put your lame gui on it. please get over yourselve before you end up like M$.

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WTF?

@ AC (5th July 14:23)

Well said that man :) There is far too much unwarranted Microsoft-bashing by those I shall term "Regtards" who seem to be incapable of writing a comment that is anywhere near related to the article!!

Yet again... the comments on this article have turned into anti-Microsoft bullshit... HOW THE FUCK DOES THIS HAPPEN EVERY TIME???!!

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