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back to article Hackintosher aims 'blazin' guns' at Apple

Psystar, the pesky Hackintosher that has been giving Apple fits for well over a year, has switched legal representation and is preparing to go to trial with, as the company puts it, "guns blazin'". In a posting on the Florida company's newly launched Psystar Community blog entitled, "In comes the cavalry", the Hackintosher sets …

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Flame

If I buy something it's mine

"Apparently, the Hackintoshing Floridians see no difference between licensing and buying. Apple does. Every EULA we've ever taken the time to read does too."

P**s on EULAs. If I buy something it's mine. If I buy a book I can burn it,

cut it up, use it to balance my table, etc. No diff.

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Jobs Horns

regualalrly titled

I wish Psystar success. Down with the freaking EULAs telling people what to do with the stuff they own.

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First Sale Doctrine

Now Psystar is challenging Apple's MacOS EULA on the grounds of the Copyright Act, claiming Apple has no right to restrict what happens to a licensed copy of their software (apart from those restrictions already declared by law) once it leaves their hands. This justification actually has at least a few similarities to the 2008 Autodesk case.

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Anonymous Coward

Good to hear they'll be more open from now on.

Maybe with this occasion they will tell the world who is financing their lawsuit.

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FAIL

In a word "support"

My biggest concern throughout this whole sorry affair is support. Who will support the users of this "product"?

Apple will deny it - You're not running it on our hardware, against the dictats of the EULA when the software was purchased.

Psystar - They would neither have the full backing or full gamut of technical expertise to be able to handle some of the bizarre things users of any products can come up with, let alone a full blown O/S.

How is a tiny company like Psystar with, at a guess 200 hundred employees, going to support a few hundred to a few thousand users of hardware they don't make and software they didn't write? You call up with a support call and the Psystar then spend the next days trawling the Hakintosh support forums for help? No thanks.

Seems like one big PR exercise to raise people's awareness of Psystar and their purpose, try to get customers and a financial backer for their cause. Maybe they're simply trying make themsleves out to be the classic biblical David, I'm not the religious type but didn't Goliath start it in the first place, not David?!

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Linux

GO PSYSTAR!

Let's take some control back from these evil people. Besides, what is Apple so afraid of?? This can only be good for them. What? Can't control what you spoonfeed the Apple faithful?

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This post has been deleted by its author

@In a word "support"

Few companies support the OS beyond 'here's a re-imaging tool' and you certainley don't get free support from MS anymore.

If it bugs you then pay more for the support.

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Ty
Jobs Halo

heheh

All you poor Windoze zealots secretly pining for Mac OS X. Makes me laugh!

Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac!

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N2
Bronze badge

Hmm, early days?

I see the group is heaving with new members...

All three of them.

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Happy

Apple - labbled gear

1) buy apple in supermarket, with sticky label naming the variety

2) stick label onto computer

3) eat apple

4) install Hackintosh

5) an apple a day keeps Apple-lawyers away

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Jobs Horns

Doesn't know who he's messing with!

This poor guy doesn't understand the organisation he's messing with. The next thing he knows the Foxxconn security chief will be popping around asking him if he wants to take a tour of the roof...

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FAIL

Camara & Sibley?

The same Camara & Sibley who did such a sterling job in the second Thomas-Rasset trial? Sure. Lotsa luck Psystar.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Ty

Quote /

All you poor Windoze zealots secretly pining for Mac OS X. Makes me laugh!

Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac!

Or, buy 3 PC's for the same money.......

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Stop

Haven't they got

anything better to do?

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Minnows and Sharks...... A Cautionary Tale for Traditional Investment Brokerage ....

... in Alternative Intelligence Markets*

"Psystar - They would neither have the full backing or full gamut of technical expertise to be able to handle some of the bizarre things users of any products can come up with, let alone a full blown O/S." ..... By Anonymous Coward Posted Wednesday 29th July 2009 03:28 GMT

AC,

Psystar may disagree with you on that or alternatively they may know of some expertise that can easily handle a full blown O/S.

* In a Fresh Water Environment is the Minnow King and Lord over the Shark. And in the World of Virtualisation are Real World Powers a Liability if they are not Freely Shared with a Cash Boost to and for ITs New Players to Boot, and Return to the System with XSSive Capital Spend/Novel Plant and Innovative Material Purchase.

Thus is Traditional Capital Investment Quickly Returned to the System for yet A.N.Others to Benefit from and with the Self Same Flash Cash Injection/Infection, and the Resultant SMARTer System Benefits from ITs New Control Power Tools and Drivers, for a Double Whammy of Good Fortune and Fortunate Betas. And should the Former Helped become the Phorming Helper, then that is also an Advantageous Opportunity to Plunder for Added Treasure and Pleasure.

To think to halt or hinder such Progress to the next Higher Levels of Confusions will only Result in the Obvious Outing of Malicious Embedded Code masquerading as Essential Protection whenever all that it really is, is a Self-Serving Trojan Worm and Debilitating Virus Gorging on ITs Hosts' Generosities/Intelligence Weaknesses. And that is an Action/ProAction which will always Warrant the Harshest of Natural Justice Punishments delivered with Impunity and Immunity which cannot be Challenged or Denied.

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Anonymous Coward

@christian graffeuille

No, it doesn't mean you can install it on as many PCs as you like: there's this thing called "copyright", you know, and copyright exists and works without any so-called EULAs.

Also, I rather suspect that the Hackintoshing Floridians do see a difference between licensing and buying: they are probably going to argue that buying is what took place in this case.

Something should be done about the ridiculous tradition of so-called EULAs. You can't make something into an "agreement" (which implies a contract) just by writing it all in capitals and putting the work "AGREEMENT" at the top. There has to be a "meeting of the minds". Obviously there's no meeting of the minds when the purchaser doesn't read the document in question until after they've bought the product, and in most cases not even then. (Why should they? It's not as if they're signing anything or have any choice.)

Unfortunately, any attempt to clarify the situation through legislation will inevitably make things worse for the general public as the politicians who make the laws have little enough respect for the general public even when dealing with issues that the general public follows and understands.

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Wouldn't it be great...

...if one of the people from the 'you find it, you keep it' Microsoft commercials ends up buying a Psystar? Heheh

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FAIL

Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Psystar remind me of that knight in the Holy Grail who has had his arms and legs chopped off - "it's only a flesh wound", "I'll bite your legs off" etc.

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Boffin

Copyright

"If this works, then we can do anything we like when we buy a copy of any software. Like install it on as many as we like PCs."

As I understand it, it would just mean that we could install a copy on any PC we liked - singular - at a time. Copyright would still restrict us to one "working" copy at a time in addition to backup copies which are not in simultaneous use.

The real issue is not copying but the requirement that one only install the software on Apple-approved (ie, manufactured) hardware. Which is an important point with implications across many industries from Blur-Ray players to cars; it is very important to consumers everywhere that Apple lose here, even if they've never used a computer of any sort in their lives.

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Way around this

The EULA states: "This License allows you to install, use and run one (1) copy of the Apple Software on a single Apple-labeled computer at a time. You agree not to install, use or run the Apple Software on any non-Apple-labeled computer, or to enable others to do so."

So slap on a sticker which reads 'With Apple's OSX' and include their logo.

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@ Go Psystar

Quote: "By Wrenchy Posted Wednesday 29th July 2009 03:51 GMT

Let's take some control back from these evil people. Besides, what is Apple so afraid of?? This can only be good for them. What? Can't control what you spoonfeed the Apple faithful?

"

Given that Apple has actively requested that this goes to court in spite of Pystar's "bankruptcy", my guess would be that they are not afraid of anything because they know that they are going to win. As it seems that others think that this is only about the EULA, it isn't as it is also about the DMCA and theft of IP. Psystar might (a big might) have got somewhere if it were just about the EULA, but they have no chance whatsoever against the DMCA. They are going to lose and lose badly.

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@Ty

"Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac!"

My computers are tools that I use to enable (and finance) my chosen lifestyle. For any given task, I use whichever combination of applications, OS and hardware that gets in my way the least. Over the last decade and a half, that's been mostly Slackware[1].

I don't need a computer to have a life. In fact, I'm quite looking forward to retiring from IT entirely sometime in the next year or so. I'll still maintain the wife & I's personal stuff, and keep the barn's web presence and email system up to date, but that's about it. Oh, and family stuff (Mom, my Great Aunt, etc., folks who really aren't up to learning about the guts of this new-fangled technology, but still make use of it to communicate with far-flung family).

[1] I'm not a fanboi. Slackware works for ME, and has for a long time. The wife's two main boxen (laptop & desktop) are WinXP, and I'm happy with that, because they work for her. We also have a couple Apple machines that we use mostly for video editing. The servers are all one variation of BSD or another (with a couple of legacy exceptions). I have a Win2K box under my credenza that runs AutoCAD (it is air-gapped, I'm not stupid). The barn office & lounge have half a dozen machines that dual-boot WinXP and a custom version of Slackware 12.2 (soon to become a custom Slack13). Most of the barn-brats[2] prefer to boot Slackware; the adults[3] seem to mindlessly use whatever is running when they sit down in front of it. The lone Mac in the lounge hasn't even been powered up in months, according to firewall logs.

[2] Kids learning to ride ... Between 6 and ~16 y/o, usually between 3 and 4 dozen on any given week. More if you include scouts getting merit badges. More if we book a largish party of tourists for trail rides. All of 'em seem to think that getting the latest pics onto MyFaceTwitsGiHotBlogs before leaving the barn is somehow important ... I'm seriously thinking about putting in a three-hour modern-day delay-line[4].

[3][5] ~26+ y/o ... Adults, serious about riding. None of them have any clue about technology.

[4] No, I won't, not really. The lack of ethics that comes with storing the password info on my local systems isn't my bag.

[5] After ~16, the kids are more interested in the boyfriend/girlfriend/MotAS game; prior to ~26 or so, if still interested in horses and capable of affording to ride, they seem to be at University.

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@Ty

Umm seriously? Your going to post a comment about the goodness of Apple stuff when there have already been multiple comments from those who run *nix, who are questioning the EULA or the support questions? SERIOUSLY??

Wow bro you couldnt have come off as more of a fanboi/troll then you just did. You managed to take a comment thread that hasnt had a mention of Windows and turned it into an all out flame war. Good Job bro.

I wish I had the Apple Syndrome. Atleast then I could feel as if I am in an elite crowd when a story about Apple gets posted.

Good day to you fanboi/girl.

/Why should I bother explaining the icon? (looks at Ty)

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Blah!

OK, IP, intelectual property, who owns it? I own my own and that's it, I'm allowed to use other IP, such a reading a book, watching a movie or TV show, even installing an application on a PC. I have the rights to USE said piece of software and said software will always come with a EULA and a copyright. Now the book is copyrighted, but it doesn't have a EULA, so technically, once I buy the book I can reproduce it to PDF, or copy it word for word into a word processing application or retype it, or even handwrite it into a notepad, but I can't sell said reproductions without the owners expressed permission.

Microsoft's EULA does not specify where I have to install their OS, I can install it on a physical machine from a name brand computer manufacturer, or onto a home built PC, or even run it as a virtual machine, using something like Virtual PC, Virtual Server, VMWare Workstation, Hyper-V, VMWare Fusion...

OR

Dual boot it on a Mac....

Why can't we do the same with Mac OS? I want to run Mac OS as a VM, but due to it's legalise and it's EULA, I'm not allowed to. Sounds like Apple has it's own monopoly on it's own stuff, more so that Microsoft does.

Can anyone name any applications, outside of iTunes, Quicktime and Safari, that Apple makes that can run under OS's other than Mac OS?

My thoughts, my opinion, take it or leave it.

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Anonymous Coward

So, to cut through the PR spin a bit

"our previous lawyers told us we were fucking morons for getting into a fight like this in the first place and weren't going to win, so we fired their asses in favour of some other lawyers who said they'll kiss it all better and gave us a nice reacharound"

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Pirate

Hardware-schmardware

Seems like a very simple work-around.

Psystar sells the hardware OS-free, you just go to the Apple website and buy a copy, install and you're done.

Am I missing something here?

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"Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac!" - and

Get ripped off!!

Overpriced shiny hardware made in China by the cheapest labour force in the world. If Apple started boxing turds these idiots would buy them.

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If they break this EULA

Then all of them break. Microsoft included. Can't really see them allowing that to happen. Especially if, as some people suggest, Microsoft are paying the bills.

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Unhappy

@AC...

Sure you can do whatever you want with the physical BOOK, but the book is just an INFORMATION CARRIER. you're still not allowed to repost the CONTENTS or rewrite it and publish as your own.

The same with the MAC OS CDs.

You can use the physical CDs as coasters, frisbees, break them into small pieces or een microwave them if you want.

Because of PsyStar we may end up with 'copy protection' or other nonsense on these CDs.

(Something Apple has never had to do with their OS before. )

Can I sue Psystar for the added inconvenience they will be causing me?

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Badgers

lottie

Can't they just put a sticker of an apple on the case and say it's apple labeled?

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Linux

@Ty

Did you just come into this to be a troll?

Anyway, I'm a linux user and in no way do I 'pine' for mac os x, nor does my bank balance!

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Coat

the next thing...........

if they loose, will apple unbundle safari with their OS and installing Opera by default...............

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Coat

@Ty

You forgot your joke icon...

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FAIL

So...

If PsyStar manage to overturn the EULA, and that's a massive if, what's to stop Apple, MS, et al from dramatically increasing the cost of their operating systems? They're businesses after all, lost revenue has to be recovered one way or another, and the easiest way of doing that is putting prices up.

Perhaps OSX CDs for a fresh install will simply be priced so high that buying a hackintosh no longer makes sense. (Never owned a Mac so I'm not sure how the whole upgrade / fresh install process works)

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Gates Horns

kicking off

I see all hackintosh and osx86 stuff has disappeared from ebay now. Even folk just selling hackintosh logos and stuff.

Apple must have forseen this coming when they moved to open x86 hardware.

To have a RETAIL OS that you sell that runs on open x86 hardware, and then try to tell folk they must run it on an apple is no different from say Sony saying you should only use SONY CDs in your Sony CD player, or Ford saying you must only use ford oil in a ford car.

It ain't gonna fly.

If pystar have got wee Bill G behind them with his wallet open it could be an interested decimation of apple....Or more likely they will engineer osx back to require non open hardware, and we'll all lose out :-/

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@Charlie Mason, Sebastian Brosig, Lottie

The full EULA clearly establishes in the preamble that Apple are a company, so it's clear from context, from ordinary legal construction and from the rules related to proper nouns versus common nouns that 'Apple-labelled' with a capital 'a' means labelled by the company Apple, not labelled with a picture of an apple.

Any legal statement on the extent to which EULAs may apply is to be welcomed though, I think.

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Jobs Horns

@Robert Long 1

Right. Restrictive licences are anti-consumer, full stop. Allowing companies to dictate arbitrary licensing terms does not a contract make. You know where this ends up - "Thou shalt not use this software on the sabbath" - type clauses which the consumer gets browbeaten into thinking is acceptable - well it's not.

One more thing - can Psystar be liable to comply with an EULA if they are not technically the "End-User"?

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FAIL

Mac Cracking FAIL

As both a Mac and Windows, and when I need to, Linux user, I do believe Psystar should fail miserably.

Psystar have taken it up on themselves to deliberately 'bodge' a perfectly good, well established product for their own financial gain, and expect the creator (Apple) to sit back and do nothing. Or do I misunderstand?

What say, some numbskull buys one of these pieces of less than second-rate Psystar junk, with a hacked version of Apple's fantastic OS X. (Linux lovers and other Apple haters should read the first line of my post again, right now, before entering Keyboard Warrior mode). It then fails miserably, because Apple poured millions of $ into making OS X work perfectly on their own (equally well-developed) hardware, and Psystar just spent months simply cracking it to work on anything with an Intel processor.

Said numbskull then discovers that the Frankenstein's Monster of his wannabe Mac takes exception to some of the simple instructions he passes to it, because the OS is operating outside of its natural environment. He then flames Apple, and the Mac, saying it's useless to all his friends, who were maybe thinking of moving to Apple, away from the Dark Side. What he doesn't tell them is that he was a tight-ass who couldn't afford (nor wished to pay for) a real Mac, and wondered why his POS (not Point Of Sale) didn't work.

It's like buying a BMW 3 series - to all intents and purposes, a well designed, and well built car, which BMW poured millions into developing and building. Some guy then says "I know, I can make a BMW! All I need is some pieces of metal, some seats and a PC motherboard!"

Should one then take this 'ultimate driving machine' to a BMW dealership and say "I bought one of your cars last week and It's not running or handling right - can you fix it?"

What should the nice man in the workshop say to the customer his Bob's Motor Wagon 3.5 Series GTI rolls onto the ramps?

FAIL - Because it should be Psystar's corporate slogan.

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Go

Licence not the issue

EULA talk is a red herring designed to take eyes off the ball.

Real issue is the fact they are cramming OS X onto non Apple hardware, therefore tangibly causing Apple financial loss for each machine sold.

Apple really only have to prove their losses here.

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@AC

"All you poor Windoze zealots secretly pining for Mac OS X. Makes me laugh!

Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac!

Or, buy 3 PC's for the same money......."

So it takes 3 PCs to do the same work as 1 Mac.

Has anyone noticed that as soon as an Apple item appears on El Reg, it doesn't take too long before an AC posts with the word 'turd' somewhere.

Is is the same AC?

If so, AC you have a problem and need therapy.

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@Ivan Headache

"So it takes 3 PCs to do the same work as 1 Mac." - No just cost's 3 times the price.

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Anonymous Coward

Legal ignorance

"Real issue is the fact they are cramming OS X onto non Apple hardware, therefore tangibly causing Apple financial loss for each machine sold.

"Apple really only have to prove their losses here."

Causing a company to lose money is not grounds for suing them, otherwise Apple could sue Microsoft every time someone bought a Windows PC. Apple must prove Psystar actually violated some law. And the law around EULAs is rather messy and not fully tested, with many EULAs perhaps not legally enforcible.

The USA still has some anti-trust laws which are intended to promote competition, as well as laws to protect intellectual property. If Psystar offer a better or cheaper product, they will succeed as a business, and good luck to them. If they offer a worse, buggy, badly-supported product, they'll go bankrupt no matter what Apple does.

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Jobs Horns

Re: "Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac!"

Get bent.

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what's presumably happening here is . . .

Psystar's first lawyers wouldn't do any more work without being paid, so they got a new lawyer who's willing to do it for the publicity. If there is a covert financer of Psystar, they may afraid of being found out.

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re: GO PSYSTAR!

Erm, you do realise that Psystar has simply taken the work from the various groups in the hackintosh community and tried to make money from it?

Worth noting (as yet) that Apple hasn't gone after the hackintosh community, most of which is absolutely furious with Psystar as not only has its open source work has been ripped off by a company trying to cash in, but Apple may decide to their efforts aren't as harmless as once thought.

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Grenade

"buy 3 PC's for the same money"?

Yep, 'cos the new efficient super Windows bloatware needs a three-node cluster to be able to run up a word processor, spreadsheet or browser, but not all three at once obviously

"*nix, efficiency inside!"

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Alert

Re: So... (@AC)

But if they make the OS too expensive, people will stop buying it, and their revenues will dry up. Why do you think Microsoft is going out of its way to make Windows 7 so affordable. They WANT people to make the jump, so they're reducing their revenues to get people on board.

But back to the subject. If the EULA argument gets a hearing, you can rest assured just about any software company doing business in the USA will be watching this very carefully. If EULA's are found to be unenforcable beyond that which is already in the law, then this both restores the resale and transfer rights of software (as it is with music and books) and boosts the case for the right to resell and transfer software in the increasing world of digital downloads.

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You did not buy the OS...

...you only bought an UPGRADE to the OS... Apple does NOT sell the OS wholesale at all. You have to actually have a working Macintosh in order to use the retail copy. Sure, the disk in the box performs both a "full install" as well as an "upgrade install," but so does your upgrade copy of Vista, XP, etc... The only difference is that Microsoft requires an activation key, and validation of previous purchase (insert old CD or type in old CD key to validate your upgrade), and Apple can assume you have a Mac, and since all Macs come with OS X (Not all PCs come with Windows) and doesn't need such a process, making the "upgrade" status less obvious.

If the EULA does fall (a HUGE if, as it would have MASSIVE rammifications throughout the industry, and no small judge is likely to risk the backlash of such a decision without federal appelate backing) then Apple will simply relable all the existing copies "Upgrade" (reflecting it;s actual status) and then start selling "full versions" for the appropriate price (likely between $300 and $400 a copy, reflecting appropriately their profit margin on a system).

...and for those of you STILL saying things like: "Get a grip, get a life, get a Mac! Or, buy 3 PC's for the same money......." You still fail to make actual performance/price comparrisons. If you DID, you'de know that each Apple machine falls nicely between $100+- of each equivalent HP, Dell, etc machine. Yes, you can get an el-cheapo PC notebook for $500, and the cheapest Mac notebook starts at $850, but the cheaspest Dell that compares to that $850 mac is a 15" monster costing over $1000, weighing nearly double, and has only a 2 hour battery life (and lacks bluetooth, firewire, an SD reader, backlit keyboard, is made of cheap plastic, the warranty costs more, and the vid card is inferior compared to the CHEAPER Mac). The higher in class system you go, the cheaper Apple gets. At the top end, their systems undercut Dell's pricing by $400+. Some MacPro desktop configurations are $2,000-3,000 cheaper than the competition.

What good is a $500 notebook if it can barely meet the minimum specs to run Windows? If it's a "netbook" equivalent in a larger form factor, Apple has made it QUITE CLEAR, that is NOT their target user base, they're only interested in people who either use lots of media (manage tens of throusands of pictures or edit home videos), or people who use the machines professionally. Low end users are only profitable until the first time they call tech support, and low end machines that can't properly handle the OS and applications cause users to call support more frequently. Apple will not lower their standars of Support to Dell's level, now will they distribute different "versions" of their OS crippled to support the hardware underneath it.

If you want a PC for your kid for researching school project and word processing, get them a cheap machine with Linux. If you have a grandma who wants to video chat and online shop, but that's about her level of technical understanding, get her a cheap PC. If you are a family, have a camera and camcorder, and communicate regularly with other members of your family who do the same, and maybe want to actually play some games on that machine as well, than an Apple Mac is in 80% of cases the CHEAPER option.

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Boffin

Install on a MAC?

Can you legally install OSX on a MAC, then move that hard disk into a standard PC, and have it work? You installed it legally, right?

Could that be a loophole in their EULA?

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