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Apple's Leopard Will Exclude 800MHz G4 Processors 371

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the older-tech-gets-forked dept.
goombah99 writes "According to AppleInsider, Apple is about to announce that Leopard will not support 800 MHz G4 PowerPC processors. Previously developers had been told that it would require at least an 800 MHz G4. But AppleInsider alleges only 867 MHz G4s and higher will now be supported because of speed issues, and testers have been told that the new OS 'cannot be installed' on lesser machines. This cutoff in minimum requirements means that all those original iMac flat screens and Titanium PowerBooks are now forked to the Tiger (10.4) Update Path."
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Apple's Leopard Will Exclude 800MHz G4 Processors

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  • by Kelson (129150) * on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:00PM (#20733751) Homepage Journal

    The article is specifically about 800MHz and slower G4s being excluded:

    Instead, Leopard will now require Macs with "an Intel processor or a PowerPC G4 (867 MHz or faster) or G5 processor." Other system requirements include a DVD drive, built-in FireWire, at least 512MB of RAM (additional recommended), and at least 9GB of hard disk space.

    Though seemingly mild, the 67MHz increase will exclude a handful of Mac system, namely the 800MHz PowerBook G4 (Titanium), 800MHz PowerMac G4 (Quicksilver), 800MHz iMac G4, 800MHz iBook G4, and 800MHz eMac.

    Nowhere does the article claim that Leopard will be G5 & Intel only.

    • It did seem a little early to drop the G4 entirely...
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by catwh0re (540371)
      Actually the article summary has been misled/mistaken.. since the Titanium Powerbooks actually went to 1GHz before being discontinued.
  • Incorrect Summary (Score:5, Informative)

    by SpottedKuh (855161) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:01PM (#20733783)

    Actually, AppleInsider said that 800 MHz G4 processors may not be supported. 867 MHz or greater G4 processors would still be usable. From TFA:

    Instead, Leopard will now require Macs with "an Intel processor or a PowerPC G4 (867 MHz or faster) or G5 processor."
    OS 10.6, it is speculated, may not support PPC processors (so, we're talking 2009 here?)
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Apple is not dropping all G4's.. FTFA:

    Instead, Leopard will now require Macs with "an Intel processor or a PowerPC G4 (867 MHz or faster) or G5 processor." Other system requirements include a DVD drive, built-in FireWire, at least 512MB of RAM (additional recommended), and at least 9GB of hard disk space.

    So, instead of supporting 800 MHz and up, you now need 867 MHz and up.
  • by thatskinnyguy (1129515) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:05PM (#20733839)

    two-flavors of the apple OS in widespread use, it's...
    There! I can sleep better tonight knowing some wrong in the word has been righted!
  • Apple: RECONSIDER (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Eugenia Loli (250395) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:05PM (#20733845) Homepage Journal
    800 Mhz Macs should be included on Leopard's compatibility list IMO. We are talking about machines that were released just 4 years ago, and we should not forget that Mac users take pride on their computers and they keep them for a long time. There is not a real technical limitation why QuartzExtreme-compatible, firewire-compatible etc Macs should not be supported, other than Apple wanting more money from you and less money spending on testing with these systems.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jellomizer (103300) *
      I am fairly sure the Pre 800mhz Macs are not QuartzExtreme-compatible. I know my 667mhz powerbook wasn't I don't think Other G4s at that time were either. 4 years is a good run for a PC. And you are not forced to upgrade to the New OS. Software will be available for the old OS for years.
      • Re:Apple: RECONSIDER (Score:5, Informative)

        by MojoStan (776183) on Monday September 24, 2007 @08:00PM (#20737185)

        I am fairly sure the Pre 800mhz Macs are not QuartzExtreme-compatible.
        I'm assuming you meant to include 800MHz Macs in the "not QuartzExtreme-compatible" group, but there are many "800MHz and under" Macs that are QE-compatible [apple.com]:

        4 years is a good run for a PC. And you are not forced to upgrade to the New OS. Software will be available for the old OS for years.
        That's three and a half years for some iBooks and eMacs, but I agree with your point (it will be a good run). However, although software will be available for years, OS X Tiger will stop receiving security updates when OS X 10.6 is released (if Apple continues its undefined OS lifecycle).
    • by Trillan (597339)
      If the article is true (big if), it's probably mostly about being able to exclude the early iBooks in a way that's easy for end users to understand.
    • by p0tat03 (985078)
      I suppose you're one of the people that expected XP to run on your 386... Like other posters have brought up - Leopard will run on machines made up to *FIVE YEARS* ago. Not to mention that companies will not start dropping Tiger support until well after Leopard has been released, so you can expect another good year or two of compatibility with a Tiger machine until new versions leave you behind. 6-7 years of support for a machine? That sounds pretty good to me.
  • RTFA! (Score:4, Informative)

    by Kristoph (242780) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:10PM (#20733909)
    The article does not in any way resemble the summary. Do the slashdot editors RTFA!

    The text in the article reads ....

    Leopard will now require Macs with "an Intel processor or a PowerPC G4 (867 MHz or faster) or G5 processor." Other system requirements include a DVD drive, built-in FireWire, at least 512MB of RAM (additional recommended), and at least 9GB of hard disk space.

    ]{
  • by damn_registrars (1103043) <damn.registrars@gmail.com> on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:11PM (#20733943) Homepage Journal

    Leopards advances came in the form of either under-the-hood changes (e.g. 64 bits) or added capabilities (e.g. time machine)


    And my OS still hasn't even perfected its flux capacitor relay yet. Egads, skunked by apple yet again.
  • by noewun (591275) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:15PM (#20734013) Journal
    It's not real until Apple says it.
  • it's one thing for the summary to add something extra to a story... but damn it was just false. I read the article looking for where they said G5+ only and it's just not there... that's the first time that happened to me. Guess I don't read slashdot enough these days. well I'm glad my G4 powerbook will be upgradeable... I think...
  • by Dekortage (697532) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:24PM (#20734133) Homepage

    There's a difference between stated requirements and what you can actually get to work. Users of the open-source XPostFacto [macsales.com] have known this for years. Can't run OS 10.3 on that old beige G3 tower? Sure you can! Maybe even 10.4.

    Nonetheless, even 10.4.x is supported on the 400mhz PowerBook G3 (the version with a bronze keyboard and FireWire). It is not the speediest thing ever, but for email, Word/PowerPoint, and most web browsing, it's just fine. My main reason to consider replacing it: after seven years of use, the backlighting is starting to fade. But those dual battery bays are hard to give up.

    • by wandazulu (265281)
      I run Tiger on a 450mhz G4 that I bought in 2000 and I use it primarily as a server. What's interesting is that I only ever use the console from VNC and even through that additional interface, it's surprisingly usable. It's not fast, and it's definitely nothing I want to use day-in and day-out, but if that's all I had and all I wanted was something to web surf or write the odd document or two, it'd certainly be usable.
    • by TJamieson (218336) on Monday September 24, 2007 @06:41PM (#20736607)
      I suspect this requirements push is again solely due to video cards. The 800 MHz iMac G4 had a GeForce2MX; yikes. The first major push was to kill the G3 so OpenGL could use vector libraries, now they probably want to ensure the equivalent of 'DirectX 8+' for Leopard. So in theory, if you have a GeForce 5xxx in an 800 MHz G4 tower, you should still be able to run Leopard.
  • by Manfesto (865869) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:32PM (#20734257)
    I can confirm that an 800MHz G4 is all that is required to install Leopard (the developer preview). A staff member in my department did it with an 800MHz Windtunnel PowerMac - and more interestingly, he used target disk to install Leopard on his unsupported 667MHz TiBook (on which the installer refused to run because it didn't meet the minimum requirements). Here is his entire story. http://forum.oscr.arizona.edu/showthread.php?t=4557 [arizona.edu]
    • Whatever bit of code in Leapord determines if the computer can handle Leopard can be trivially updated to exclude sub-867 MHz Macs. The developer preview doesn't precisely indicate the functionality of the final shipping software -- that's why it's a "preview", you see.

      Presumably Apple is looking at the results of all that developer previewing and has decided that Leopard performs poorly enough on sub-867 MHz Macs that users will be pissed and thus blame Apple for making their hardware slow or hard to use
  • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:34PM (#20734279) Homepage Journal
    Why don't these Slashdot posts automatically have the word "rumor" in the headline? Seriously. As is, the headline is totally misleading, which leads to arguments that treat the discussion as if it is fact. Sure, Apple may incorporate these requirements into Leopard, but until then we're just putting out hot air about a rumor.
    • by liquidsin (398151)
      because the headline "Apple's Leopard May Exclude 800MHz G4 Processors" is way less sensational. plus, look at all the page views for /. this generated, just from everyone correcting the headline...
  • Apple has to kill off support for 32-bit systems, and uni-processors for that matter, sometime. AltVec also must be on the eventual chopping block, given that none of their new systems support it.
    • by guruevi (827432)
      Don't you dare touch my Altivec you insensitive clod. The newer systems don't support it because they're Intel. Currently running medical image processing on a cluster of machines, Altivec is a nice thing to have compared with other processors from the same era that didn't have it.
    • by dal20402 (895630) *

      That will take awhile, given that Apple just killed the last 32-bit Mac mini two months ago. (And I want it to take awhile, given that I'm running a fast but 32-bit Core Duo MBP and won't be able to upgrade it for about a year...)

      I would expect that over the life of 10.5 we will gradually start to see apps that will run only on 64-bit systems.

      For its part, AltiVec support will disappear only when PPC support disappears. All PPC processors supported by Leopard feature AltiVec. It seems reasonable that PP

  • Odd. (Score:4, Funny)

    by mattgreen (701203) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:35PM (#20734309)
    I thought every new release of OS X runs faster than the previous one?
  • by foo fighter (151863) on Monday September 24, 2007 @03:47PM (#20734455) Homepage
    Whenever I see a post about running Linux (or any non-OS X os) on Apple hardware I also see a post asking what is the point when OS X is the best UNIX available on the desktop.

    Here is the point. When Gnome or KDE copies features from OS X 10.6 or greater, owners of this newly excluded hardware will be able to get in on the fun as well.
  • I had a power mac 7300 way back in the day. It used a 604e motorola chip at 180 Mhz. The 7300 also had an upgrade card slot which allowed me to pop in a G3 card eventually and upgrade my processor. It also had 4 DIMM slots for lots of extra memory capacity.

    When the 7300 came out, it cost around $1200. I bought it used for $500. The card cost me $300, memory was $50-$100, plus a $150 upgraded video card when it became available. I got about 7 years use out of that machine for the money invested.

    A midrange iMac now costs twice as much, and has fewer upgrade paths than previous Macs. The white iMacs had options for 128 and 256 mb video cards but you could only buy them in that flavor, you could not upgrade them later.

    To get a mac with upgrade options, you have to go with the $2500+ Mac pros. I bought a G4 1ghz about 4 years ago. I have no option to upgrade to a G5, and obviously can't upgrade to an intel. I can do surfing and wordprocessing on it just fine, but I can't play any new games on it, and the latest graphics programs and compression codecs for movies will drag to a crawl unless all other programs are shut down.

    Now, the summary is utter crap. In fact, they are upping the requirement from 800 mhz to 867 mhz G4, and not ending it all together. However, this chops off 6 popular lines of Macs from being upgraded. My point is, however, upgrade paths are slowly getting shorter and shorter, and small changes like this are exposing that problem. The problem isn't the fact that Apple is upping the minimum requirements, it's the fact that without shelling out money for an entirely new computer, it's getting harder and harder to meet the minimum requirements. These 800 mhz machines were new just 4 years ago, and you can't pop in a $200 upgrade to get more life out of them.

    I love Apple's products, and I'm still not considering a PC, but as a consumer, I want to be clear that keeping up with Apple is becoming more and more expensive, and there are no signs that Steve really cares (why should he, he's a CEO and his company is making gobs of money). I'm not comparing Macs to PCs, I'm comparing Macs to history costs of other Macs. The inflationary curve is out of control. At this rate will be back to the $10,000 price tag the Mac 2 had back in 1986 somewhere in 2015.
    • by Black-Man (198831)
      Sad but true... but its PowerMac/Mac Pro all the way w/ me now. They even tried to cripple the MDD's and now after nearly 4 years Sonnet is coming up w/ upgrade cards. It is still cost-effective to go pro, though. The 9800Pro is put in my G4 dramatically improved performance. And really... $2500 for a computer you can get 5 years (or more) out of... that's pretty good bang for the buck.

  • Several months ago [slashdot.org], I posted the idea of setting an "R2 standard" where a computer can be connected to and useful from now until... Much like the R2 unit that both Obi-Wan and Luke used in their fighters.

    This is a perfect example... an 800MHz G4 on Tiger could be one of those "droids". I was quoted as saying recently that "If this G4 Titanium with Tiger is all the computer humanity ever got, we'd be doing alright."

    Specifically, Spotlight is such a boon to workflow, that it's worth the Panther to Tiger s
  • for sale (Score:4, Funny)

    by pak9rabid (1011935) on Monday September 24, 2007 @04:12PM (#20734809)
    Sweet, so I guess there'll be a lot more G4's for sale on craigslist that I can experiment w/Linux on =D.
  • The article doesn't say, but maybe someone here with a developer build can shed some light. I have an old Sawtooth G4 that's been upgraded a number of times. It now has a 1.2GHz G4, Radeon 9600 (supports CoreWhatever), a Sonnet RAID card, and 1.5 GB of RAM. I still use the machine daily as my main home machine because, even though it's nearly 7 years old, it still works great! It would be nice to know that I could run Leopard on this, although, as I mentioned, I am quite happy running Tiger. I guess I
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by rworne (538610)
      I'm in the same boat.

      I have a DP800 Quicksilver with the same video RAM and HD specs you do.

      I'm really wondering if my system will be left out - with the above upgrades, my system easily ran software requiring a faster machine (the COD2 United Offensive for example). Besides, a DP800 should outpace a SP867 machine. After all, it will be running more than one process.

      On the other hand, my machine was purchased in Oct 2001. It's had a long, good life and needs to retire.
  • As far as there is support for any G4 processor, enabling Leopard to install on lesser Macs should not be much harder than edit the OSInstall.dist file on the installation DVD (as some people do to install Tiger on non firewire iMacs).
  • No not the bs they include (I'm sorry when I can type faster than the fucking shell that's a problem, and one problem I haven't had since like 91-92 on dialup :P

    And these other bolt in shells suck just as horrible.

    Yes I could run X11, but why would I run X11, ontop of Aqua just for a decent shell. I still can't believe in all the improvments, they still ship that shitty ass terminal app.
    • No not the bs they include (I'm sorry when I can type faster than the fucking shell that's a problem, and one problem I haven't had since like 91-92 on dialup :P

      On a 1.2GHz G4 eMac:

      $ find / > /tmp/foo
      $ wc /tmp/foo
      636858 1061869 59578401 /tmp/foo
      $ time cat /tmp/foo
      cat /tmp/foo 0.00s user 1.45s system 2% cpu 49.424 total

      I cannot quite type 1.2MB per second for more than a short burst, so I'll defer to your presumably superior typing skills and admit that I may not be as finicky as you deservedly are. Still, I would suppose that even one such as yourself would find Terminal.app to be at least, say, decent?

  • There are G4 CPU upgrades for the slower then 800Mhz systems you even use G4's form Quick Silver Power Mac G4s macs with a 12 V power mod to the 4th pin on the cpu.

    You can find g4 cpu's on ebay from time to time.
  • I have a G4 with dual 800mhz CPUs. I wonder if the leopard install engine is smart enough to allow me to proceed with the install?
  • by WoTG (610710) on Monday September 24, 2007 @06:18PM (#20736389) Homepage Journal
    I don't have a Mac. So, as an un-cool outsider, I find this topic a bit confusing.

    Do Apple users actually keep up to date with OS X revisions? Is "Leopard" more like a service pack or a whole new OS or somewhere in-between? And what's the downside to not upgrading? Applications aren't tied to new OS X versions, are they?

    In the Windows world, I would expect very few (non-geek) people to upgrade existing machines to Windows Vista.

    • by sfgoth (102423) on Monday September 24, 2007 @06:38PM (#20736573) Homepage Journal
      Do Apple users actually keep up to date with OS X revisions?
      I'd guess about half of them do. Most of the other half stay up-to-date with the minor revisions (10.4.x) for free using Software Update.

      Is "Leopard" more like a service pack or a whole new OS or somewhere in-between?
      It's a "whole new OS" like Vista is a whole new OS relative to XP.

      And what's the downside to not upgrading? Applications aren't tied to new OS X versions, are they?
      Same as with Vista. You get various OS improvements, most are low level. Slowly apps will come out that require those features. Five years from now it'll be the minimum required version, etc...

      -pmb

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