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Apple Suit Demands That Psystar Recall OpenMacs 759

Posted by timothy
from the give-us-your-cake-and-a-fork dept.
Da'Man writes "The Psystar saga takes another series of turns. Not only is the website down but an examination of the suit filed by Apple shows that the Cupertino Goliath wants Psystar to recall all Open Computer and OpenServ systems sold by the company since April. It seems that Steve Jobs is out to totally sink Psystar and put an end to Mac clones."
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Apple Suit Demands That Psystar Recall OpenMacs

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  • Oh Yeah! (Score:5, Funny)

    by MightyMartian (840721) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:06PM (#24216373) Journal

    The more you tighten your grip, Jobs, the more star systems will slip through your fingers!

    • Re:Oh Yeah! (Score:5, Funny)

      by s0litaire (1205168) * on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:08PM (#24216413)
      Should that not be "The more you tighten your grip, Jobs, the more psystar systems will slip through your fingers!" :D
    • IBM PC (Score:5, Funny)

      by fictionpuss (1136565) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:11PM (#24216479)
      Apple have no choice - if only IBM had retained such control over the IBM PC. And where are IBM now?
      • Re:IBM PC (Score:5, Insightful)

        by PlatyPaul (690601) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:15PM (#24216539) Homepage Journal
        Showing a remarkably high trading value [google.com]?

        Yes, IBM "got out of the game". No, it was not necessarily bad for them.
        • If you look around next time your out shopping, you'll see (part of) how IBM is doing so well. They got back into the BM (no, not bowel movement) part of IBM. A very significant portion of all point of sale terminals (amongst other things) are made by IBM. Whether or not Apple could pull the same move is hard to say.
      • Re:IBM PC (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Bert64 (520050) <bert@s[ ]hdot.fi ... m ['las' in gap]> on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:18PM (#24216625) Homepage

        IBM only produced the hardware, Microsoft produced the software and look where they are now...
        Apple produce both, by your reckoning Apple would be selling about the same level of hardware that they are now, but selling millions of units of software.

        Also when you talk of retaining control, look at the absolutely farcical situation with AmigaOS 4. They are trying so hard to retain control that they've pushed away any customers they might have ever had.

  • really? (Score:4, Funny)

    by cavtroop (859432) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:07PM (#24216381)
    It seems that Steve Jobs is out to totally sink Psystar and put an end to Mac clones.

    um, you THINK?

  • Seriously? (Score:3, Funny)

    by Mistah Bunny (1256566) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:08PM (#24216401)
    Be honest - who didn't see this coming?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by MoonBuggy (611105)

      To be fair, I wasn't expecting them to try and make Pystar take back the systems that they'd already sold.

  • because it exposes the fact that today's Mac desktops are just commodity hardware with an extra $1,000 charge for an OS X dongle (TPM).
    • Has the price changed that much? Last I looked, Apple was actually competitive (within $100, sometimes cheaper) with commodity hardware. The only difference is, you can't get a Mac without the bells and whistles.

      In other words, you get exactly what you pay for, which includes $1k of hardware you don't actually need.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Sandbags (964742)

        It's not even that bad. Compare the iMac to the Dell One, a very similar system, and the dell, missing some of those bells, whistles, and a lot of quality software, costs MORE. The Mac Pro 17" machines are VERY competitive (within $300 +/- of other name brand systems, depending on how much attention you pay to package details, battery life, and weight concerns).

        If you want to overstate, fine, but keep in mind, subtract the $1000 in "unneeded parts" and the iMac is a $200 machine... NOT!

    • by f8l_0e (775982) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:18PM (#24216623)
      That's not accurate. OSX does not use the TPM chip for hardware authentication. The reason OSX does not run without modification is that it requires EFI firmware instead of BIOS. Pystar uses an open source EFI emulator to boot.
    • There is no TPM. (Score:5, Informative)

      by danaris (525051) <danaris AT mac DOT com> on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:20PM (#24216673) Homepage

      Cribbed shamelessly from an Ars Technica discussion on the same issue:

      "TPM DRM" In Mac OS X: A Myth That Won't Die

      Amit Singh

      http://www.osxbook.com/book/bo...chapter7/tpmdrmmyth/

      Beating a Dead Horse

      "In October 2006, I wrote about the TPM and its "use" in Mac OS X. Since Apple provided no software or firmware drivers for the TPM ...

      "Apple's TPM Keys"

      "The media has been discussing "Apple's use of TPM" for a long time now. There have been numerous reports of system attackers bypassing "Apple's TPM protection" and finding "Apple's TPM keys." Nevertheless, it is important to note that Apple does not use the TPM."

      In short, while there was a TPM chip in some of the early shipping Intel systems, there were no drivers for it, and Apple did not use it. Current shipping Macintel systems don't even have the TPM chip, so there's no possible way for them to use one.

      Dan Aris

  • by transporter_ii (986545) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:10PM (#24216459) Homepage

    Notice that Apple filed approx a day after the WoW copyright decision. If there was some doubt on Psystar beating Apple on the validity of of the EULA...it is pretty safe to say that Psystar is about to get slapped down.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:28PM (#24216845)

      IAALS (I am a Law Student). Having worked with litigators, I can gurantee that yesterday's ruling (which actually sets almost no precedent because it relied on existing copyright doctrines despite what Slashdotters thought) had exactly 0 to do with the filing date.
            I know this because:
                1. If there had been any real precedent set, the litigators would have taken at least several weeks to analyze the decision, make an educated guess as to whether the decision will survive appeals, recraft the complaint, and make sure all of this was OK with the client (Apple) before proceeding. Litigation takes time.

                2. The actual filing date of the lawsuit was July 3rd, and the Steve Jobs Reality Distortion Field is strong, but it does not enable time travel.

  • ...Steve Jobs called a "suit."

  • Lame (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Mr2001 (90979) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:11PM (#24216483) Homepage Journal

    This was probably inevitable, but it's a shame to see Psystar brought down. Without any competition in the computers-that-run-OS-X market, Apple just keeps getting more obnoxious.

    (If this kind of thing bothers you and you want to take a swipe back at Apple, I recommend passing up that shiny new iPhone 3G and looking at the equally shiny LG Dare instead. The screen is smaller but it's actually easier to type on.)

    • Re:Lame (Score:4, Funny)

      by Lumpy (12016) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:19PM (#24216661) Homepage

      I agree. This morning my Dualcore G5 booted, installed and update and then insulted me on how I was dressed and dissed me for not buying a new iPhone already.

      I'm getting tired of how condescending OSX keeps getting after each release.

  • by Biljrat (45007) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:14PM (#24216537) Homepage

    Take that Stevie!

  • Apple demands? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:16PM (#24216571)

    Ok, how about the thousands of us who demand a headless, non-pro, non-laptop computer, with actual desktop/decent parts in it?

    Mac mini: piss-poor GPU and low-capacity/slow LAPTOP 2.5" drive in a DESKTOP computer?

    iMac: fuckin' all-in-one computer with stupid glossy screens and low quality LCDs with not even average GPU choices.

    Mac Pro: are you fucking insane? I don't need that much power (and even the GPU options for that one are ridiculous).

    Make the Mac mini taller/bigger, put a 3.5" drive and a half-decent GPU in it (the ability to run Starcraft II and Diablo III at medium settings) and it WILL sell. A lot. You have no fuckin' idea how much people loathe all-in-one computers.

    • Re:Apple demands? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by UnknowingFool (672806) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @02:56PM (#24218449)

      Ok, how about the thousands of us who demand a headless, non-pro, non-laptop computer, with actual desktop/decent parts in it?

      Unfortunately the same thousands who make this demand also want this computer to be very customizable and to cost under $500 because that's what Dell is selling. There's not much profitability in this market. I suspect this is the main reason Apple hasn't gotten into the market. They're not going to compete with Dell, Lenovo, and countless others in this cutthroat pricing. Apple isn't in business to make computers that are unprofitable.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by radish (98371)

        Apple isn't in business to make computers that are unprofitable.

        Interestingly, neither are Dell or Lenovo.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by anaesthetica (596507)
          Dell and Lenovo make profit from small margins but high volume. Apple does the opposite.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Swampash (1131503)

      Mac Pro: are you fucking insane? I don't need that much power

      Please hand in your Man Card at the door on the way out.

  • End of a Story (Score:4, Insightful)

    by lord_rob the only on (859100) <shiva3003@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:17PM (#24216589)

    If Psystar were rich enough, they could win their case against Apple and we could see Mac clones on the market like we saw IBM PC clones in the 80's. But still, what would be the point in having Mac clones ? We'd start to see an OS (Mac OS) that crashes all the time because the hardware is "not supported officially". So we would be forced to install an alternative OS on the machine, like Linux or BSD. Ok it could work great but it works as great on PCs.

    Really I'm not trying to troll/start a flamewar, I'm just wondering.

    • by argent (18001)

      But still, what would be the point in having Mac clones ?

      Well, let's see... people looking for something that Apple doesn't currently produce could get a computer with OS X on it that fit those requirements.

      Like... a conventional desktop with expansion slots.

      Like... a laptop with a two-button trackpad and a decent keyboard.

      Like... a laptop with a swappable drive bay. Or multiple hard drives.

      Like... a compact Mac with a high performance hard drive and a real GPU.

      Or, Apple could just quit being so damn insist

  • Begun it has... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Ngarrang (1023425) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:18PM (#24216619) Journal

    ...the clone war.

    What are the odds of people actually returning their much-less-costly Mac clone?

  • by BUL2294 (1081735) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:18PM (#24216627)
    Looks like I was right in my comments from yesterday [slashdot.org]--but I never figured they would fall apart so quickly! Build a product that might infringe but would definitely piss someone off, make & deliver a bunch of orders, pay bonuses, declare bankruptcy (how long until Psystar does this???), and disappear... Take the money & run. The funny thing is that if they fulfilled their orders, they might be in the clear from criminal prosecution and their customers are the ones that got exactly what they paid for (sans warranty once they file for bankruptcy)... Excluding the execs, who might be sitting on a beach somewhere, everybody loses--including Apple.
  • by Yvan256 (722131) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:24PM (#24216783) Homepage Journal

    Who here would expect Nintendo, Sony or Microsoft to NOT do anything if a competitor suddenly started to sell compatible systems or even just emulators for their own systems?

    Remember that Apple sells systems, not computers. This may be an alien concept to kids today, but at the beginning, all companies were selling computer+OS systems and they were all proprietary (Apple II, Mac, Atari ST, Amiga, CoCo2+OS9, C64+GeOS, etc).

    Also, don't be two-faced about this: you don't like it when companies don't follow GPL and other similar licenses, but when it's Apple or Microsoft, why wouldn't they be allowed to do the same?

    I hope there's one good thing to come out of this mess: Apple selling a headless, iMac-specs computer (i.e. ATI/nVidia GPU with a 3.5" desktop hard drive). Heck, why don't they just make a case for the actual iMac motherboard to lower R&D costs?

  • by Jasonjk74 (1104789) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:28PM (#24216849)
    If this were a story about Microsoft trying to stop vendors from building machines that can run their OS, there would be a million typical comments about them being an evil monopoly, etc. Since it's Apple, I'm sure it's somehow ok, in a shiny, trendy, hip way.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by revscat (35618)
      Umm, no. Microsoft would have every right to go after vendors who were including unlicensed, modified versions of Windows in their systems. How is this any different?
      • by jpmorgan (517966) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @03:04PM (#24218579) Homepage

        Umm, no. Microsoft would have every right to go after vendors who were including unlicensed, modified versions of Windows in their systems. How is this any different?

        Psystar buys a license of OS X for each machine they sell? Apple may claim that the copies aren't licensed since they violate the EULA, but US copyright law doesn't limits copyright holders rights to prevent installation of software. Furthermore, the doctrine of first sale gives Psystar the right to resell OS X.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by nine-times (778537)

      If this were a story about Microsoft trying to stop vendors from building machines that can run their OS, there would be a million typical comments about them being an evil monopoly, etc.

      Well, the story isn't that Apple is preventing someone from building machines that can run their OS. Anyone can build machines capable of running OSX. It's not hard-- Apple is using normal Intel hardware in their computers.

      Instead Apple is suing someone for blatant copyright infringement-- distributing an altered version of their OS without a license to do so. If someone were selling a hacked version of Windows without any special arrangement with MS, I would expect Microsoft to sue.

      But hey, maybe you'

  • Apple is... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Drasil (580067) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:29PM (#24216881)

    I suspect Apple is every bit as evil as Microsoft, just less successful.

    • Re:Apple is... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by faedle (114018) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:42PM (#24217099) Homepage Journal

      "Success" can be relative.

      If I was an investor right now, I'd argue AAPL is more successful than MSFT.

      MSFT has a gazillion bucks, but the ROI for their stockholders has suffered recently. Whereas AAPL under Jobs just keeps making stockholders money. Good money. If you bought AAPL and MSFT one year ago, you would have made 24% on AAPL, and lost 10% of MSFT.

    • Re:Apple is... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Reality Master 101 (179095) <RealityMaster101 ... m ['il.' in gap]> on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @02:04PM (#24217535) Homepage Journal

      I suspect Apple is every bit as evil as Microsoft, just less successful.

      Suspect? Imagine a world where Apple won the PC wars rather than Microsoft. Imagine what we'd be paying for computers with only a single supplier.

      Of course, if Apple *had* won, they probably would've been broken up long ago as a monopoly, but it would've set the computer industry back at least a decade.

      Say what you want about Microsoft, but at least they never leveraged their OS dominance by producing a "Microsoft PC" and then "phasing out" all the other hardware manufacturers. If Steve Jobs, through some twist of fate, had been in charge of Microsoft rather than Apple when he returned, that's exactly what would've happened.

      And let's not even get into the fact that Apple competes via lawsuit orders of magnitude more often than Microsoft.

      Apple is *far and away* more evil than Microsoft ever dreamed of being. They're fortunately just not the dominant player.

      [And no, I'm not defending whatever evil Microsoft has done, only that they are not nearly as evil as they could've been.]

  • by caseih (160668) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:36PM (#24217009)

    If I bought something, it's now mine (the hardware anyway). I doubt Pystar can actually repossess any of the boxes. The entire demand by Apple is pretty silly. Apple's copyright claims can't possibly cover the possession of physical hardware. Very bizarre. I think Apple only has a claim against Psystar itself over copyright infringement (the distribution of hacked Apple patches). Personal use of OS X in breach of Apple's license would have to be an issue that Apple would have to deal with on a per user basis, which I doubt they are willing to do.

  • by GauteL (29207) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @01:52PM (#24217267)

    No, this is not just about the EULA.

    If you look up Psystar and the open computer, you'll find that they also modify and redistribute Apple security updates.

    They can't rely on software updates directly from Apple always working on the computers, so they distribute updates themselves.

    Since they are very, very unlikely to have permission for this, it is a straightforward case of copyright infringement.

    Also, what do you expect? You all know that Apple does not allow "clone makers", so when one happens, do you just accept them to leave them alone, because they are "small time"?

    Wouldn't you then be even more outraged if they waited until Psystar was big before they sued?

    Psystar must have known this would happen, and I suspect they just used the OS X machines as publicity for their other machines.

  • by Animats (122034) on Wednesday July 16, 2008 @02:41PM (#24218161) Homepage

    Psystar could probably win this on antitrust grounds. Apple's EULA is probably an "illegal tying arrangement" and unenforceable. But Psystar may not be able to afford the litigation. Historically, IBM lost on this antitrust issue in the 1970s, which is why there were and are IBM mainframe clones and, indeed, IBM PC clones. In fact, IBM was forced to sell their mainframe OS and applications to users with mainframe clones from Amdahl and NCR.

    The difference between this era of Mac clones and the last one was that the earlier generations (pre x86) of Apple machines had parts of the OS in ROM, which gave Apple more legal leverage. The current Apple machines are essentially Intel-based PC clones, with little or no essential Apple intellectual property inside.

    Psystar does not seem to be redistributing Apple updates. They distribute an installer which, on the client machine, downloads an update from Apple and patches it.

    Also, Psystar's web site [psystar.com] is not down. It's just slow.

  • Rant... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rizzo320 (911761) on Thursday July 17, 2008 @03:04AM (#24225071)
    Alright. Label me a troll. A fan-boy. A zealot. I don't care.

    Why can't a company create a product for the market they want? What gives us the right to buy a product that clearly states what it's for, then, get upset about when it doesn't work the way that we want it? Why do we feel that we have the right to create a market for a product that the creator didn't intend to?

    Seriously.

    Apple created Mac OS X. They specifically state that it's for Apple computers. They aren't hiding it from you. They made the decision to make this software for their hardware only. What's wrong with that? Why can't a company limit it's own market?

    I don't want to hear this "Apple is monopoly" bullshit. They aren't a monopoly, they are a brand. Ford has a "monopoly" on Ford cars that run Ford engines and Ford computers and Ford seatbelts. Sony has a "monopoly" on the Sony operating system that's runs on the Sony Playstation. The operating system is an Apple product for Apple hardware. They just happen to also sell it in a box. Just because its in a box, on a shelf, and you can buy it, doesn't give you the right to decide that you can change what its for. No one is forcing consumers to buy Apple computers. There are other competitors in the market. Nope, no monopoly here.

    It's just so aggravating to read the posts. Fuck Psystar. They deliberately tried to tired to sell a product created and sold by another company in a way they didn't want it to be done. Why shouldn't they go down?

    Really. Someone explain it to me? Why is Psystar entitled to do this? Why are we entitled to install Mac OS X on hardware Apple tells us not to?

    Anyone?

    Is it anything more than people who just want to get their way. Why doesn't Apple make a headless Mac for me? Why can't I run Mac OS X on my Dell? Why why why... I want I want I want... wahhhh...

    It's like reading a collective bunch of three year olds. Apple doesn't want to sell you their product, for whatever reason they see fit. Shut up and deal with it. It's not an issue of EULA's and copyright and DRM. It's the fact that people are just pissed of they can't get their way. It's why this country is going to shit... people going out of their way- way beyond the realms of common sense and moderation- to obtain their way. Your sense of entitlement sickens me. The fact that Apple is successful without you getting what you want pisses you off even more.

    Honestly, you can replace Apple with any other company. It doesn't matter.

    Operating systems exist out there that are licensed that you can do whatever you want with them. Go try one out. If you don't like it, learn to code so you can make it something you like.

    And yes, I have more custom built Linux systems in my home and in my place of employment than I do Mac or Windows systems. So don't give me a lecture about free software or the GPL.

    I feel better now. End of rant.

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