Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Apple Businesses

Psystar Wins a Round Against Apple 660

Posted by CmdrTaco
Daengbo writes "'A federal judge last week ruled that Psystar Corp. can continue its countersuit against Apple Inc., giving the Mac clone maker a rare win in its seven-month-old battle with Apple. He also hinted that if Psystar proves its allegations, others may then be free to sell computers with Mac OS X already installed.' Apple is currently suing Psystar over its sale of Mac clones."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Psystar Wins a Round Against Apple

Comments Filter:
  • If they win... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by the_humeister (922869) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:25AM (#26783665)

    I wonder if that means we can install things like HP-UX on non-HP hardware?

  • If this works... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Zombie Ryushu (803103) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:34AM (#26783831)

    If this works... I wonder if it will be possible for other hardware makers to be sued for making Windows only products. One of the big barriers to Linux adoption is chipsets that have no Linux driver and it seems that some companies go out of their way to make hardware that won't work with Linux intentionally.

  • Blizzard and Glider (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:35AM (#26783863)

    Blizzard's win against Glider allowed Blizzard to dictate what you can and can't do on your own machine if you use their software.

    The same should apply to Apple. You license OS X, and you agree to only run it on Macs.

    (Not that I agree with the decision, but that's how I see it)

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bigstrat2003 (1058574) * on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:38AM (#26783901)
    They already want to sell their OS: if they didn't, it wouldn't be in stores. The fact that they think they can dictate what gets done with it is pure, unmitigated bullshit, and hopefully it gets knocked down in court soon.
  • I think you mean... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Microlith (54737) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:43AM (#26784015)

    others may then be free to sell computers with Mac OS X already installed

    I think you mean, "others may be free to buy a mac to get the OS X license to put on a cheaper computer, which they won't do as Apple kills off retail sales of OS X"

    So if they do win, sure you can migrate your OS across platforms. But you won't see other vendors shipping it.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by CrackedButter (646746) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:51AM (#26784151) Homepage Journal
    Some might be rabid but others hold them to a high standard, if you actually sit in a mac forum long enough you'll notice the huge amounts of whining and dissatisfaction with Apple. These are over little details as well because they expect more from Apple and are quite knowledgeable and know what they want. Don't generalise.
  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RMingin (985478) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:58AM (#26784277) Homepage

    It's very very easy to compensate for this. MS figured it out years ago. You want to give your existing customers preferential pricing on a new OS, but still gouge the new users?

    UPGRADE PRICING.

    Suddenly every existing OS release was an 'upgrade license', and there are two packages at retail for 10.6. 149$ gets you Snow Leopard Upgrade, which will install on any branded Mac without issue, just like existing versions have. You now have a new 499.99$ Unsupported Full Install package sitting next to it. Apple gets their money, Hackintosh users get somewhat validated, Apple still doesn't have to take their phone calls, and everyone is either happier or status quo pro ante.

  • apple club (Score:4, Interesting)

    by goombah99 (560566) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:58AM (#26784293)

    If Psystar want's to compete, let them compete. Apple competes by creating products, Psystar is simply riding their coat tails. The government forcing a company to operate in areas they deem unprofitable is not fair competition in the marketplace.

    exactly. meddling in the market makes it unfair not more fair. Apple is only a 10% player in the computer market so their bussiness model is not in restraint of trade for computers.

    Apple should form a "discount buyers club". To belong to the club you have to buy an apple computer. Then you get 90% discounts on the operating system updates priced at $1000 retail.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by javacowboy (222023) on Monday February 09, 2009 @11:59AM (#26784295)

    So, all the $$$$$ Apple put into R&D counts for nothing? It took over 5 years for Apple to develop OS X (not counting NextStep), and more time for them to enhance it.

    And after all that effort, they should be forced to essentially give it away for $130 and sacrifice their hardware business?

    What's "pure, unmitigated bullshit", is the mentality that some people should be force to essentially give away the fruits of their labours.

  • Re:If they win... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MasterOfMagic (151058) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:05PM (#26784409) Journal

    The only problem I have with OSX is that it is currently against the license agreement to use it on any machine other than an Apple branded machine. If they said "we only support Apple branded hardware", then I wouldn't have a problem with it - the user can use the disc and software however he wants, but only when it is installed on Apple hardware is he entitled to support.

    In this vein, HP could sell HP-UX to whomever wants it, but only offer support if it is installed on HP branded hardware.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Ethanol-fueled (1125189) * on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:05PM (#26784415) Homepage Journal
    Especially since they went Intel x86, they were just asking for it.

    Unless the conspiracy theories are true re: PsyStar being a front for Apple just testing the legal system, possibly to set precedent.
  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dwarg (1352059) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:09PM (#26784483)

    The other possibility is that Apple might stop selling shrink-wrapped copies of OS X. Instead you get a copy when you buy a machine and that makes you eligible for upgrades. So every copy of the OS would be tied to a machine, in terms of sales, if not via hardware key.

    Then PsyStar would have to pirate the OS and that would definitively put them in the wrong.

    And that way everybody loses.

  • by grimJester (890090) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:09PM (#26784491)
    There go my mod points, but you raise an interesting point. The Glider case decided that

    a) launching the software in an unapproved manner makes the copying from HD to memory an unauthorized copy in violation of the EULA and

    b) selling a product that requires the end user to break the EULA of another product to work is tortious interference [wikipedia.org] Apple may actually have a case here, simply because of some WoW bot writer's inept legal defense...
  • by Aladrin (926209) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:09PM (#26784497)

    'Monopoly' is a business model. Like it or not, governments already decide whether business models are 'wrong' or not.

    The government's job is to protect the people. Everyone disagrees on exactly how this is done, but quite a few think that businesses should not be able to dictate what people do with products that they buy.

    Others, think that IP rights are more important and that businesses should be able to tell their consumers what they can do with things they have purchased.

    This is actually one of the biggest battles our court system is facing right now: The rights of the buyer vs the rights of the creator. (Or at least, IP-holder.)

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Nursie (632944) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:10PM (#26784535)

    "And after all that effort, they should be forced to essentially give it away for $130 and sacrifice their hardware business?"

    Who's forcing a price on them?

    They can charge what they like, surely?

    It's the restraint of what is done with it after a sale that is at issue here. If that means that the current $130 is subsidised by hardware sales, then maybe they'll have to look at charging less for hardware and more for new OS versions? Business models have to adjust from time to time, you know. Especially when they are based on artifices like restraint of post-purchase usage which may not be legally enforceable.

  • by Hatta (162192) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:19PM (#26784697) Journal

    The Psystar assholes are trying to profit off of someone elses work, that is all there is to it.

    And what exactly is wrong with that? That's what we call capitalism. If you sell Item A, and I sell Item B that works with Item A, then I'm trying to profit off of your work. Or rather, I'm exploiting a market opportunity created by your work. Psystar selling hardware that interacts with data sold by Apple is no different than Apple selling hardware that interacts with data sold by RIAA members.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by UnknowingFool (672806) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:25PM (#26784809)

    They already want to sell their OS: if they didn't, it wouldn't be in stores. The fact that they think they can dictate what gets done with it is pure, unmitigated bullshit, and hopefully it gets knocked down in court soon.

    Here's the difference. You can buy OS X and install it on any machine you want. Apple won't stop you; however, don't expect Apple to support it as it runs on non-Apple hardware. Now the moment you create a business to start selling it, you become a re-seller. As a re-seller, Apple can dictate what you can and cannot do.

    The crux of Apple's argument: Psystar is a re-seller. As a re-seller, their contract would forbid them to do what they are doing. If they've never agreed to a re-seller license (which I doubt they did), then they're not allowed to re-sell OS X as they are doing. Also Apple alleges to install OS X on generic hardware, Psystar would have had to modify OS X. Apple did not give permission to Psystar to modify their code and re-sell it. If Psytar were just to sell OS X unopened in the box with instructions on how to install on generic hardware, they technically would be fine, but Psystar is actually installing OS X which is not okay. The second part of Apple's argument is that these machines do not receive updates from Apple as they fail some sort of verification. Psystar has been distributing updates by taking the Apple updates and modifying them. Again, Psystar does not have permission to modify and re-distribute Apple's code.

  • by slashdotlurker (1113853) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:31PM (#26784927)

    The Psystar assholes are trying to profit off of someone elses work, that is all there is to it.

    The value of your gratuitous advice for me not to go into business or law has to be measured against this gem. I believe the system you are ranting against is called capitalism. Products create markets, which can lead to other products that you did not intend. If your sensibilities are so offended, one wonders if the following equally offend your taste (staying close to this subject) :

    1. Apple's profiting off BSD kernel (what is your favorite pejorative for Steve Jobs, given your love of Psystar above ?).
    2. The entire aftermarket slew of non-Apple products that exist for iPod ?

    Or is it that your sensibilities are affected only if rules of capitalism work against Apple instead of for it ?

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by erroneus (253617) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:42PM (#26785093) Homepage

    But in a corporate/business setting, if I could move some of my design/production people over to Mac clones and OS X, that opens some doors I didn't have available before. As this stuff gets through, I would not be at ALL shocked to see Dell computers with a "Mac Clone" option that enables it to run Mac OS X.

    Now if I can just get AutoCAD to run natively in Mac OS X, I wouldn't even wait for all of this other stuff to happen. I'd just go buy a bunch of Apples. I am sick to death of all the performance-draining crapware I have to install in order to prevent performance-draining crapware from getting installed.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ethicalBob (1023525) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:48PM (#26785183)
    That would be true if they were Selling you a product... what you are purchasing is an end-user license that comes with restrictions regarding the use of their product. Not the same thing... You may not LIKE it; but this is the case. The CD (or DVD) you are getting is free, and only a delivery mechanism.
  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by javacowboy (222023) on Monday February 09, 2009 @12:51PM (#26785271)

    How is Psystar buying copies of OSX that Apple is (voluntarily) selling "forcing a company to operate in areas they deem unprofitable"?

    Because Psystar modifies OS X (including the kernel) to install on BIOS (non-EFI) systems, and modifies the binaries of every OS update Apple distributes.

    They are no selling OS X computers. They are selling computers with unauthorized distributed works of OS X, which is a clear violation of copyright law.

    If you agree with this, then you agree with Microsoft using GPL code in Windows.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09, 2009 @01:07PM (#26785551)

    "Incredible hardware features like magnetic clasps, incredible software features like appfolders, AND incredible features like instant sleep on close/hibernate on low power that require support from both software and hardware."
    I've never owned an apple, but if that is the best apple lovers can come up with, I'm not likely to either (I get most of those features on windows anyway, except the magnetic clasps, and well nice, they aren't exactly necessary)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09, 2009 @01:11PM (#26785635)

    But when you buy something with the clear intention of using it for resale you place yourself into a different bracket.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by gnasher719 (869701) on Monday February 09, 2009 @01:27PM (#26785917)

    How is Psystar buying copies of OSX that Apple is (voluntarily) selling "forcing a company to operate in areas they deem unprofitable"?

    Psystar buys boxes of MacOS X that come with a license that allows installation on a Macintosh computers, and nowhere else. That is absolutely fine, they can buy as many boxes as they like, and Apple doesn't mind and can't prevent it anyway (anybody buying a MacOS X box has the right to resell it, unopened, unmodified). As soon as Psystar installs the software on a non-Macintosh computer, they have made an illegal copy of the software (because the license didn't allow it), and the license becomes invalid (because that is what the license says, similar to the GPL license which becomes invalid automatically when you make illegal copies of GPL'd software).

    When Apple sells that box, the price comes from the combination of software + license that you get. If Apple were to sell boxes with a different license, they would have different prices. The family pack is identical software, with a different license that allows a higher price. If Apple wanted to sell boxes with a license to sell anywhere, they would have different prices. Apple doesn't want to sell such a combination, and nobody can force them to.

  • by furby076 (1461805) on Monday February 09, 2009 @01:43PM (#26786155) Homepage
    Actually, they do have a monopoly. If you buy an Mac you have to buy parts from Apple; ford mustang - I can go to an after-markets store to buy their product which was not made in a ford factory. If you want OS-X, where are you legally allowed to get that...yea...

    They may not have the market-share of Microsoft, but they have a monopoly. Just like MS doesn't want people's fingers in their OS, Apple doesn't want people's fingers in their hardware. So if you want to bash MS for monopoly, then you better buy an extra hammer for Apple.
  • by tonywong (96839) on Monday February 09, 2009 @01:46PM (#26786229) Homepage

    For instance, I can buy a painting from a painter. He may say, "under no circumstances are you to destroy this paining or sell it to anyone else," but once he sells it to me, I can do with it as I please. I can spray paint it, burn it, or sell it.

    This is the crux of the matter. In face-to-face transactions, the painter would simply deny the sale to you of his painting if you refused his covenants. However in the new world of shrink wrap and electronic transfers, the requirement is to provide a End User License Agreement (EULA) for those covenants. The standard is that if you click 'I Agree', or bust open the shrink wrap, that you agree to the terms and conditions placed upon you for that product.

    Obviously, the problem lies in when you do not agree or conform to the EULA. Is it enforceable? Is it valid? What are the penalties? Can you properly 'own' the product if you did not agree to the EULA or intended to break the agreement?

    Regardless of the fluff about antitrust and DRM or whatever anyone wants to float, the center of the question revolves around EULAs and enforceability of those 'contracts'.

  • Re:Hell yes! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ngc3242 (1039950) on Monday February 09, 2009 @04:08PM (#26788935)
    I suspected that was your point, but it is not what you said.

    You said (my emphasis) "Here's the difference. You can buy OS X and install it on any machine you want. Apple won't stop you; however, don't expect Apple to support it as it runs on non-Apple hardware. Now the moment you create a business to start selling it, you become a re-seller. As a re-seller, Apple can dictate what you can and cannot do."

    My point (of which you're probably aware) was that Apple actually does try to dictate to everyone that OS X may only be installed on Apple hardware. However, unlike the RIAA, they don't seem to think it's worth it to sue each individual user. Though that view doesn't stop them from trying to use the DMCA to keep the information from users http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/06/02/17/apple_serves_dmca_notice_to_osx86_project.html [appleinsider.com]. The only difference between an individual and a group to Apple is how much effort they are willing to expend to stop you from using OS X in violation of the EULA.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09, 2009 @04:29PM (#26789277)

    Mod parent up. It seems a lot of people don't know that it's illegal for a car manufacturer to stop third party parts from being made and sold, and it severely undercuts the GP's point. Car people know the Magnusson-Moss Act like gun people know the 2nd Amendment (which is to say they know enough to refer to it in appropriate situations, even if they don't completely understand it).

  • by gnasher719 (869701) on Monday February 09, 2009 @06:20PM (#26791021)

    I'm sorry, but in this instance, it very much is personal computers that run OS X. The whole point of all this is because Apple want to be the only company that supplies computers with OS X preinstalled. Let me run that by you one more time. The only company that supplies computers with OS X preinstalled. If that isn't the definition of a monopoly, please do tell me what is.

    The problem with your "definition" is that "computers with OS X preinstalled" is not a market.

    Determining what is or is not a market can be a bit difficult, but the following can help: There are many things I would like to buy. Typically, if I buy something in one market, I still want the things from other markets, but I have less desire to buy things in the same market. I might be looking at LCD TVs and Plasma TVs. If I buy one of them, I suddenly don't have any desire for the other anymore; I conclude that LCD TVs and Plasma TVs are in the same market. But TVs and DVD players are in different markets; after buying the TV, I still want the DVD player.

    Now lets at the "computers with OS X preinstalled": Someone might go to two computer shops, looking at a computer with OS X preinstalled and a computer with Windows preinstalled. After buying one of these computers, that person is suddenly much much less interested in the other computer. Conclusion: Same market. Therefore: No monopoly.

Administration: An ingenious abstraction in politics, designed to receive the kicks and cuffs due to the premier or president. -- Ambrose Bierce

Working...