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Mac OS X 10.6.2 Will Block Atom Processors 1012

Posted by kdawson
from the caveat-hackor dept.
Archeopteryx writes "According to Wired's 'Gadget Lab' blog, Snow Leopard's next update, OS X 10.6.2, will block the Atom processor and will disable many 'Hackintosh' netbooks. It is indeed true that OS X will run just fine on some netbooks if you install the right drivers and ktexts, but Apple's EULA has always specified that the license was applicable only to Apple hardware. There have always been processor types specified in OS X and that have to be worked around now for those who want to use an Atom or similar non-Apple-adopted processor, so this is likely no more than a hiccup on the road for the OSX86 crowd. But, it raises the question: is it time for Apple to sell a license for non-Apple hardware — priced accordingly of course — for those people who want OS X on platform types Apple has not yet adopted, like the netbook? The only reason OS X is not on my Eee is that I want to comply with the licensing terms. I could just pay for a license to use it."
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Mac OS X 10.6.2 Will Block Atom Processors

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  • by Renraku (518261) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:07PM (#29957090) Homepage

    This right after the 'people who don't update because we've been known to harass and accuse them via patches have more malware' article. It's like Microsoft and Apple are trying to compete and see who can belittle and harass their customers the most.

  • by sbeckstead (555647) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:09PM (#29957114) Homepage Journal
    It would seem that this does not actually inconvenience their customers at all right?
  • Apple's target market aren't going to put up with the kinds of shenanigans it takes to get a hackintosh running, whether or not they pull this kind of stuff.

  • by matty619 (630957) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:14PM (#29957192)
    Apple makes their bread and butter selling an image in an environment of artificial scarcity. A large percentage of Mac users do so just because Windows has become so pedestrian. Apple knows this....and capitalizes on it. As soon as you can get OS X on a $300 notebook, you've lost a percentage of the apple crowd who buy Mac just for exclusivity of it all.
  • No. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ty (15982) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:15PM (#29957206) Homepage

    Apple learned it's lesson in the 90's when it licensed MacOS. While the hope was that the licensees would expand MacOS market share, it instead only whittled away at Apple's own market share. I was an example myself - I have a PowerComputing system lying around somewhere - and it was a sale that would have gone to Apple were they not in existence.

    Additionally, as long as Jobs is at the helm, this will never happen. He's made it very clear that Apple doesn't sell hardware or software, but rather the full experience provided by very good integration between the two.

  • by Renraku (518261) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:17PM (#29957226) Homepage

    Depends on what you call a customer. They have NO RIGHT to tell me what I can or can't install their OS on. They try to with EULAs, but it wouldn't hold up in court if they tried to sue over it. As long as someone is paying Apple for the OS, then they're a customer.

  • Um... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by TheSpoom (715771) * <[ten.00mrebu] [ta] [todhsals]> on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:20PM (#29957270) Homepage Journal

    Apple makes its money from its (vastly overpriced) hardware. To do this, it creates nice, shiny software, and then deadbolts it as much as it can to the hardware, so people will pay the extra price for the hardware in order to get the software.

    Selling the software individually would allow their competition to massively undercut them, and would enable customers to (rightly) ask why they should bother to pay extra for Apple's shiny hardware when X Hackintosh does exactly the same thing for much much less.

    It's not exactly rocket science here. Apple knows where the money is, and individually licensing the software isn't it.

  • by uncanny (954868) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:20PM (#29957278)
    they make the program, they may not be able to "tell" you what not to do with it, but they can make their program however they want to. and if they dont want it to run on a certain system, guess what, you cant TELL them not to do that. however not giving them your business, or whine, is about all you can do.
  • Re:No. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mr2001 (90979) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:21PM (#29957294) Homepage Journal

    Apple learned it's lesson in the 90's when it licensed MacOS. While the hope was that the licensees would expand MacOS market share, it instead only whittled away at Apple's own market share. I was an example myself - I have a PowerComputing system lying around somewhere - and it was a sale that would have gone to Apple were they not in existence.

    So, in other words, Apple wasn't charging enough for MacOS licenses, and they guessed wrong about how willing customers would be to keep buying Apple branded hardware.

    Why does this doom future OS licensing? Why can't they just charge enough for the OS X license so that they'll stay profitable if it turns out people only want the software?

  • Raises a question? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:25PM (#29957330) Homepage

    But, it raises the question: is it time for Apple to sell a license for non-Apple hardware — priced accordingly of course[...]

    No it doesn't! You did. YOU want that, so YOU asked it. It isn't inherit to the facts. An inherent question would be "If Apple isn't support them Atom, then what chip will they use for [speculated product]?"

    The statement in the summary is equivalent to:

    Today ADM said it will no longer sell soybeans to people with the letter 'R' in their name. That raises the question - shouldn't ADM make soybeans that taste like root beer?

    "Apple stops supporting something it never supported". What a story. Is anyone surprised? In fact, since hackintoshes are almost certainly eating into Apple's hardware sales (maybe not by much, but they must), this is an obvious thing to do. Why maintain support for something you don't use and is probably causing you some financial harm.

    I remember with Apple stopped shipping drivers VESA Local Bus sound cards and the internet went NUTS. Same when Dell stopped shipping PPC drivers with their Xeon servers.

    No, wait, Apple never officially supported those (if they had existed), and Dell didn't tell people they would ship PPC drivers with Xeons, so no one was surprised.

    How dare Apple stop supporting unsupported hardware for people who aren't paying Apple for the software they may have simply stolen?

    Come on. I know people on /. want to be able to put OS X on any computer... but is this really a surprise? This isn't much of a story, it's just another excuse for the licensing/purchasing/monopoly/first-sale debate we have in every Apple article.

  • by TubeSteak (669689) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:25PM (#29957350) Journal

    They have NO RIGHT to tell me what I can or can't install their OS on. They try to with EULAs, but it wouldn't hold up in court if they tried to sue over it.

    Licensing terms that won't hold up in court if Apple sues you
    also won't hold up in court if you sue Apple for declatory relief.

    So either no one has thought of this before (highly unlikely)
    or nobody is confidant enough to file the lawsuit (more likely).

  • by GF678 (1453005) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:31PM (#29957434)

    They have NO RIGHT to tell me what I can or can't install their OS on.

    Morally, they don't.

    Legally, they DO (and has been proven in court).

    Break the agreement at your peril.

  • by drsmithy (35869) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .yhtimsrd.> on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:40PM (#29957572)

    In fact, since hackintoshes are almost certainly eating into Apple's hardware sales (maybe not by much, but they must), [...]

    Not true.

    Indeed, that the majority of Hackintoshes seem to be for market segments Apple has no presence, or are explicitly refusing user demand, in, then it's hard to see how anyone could argue they "must" be "eating into Apple's hardware sales".

  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:41PM (#29957582)

    A LITTLE more expensive? Seriously man, what are you on? Base price is $1200. A 10" EEE PC (with XP not Linux) is only $320. The Mac is damn near four times the price! That is not a little more expensive, that is a whole different category of cost.

    The appeal of netbooks isn't just the portability, though that is certainly part of it. The 7" ones in particular can fit in extremely small bags which is useful in some cases (some of our researchers use them to control devices in the field). A big part of the appeal is price. If you don't need much computer, if word processing and web surfing is pretty much all you do, you can have a computer for just a couple hundred bucks.

    The MBP is not at all the same market at its price. You are in to the mid range, or upper mid range of normal laptops at this point. That's fine if that's what you need/want, but it is not at all a netbook competitor.

    This has always been one of Apple's big problems. Not everyone wants expensive shit. They have somewhat diversified their desktop line, though a consumer tower is notably absent, as it always has been, but their portable line is as pricey as ever. You start upper mid range and go up from there. There's nothing for people who want a minimal system for minimal cost.

  • by Just Some Guy (3352) <kirk+slashdot@strauser.com> on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:45PM (#29957632) Homepage Journal

    You didn't pay for it. You paid for an upgrade of OSX... for the copy that came with the Mac you never bought. You stole it.

    You're a damn liar. I'm holding the Leopard box that I walked into an Apple Store and paid full retail price for. Looking at the label, it says "MAC OS X V10.5 RETAIL". The DVD inside says "Mac OS X Leopard Install DVD". WTF part of that sounds like "upgrade" to you?

  • by BitZtream (692029) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:49PM (#29957704)

    No one buys a Mac because its exclusive. Its not, they don't produce too few for market demand any more than Nintendo does.

    The idea that people buy Apple software because its 'rare' is just silly, if that were the reason their market existed, then people wouldn't be trying to run OSX on generic hardware.

    People LIKE OS X when they use it on a Mac. Having ran OS X on a PC, I stopped, why? Its not worth the effort. I have a job, I make money, I can just buy a Mac and have things work if I want to. Windows supports my Dell, OS X does not, its fine if you want to hack it up because you enjoy doing that, thats not what you're claiming.

    Unfortunately, as I've said, what you are claiming is false. You can walk into BestBuy and buy pretty much any Mac you want, no scarcity. You can buy from multiple stores and multiple websites, including Apples own.

    There may be some Apple arrogance with the 'haha you run Windows', that is true, but of course pretty much anyone you are referencing falls into that category. They aren't running it because they've got a trendy mac, they're running it because they prefer it over Windows.

    Get a dose of reality and a cluepon please.

  • by Capt_Morgan (579387) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:49PM (#29957708)
    It's a contract of adhesion.... do you have the right to tell me what size monitor I can use with your software? How about what days of the week I can use it? Get over yourself
  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:52PM (#29957766)

    1) Charge more for software licenses. Seriously, if you are going to not make as much on hardware, make more on software. They could double their price and still be under what Windows runs retail. Also, software sales are where the real money is at, if you can get a large market. Cost per item is almost zero.

    2) Offer more hardware that people want. Seems to me that the hackintosh computers you see are in the two markets that Apple steadfastly refuses to produce in: Consumer towers and netbooks. These also happen to be very popular markets. Well, start making shit in those areas, maybe it isn't such a problem.

    3) Stop charging so damn much for your hardware. It isn't special, the games for that are over. It is all standard PC components made by the same vendors as everyone else.

    You have to remember that a big part of the reason people jumped to clones wasn't just that Apple cost a lot, it was also that they offered products Apple refused to. Apple has always had large holes in their computer lineup and these are niche things. The consumer tower is a wonderful example. Maccies have been clamoring for one for years. It is the best selling desktop style of computer in the PC market. Businesses love them. Yet Apple refuses to make one. You get an all-in-one or a professional workstation. Nothing else.

    I suspect if Apple filled out their line and adjusted their prices they'd have little problems. However the window for them may be closing rapidly. Part of their recent surge seems to be Vista antipathy. Well Windows 7 doesn't seem to get that at all. People are excited to get it. Thus if Apple doesn't offer what people want, their share may slip again.

  • Re:No. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by pseudonomous (1389971) on Monday November 02, 2009 @08:56PM (#29957804)
    Becuase one of the reasons why people have good experiances with OS X versus Windows / Linux has nothing to do with how good a software product OS X is, but rather that apple is very careful that the software and hardware work well together; if they open up the platform then you'll have manufacturers who'll stick OS X on a laptop where the network card only soft-of works right, or maybe things work fine except that when you suspend to ram the graphics card doesn't shut off and it still drains your battery. (I mean look what happened with linux based netbooks, every major vendor who sold them had some issues with misconfiguration on at least one model) If OS X loses it's reputation of "just working", which happens becuase Apple controls both hardware and software, people won't desire it as a product anymore.
  • by flydude18 (839328) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:01PM (#29957870)

    If you want to specify what I can do with a copy of your software, write a contract and make me sign it.

    If you're selling me a box (with a computer and a copy of the software inside it), then that's a sale. Maybe if your website said "click here to buy a computer and enter into a license agreement regarding a piece of software", you'd have an argument.

    If you're calling it a sale, then it's a sale, and first-sale doctrine should apply. That means I own the copy of the software that you sold to me. I can do whatever I want with it.

    Unless you're new here, you must have heard this argument against EULAs before.

  • by SEE (7681) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:06PM (#29957930) Homepage

    Why shouldn't Apple have the ability to specify conditions of sale.

    I have no objection to them doing so. All they have to do is present the conditions prior to completion of the purchase, to accept or decline, like any other conditional sale.

    If they aren't willing to do so, then they made the sale without conditions. I accordingly have all the rights specified in the United States Code regarding a copy of software I purchased, which explicitly includes making an adaptation to run on a machine of my choice.

    Apple doesn't do this because it would cost money to actually put conditions on the sale, printing the EULA forms and auditing resellers to make sure they were signed. It would also discourage purchases. Which are understandable reasons, but doesn't suddenly make it acceptable to impose conditions after a sale has been completed.

  • by chromatic (9471) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:14PM (#29958014) Homepage

    Legally, they DO (and has been proven in court).

    Which case is this? In which jurisdiction was this case?

  • by Faceless Void (1260956) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:18PM (#29958072)
    Nobody said that. It's just that the Snow Leopard disc is so cheap because they assume that you have bought an Apple computer already. If they couldn't make this assumption, the disc would be much more expensive. So yeah, you are "stealing", (if you can call that kind of infringement stealing). It's like going to the restaurant of an hotel where guests have to pay less and telling them that you are a guess to get a discount, when in fact you aren't. How do you call that?
  • by Stupendoussteve (891822) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:22PM (#29958128)

    Uh... I think he already did.

    People like running OS X on Apple hardware? (This is not even going into the build quality and customer service which leaves most customers satisfied for years)

  • Re:Um... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GlassHeart (579618) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:26PM (#29958178) Journal

    Apple knows where the money is, and individually licensing the software isn't it.

    To be more precise, individually licensing the software for $129 isn't it. If Apple could charge $400 for MacOS X, perhaps it'd be worthwhile. The problem is that the people who loudly proclaim they'll happily pay for a license will probably hide back into their basements, and pirate a copy instead, because the price they were willing to pay was the one subsidized by "vastly overpriced" hardware.

  • by assaultriflesforfree (635986) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:32PM (#29958236)
    This is ridiculous nonsense.

    1) You have no such "right." Somewhere along the line some lawyer made this up and then guys with lots of money threatened to bring down big hammers on anyone who didn't respect it. Similarly, I don't have the right to sell you a sock and then sue you for trying to wear it in a competitor's shoe.

    2) Good reasons you shouldn't have such a right: it's anti-competitive and bad for the economy when a small handful of companies are able to control how the majority of people are able to use their products to do useful things, or are able to bar competitor's from using their products in completely fair ways. "Apple isn't a monopoly" doesn't negate this fact.

    3) Apple has an effective monopoly on certain industries, so the point's wrong on the facts as well.

    4) Simply stating, "You were free not to buy my software," is being willfully obtuse. Forgive the hyperbole, but imagine for a moment that Monsanto suddenly decided you could only cook their food in pots they made and sold for ludicrous prices. What good reason could we possibly have to deny them this right (that they simply made up) to control how their consumer products are used after sale? After all, they're not selling food; they're selling the "experience" of eating. And we're perfectly free not to eat!
  • Really now? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Rix (54095) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:38PM (#29958310)

    By reading this comment, you agree to send me $5.

    I've never signed a license agreement boxed software. I have for real software licenses. Without a signed licensing agreement, a software sale is just that, a sale. It's not a license, and has no terms.

  • by Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:40PM (#29958342)
    False. EULA stands for End-User License Agreement. Like the name suggests, its the terms to which you are licensed the software. It has nothing to do with support. Apple didn't go after the hackintosh community because:

    1. Its as impossible as stopping piracy.
    2. Apple, despite common belief, isn't out to fuck anyone over.

    Psystar is cutting into Apple's profits in an illegal manner. Apple only LICENSES OSX, and Psystar is breaking that license (or contributing to the end user to do so) and thus makes it a matter of copyright infringment. If Psystar has OSX but no license, then it has an illegal copy. Apple will put a legal end to Psystar, and if it can't, it'll put a technical end to both Psystar and the hackintosh community
  • by Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:43PM (#29958358)
    If you're speeding and nobody is around to report it, are you still breaking the law?
  • by Belaj (1073748) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:45PM (#29958388)

    Skipping the tire analogy, I could say that :
    Apple knows its OS best and the Apple approved choices are the optimal choices and thus, the best result for the customer;
    or that blocking hardware that works fine is just an attempt to maintain a stranglehold on the ecosystem (and their profits).

    My initial point was that attacking the person shows the lack of merit of your argument. If their argument has flaws, expose them. If they are indeed morons, then it's self-evident and there's no need to lower oneself to name-calling.

  • by db32 (862117) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:45PM (#29958400) Journal

    This kind of idiotic entitlement mentality is fucking things up for everyone. So, those using the GPL have no right to tell me that I can't close their source and resell it like I want. Why is it that people are so happy to violate licenses to get what they want, then scream and bitch when someone else violates licenses to get what they want? It blows my mind that this crap is modded insightful. What you are advocating is just another form of tyranny. "They don't sell what I want them to sell, so I will force them to do it my way!"

    Right now Apple doesn't do any of that serial key, activation, or other call home bullshit. Asshat behavior like yours is going to drive them to either doing something irritating along those lines, or simply pricing a standalone copy of OS X at an obscenely high price and then just sell "upgrades" or some other such nonsense to force the tie to a piece of Apple hardware. If you don't like their terms, don't buy it, that simple. It isn't like the standard EULA where they hide terms until post sale, the Apple hardware requirement is put out there up front.

    I suppose you are the kind of neighbor that turns the stereo up at 2am in your apartment because you paid for it and no landlord has a right to enforce the conditions?

  • Re:No. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Ungulate (146381) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:47PM (#29958416)
    Just because Apple's first attempt to license the OS was unsuccessful doesn't mean that it can't work now, if it were executed properly. Now that Macintoshes run on normal PC hardware, Apple could just expand the range of supported chipsets/hardware and certify systems from major OEMs to be MacOS compatible. The hackintosh community has already done a great deal of work in supporting regular hardware - if you buy the correct parts and download one of the easy-to-install MacOS distros, there's almost zero tinkering to be done. If the hobbyists can make that much progress, Apple could obviously do a much better job. If they could seriously challenge Windows with a strategy like this, I think it could be far more lucrative than the hardware profits they reap from their 10% marketshare.
  • by MightyYar (622222) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:48PM (#29958422)

    Care to point out the Dell that I can get for 1k that competes with the 2k Macbook? Every time I price them I get +/- 20%.

    Or were you not taking size, weight, and battery life into account?

  • by mejogid (1575619) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:55PM (#29958506)

    You seem to have quite an optimistic view on the benefits of software licensing. While I do think the consumer would benefit from a more open OS X licensing model, I'm not sure Apple would benefit:

    1) If Apple enters an all software market, they lose a major selling point of their hardware and enter an area with more competition and a lower barrier to entry (see: Linux). OEM licensing could potentially be more profitable, but I'm unconvinced that the market for OS X is much bigger than the market for Macs - users, particularly businesses, are often held back by software requirements rather than by the price premium.

    2) Apple likes dictating what hardware you purchase - cheaper, more standard tower blocks don't fit with its image as being refined and premium, and the netbook market has far lower margins than they currently reap on MacBooks. One MacBook purchaser could well bring more profit than 5-mac-netbook purchasers. Apple doesn't want to enter a race to the bottom - they make plenty of money through brands that are seen as higher quality.

    3) Why? It gives them higher margins and it's unclear whether the market share increase would offset that.

    Most importantly, in my opinion:

    4) Apple is so profitable because they have created their own "premium computer" market that is far larger than anything held by Alienware or Dell's Adamo. They do this by creating products that appear relatively unique and are functionally different from competitors' equivalents thanks to unique software, design and minor features (such as battery life on their laptops). Without OS X, a Macbook is just another expensive laptop. There is also some level of positive feedback - unique hardware makes the software appear higher quality, which makes the hardware seem more unique etc - and some of the major selling points depend on hardware-software integration.

    I'm not saying it isn't possible that Apple would benefit from opening up their software, but it's far from being certain.

  • by kimvette (919543) on Monday November 02, 2009 @09:57PM (#29958530) Homepage Journal

    or whine, is about all you can do.

    Or, you can bypass technical measures for the purpose of interoperability, which is expressly permitted even by the DMCA itself.

  • by MightyYar (622222) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:05PM (#29958622)

    Begging the question, are we?

    Seriously, where is my peril for building a Hackintosh. And if it is "illegal" to screw around with hardware and software that I've purchased without any kind of special contract, then seriously... fuck the law. That's just messed up.

    If software vendors want me to follow special rules, then they can try to get me to sign a contract. The ethics are pretty clear when enter into a contract and you are not coerced to do so.

  • Re:No. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ignavus (213578) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:11PM (#29958684)

    ...very good integration between the two.

    By "very good" integration between hardware and software, do you mean deliberately crippling the software on hardware that could otherwise run it perfectly well?

    Mac hardware is not mystically special. It is just expensive. You no more need Mac hardware to run MacOSX than you need a Rolls Royce to drive to the corner shop. Of course, you will need a Rolls Royce to get to the corner shop if there is an army of goons who will block your path unless you are driving a Rolls Royce. That is the "experience" that Apple is providing.

    I think I will start selling books that you are only licensed to read if you are wearing my expensive brand of clothing. Oh, look. I can't, because I cannot physically enforce it. Apple gets away with artificially restricting their software because they can physically enforce it. It is simply an artificial revenue-maintenance restriction: it is anti-competitive.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:14PM (#29958730)

    They blocked iTunes from the Palm Pre...

    They blocked Google Voice from the iPhone...

    They will now block OSX from non-apple computers...

    Isn't it time people get unblocked and get a PC already?

    Life, without walls.

  • Re:Netbooks (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:17PM (#29958754)

    Hehe, I'm a Mac "user", I stress that term as I use the platform of my choice, not because I have some statement to make, or some inferiority complex, but It's what works best for me, and alot of other people. Quality is a very hard term to categorise, seriously, if you've ever read "Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance" a huge part of that book asks the question "what is quality?" if you haven't read it then maybe you should, not that I'm trying to slight anyones knowledge, but reading that should give you an understanding of the brick wall many Mac users feel they are hitting their heads off when trying to explain to people the "quality" of OS X, Quality isn't necessarily "superiority" many people make that mistake, "quality" can simply be doing the same thing just as well but simpler, or less intrusive, or intuitively, their abstract concepts... unmeasurable, but can make a huge difference, even though the task may be exactly the same. I know its daft getting philosophical about computer hardware, but some people notice these things, not because they are "superior" (as most people who use macs seem to be branded as for some screwed up reason) but because they care about these kinds of things, other people dont care about these things and can be perfectly happy with the opposite. So please put aside the hatred, I know there are Mac zealots out there giving the rest of us a bad name, but theres just as many Window zealots now (I've noticed a massive increase on forums with the release of Windows 7) and it upsets me to find people willing to hate me and label me just because of the computer system I choose to use.

  • by initialE (758110) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:20PM (#29958780)

    It was bound to happen the moment Apple moved to the intel platform and started using commodity hardware. What this article is saying is that Apple will not consider a low-cost low-power computer with an Atom inside it. Guess you won't find that option in the next refresh of the mac mini. They're being anal of course, since they're actually adding extra code to lock out that processor series.

  • Re:No. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by MeNeXT (200840) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:20PM (#29958792)

    Nice of Jobs to limit his market but that's not what I'm buying. I own a Mac but the Apple experience leaves a lot to be desired and in some cases modified systems preform better at a lower cost than the real thing. Where Apple gets it right it gets it right but when it gets it wrong (iTunes, iPhone as anything but a music phone) it gets it really wrong. One size does not fit all.

  • Actually some of them work with Snow Leopard almost right out of the box.

    "almost"

    And audio on Linux is "almost" painless these days, isn't it?

    Apple's target market aren't going to put up with "almost". I've gotten tired of dealing with "almost" myself.

  • by Col. Klink (retired) (11632) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:30PM (#29958916)

    First Sale applies to recordings too. I am allowed to buy a used CD and I can do whatever I want with it. The digital contents of the CD are read into a machine just as software is read into a machine. No one ever said that you were only allowed to look at the bits on a CD. You own your copy and you can do whatever you like (other than copy and redistribute). So why should software be different? Why does the author of a software program get to limit my rights when no other type of copyright holder has such a power?

  • by ppanon (16583) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:30PM (#29958920) Homepage Journal

    At which point they could refuse to sell the update to anyone who hasn't registered their purchase of an Apple computer. Currently that's a hassle they prefer not to make their users go through, but if they had no other way to limit distribution to owners of Apple computers supported by that update, that would certainly be an option. At which point you wouldn't be able to legally run their software because you wouldn't be able to buy a copy except on eBay secondhand (and you know how well that would work).

    The cost model for MacOS is the opposite of the one Microsoft, HP printer/cartridge, and razor vendors use: the fixed and variable costs are front-loaded on the initial purchase and minimized on the updates. Conversely, Microsoft practically gives away Windows licences via OEMs and nails you on the upgrades. I actually think it makes sense that the MacOS X incremental upgrades are cheaper and the up-front costs of the hardware are higher. I don't have a lot of sympathy for you trying to game the system/business model. Seriously, if you want to run MacOS X so much, buy a MacOS box sized for your needs. You can multi-boot or virtualize Linux, Windows or any other O/S you care for. I don't see why anyone would care whether your efforts at running MacOS on unsupported hardware are being stymied.

    Now sure you can say: if you can't virtualize MacOS then you are concerned about its long term availability and your ability to access your applications and data in the future. Now that's a good point, one which I can appreciate since my wife's G4 iMac has been in the shop for the last month because of the lack of availability of replacement power supplies. However if that is an overriding concern for you, then run Linux on commodity hardware where that concern is addressed. But you can't always get everything you want and sometimes you have to make a decision on what's more important to you. Apple has basically made it clear they are only interested in doing business with those people willing to accept their business model. If that model's not acceptable to you, then too bad. Move on.

  • by peragrin (659227) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:37PM (#29958998)

    For what? apple doesn't have to support hardware it doesn't want to. Just like Windows doesn't support sparc. MSFT should be brought up on anti trust charges for not porting every windows app to Sparc, and Cell, and arm.

    pull your heads out of your asses people.

  • by Reverend528 (585549) * on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:38PM (#29959000) Homepage

    Complaining about Apple will not hurt them, but withholding your funds from them sure as hell will.

    Well, if the 40 people in the world who realize that they can install an os that didn't come on their computer and think that OS X is worth installing withhold their funds then...

    apple probably won't notice.

    but if all 40 of them come here and complain, then apple will...

    still probably not notice.

  • by Just Some Guy (3352) <kirk+slashdot@strauser.com> on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:54PM (#29959140) Homepage Journal

    Sigh. You can access them prior to purchase, [apple.com] and are encouraged to do so

    Did you check for a EULA at the website for the box of cereal you opened this morning? The book you'll read before going to bed? The CD you listened to in your car? The chair you're sitting on right now?

    Of course not. You handed someone cash, and they handed you a product. You own it, just like I own my copy of OS X. Don't get started on the "so you think you have the right to give away copies?" crap because no one's saying that. What I am saying is that I have the right to do whatever I want with my copy, short of violating the law, because it became my property when I bought it.

    Oh, and nothing that I know of prevents me from hacking the installer so that it never presents a EULA to me. Why couldn't I? Until/unless I agree to a EULA, I haven't consented to be bound by any terms beyond the ones on that box of breakfast cereal.

    And finally, even that BS EULA only requires Apple-branded hardware. Any lawyers care to offer evidence that my Apple-brand (by me) HP Mini 10 [facebook.com] doesn't count? Is "Foo-branded" a term of legal art meaning "branded by Foo" as opposed to "branded as Foo"? I'm clearly not trying to sell it as an authentic Apple product, and I'm not aware of any restrictions that would keep you from labeling your Chevy as a Ford so long as you don't try to misleadingly sell it as such.

  • by MBGMorden (803437) on Monday November 02, 2009 @10:56PM (#29959162)

    This isn't a case of "not supporting" a specific chip. By default it worked just fine, and is working just fine for many people currently using OS X on the Atom. No, this is a case of deliberately disabling a working feature for the express purpose of forcing you to buy their hardware over another's.

    You never code in support and it doesn't work on certain hardware? No big deal. Hell that's the case for a ton of stuff on Hackintoshes already - people don't bitch because their sound card or NIC doesn't work - they generally go out and buy one that's noted on the net as working. Code that is working fine but sabotaged on purpose is another issue entirely though.

  • by Leebert (1694) * on Monday November 02, 2009 @11:25PM (#29959354)

    What part of this do people not understand?

    The part where Apple's broken business assumptions are their customer's problems?

  • Re:Um... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by indiechild (541156) on Monday November 02, 2009 @11:39PM (#29959434)

    For proof, just compare the price of retail Windows 7 and Snow Leopard. Mac OS X is clearly subsidised by Apple hardware sales.

  • by pizzach (1011925) <pizzach AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @12:04AM (#29959606) Homepage

    This isn't a case of "not supporting" a specific chip. By default it worked just fine, and is working just fine for many people currently using OS X on the Atom. No, this is a case of deliberately disabling a working feature for the express purpose of forcing you to buy their hardware over another's.

    And how do you know this? Did you do testing? Did you go through the Q&A? Did you know that if you program for W3C HTML specs it should work for any compliant browser. But people still do block out unsupported ones sometimes...

    No...We have to remember that Apple is evil at all times for not supporting hardware they do not officially support. Sorry my bad. Thank you for opening my eyes.

  • by ppanon (16583) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @12:15AM (#29959672) Homepage Journal

    They ought to start wondering why it is that many of us give fuck-all about their precocious shite hardware and realize it's the operating system people are after.

    You still don't get it. They know that some people feel the way you do and don't care. They have a business model for making money. You play ball with them or they keep their ball. Seriously all business is like that. There's a value proposition offered by the vendor. If it works for you, you buy; if not, you don't. If you're a big enough customer, maybe you can negotiate if it's worth it to the vendor.

    Starbucks isn't going to change their roast recipe because my wife finds their coffee too strong and, as long as they feel their model works at making them money, their renumeration and hiring practices also aren't likely to change significantly because somebody has a problem with it. That's the way business works. As long as Apple continues making a lot of money by successfully positioning themselves as a premium vendor, they're not going to change to accommodate you if it's going to cut into their healthy profit margins. While it's best to keep your customers happy, you are not part of Apple's targeted customer base. That's their decision to make. Deal with it.

  • by LodCrappo (705968) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @12:48AM (#29959918) Homepage

    Microsoft is able to make massive profits selling mainly software.. software that a user can run on any machine they want to run it on. They do not make money on hardware. They take a significant loss on every Xbox sold, try google: http://www.google.com/search?q=microsoft+loses+money+on+xbox [google.com]

    Why can MS make profits that dwarf Apple's without profiting from hardware? (MS's net profit last quarter was down 32% but still over 3 times that of Apple's which was up).

    What is MS doing so much better than Apple?

    Using the example of Apple's attempt to sell System 7 to Mac clone makers as evidence that they cannot survive as a software company is not fair. System 7 was 1) a piece of crap and 2) not able to run on PCs, i.e. 90%+ of computers could not use their product back then even if they wanted to.

    Today is a very different situation. Apple's software runs great on most any PC, and OS X is quite a nice environment. You didn't see people in 1995 getting excited about porting System 7 to, well.. anything. Today, running OS X on a wide range of non Apple hardware is very popular, and usually quite simple to do.

    (unlike the above, which is based on fact, the following is merely my own opinion, based on my own impressions)

    Of course Apple has their reasons for not moving into the software business. They might be quite valid, but I don't believe it has to do with profitability, at least not directly.

    Apple doesn't really care if they sell hardware or software. They care about selling an image, a lifestyle, a brand. Nobody really buys a Mac because it's more useful than the alternatives. There's very little that Win\Linux\Mac can do that Win\Linux\Mac cannot, certainly not enough to justify the premium pricing. People buy Apple because they like to own Apple, they like to be an Apple guy or whatever they call themselves. This is a very powerful thing, and Apple is making extraordinary profits on slightly above average products by perpetuating the Apple culture. To make Apple software available to everyone would dilute the brand. It's not special if everyone can have it. My friends who are "Apple guys" spend a great deal of time talking about how different their system is, highlighting the (mostly trivial, from a functional stance) things that set it apart from the masses. Owning Apple makes them feel special, like they are somehow superior for buying Apple. This is a hugely valuable resource for Apple, and I think they would be foolish to risk compromising the culture they've created. In my opinion, this is the true reason you will not likely see Apple software available on normal computers.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @12:51AM (#29959936)

    Not supporting it is one thing. Breaking it on purpose is something else and is what they're talking about here.

  • by gbarules2999 (1440265) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @01:04AM (#29960044)
    They blocked hardware - in this case, the Atom processor. That's not the same as "stop the support" of the hardware. They went out of their way to make sure it didn't work. That's different from dropping drivers or support.
  • by Me! Me! 42 (1153289) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @01:37AM (#29960262)
    I now begin to truly understand the term "freetard" in all it's significance.
  • So don't use OS X (Score:5, Insightful)

    by putaro (235078) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @02:37AM (#29960608) Journal

    It wasn't sold to work on random hardware. It was sold to work on hardware that Apple sells. No promises were made, express or implied, that it would work on Atom processors.

    It is an express case of disabling things so you can't use it in a certain manner. Hello! That's what the whole Free Software thing is about. Don't use the Apple software if you don't like it. No one misled you about this.

  • by Hal_Porter (817932) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @03:11AM (#29960800)

    Freeloader more like. How many people making Hackintoshes are actually paying for the software and how many get it off a torrent?

    Even if they are paying retail price they're still violating the license. A copy of OS X and Mac is profitable for Apple. A copy of OS X and an netbook probably isn't. Now at this point people start to mumble something about buggy whip manufacturers, but guess what, that's a poor analogy. Buggy whip manufacturers went out of business because people didn't want their stuff. If Apple goes under it will be because people want their stuff but don't want to pay.

    Even more irritatingly these tend to be the same sort of people who are outraged when some company uses Linux and doesn't make the source code available. And yeah, I know the GPL is a copyright license not an EULA. But in both cases people are using something in a way that the copyright holder has explicitly forbidden. Either you can have a copyright free world, in which case you can run OS X for free and keep your Linux fork closed source, or you live in a world with copyright where both things are illegal.

    That being said I don't really like Linux or OS X. Still if you do, it seems like you need to follow the terms of the license the code is under. With Linux that means publishing your code and with OS X it means running it on Apple hardware.

  • by LodCrappo (705968) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @03:46AM (#29960944) Homepage

    "People aren't that stupid".. I'm going to guess you are young :) People *are* that stupid. Empires are being built as we speak on the backs and with the bucks of people that are actually, honestly, that stupid.

    Apple's appeal has nothing to do with nerds. My friends who own them are some of the least technically inclined folks I call friends. They are generally affluent, somewhat successful, maybe a bit conceited/smug, and yes.. "that" stupid. They love their Apples, and they talk about them *a lot*. They talk about them to their other non nerd somewhat successful friends, who sometimes end up buying one, although of course a higher/newer model than the original person has, they'll be quick to point out next time they see them.

    These are people with money. They are happy to spend it on something that inflates their ever expanding self image. These are the people that bring money to Apple. They buy 3 or 4 ipods for their kid, a couple iphones, the drawer full of accessories, a mac laptop and a mac desktop every couple years if not more often, and they really are that stupid. This is a valued Apple customer to whom Apple will strive to provide the Apple experience. And they will enjoy the Apple experience, because they are Apple people. And they really are that stupid.

       

  • by gmhowell (26755) <gmhowell@gmail.com> on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @03:51AM (#29960972) Homepage Journal

    And meanwhile, those of us techies, without axes to grind, when asked why we never have trouble with our computers will say "I bought a Mac" and convince even more.

    Anti-Mac people and Linux people... Do you have any idea what the average person thinks of you? They view your paranoid rantings and ravings with the same aversion as the panhandler on the street complaining about the CIA listening to his thoughts through the fillings in his teeth.

  • by Hal_Porter (817932) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @06:46AM (#29961656)

    You mean this one

    http://reviews.cnet.com/laptops/apple-ibook-g4-12/4505-3121_7-31466301.html [cnet.com]

    That's was $999.

    Or the MacBook Air

    http://gizmodo.com/348753/macbook-air-review [gizmodo.com]

    . It has Wireless N/B/G, Bluetooth 2.1 EDR, and is available in two basic configurations: $1799 for a 1.6GHz chip, plus 2GB of RAM and a 80GBs 4200 RPM Drive. For almost double the price at $3098, you can get a 1.8GHz chip with the same 2GB of RAM and a 64GB solid state drive module that, like all SSD, is shock resistant.

    Neither of these are Netbooks. Netbooks are small (9"-10") cheap (<$500) minimalist (cheap but slow Atom processor, tiny SSD, horrid graphics/chipset) notebooks. Apple do small but they don't do cheap. The marketing term for Apple's small notebook is ultraportable - i.e. you pay a premium for a smaller machine. It's actually the opposite concept of a netbook. Now if you're a manufacturer it's better to make "ultra portables" than "netbooks" - you put a bit more powerful hardware in and charge higher margins than than regular notebooks (ultra portables) rather than lower ones (netbooks). Unfortunately in the world of PCs it only takes one manufacturer to break ranks and make a netbook and they will sell millions - like the Asus EEE pc or the Acer Aspire One. At that point everyone else is forced to compete with them. Of course there's only one vendor of Apple hardware and so they can just keep making "ultra portables" and ignore the netbook market.

    Of course this is the reason it's better to be a user of an open, multi vendor platform like the PC than a closed, single vendor one like the Mac. But if you're Apple a closed platform is obviously better for you.

  • Re:Um... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @07:44AM (#29961960)

    Exactly. Other people have pointed out Apple's attempt to license their OS to other hardware manufacturers and how badly that worked out. And in a way, Apple (or more precisely, Jobs) has also experimented with selling the $400 "OS only" solution -- i.e. NextStep [wikipedia.org]. It didn't work out all that great either.

    From a business point of view I understand why they are doing it the way they are, and I do appreciate that they (so far) haven't resorted to anything as absurd as Windows "Genuine Advantage" to keep it that way. But I wish they would allow for the possibility of a small number of people hacking things together, even if it is officially unapproved, as long as they are buying an genuine OS license. Tying it down to hardware or upping the OS price would be a pain if you do own Apple hardware.

  • by quetwo (1203948) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @08:59AM (#29962348) Homepage

    You didn't buy OSX, you bought a LICENSE to OSX. In the leagal world (which it seems most /.'ers have no idea about), there is a big difference.

    You cannot do what you wish with a piece of licensed software. You don't own it, the source code, etc. The license you purchase allows you to do only certain things with it, and in this case, only on certain hardware.

    Your example of branding is incorrect. They say in the EULA : "This license is only valid on Apple Hardware [defined earlier as computers, electronics and devices manfactured by the Apple Computer Corporation of California]. Additionally, you break very clear trademark rules if you were to use the Apple logo, brand or other representations of their product without their permission. You do not have the right to label your Chevy as a Ford -- and you can be sued for doing so.

  • by dangitman (862676) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @09:01AM (#29962362)
    They require it as a condition of running the software. If you choose to buy software that you don't have the right to run, then that's not very smart.
  • Re:Netbooks (Score:3, Insightful)

    by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @09:37AM (#29962634) Homepage Journal

    Is the 13" MacbookPro or Macbook really that much different than the Eee in terms of portability?

    Yes. It's three inches bigger and notably heavier.

    Yes, it's more expensive, but we're talking about Apple and they're always a little more expensive because it's a higher quality product.

    False. The case designs on the smaller macs are fragile (you can actually drop a EEE) and they use PCBs made by Foxconn like everyone else, to the same standards as ASUS, Lenovo, or whatever. Which is to say, mediocre.

    The 13" MBP is very thin and light, it's not sub-12 inches

    It's not sub-12-inches. You answered your own question. Yes, it really is that much different.

    if you want a highly portable computer that runs OS X, Apple already makes one.

    It's not even in the same size class. Fail. A 13" computer is still big enough to be unwieldy. Frankly 12" is pushing it a little bit, but I have gigantic hands so that where I've settled. Ask your girlfriend if one inch makes a difference.

    I think it would be a stupid idea for Apple to license their OS to other hardware makers

    This much is true. There's no way they can provide the same level of support for everyone's hardware that they do for their own. On the other hand, Linux will destroy OSX eventually, which is probably less true than it is for Windows. Apple gave away central dispatch, which is their only real advantage after integration, and I have had plenty of problems with apple software and apple hardware. I will refer back to the B&W G3 Rev.1 UDMA data corruption issue, for which Apple said the solution was to buy third party software or actually buy a new IDE card (with the attendant Mac Tax of about 400%, this is not an exaggeration either, I priced them.) Apple could have made a software workaround in the form of a new disk driver that would enable multi-word DMA rather than ultra-DMA, but instead they expected you to give FWB forty bucks to get one. The idea that Apple software will work perfectly on Apple hardware is an absurdist fanboy myth. Yep, I said it.

  • They take a significant loss on every Xbox sold

    Microsoft is no longer selling the Xbox. They now have a competing console, the Xbox 360. The Xbox was being sold at a profit before its end of life, and the Xbox 360 is no longer being sold at a loss [techspot.com]. Constructing an adequate comment on slashdot? You fail it!

    Using the example of Apple's attempt to sell System 7 to Mac clone makers as evidence that they cannot survive as a software company is not fair.

    The world is not fair. Here in the real world, where things happen, people bought enough mac clones to threaten Apple's own sales, proof that Apple cannot survive as a software company, at least not without dramatic changes. Certainly it won't work to sell people the OS for their PCs, and to keep selling the OS to your customers every year, because now that they've become just another PC their OS will work on lots of other PCs and Apple doesn't even get a cut of the hardware sales in licensing.

    Today is a very different situation. Apple's software runs great on most any PC,

    So the situation is even worse, not better. Now you can use Apple's OS without them getting ANY licensing fees for hardware. The clone market was actually superior to this situation.

    Of course Apple has their reasons for not moving into the software business. They might be quite valid, but I don't believe it has to do with profitability, at least not directly.

    Too bad that's exactly why they got out (for some strange value of "out") of the software for non-Apple-computers business to begin with.

    Owning Apple makes them feel special, like they are somehow superior for buying Apple. This is a hugely valuable resource for Apple, and I think they would be foolish to risk compromising the culture they've created. In my opinion, this is the true reason you will not likely see Apple software available on normal computers.

    Maintaining that cachet maintains their high prices, and making people pay those prices maintains their profitability. It's all connected.

  • by stewbacca (1033764) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @09:54AM (#29962778)

    My friends who are "Apple guys" spend a great deal of time talking about things other than updating drivers, highlighting the (mostly trivial, from a functional stance) things that set it apart from the crappy Windows computer they use at work.

    . There, fixed that for you. But seriously, can you project any more? Nobody buys a Mac because it's more useful? None of the professional sound engineers, photographers, print industry professionals, journalist, writers, or any other myriad of people who benefit directly from the very tangible benefits of OSX over Windows? How about me, Joe Schmoe, who uses a crappy PC all day at work and just wants to come home to a computer I don't have to dork around with, so I can go on Facebook, listen to some tunes and play some Warcraft? I think there are far more people like me out there than you think.

  • by Just Some Guy (3352) <kirk+slashdot@strauser.com> on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @10:51AM (#29963406) Homepage Journal

    How many people making Hackintoshes are actually paying for the software

    I did [facebook.com].

    A copy of OS X and Mac is profitable for Apple. A copy of OS X and an netbook probably isn't.

    That's RIAA logic: you're actually claiming that Apple lost money by selling me that copy of Leopard for $130, because it's less than the $1,000 or so I would have paid if I'd bought their hardware at the same time. While I'm certain they'd rather have the $1,000, I'm just as certain that they ended up with $130 that they wouldn't have had otherwise.

  • by LWATCDR (28044) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @11:27AM (#29963782) Homepage Journal

    Anti trust? Apple has what percentage of the PC market? 10% maybe? Apple blocking support for a chip that is used in none of their current OS. It maybe that they are going to come out with a new version of OS/X for say the AppleTV that will run on the Atom/ION platform and don't want people putting full OS/X on them.
    This is so far from anti trust that it isn't funny. Frankly if you don't like how Apple does business then don't buy from them.

  • Re:No. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Macka (9388) on Tuesday November 03, 2009 @06:52PM (#29969994)

    Perhaps if they were a software company, they'd do what Microsoft does and distinguish between upgrades and full installs

    People have been asking them to do this for years. They don't show any signs of changing.

    I don't know about that. Mac users love spending money, don't they? They're already paying $2500 or more for a desktop tower because of the gaping hole in Apple's lineup. If they could get a tower that met their needs for $1000 instead, that would leave $1500 to spend on software.

    Mac users are no different from anyone else and don't like spending more money than they have to. People buy from Apple because they perceive they're getting a quality product and a better user experience. For that they're prepared to pay a bit more. That doesn't make them careless with money.

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