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The Courts Apple

Apple Asks Judge To Shutter Psystar's Clone Unit 346

CWmike writes "Apple wants a federal judge to shut down Psystar's Mac clone operation and order the company to pay more than $2.1 million in damages, according to court documents. The move was the first by Apple since US District Court Judge William Alsup ruled that Psystar violated Apple's copyright and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act when it installed Mac OS X on clones it sold. Alsup's Nov. 13 order, which granted Apple's motion for summary judgment and quashed Psystar's similar request, was a crushing blow to the Florida company's legal campaign. In a motion filed Monday, Apple asked Alsup to grant a permanent injunction that would force Psystar to stop selling any computer bundled with Mac OS X; using, selling or even owning software that lets it crack Apple's OS encryption key to trick Mac OS X to run on non-Apple hardware; and 'inducing, aiding or inducing others in infringing Apple's copyright.'" Groklaw has summarized Apple's request as well, and noted that Apple has also filed a motion to dismiss Psystar's litigation in Florida (or transfer it to California, where the above injunction was filed).
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Apple Asks Judge To Shutter Psystar's Clone Unit

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  • n/t

    • by Necroman ( 61604 )


      • a mechanical device on a camera that opens and closes to control the time of a photographic exposure
      • close with shutters; "We shuttered the window to keep the house cool"
      • a hinged blind for a window


  • The way I see it (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Monkeedude1212 ( 1560403 ) on Thursday November 26, 2009 @02:20PM (#30238530) Journal

    Yeah, Apple is Apple and I don't have to like the way they do things. I will however support them if someone is encroaching on the way they want to run their business. Cracking an Apple OS to run on a machine that Apple doesn't want to goes against what Apple wants to do with their OS. Yes, I know, they're still making money on an OS copy sold, so they shouldn't bitch, but if they want to thats their business.

    Apple wants everything to stay within their box, and they want to have complete and utter control over that box. As long as Apple isn't trying to control whats outside the box - I don't care, but as I see it, OS X is part of their box. In the long run, their strictly closed box might be their downfall. No skin off my back.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by DAldredge ( 2353 )
      So was it wrong when Compaq cloned the IBM BIOS?
  • Psystar f-ed it up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by russotto ( 537200 ) on Thursday November 26, 2009 @02:36PM (#30238670) Journal

    This isn't a case where Psystar was making boxes, buying retail copies of MacOS, installing those on the boxes and selling box and MacOS together. That's how Psystar portrayed it, but it turns out that what they were actually doing was cloning all the machines from a master copy of the OS, then including a (still-unopened) copy of MacOS with the box. If you want to use 17 USC 117 (running programs) and 17 USC 109 (First Sale), you have to actually observe the forms. It's not enough to claim that the result is the same as if you'd observed the forms. Thus the case was a slam-dunk for Apple.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      It's still inane. I argue this is similar to time-shifting. If they paid for the copies, who cares where they install them? Face it, people who are in favor of Apple in this case wouldn't be in favor if it was some other company, say CueCat [] or this was DVD CSS Region Control.

      If I was a judge I would understand this as breach of copyright license if the license includes a mention in how you can only use the software in Apple hardware. That is if I was a judge, who was concerned with upholding the law rathe

      • The license does say you can only use the software with Apple hardware.
        • by Steeltoe ( 98226 )

          The license is not legal. I never agreed to it prior to purchase. I was never given opportunity to negotiate the terms. I don't even know what terms they have dictated in their silly documents. The terms are draconian and unenforcable.

      • by gnasher719 ( 869701 ) on Thursday November 26, 2009 @03:41PM (#30239130)

        It's still inane. I argue this is similar to time-shifting. If they paid for the copies, who cares where they install them?

        You can argue as much as you like, but Judge Alsup didn't agree with you. Mostly because that is not what happened.

        Psystar paid for boxes with MacOS X and a license that allows installation on one Apple-labeled computer. They shipped their computers with these _unopened_ boxes. Whoever bought one of their computers now has a box with MacOS X which they can install completely legally on any Apple computer. Clearly these boxes have _nothing_ at all to do with the software that Psystar installed on their computers. Actually, the court saw evidence that the software in the boxes and the software installed was not the same. Psystar didn't even bother to argue in court that they bought boxes with MacOS X. Had they bought boxes with Windows 7, or boxes full of popcorn, it would have exactly the same legal effect - none whatsoever.

        Let me say that again: Psystar bought boxes with MacOS X and sold them on. If you buy MacOS X and sell it on, then there are no rights that stick with you.

    • Duh (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Steeltoe ( 98226 ) on Thursday November 26, 2009 @04:06PM (#30239286) Homepage

      What is the difference though? Lots of manufacturers like Dell use master copies to clone their PCs.

      What you're suggesting is insane. The only difference is having to install everything manually on every computer, or just cloning the same bits and bytes. What's the difference as long as Apple got the same amount of money?

      The law should not be stupid, but be interpreted according to common sense. If this is how it is, either this broken legal system needs further fixes, or we just need to stay away from proprietary software altogether - too much risk and arbitrary decisions in the hands of the wrong people..

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by falconwolf ( 725481 )

        What is the difference though? Lots of manufacturers like Dell use master copies to clone their PCs.

        The difference? Microsoft licenses Dell to do that, Apple does not license Pystar though.

        What's the difference as long as Apple got the same amount of money?

        Pystar [] "failed to produce "customer purchase receipts or order documents" from April 2008 (when Psystar began selling their computers with Mac OS X preinstalled) until October 2008."


      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by L4t3r4lu5 ( 1216702 )
        The phrase you're looking for (in UK law) is the "Golden Rule." It's one of the methods of interpretation of law, alongside "Literal Rule" and "Mischief Rule". The Golden Rule looks at the strictest wording of the law as applied, and decides if it leads to an absurdity. If that is the case, it is within the power of the Judge to re-interpret the law along the lines of how Parliament would have expected it to be understood. Having a piece of shrink-wrap plastic around a DVD being the centrepoint of how this
  • I'm not sure why these smaller companies keep trying to take on the big boys, though, when they know they'll get crushed, like a nut.

    You've got Real thinking they can legally distribute software to rip DVDs to you hard drive, Psystar thinking they can legally create defacto Macs, Napster thinking they can facilitate file sharing and on and on.... Someone needs to sit down with these companies and explain how this crushing business works.
    • Perhaps I am paranoid, but think of all the good that Apple has gotten out of Pystar:
      Massive free advertising.
      Defacto confirmation of their OS license.
      Now no one else will try what Pystar did.

      If I were a betting man I would bet on Steve Jobs owning a large piece of Pystar.
      • by Yvan256 ( 722131 )

        Steve Jobs can't possibly own a large piece of Psystar, the poor guy only receives $1/year in salary!

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I'm not sure why these smaller companies keep trying to take on the big boys, though, when they know they'll get crushed, like a nut.

      Check out the Groklaw article [] on the case. It appears that getting sued by Apple was part of Psystar's business plan from the get-go. They actually marketed the idea to VC outfits as a reason to invest in the company.

      What Psystar was more than anything else--certainly more than a computer manufacturer--was a case of investor fraud. Standby for shareholder lawsuits in 3...2...1...

  • Apple is .. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kuzb ( 724081 ) on Thursday November 26, 2009 @05:22PM (#30239766)

    .. evil. This is nothing new. They've had the same predatory behavior for well over 2 decades now.

    It's hard for a lot of us to accept, because nearly everyone here owns an apple product they genuinely enjoy (I own several myself), but the truth is Apple is evil.

They are called computers simply because computation is the only significant job that has so far been given to them.