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Hardware Hacking Intel OS X Apple Hardware

OS X Update Officially Kills Intel Atom Support 610

bonch writes "After apparently disabling and then re-enabling support for the Atom chipset in test builds of their 10.6.2 update, Apple has officially disabled support for the chipset in the final update. This makes it impossible for OSX86 users to run 10.6.2 on their Atom-based netbooks until a modified kernel shows up."
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OS X Update Officially Kills Intel Atom Support

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  • Dell Zino (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tompeach ( 1118811 ) * on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @09:57AM (#30059394)
    I wonder if the recently launched Dell Zino could have been a motivator? []
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by socsoc ( 1116769 )
      I'd say no more than the countless netbooks that it (previously) could be installed on.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Nerdfest ( 867930 )
      Who needs OS X with that ... they sell a version with Ubuntu installed. I just wish they'd sell a larger range of laptops with Linux already loaded.
    • Re:Dell Zino (Score:5, Interesting)

      by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @10:34AM (#30059936) Homepage Journal

      Absolutely not, Apple has sold machines and sells machines to that demographic already. It's netbooks that challenge Apple, because they don't actually offer anything in that market.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        How does a product that doesn't compete with anything Apple makes somehow challenge them? If I sell pull-knit sweaters, and Apple doesn't offer anything in that market, have I somehow stolen a run on them?

  • by paimin ( 656338 )
    I saw this on Google News yesterday, and I figured, "Huh, must have missed that on /."

    Ah well, let the shitstorm begin.
  • "Officially"....? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by benwiggy ( 1262536 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @10:00AM (#30059442)

    I RTFA, and there's no acknowledgement by Apple of what they have done or why they have done it. So the update does not "officially" break Atom support, it just breaks Atom support.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

      I don't think that OS/X ever had official atom support to start with. The interesting question is this caused by intent or because Apple didn't test the update on an Atom. Of course they have no reason to test the update on an Atom because they do not sell a single computer that uses the Atom.

    • by nine-times ( 778537 ) <> on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @12:30PM (#30061582) Homepage

      Even saying it "breaks Atom support" is perhaps a little inaccurate. There has never officially been Atom support in OSX. It just happened to work. Now it happens to not work. Maybe it was intentional on their part, but it was never "official".

  • It's funny as someone with an aging MacBook Pro, I was contemplating passing it down to my wife, claiming her netbook, installing osx86 on it, and then picking up a new Mac desktop, either an iMac or a Mac Pro, and just standardizing on OSX throughout the house.

    Now I wonder if I'm better off just installing Ubuntu on the MBP and the Netbook and spend a lot less money on the desktop and build myself one with Ubuntu as well.

    I'm not totally stating that this has caused Apple a hardware sale, (at least not yet)

    • by Skraut ( 545247 )
      should have said "caused Apple to lose a hardware sale" That'll teach me not to hit preview.
    • Why would you put osx86 on an Apple MBP....? You can run OS X 10.6.2 on it.

      I can't see how the "decision" not to support hardware for which the OS is not designed affects your setup one jot.

      • Oh, hang on. Sorry, had trouble reading. I see now.
        Still, either the osx86 crowd will hack the kernel, or something else will happen.

      • Learn to read. He said he was going to get his wife's netbook and put OSx86 on THAT.

    • by vvaduva ( 859950 )

      I almost bought a netbook for the very same reasons - keep my macbook pro at work, take the netbook with me wherever I need to go and have a small computer with me.

      This is not causing Apple to sell more's just pissing off people like you and I, making us wait until a fix is out.

    • by StuartHankins ( 1020819 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @10:37AM (#30059964)
      OS X vs Ubuntu have not only entirely different target audiences but are entirely different experiences. I use XP, OSX Tiger, RHEL 5 and Fedora 8 daily but switching my laptop from OSX Tiger to Fedora or RHEL would be a huge difference in capabilities and would greatly reduce my performance -- until I found replacements for all the things I do, assuming that's possible.

      And please before you tag me as not friendly to open source, I've been using Fedora since it was called Red Hat 5.2. Just make absolutely sure you are willing to put up with the change in scenery... Ubuntu tends to be a rather cutting-edge distro. Hope it works for you.
  • Oh, great. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by saintlupus ( 227599 )

    Time for another thousand posts on how Evil Apple should leave in support for hardware that they don't sell. Fantastic.


    • "Disabling support" in this case is an euphemism for intentionally breaking stuff.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      There is a difference between leaving in support and explicitly disabling "support". I put support in quotes because there was never anything extra done to support atom, it just acts like a normal processor. This si like websites which look at your browsers user agent and deny you access because you are running the wrong browser, when the page would run in the blocked browser anyway.

      • Re:Oh, great. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by ThrowAwaySociety ( 1351793 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @11:16AM (#30060460)

        There is a difference between leaving in support and explicitly disabling "support". I put support in quotes because there was never anything extra done to support atom, it just acts like a normal processor. This si like websites which look at your browsers user agent and deny you access because you are running the wrong browser, when the page would run in the blocked browser anyway.

        They are not "explicitly disabling 'support'" and they were never "leaving in support." As you said, they never did anything to support Atom, and now they've coincidentally broken it. Just like when a website starts using a JavaScript function that breaks in Opera/Safari/Chrome because it was never tested on that browser.

    • Re:Oh, great. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ircmaxell ( 1117387 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @10:32AM (#30059900) Homepage
      You haven't read through the previous comments, have you? I see far more people (at least at this point) complaining about the anti-apple comments than anti-apple comments...

      Now, with that said, I think it's genius what they are doing from a business perspective... Making the software an beacon to their hardware profit center. From a moral perspective, I don't care what they do, cause I'm not spending $3k on a MacBook Pro... OSX may be amazing, but I am quite happy with Ubuntu, so this news has no consequence for me. If you want the freedom to do what you choose, use a free OS (Linux flavors, BSD flavors, etc). If you want the polished yet non-free OSs (OSX, Windows), then you have to live with the restrictions... It's as simple as that. They own the copyright on the OS, so they can tell you how they want you to use it. You can argue about the moral implications of what they do all day long, all it does is keep their name in the news...
  • by Fred IV ( 587429 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @10:23AM (#30059784)

    Hackintosh users can live without the 10.6.2 update. This doesn't really break anything, it just prevents netbook users from having the latest set of OS patches between now and whenever the community finds a workaround.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Zandall ( 658755 )
      Hackintosh users doesn't need to live without 10.6.2 update: make a copy of 10.6.1 kernel, install 10.6.2, DON'T REBOOT, rename new kernel to kernel10.6.2, rename old 10.6.2 kernel again, reboot. The hackintosh user will have everything updated except the kernel. you can even use new and updated kexts made for the new kernel... You can also a small patch on source code and have kenel 10.6.2 but it's a little bit of work for a tiny hackintosh:
  • Not in Darwin? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wandazulu ( 265281 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @10:50AM (#30060102)

    I'm guessing that, since the actual kernel is open source [] that they are doing some additional check further up the chain in a non-open source module. Otherwise wouldn't it be trivial to do a diff, search for the code that checks for the stepping, and if it's an Atom, call exit(0)?

  • by jht ( 5006 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @12:06PM (#30061220) Homepage Journal

    Apple doesn't make an Atom-based Mac. Nor did they in the past. They explicitly sell and license Mac OS X to run only on Macs. If you want to try and get it to work on a non-Mac with a different CPU and/or chipset than what Apple supports, you're on your own, good luck to you.

    Apple isn't going to send an army of lawyers to your house to stop you from trying to build a hackintosh. They will if you figure it out and then start selling them - see Psystar for details. But they won't do anything to make it easy for you to build a hackintosh, and if it breaks - oh well, sucks to be you, next time buy a Mac or stick to a supported OS on your hackintosh.

    Me, I stick to Windows 7 Pro on my eee901 for now, but I may switch to eeebuntu soon. I like it. I'll keep Mac OS on my Macs.

  • by konohitowa ( 220547 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @01:22PM (#30062378) Journal

    Well, I RTFA and followed the links there. I found the part where this build isn't working with the Atom processor. However, I was unable to find the "official" part. Any links to that?

  • Atom vs PPC (Score:4, Insightful)

    by not-my-real-name ( 193518 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @02:09PM (#30062966) Homepage

    What I find ironic is that there is more fuss being made about support for Atom processors than PowerPC processors, and Apple even made PowerPC based computers. Once could also complain about the lack of 68k support, but probably most people don't remember back that far.

  • by toriver ( 11308 ) on Wednesday November 11, 2009 @02:36PM (#30063392)

    Spare some thought on the multitude of NT 3.5 users, happily running on MIPS or Alpha, when EVIL Microsoft decided to just release NT 4.0 on Intel hardware!

    Seriously, it's their product. Want to run an operating system on Atom? Make and sell one! There is a market opportunity for you to exploit instead of whining.

Never buy what you do not want because it is cheap; it will be dear to you. -- Thomas Jefferson