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August 14, 2005

Apple OS for Intel cracked to run on PCs

Several Macintosh enthusiast web sites detailed late last week how Apple Computer Inc's Mac OS X operating system for Intel Corp machines had been hacked to run on any personal computer.

By CBR Staff Writer

Apple announced early June that it was moving to an Intel-only architecture for new Macs beginning next year, ending its 11-year relationship with IBM. Back in June, chief executive Steve Jobs made it clear that Apple would prevent Mac OS X from running on non-Apple hardware.

Intel’s digital rights management chip, called the Trusted Platform Module (TPM), was designed to do this. Mac OS X for Intel was supposedly unable to be installed on a non-Apple machine that did not have a TPM chip.

However, hackers say they have found several ways.

According to several Mac-user Web sites, including The OSx86 Project, many hackers have been successful in circumventing the TPM and other hardware requirements of Apple’s developers’ version of OS X for Intel.

The Apple Developer kit version of Mac OS X x86 has indeed been fully cracked! read the OSx86 site.

By using the same SSE3 processors and chipsets of OS X-for-Intel transition developer’s kit, some crackers have run the operating system on PCs at speeds comparable to the fastest Macs – even faster in some cases, according to OSx86. It was just a matter of time.

Others said they had built a version of OS X that works on regular PC hardware, bypassing the required TPM.

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Other sites posted video and screen shots purporting to show Mac OS X running on non-Apple hardware.

Also available online is how-to guides for installing OS X in the latest versions of VMWare, bypassing what some call the theoretically necessary TPM chip.

Apple did not return several phones calls requesting comment.

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