Resolved Applications for Mac OS X, without Apple's operating system

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by grahamperrin, Jun 4, 2016.

  1. grahamperrin macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #1
    Seeing today's brief video about work in progress on CrossOver Android, then finding last year's blog post, makes me wonder …

    whether some future product, from any group of developers, will allow easy use of some apps for Mac OS X – without Apple's operating system. Some, not all – for starters, I guess that it'll be impossible to run apps that were delivered through Apple's App Store. Some apps will be too closely tied to Apple private frameworks, and so on … but maybe some apps have the potential to run, in the future, without Apple's OS.

    I expect (and understand) that for as long as there will be Mac hardware, there will be a majority of users preferring Apple's OS on that hardware. If you foresee yourself having that mindset then (with respect) you need not reply to this topic.

    If you like the idea of running an .app for Mac OS X without Mac OS X, please share your thoughts. Thanks!

    (I'm vaguely aware of QEMU, for example Running Mac OS X as a QEMU/KVM Guest (highlights), but it's not of immediate interest to me.)
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Location:
    Boston
    #2
    Why?

    Macs have s tiny fraction of the computer marketshare, so the demand for OS X apps are not that high.
    There are more applications for Windows, then OS X, so the likelihood of there being an app on OS X and not windows is low. While there are specific apps that are OS X only (take blocs app) there are plenty of alternatives.
    Wine used for comparison has a high volume of apps that simply don't work, or work very well.
    Many people just use the Mac App Store, so getting apps will be difficult, since the MAS built into OS X, there's no way to run that without OS X.

    From a technical aspect, WINE translates win API calls and in a general sense, it's not 100%, there are more apps that don't run that do it seems. I'd have to say given how Apple locks down their OS even further then windows does, it probably makes it less likely to work.

    To summarize, there's less demand, less supply of unique apps, higher technical investment to make it work. I see no positive end, the prospect of getting sued by Apple is high, and I'd say there's little to no prospect to make money.
     
  3. grahamperrin, Jun 5, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2016

    grahamperrin thread starter macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #3
    It will be easy to copy an app but (above) I guess that it'll be impossible to run.

    I doubt that. Consider areas such as PowerPC - QEMU, OSx86, Pike's Universum – Great people share their wisdom without asking for anything in return… – how often has Apple successfully sued, or attempted to sue, in a relatively niche area?

    Four years ago http://web.archive.org/web/20120422...to-icloud-calendars-with-third-party-software mentioned a prohibition but if I recall correctly, that related to unacceptable use of an Apple service and https://twitter.com/muhlba91/status/739422630009266176 offers a concise explanation.

    I don't imagine it being primarily commercial. Recall, for example, the relationship between CodeWeavers and Wine.

    More broadly, some developers choose to share parts of their work without asking for anything in return :)
     
  4. Tech198 macrumors G4

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    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #4
    kind of reminds me of something from CrossOver
     
  5. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2009
    Location:
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    #5
    There's not only a "why", there's a "where do we start" question. When people come to Linux and the Mac, the biggest problem they have is that they can't run Microsoft Office. The next thing is probably the Adobe suite on the Linux side.

    But there isn't that universally used app on the Mac. Maybe Safari and iTunes, but they're the most controversial Apple apps that most try and get away from.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Boston
    #6
    That's basically what I was getting at. There's really no demand for such apps, and for those that do want to run those, they'll either buy a mac, or build a hackintosh.
     
  7. grahamperrin, Jun 5, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2016

    grahamperrin thread starter macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #7
    A year or so ago I might have described (pre-Yosemite) Safari.app or open source WebKit.app, alone, as highly desirable. Then (Mavericks) Contacts.app … although I rarely use the multi-CardDAV-service features that make it desirable, so I'd probably use that in a virtual machine. Plus Finder.app because there's no comparable alternative with Miller columns … although since trying Upthere Home for Mac, a few hours ago, I'm more open to the possibility of working partly without a hierarchical file system; and there's work on a web client.

    For Executor, first released in 1990, there were various frequently asked questions – if those FAQ included nothing about the rationale for existence of the project, it was probably because the home page kept it simple:
    • for anyone who wants to run Macintosh programs on non-Macintoshes.
    For me now it's similar. The simple wish to use a 'Mac app' on/alongside an alternative to OS X – without a frequent overhead of virtualisation of OS X in its entirety.

    To my surprise, I found that something began probably in 2012 (there's a screenshot of a terminal window showing Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion)): Darling.

    Developers may find Darling interesting as a playground to work on something extraordinary. There is a lot of work ahead of us, but not so much to have usable results.
     
  8. grahamperrin thread starter macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #8
    Finding Darling (via Ask Ubuntu) was enough for me to mark this topic as resolved.

    Around the same time I found a reminder of something from around ten years ago, The Cocotron:
    A few closing notes:
     
  9. rshrugged macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2015
    #9
    Although you've marked this as resolved, I thought there might be interest in the new developments with Darling.

    http://blog.darlinghq.org/2017/02/the-mach-o-transition-darling-in-past-5.html
     

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