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glenthompson

Contributor
Original poster
Apr 27, 2011
2,543
533
Virginia
Title says it all. Once Apple drops OS support for Intel Macs in a future version will the idea of a hackintosh be dead? May be a few years before the Intel Macs are deprecated but we can expect it to happen sometime.
 

MacPoulet

macrumors 6502
Dec 11, 2012
385
180
Canada
It's interesting to note that back in the days of Motorola and PPC Macs, no one was building a Hackintosh with a PC so they could run Mac software. I would expect the same thing will happen when Apple moves completely to the ARM.
Back then they were officially licensed clones made by other manufacturers.
 
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dgdosen

macrumors 68000
Dec 13, 2003
1,854
557
Seattle
Take a look at the WWDC video on "System Architecture of Apple Silicon Macs" - the last half talks about Boot/Start-up.

Based on what I see/hear there... There's a reduced bootup security option - more for devs, but seems to potentially allow for using custom bootup security. I'd say it's undecided at this point...
 
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mzeb

macrumors regular
Jan 30, 2007
189
195
It's interesting to note that back in the days of Motorola and PPC Macs, no one was building a Hackintosh with a PC so they could run Mac software. I would expect the same thing will happen when Apple moves completely to the ARM.

OS 9 certainly wasn't worth hacking onto something but OS X with a command line and awesome programming tools absolutely is. At every shop I've been at doing Linux dev work 90% of the devs write the code on Macs. For independent devs that don't want to pay 2x as much for a Mac I could still see this being a niche thing.

One other thing of note: there was no one else building PPC desktop machines (besides Next which didn't make many of them) so there was no alternative to build a hackintosh. There are a LOT of ARM devices out there. Assuming Apple doesn't put weird instructions in their chips it could potentially be hacked onto the Surface Pro X or a Chromebook.
 
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chscag

Contributor
Feb 17, 2008
4,303
1,615
Fort Worth, Texas
Assuming Apple doesn't put weird instructions in their chips it could potentially be hacked onto the Surface Pro X or a Chromebook.

Now that's something I would like to see. Chromebooks which were once cheap niche items have become fairly nice machines, and the prices are right.
 
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DearthnVader

macrumors 65816
Dec 17, 2015
1,279
5,904
Red Springs, NC
It's not just having Arm, Apple is going to use all sorts of custom SoC's.

My little Firestick is Arm, but it has co-prosessers to handle video playback. I think Apple is going to go this route, offloading things like video/audio encoding and decoding to more custom SoC's like the Afterburn card.

Then there is the matter of custom GPU's to run metal.

So, I think, it's not just going to be a matter of having one Arm chip in a Chromebook running OS XI. Poeple may figure out how to get it to boot, but I doubt it will run very well.

With these things in mind, not to even consider how Apple can lock down the macOS to their own Fab, I do think it's the death of the Hackintosh.

>>Tim Cook holding a funeral for the Hackintosh WWDC 2022. :p
 
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bousozoku

Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
14,397
469
Lard
Only one clone that I was aware of and Steve Jobs killed that very quickly when he returned to Apple. I don't believe we'll see a Hackintosh ARM machine.

PowerComputing was the big maker of Mac clones. In fact, Halo was shown on a 275 MHz 604e Power Computing machine during a demo. Motorola and others also made clones.

The last I remember about ARM and Apple was about that time. The Newton eMate 300 was 25 MHz PDA in laptop form running on ARM.
 
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xraydoc

macrumors demi-god
Oct 9, 2005
8,235
2,295
192.168.1.1
Will likely be able to hackintosh an Intel PC for some time (for at least as long as macOS supports Intel processors, which could be another 6-10 years), but I strongly suspect macOS for ARM will only ever run on Apple’s custom systems.
 
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leman

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2008
13,050
8,491
I don't even think that Apple would have to build any particular safeguards agains running macOS on foreign hardware. Apple Silicon is going to be at least 2-4 times faster than other commercially available ARM hardware, not to mention that it is including custom made GPUs and other hardware. Even if you scramble together some homebrew drivers and manage to launch macOS on your Pi, it is going to run like crap.
 
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theluggage

macrumors 603
Jul 29, 2011
5,090
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Title says it all. Once Apple drops OS support for Intel Macs in a future version will the idea of a hackintosh be dead?

Intel vs. ARM as the primary CPU is irrelevant.

Once the whole range is on T2 - even with Intel processors - Apple will be free to make a future version of MacOS require a T2 chip (...yes, they have to support current iMacs and last year's Trashcans for some years yet, but 'support' needn't mean anything more than providing security patches for Big Sur).

Since everything but the iMac is now on T2 ...and it still sounds like Apple may release a new Intel iMac Real Soon Now - the writing for Hackintosh was already on the wall.
 
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theluggage

macrumors 603
Jul 29, 2011
5,090
4,108
How exactly do you imagine running PPC OS on a PC?

I do recall that you could run Mac OS Classic on an Atari ST (both 68000) - you just needed 'genuine' ROM chips from a Mac (I'm sure there were ways and means to obtain quote-genuine-unquote ROMs) - and if you could do it on an Atari ST then someone would have come up with a way to do it on Amiga with added bouncing beachballs and funky sound samples (it's the law!)

Also, back in the 90s, Windows NT briefly supported PPC (and other) alternative chips - if this had succeeded and the market was flooded with cheap PPC boxes then I'm sure we'd have seen PPC Hackintoshes. However, as it was, Macs weren't particularly expensive c.f. other low-volume PPC hardware.

However, Windows on non-intel failed (either because Intel and MS deliberately strangled it at birth, or simply because nobody ever chose Windows because they liked the OS - its selling points have always been "cheap hardware" and "runs my 20 year old software natively").

Only one clone that I was aware of and Steve Jobs killed that very quickly when he returned to Apple.

No, there were several, and they were rather successful. Trouble is, at the time, Apple were still trying to make a significant chunk of their money from the high-end desktop workstation market, which the clones threatened in a way that the current "Hackintosh" doesn't.

List of historical Mac clones: https://lowendmac.com/the-macintosh-clones/
[automerge]1593083446[/automerge]
I don't even think that Apple would have to build any particular safeguards agains running macOS on foreign hardware.

Most likely, Mac OS 11 will just require, from the start, that ARM machines have the T2 chip (or equivalent) which will probably rule out ARM Hackintoshes with the same requirement for Intel machines appearing as soon as Apple feels they can stop support for iMacs sold in 2020.
 
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hwojtek

macrumors 68000
Jan 26, 2008
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513
Poznan, Poland
I do recall that you could run Mac OS Classic on an Atari ST (both 68000) - you just needed 'genuine' ROM chips from a Mac (I'm sure there were ways and means to obtain quote-genuine-unquote ROMs) - and if you could do it on an Atari ST then someone would have come up with a way to do it on Amiga with added bouncing beachballs and funky sound samples (it's the law!)

I did that. My STe was able to run Mac OS 6, I believe, but this was due to the fact it used the same CPU as Macs were. It was not a PC though.

Also, back in the 90s, Windows NT briefly supported PPC (and other) alternative chips - if this had succeeded and the market was flooded with cheap PPC boxes then I'm sure we'd have seen PPC Hackintoshes. However, as it was, Macs weren't particularly expensive c.f. other low-volume PPC hardware.

Yeah, I had NT 3.51 running on a PowerStack machine back in the day. Things would look very, very different now, if Steve Jobs had agreed to make a standard-compliant Macintosh with a 604 chip allowing it to run NT natively.

Still - there was no x86 compilation of Classic Mac OS, so the only way to run Mac OS on an (Intel) PC was emulation, which was buggy and dead slow.
 
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robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
25,611
887
Harrogate
I think the biggest problem will be GPU drivers. So far Apple has only talked about custom Apple GPUs on Apple Silicon. No other ARM hardware will have this or be compatible with the built-in drivers and it's very unlikely any other manufacturer will bother with the time and cost of writing Mac OS (ARM) drivers and even if they did they would not be signed and hard to get running
 
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theluggage

macrumors 603
Jul 29, 2011
5,090
4,108
Still - there was no x86 compilation of Classic Mac OS, so the only way to run Mac OS on an (Intel) PC was emulation, which was buggy and dead slow.

Or you could have got ahead of the crowd and run NextStep before it evolved into MacOS 10....

Things would look very, very different now, if Steve Jobs would have agreed to make a standard-compliant Macintosh with a 604 chip allowing it to run NT natively.

Er, no - MS dropped NT for PPC in 1997, before the Second Coming of St Jobs.


From that article:

"Apple sold less than 4 million PowerPC Macintoshes in 1996, compared to 50+ million Intel-based systems. For all practical purposes, the PowerPC has been relegated to a Mac-only solution while high performance NT users have turned to Digital's Alpha. The Alpha architecture is even more impressive than the PowerPC and is far more scalable."

Of course, we now know that NT-on-Alpha (and, indeed, Digital themselves) weren't long for this world at that point.
 
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dgdosen

macrumors 68000
Dec 13, 2003
1,854
557
Seattle
Intel vs. ARM as the primary CPU is irrelevant.

Once the whole range is on T2 - even with Intel processors - Apple will be free to make a future version of MacOS require a T2 chip (...yes, they have to support current iMacs and last year's Trashcans for some years yet, but 'support' needn't mean anything more than providing security patches for Big Sur).

Since everything but the iMac is now on T2 ...and it still sounds like Apple may release a new Intel iMac Real Soon Now - the writing for Hackintosh was already on the wall.

That makes sense - that would imply:
- Hackintoshes will fade away as non T2 macs get sunsetted from OS support.
- Given 2012 macs are no longer supported in Big Sur, that's about an 8 year difference.
- If we assume 2021 as the last year to officially buy Intel Macs sans a T2 chip in an Apple store (iMacs), That 8 year clock for non T2 lockdown of macos support would then be run out around 2029 or macos 11.9 (at the latest?)
- And macos 11.8, would get security updates for a few years.
 
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