Legal Mac OS X on PC

Discussion in 'macOS' started by michael.lauden, Jan 29, 2009.

  1. michael.lauden macrumors 68020


    Dec 25, 2008
    hey everyone, i couldn't find any answers on any other sites so i thought i would turn to the experts! :D

    i have a brand new 13" unibody macbook (2.0gHz, 2GB DDR3 RAM, and 160GB HD) bought from apple around new years.

    anyways i am about to perform some upgrades (crucial RAM to 4GB, and a 320GB or 500GB hard drive update).. and i have a question reguarding the OS X EULA statements.

    i took this from "":

    "[...]OSX' EULA clearly states that you aren't allowed to install OSX on non-Apple hardware, you aren't allowed to Install OSX Tiger or Leopard on your regular Windows machine[...]"

    this is the part i need a few answers from...

    i have used about all of my hard drive space on this note book - and OSX is native to it. if i took out the 2.5" SATA hard drive. and replaced it as my desktop's PC's Hard drive...

    1.) would i be able to boot up OS X? if not how would i go about doing this?

    2.) since i didn't INSTALL OS X on any other system, it wouldn't be illegal right?

    and finally,

    3.) IF i did (not that it's my intent to) but how would OS X perform?

  2. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza

    Loopholes do not a working machine make...

    Good thought, though.
  3. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off

    Getting OS X to run on a non-Apple computer counts as an installation, no matter what method you use.

    Besides, if there were viable loophole, you can bet Psystar would have found it by now.
  4. TJRiver macrumors 6502


    Jan 14, 2009
    Okeeeee Dokeeee

    .....................And wouldn't you be installing the hard drive containing the OS on a non-Apple machine? Kind of like arguing that I am not installing the OS on a machine, I'm just installing the DVD containing the OS..............

    Try telling that one to the judge. I guarantee the defense lawyer will want all of his $ up front.:rolleyes:
  5. kuwisdelu macrumors 65816

    Jan 13, 2008
    And to answer your other question: no, it wouldn't work anyway. You'd still need to hack it to emulate EFI instead of the regular BIOS your PC uses.
  6. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    Not to mention that your PC laptop might not have video, ethernet, or sound that works with OSx.
  7. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    That picture is perfect.:D

    As for would it work. Maybe it would maybe it would not. But you will have to spend a lot of time getting working drivers and have a good chance of borking the install while fiddle farting around. Thus you would likely need an install disc anyways.
  8. michael.lauden thread starter macrumors 68020


    Dec 25, 2008

    thanks for all of your quick replies!

    i was just thinking around in my head. i assumed it would be illegal anyways - and i'm not up for stealing money from apple any day.

    just was hoping to see if os x would run faster (not that it isn't fast enough) on a souped up PC to see if it would be worth upgrading to the big mama macs!
  9. bizzle macrumors 6502a

    Jun 29, 2008
    Really, who cares? Why does this topic still come up. The feds aren't going to bust your door down, you're not going to get a fine, you're not going to go jail.
  10. michael.lauden thread starter macrumors 68020


    Dec 25, 2008
    it's morals man, plus if i was going to illegally use something, it'd probably be best if i didn't ask for advice on how to use it online with my real name, and my real i.p.

    not that they will catch me - but how dumb do you have to be haha

    anyways i was reading that it IS possible - but as you said, you would have to do some major BIOS tweaking. i don't think it'd be worth it - after all this is the reason i got a macbook so i could bring it with me!
  11. Anonymous Freak macrumors 603

    Anonymous Freak

    Dec 12, 2002
    Quite simple, if your morals dictate that you believe it okay to install on non-Apple hardware, then that is up to you.

    There is no legal loophole, though.

    The OS X Leopard License Agreement reads:
    Quite simple, it allows you to install, use and run on Apple-labeled computers.

    It does not say "install on one Apple-labeled computer", leaving out the "use and run" bit. Their license specifically includes using and running.

    It even says "computer", not "device". So you can't get around it by using an Apple monitor. *whistles innocently*.

    The Mac OS X Server Leopard License Agreement goes even further. It not only "allows" use on Apple-labeled computers, it specifically prohibits use on non-Apple-labeled computers, or helping others do so!
  12. iParis macrumors 68040


    Jul 29, 2008
    New Mexico
    I have been wondering this same thing.
    The possibility part, not the legal part.
    What are the specs of your current PC?
  13. elkay macrumors newbie

    Sep 15, 2008
    So stick an Apple label on your PC. As it's written, both noun and verb are grammatically correct. :apple:
  14. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    Apple labelled. As in, Apple labelled it. Not you.
  15. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    while thats the intent, its certainly interpretable other ways
  16. paolo- macrumors 6502a

    Aug 24, 2008
    Morals? : morality =/= legality. Reminds me of the Heinz dilemma in some ways.

    Mind you many of the biggest contributors to osx86 are quite known...
  17. EmperorDarius macrumors 6502a

    Jan 2, 2009
    It would more probably run slower, not faster.
  18. Loccy macrumors member

    Jan 5, 2009
    Repeat after me. "There are other countries other than the USA".

    No-one's asked the OP what country they're in, which is pertinent - there are countries where Apple's "Apple labelled hardware" stipulation would itself arguably be illegal under anti-monopoly and fair competition legislation.

    I also love the way people throw around the word "illegal" with reference to installing OSX on a PC. It's not "illegal", i.e. "in breach of the laws of the country". More accurately it could be described as "a breach of a contract you agreed to when you purchased the software". Mind you the latter is also itself illegal in certain countries in that you cannot bind someone to a contract they cannot read prior to purchase (i.e. the Leopard licence is INSIDE the packaging).
  19. pwn247 macrumors 6502


    Aug 30, 2008
    West Virginia, USA
    Short answer: Yes. It's illegal.

    Long answer: Look at the Mac OS X x86 project. You are not using a legal copy of Mac OS X, because it's only available through torrents. Even if you did purchase a legal copy of Leopard from Apple, it won't run out of the box. So that "I purchased Leopard for my Wintel" commentary is absolutely out of the question.

    Apple does legally request peer lists from torrent trackers, and Apple does take action in removing torrents from the web, and getting to the criminals. But don't take this word-for-word, I'm not inside Apple, and I don't know what kind of legal team they have. (They probably take the Leopard rippers/modifiers down to the cellar at the HQ and force them to use Windows Vista with UAC on home computer hardware :D , now that's punishment.)
  20. rockstarjoe macrumors 6502a


    Jun 2, 2006
    washington dc
    It is possible though. You just need to install a bootloader. Google Chameleon OSX86. You'll need to find kexts for your hardware as well.
  21. Loccy macrumors member

    Jan 5, 2009
    I refer the honourable gentleman to my previous post ref there being other countries than the USA, and the actual definition of the word "illegal".

    Wrong. One can install retail Leo on standard PC hardware now (albeit with all kinds of hacks and prep required, although there is a USB dongle type thing that'll let you do it virtually out of the box now. There's a Hackintosh thread on here somewhere that discusses it.)

    Firstly, why would a piece of software not running out of the box make it less legal to use? I had to go through all kinds of hoops to get Vista running on my folk's laptop for them. It didn't "run out of the box", in short. Does that make it illegal?

    See above. Is now quite feasible with current Hackintosh techniques.

    All that said, the reality is that I'd say 70% of Hackintoshes make use of such OSX "distributions" as found on the torrents that you outline. But, to say that running OSX on a PC is illegal, end of, no matter where you are, no matter how you achieve it, is debatable at best and flat out wrong at worst.

    (ps. I give it 10 minutes before this thread is moved or closed so those who enjoy debating this sort of thing should make hay while the sun shines!)
  22. r.j.s Moderator emeritus


    Mar 7, 2007
    Why does this fallacy still come up?

    If you actually read the contract, you'd see that you can get your money back - even if the package is opened - if you do not agree to the SLA.
  23. pwn247 macrumors 6502


    Aug 30, 2008
    West Virginia, USA
    Absolutely wrong. The EULA states that the system must be Apple-labeled. You can't just stick an Apple sticker on your Wintel and call it a Mac.
  24. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    Also, it's not "out of the box" if you need the EFI-X dongle. :rolleyes:
  25. Loccy macrumors member

    Jan 5, 2009
    edit to clarify: I meant you can physically install from a "legally" purchased copy of OSX, I wasn't considering any EULA legal-type issues at that point.

    Again, welcome to the world where the USA isn't the only country.

    In some countries Apple's EULA is "illegal", in that it's essentially unenforceable because it enforces conditions that are against local law. Specifically, the Apple only stipulation might itself be "illegal" under European fair competition law/anti-monopoly law. The "you can't read it without opening it" factor - notwithstanding the fact you can return and get a refund - could well invalidate the whole EULA in European countries.

    As an aside, I've never really understood why Apple SELL their OS at all in shops, at least in locations where the internet makes online distribution feasible. Let upgraders do so through software update for new versions. Bundle the OS (as is the case now) with new machines. Make it impossible to get a physical copy without having a physical corresponding Mac. Any Hackintosh activity would therefore have to be based by necessity on illegally downloaded copies of the OS and thus subject to standard copyright law, as opposed to dubious EULAs which may not apply in non-USA locations.

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