Report: Apple Mac OS X 10.4.1 for Intel hits piracy sites

“There is nothing at all that prevents the version of Mac OS X that runs on the developer transition machines from running on any PC with compatible components,” Jeff Harrell writes for The Shape of Days. “The Intel-based Power Macintoshes that Apple is showing at their developer conference are based on an Intel motherboard, generic Intel graphics and off-the-shelf Pentium 4 CPUs… I estimate that we’re down to a matter of hours before Mac OS X 10.4.1 for Intel hardware is available for download on Internet software piracy sites and peer-to-peer piracy networks. (Update: A reader who for obvious reasons wishes to remain anonymous just demonstrated to me that the software is, in fact, already available on Internet software piracy sites.) If I can think through this stuff, Apple’s management can think through this stuff. This is the most awe-inspiring stealth marketing move I’ve ever seen.”

“According to reports, Apple’s bundled iLife applications, major selling points for the Mac operating system, are already Intel-native and run at full speed… Given Apple’s experiences with software piracy, particularly the rampant software piracy that spread developer builds of Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger all over the Internet this past spring, Apple’s management from the top down knows full well that this developer preview will be in the hands of every kid with a cable modem within days of its release. Most of them will be able to install it on their own computers and run it and the full suite of iLife ’05 applications at full speed, and run most existing Mac software in translation. As a result, Apple will give thousands, possibly millions, of people a taste of Mac OS X running full speed on their own PCs. Apple’s giving their potential future customers a free taste, that’s what they’re doing. It’s a try-before-you-buy deal,” Harrell writes.

Full article here.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Is Apple setting up the ultimate “Switcher” campaign by preparing to let Mac OS X speak for itself? – June 10, 2005
Intel-based Macs running both Mac OS X and Windows will be good for Apple – June 10, 2005
Twin Mac website debuts, dedicated to dual booting Intel-based Macs running Mac OS X and Windows – June 10, 2005
Cringley: Apple and Intel to merge; Steve Jobs finally beats Bill Gates – June 09, 2005
Fortune: Apple’s switch to Intel processors to accelerate Windows users switching to Mac OS X – June 09, 2005
Will developers stop writing Mac applications if Apple ‘Macintel’ computers can run Windows? – June 08, 2005
Why buy a Dell when Apple ‘Macintel’ computers will run both Mac OS X and Windows? – June 08, 2005


  1. I would love to try. It would be cool if us Mac owners could download a 30 day trial from Apple. I am not going to or have I ever ripped off Apple or any other software maker. As for Mp3’s from CD’s I have purchased 2-3 times…..

    I think this whole switch will be killer. When the Mac whent to 68k to PPC it was great. This will be even better. Job’s and the boys and girls at Apple are AMAZING with hardware. If they think this is a good idea, it’s probably a great idea.

    My 2 cents

  2. So uhh… where’d you get it? Not that I even have a PC, but I’m sure some of my friends who have been curious about macs would love to take it for a spin…

  3. Perhaps the software expires after a certain period. Remember, Jobs said the that the Dev Kits had to be returned when they were done.

    While I understand the “Stealth” value of this….. in the end… this is what I fear the most. Apple software, running on off the shelf hardware.

    As we all know, Apple has never had any type of restriction on the install of their OS. You can buy one copy and install and install and install all you want with no “phone home” schemes to keep you honest. What was the point? Whatever hardware you wanted to install it on, was bought from Apple to begin with, so they were happy.

    Now, regardless of what Steve says, someone’s going to find away(like they already have) to run this on Non-Apple hardware, and once that starts happening, we can all kiss Apple good by.

  4. Bob – because this is just a preview OS – and the later versions of OS X will not run on any PC – if the Developer Preview can actually do that. Can anbody confirm that it can? Or is this all speculation?

  5. Perhaps apple doesn’t >really< care.

    It’s free exposure. Both to the people doing it and to people reading about it happening.

    It’s limited usefulness. There’s no way it’ll work well on more than a small number of configurations (firewire devices? video cards?). TFA has a good point. It’s a taste.

    The people installing it would never have bought a mac anyway. And now they’ll have a reason too.

    Also if anyone attempts to sell it (or a system to run it) Apple will sue them until the end of time itself.

    All this l33t downloader stuff is just noise in the big picture.

  6. If this is true … it is very cleaver. It will only be the computer “geeks” who even know how to find it, download it, and how to install it. Lets face the average computer user does not have those skills. By letting this trickle into the hands of the kids and computer enthusiasts, it is exposing them to the OS in a very Linux like way. This exposure will probably be the first time many of them have ever used a Mac OS. (I know the IT guys at my work have NEVER used Mac OSX. They play around with Linux, and other alternative Operating systems all the time, but never recommend or switched to Mac because the are not familiar with it.) Most people I know ask a Techie friend or coworker who built their own computer, “What kind of computer should I get?” before they make a purchase. I usually hear, “Buy a Dell.” in response. The average end user probably lacks the sophistication to get Linux running, and the Techie friend may have used a Mac in grade school, but probably has no real hands on knowledge of OSX. After all it won’t run on their home built, barn burning, custom kick ass game machine.

    By letting this slip out into the “Geek” community, it will increase awareness of OSX, its features, and the ever critical word of mouth recommendations. It does so in a way that adds credibility to the recommendation. The Mac Guy/Gal will always say buy a mac. This if true, will probably cause the rest of the computer enthusiasts out there to say the same thing.

    I think the final version of the intel OS will lock out non apple hardware. I remember the days when you could buy a mother board, and even home build a Mac… only problem was you had to Kill a Mac to Make a Mac. I don’t know what Apple has in mind, but what ever method they use, will only really be cracked by the hardcore users… who.. I think in reality, Apple should WANT to be paying around with the OS.

    Just my strange rambling thoughts…

  7. So .. when is Google gonna pick up your headline, MDN? I wanna see some action. Ain’t nothin’ gonna happen if this three day old blog story just sits in here with us mumblin’ on about it.

  8. It is still the developers version and bound to have some bugs. Meanwhile I am sure that when Leopard comes out it is gonna be a really killer OS because it is what will be launched head to head with Longshorn (if Longshorn does not fall further behind schedule ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” /> ) AND I am sure that Leopard will not run on anything but Macs. How many dozer kids who got used to running an illegal version of Panther on their PCs will HAVE TO HAVE Leopard? My guess would be a lot. And if they have to abandon their pirated Panther cuz it is not supported and becomes obsolete, you KNOW they are gonna be going through severe withdrawal pains. So what will they do? Why, buy an Almight Mac of course. It will be able to run BOTH windows if they need it and OS X for everything else and the majority of their time.

    I think overall I agree with the writer. This is not gonna hurt Apple. And if Apple did indeed do it on purpose it may be one of the sneakiest things I have ever seen. Good job. Or should I say “Good Jobs”? Hehehe

    By the way, I think that would be a better name for the Intel Macs – “Almighty Macs”. It sounds much better than Macintel or Mactel and really describes the situation that will arise better.

    The Almighty Mac is gonna kick some butt, fellas.

  9. Microsoft has more million dollar income from selling operating system than Apple has from entire product range. So imagine the next. If Apple catch only 10% of the traditional Microsoft ( as a Big brother) customers, can get much more money than now can. It is the bull.

    And be real, we will buy Apple hardware no matter of intel or ibm chip inside. Apple hardware is always king alone, too.

  10. Can anyone tell me where they got it? I am trying to convince my mom to buy a mac, maybe if i could get it to run on her comp she would see how much better it is. I almost convinced her last winter break when I brought my iMac home and I think a little more use would make her switch.
    I understand if you dont want to post a link or a site on here so email: or IM me: hdty6776

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