Which Macs can run Mac OS X Lion?

“Is time to upgrade? When Apple’s next-generation desktop operating system arrives this summer, OS X Lion will leave some Intel-based Macs behind,” FairerPlatform reports.

“Further, Scruffy advises that because the Rosetta PowerPC emulation layer, which translates G3, G4 and Altivec instructions, is also going away, you won’t be able to use legacy versions of many apps, such as Photoshop CS 4 and Microsoft Office 2004, a double whammy,” FairerPlatform reports.

“Wikipedia’s saying that any Intel Core 2 Duo Mac is OS X Lion compatible,” FairerPlatform reports. “However, if you try to install Lion on a Core Solo or Core Duo Mac, it won’t let you perform the installation, a roadblock that’s probably easy to get around.”

Read more in the full article here.

59 Comments

  1. Let’s see… would it be worth it to spend about $800 to “upgrade” my essential Rosetta apps just to run Lion? They do everything I need or want them to do just as they are now. No need for newer versions, and one of them HAS no newer versions. I’ll probably be sitting this one out for quite a while.

    1. If you want to see which programs will actually not work:

      AppleMenu > About This Mac > More Info… launches System Profiler

      In System Profiler, click on Applications under Software.
      The “Kind” will be PPC, Intel, or Universal.
      PPC apps will stop working without Rosetta.

  2. “…the Rosetta PowerPC emulation layer, which translates G3, G4 and Altivec instructions, is also going away, you won’t be able to use legacy versions of many apps, such as Photoshop CS 4…”

    You mean Photoshop CS3.

    CS4 is a universal app and does not need Rosetta.

  3. It’s about time to get rid of legacy stuff. Nobody expects floppy disc drives, or other outdated nonsense. Rosetta, G3,G4, Altivec and Core Solo are just that. Outdated legacy crap. Rosetta was always deemed as a bridge technology. A temporary solution.

    What kind of apps can’t be replaced? I doubt it.

    1. Quicken. And don’t say that there is “Quicken Essentials for Mac” because that product is lacking in so many areas that it’s pathetic. There are other banking programs out there, but none can do all that Quicken ’05 does. I don’t want to be stuck with legacy stuff, but this one program will unfortunately prevent me from upgrading until there is a suitable modern program that has all the functionality of this legacy program.

      1. Quevar, I am with you. I am still using Quicken 2005 because it has all the features I need and do not see reason I need to upgrade. Unlike many people, I do not use the advanced features so going to Quicken essentials will not really affect me, but if I have to upgrade, I might decide to go with different banking program because how Intuit has been neglecting the Mac and the UI in the new versions are wanting.

  4. It is worth noting that while CS4 itself is a universal app, some of it’s functions are not. For instance, action Droplets are created by CS4 as PPC apps and will not work without Rosetta. And of course any extensions will also have to be updated.

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