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Psystar expands legal action to include Snow Leopard

updated 11:15 am EDT, Tue September 1, 2009

Psystar tackles S. Leopard

Mac cloner Psystar has filed a second lawsuit against Apple, this time contesting policies surrounding Mac OS X Snow Leopard. Psystar should have the right to buy Snow Leopard and install it on third-party computers for sale, the filing says. The suit moreover accuses Apple of illegally linking Snow Leopard to Apple hardware, creating monopolies in the trade of "premium" computers, and/or systems running Mac OS X as a platform. "Apple's share of revenue in the market for premium computers -- computers priced at over $1,000 -- is currently 91 per cent," Psystar attorneys note.

While the monopoly charges are similar to those in an initial, failed approach to an ongoing countersuit regarding Mac OS X Leopard, Psystar insists that the circumstances are "wholly separate" with Snow Leopard. The technology used to chain the Mac OS to Macs has changed, says the company, along with the means needed to install it on a Psystar PC. Lawyers argue that Apple's end-user agreement should be changed to allow third-party installations, and that the court should rule that Mac cloning does not violate Apple copyright or the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

"Psystar's position with respect to Mac OS X Snow Leopard is analogous to that of a person developing a software application to run on top of Mac OS X Leopard," the attorneys say. "Just as Microsoft writes Word to run with Mac OS X and Google writes its web browser Chrome to run with Mac OS X, Psystar writes its software to run with Mac OS X Snow Leopard." In detail, the company observes that its special bootloader "makes use of features of Mac OS X Snow Leopard designed to allow software developers to extend Mac OS X Snow Leopard to work with different hardware." Psystar does admit that such features were originally meant for peripherals and external memory.

Aside from favorable EULA and copyright rulings, the company is also asking for damage compensation, and the removal of code in Mac OS X used to block installation on PCs.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Eriamjh

    Joined: Dec 1969



    They haz 'em.

  1. eldarkus

    Joined: Dec 1969


    but brains..

    They aint got 'em!

  1. nat

    Joined: Dec 1969



    they lost 'em

    is there a company anywhere that is buying versions of windows and installing them on computers without a license from ms to do so?
    i don't know but i doubt it.

    i'm sure ms can pull a license from anyone as well.

    how can you force a company to license a product if they don't want to? sue 'em and hope for the best i guess.

  1. JulesLt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Got what they asked for

    This is exactly what I expected Apple to do, for pretty much this reason - the next step is to move to pure digital distribution (and even - like the iPhone OS - just roll the price of OS upgrades into the price of a Mac).

    It doesn't really affect the (tolerated) Hackintosh community, but it closes down the loophole of selling a retail install - not upgrade - of OS X.

    You know, for the legal costs they've incurred, they could have put the money into Cocotron or New-step and actually got a long way towards creating an 'Open Cocoa' / Cocoa on Linux, which would actually be interesting.

  1. leamanc

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Epic LOL

    Yeah, I'm really sure that 91 percent of all computers that cost over $1,000 are made by Apple.

    They probably do own a good portion of that market, but 91%? Dell, HP and Sony make a lot of machines that cost $1,000 or more.

  1. Bobfozz

    Joined: Dec 1969



    You have no "seen" how a lunatic acts in the computer business. Dazzle them with BS if you can't do it legally. Bluster, it is quite doubtful, will win this one.
    Psystar is pissed because Apple is trying to lock them out...boohoo.

  1. Mr. Strat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Stomp 'em

    Would somebody please dig a hole and bury these Psystar asswipes?

  1. Mrjinglesusa

    Joined: Dec 1969


    $1,000 License...

    If I were Apple, I'd make a version of Leopard that COULD be installed on any hardware. Cost? $1,000 per license to compensate for lost hardware revenue.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: brains

    is there a company anywhere that is buying versions of windows and installing them on computers without a license from ms to do so?

    Um, yes. Probably a lot of them. Why do you think MS has WGA? Just to stop Fred from borrowing Bob's copy? No, because a lot of PC makers (the small shops, like Psystar) were just slapping on XP copies onto their machines over and over again.

  1. dslund

    Joined: Dec 1969



    marbles anyone?

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