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Psystar Claims Apple Forgot To Copyright Mac OS

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the that-would-be-an-oopsie dept.

The Courts 648

Preedit writes "Mac cloner Psystar is claiming in new court papers that Apple's copyright suit against it should be dismissed, because Apple has never filed for copyright protection on Mac OS X 10.5 with the US Copyright Office. Infoweek is reporting that the claim, if it holds up, could open the door for third-parties to enter the Mac market without fear of legal action from Apple. In its latest set of allegations, Psystar is also accusing Apple of bricking Macs that don't run on genuine Apple hardware." We've been following the Psystar-Apple imbroglio since the beginning.

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WTF (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208479)

What
the
fuck

Re:WTF (2, Insightful)

pegdhcp (1158827) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208977)

This was my exact reaction, so it is not off topic. BTW a similar thing happened to Microsoft in the past, you think people would learn...
Paul McDougall says that:

The stunning claim, if true, could undermine Apple's ability to restrict third parties, such as Psystar, from selling clones that run the Mac OS on generic PC hardware.

Emphasis is mine, and while having trouble to believe this, I know, we all know, such mistakes happened and will happen again.

Berne convention? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208483)

I thought since the US joined the Berne convention [wikipedia.org] in the 80s or 90s, registration with the copyright office is not required...

Re:Berne convention? (5, Interesting)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208525)

I thought since the US joined the Berne convention in the 80s or 90s, registration with the copyright office is not required...

It is required if you want statutory damages (you know, those crazy numbers like $25,000 per song downloaded or whatever it is the RIAA threatens people with). Otherwise the worst you can sue for is actual damages - in this case the cost of a copy of OSX for each copy made.

It sure would be funny if it is true.

Re:Berne convention? (5, Insightful)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208551)

I wonder what that will mean since Psystar buys actual OS X disks? Would Apple sue for the "damage" of not selling the hardware?

Re:Berne convention? (3, Interesting)

kithrup (778358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208695)

Apple is claiming that the boxed copies are upgrade versions, and not the original license. So "actual damages" would still include whatever cost Apple claims (or could convince a court of 8-)) for the original license.

Re:Berne convention? (4, Informative)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208587)

This is correct. But I'm not certain you can claim "a copy of OSX" is the damage per infringement.

Psystar in this case is using legally purchased copies of OSX.

Apple would be forced to disclose the ACTUAL *loss* that they sustain on each OS sale as the split between Retail and Development. So if every copy of OSX is sold at a $100 loss in order to push hardware sales they'd be forced to disclose that amount.

Re:Berne convention? (1)

nocomment (239368) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209039)

meh it's easy to circumvent though isn't it? Couldn't Apple just say that os x is nextstep rebranded and next owned the copyright on openstep. Since pple owns all next trademarks os x has therfore been trademarked since 1989 (or whateer). Sorry if this is ignorant IANAL.

Re:Berne convention? (1, Redundant)

gruntled (107194) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208527)

Copyright protection is automatic, from the moment the work is created in a fixed form.

HOWEVER

In the United States, if you want to sue for infringement of work, you must have registered the work.

It's true that if Apple didn't register a copyright, they can't sue for damages in the US.

Re:Berne convention? (5, Informative)

gruntled (107194) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208563)

Sigh. From the US Copyright Office:

http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ1.html#cr [copyright.gov]

Copyright Registration

In general, copyright registration is a legal formality intended to make a public record of the basic facts of a particular copyright. However, registration is not a condition of copyright protection. Even though registration is not a requirement for protection, the copyright law provides several inducements or advantages to encourage copyright owners to make registration. Among these advantages are the following:

        * Registration establishes a public record of the copyright claim.

        * Before an infringement suit may be filed in court, registration is necessary for works of U.S. origin.

Re:Berne convention? (1)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208643)

The GP said "It's true that if Apple didn't register a copyright, they can't sue for damages in the US."

So, if Apple hasn't registered the OSX copyright, they couldn't sue until they register the copyright, and then they can only sue for "actual damages and profits..." if it has been longer than 3 months since the specific version was published.

So, if Pystar is right, Apple would be wrong in suing in this case, but Pystar could still be liable for damages. I don't know what the damages could be, since Pystar bought a copy of OSX for each machine.

Re:Berne convention? (4, Insightful)

MidnightBrewer (97195) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208757)

So the copyright law basically says that you're protected automatically, but that the protection isn't worth anything until you actually register for protection? Nice. Good to know.

Re:Berne convention? (1)

gruntled (107194) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208777)

No, the automatic protection allows for criminal prosecution. If you want to sue yourself you have to register.

Re:Berne convention? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208827)

Why would I want to sue myself?

Re:Berne convention? (0, Offtopic)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208897)

Why would I want to sue myself?

To make the lawyers rich.

Isn't that why anyone sues anyone?

Although, I am sure that there was at least one case of "John Doe Vs. John Doe LLC", or someone suing their own sole-proprietorship.

ur readin it wrong (1)

Estanislao Martnez (203477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208879)

What the law boils down to is a procedural requirement that you register before you sue. The logic is that registration doesn't grant you copyright; it is nothing more than a public claim that you hold the copyright to a certain work. Unless you're contractually required to surrender it, you automatically have copyright over every work that you create.

So basically, the law requires you to make a formal, public claim of copyright over your work before you can sue somebody over infringements. I.e., you have some paperwork to do before going to court.

Re:Berne convention? (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208931)

Yes... but don't let the Pesky Facts interfere with a good lawyering.

Re:Berne convention? (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209051)

It is not required, but there are limits to the amount of Statutory Damages that can be sought.

Worthy of note, there are no such limits on the extent and nature of CIVIL damages that can be sought.

Ponder that carefully before you think about going into a civil suit with Apple as the plaintiff and you, clearly in the wrong.

Seriously?!? (2, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208485)

That's the worst argument I've ever heard. I've got two words for you Psystar: Berne Convention [wikipedia.org]

You'd almost think they were organized just to antagonize Apple. Hmm...

Re:Seriously?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208537)

Psystar is a legal troll.

Re:Seriously?!? (1, Flamebait)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208951)

Yeah, damn them for wanting to compete in some kind of open market. Apple has a right to a monopoly!

Re:Seriously?!? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208571)

Indeed they were. Apple formed Psystar as a way to boil the blood of Apple zealots and make them feel good about spending money on overpriced hardware.

Re:Seriously?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208573)

That's the worst counter argument I've ever heard. US copyright law, in compliance with the Berne convention, grants copyright as soon as something is in a fixed form. That said, you can't take action for the damages Apple is seeking unless you've registered the creation with the copyright office within a certain amount of time after its creation.

Re:Seriously?!? (3, Interesting)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208619)

The Berne Convention will be out the window if we ever pass the Orphan Works bill that Corbis keeps trying to push down our throats.

Re:Seriously?!? (5, Interesting)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208687)

That's the worst argument I've ever heard. I've got two words for you Psystar: Berne Convention

From the article you link to:

(note however that when the United States joined the Convention in 1988, they continued to make statutory damages and attorney's fees only available for registered works).

I suspect this is what Psystar are referring to, rather than Information Week's rather short, content free insinuation that Apple loses all rights if they fail to register.

You'd almost think they were organized just to antagonize Apple. Hmm...

Testing the waters, Hardware vendors want to sell something other than windows. I'm willing to bet one (or more) of the big 5 PC vendors is behind this

Sorry, but how exactly is this informative? (2, Interesting)

gruntled (107194) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208807)

In fact, you can't sue in a US court unless you've registered your copyright. The principles of the Berne Convention do indeed automatically grant copyright from the moment a work is placed in fixed form, but in the US, only copyright owners who register their works can sue for damages. Psystar is correct in this claim (assuming Apple did not in fact register the copyright).

Re:Sorry, but how exactly is this informative? (1, Informative)

ari_j (90255) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208981)

You're not quite right. But that's okay, this is Slashdot. Carry on!

1. You only lose statutory damages, and only for pre-registration infringement.
2. You can register anytime, although within a short time after publication is a good idea. So you register today, sue tomorrow, and get actual damages for pre-registration infringement and statutory damages for post-registration infringement.

Any failure to register the copyright isn't going to stop Apple from enforcing its copyright going forward.

Re:Sorry, but how exactly is this informative? (4, Insightful)

gruntled (107194) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209057)

I believe I am in fact correct on this. From the US Copyright Office:

http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ1.html#cr [copyright.gov]

"Before an infringement suit may be filed in court, registration is necessary for works of U.S. origin."

Yes, you can register after the fact, but if you don't do so within 90 days of publication or -- and this is particularly important in this instance -- *prior* to infringement of the work, your award is limited to actual damages; hardly worth the money Apple would be paying to its lawyers. Again, assuming that Apple didn't register the work.

Re:Seriously?!? (4, Interesting)

LoRdTAW (99712) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208823)

Follow the money? It just might lead to Redmond, Palo Alto or Round Rock.

Apple will never let anyone run OSX on non Apple hardware. As long as they want to keep their hip turtle neck wearing image they must keep complete control. Imagine Dell selling dull gray OSX computers for half the price Apple does? Or OSX Latitudes. The once hip OSX now runs on un cool nerdy looser PC guys computer. Not cool.

No I am not bashing Apple or its users. This is what their marketing department must think. Remember Apple is kept alive by what I believe is a damn good marketing machine. It keeps Apple looking hip no matter what. Take away the cool hip design and marketing and your looking at another boring PC (technically an Apple is a PC). How else can you explain people high fiving each other when they bought their shiny new iPhones?

Re:Seriously?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208991)

(technically an Apple is a PC)

An Apple is a personal computer? Holy shit, thats fucking informative right there.

Case closed! (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208489)

Re:Case closed! (2, Informative)

Divebus (860563) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208699)

Looks like you're right. The Apple lawyers only need to stand up, say "Registration Number TX0006849489" and sit down. (sfx: gavel strike)

Back to Basics (4, Informative)

westlake (615356) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208773)

The United States Copyright Office says otherwise.

"No publication or registration or other action in the Copyright Office is required to secure copyright.

If made before or within 5 years of publication, registration will establish prima facie evidence in court of the validity of the copyright and of the facts stated in the certificate.

If registration is made within 3 months after publication of the work or prior to an infringement of the work, statutory damages and attorney's fees will be available to the copyright owner in court actions. Otherwise, only an award of actual damages and profits is available to the copyright owner.

If the work is an unpublished or published computer program, the deposit requirement is one visually perceptible copy in source code of the first 25 and last 25 pages of the program. For a program of fewer than 50 pages, the deposit is a copy of the entire program.

If the work is in a CD-ROM format, the deposit requirement is one complete copy of the material, that is, the CD-ROM, the operating software, and any manual(s) accompanying it. If registration is sought for the computer program on the CD-ROM, the deposit should also include a printout of the first 25 and last 25 pages of source code for the program." Copyright Office Basics [copyright.gov]

Berne Convention? (1)

TejWC (758299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208519)

IIRC, doesn't the Berne Convention say that all creative works have copyright even if you don't register it?

Re:Berne Convention? (0)

russlar (1122455) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208567)

doesn't the Berne Convention say that all creative works have copyright even if you don't register it?

Not trying to flame, but by this argument, the Berne Convention should render the GPL null and void.

Re:Berne Convention? (5, Informative)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208585)

Not trying to flame, but by this argument, the Berne Convention should render the GPL null and void.

No, the GPL has most of its power because copyrights are automatic. The GPL is an optional license that you can use to copy the program. If you don't obey the license, it is a copyright violation, since copyrights are automatic.

Re:Berne Convention? (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209045)

That said, if you register your copyright, you'll get significant advantages.

Re:Berne Convention? (1)

AceofSpades19 (1107875) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208617)

how?, the GPL is a license people put on their software willingly

Re:Berne Convention? (2, Insightful)

Skrapion (955066) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208721)

No. You can always waive your own rights. The GPL is a statement that you're waiving some of your rights, provided the users of your work follow the rules in the license.

Re:Berne Convention? (1)

Garwulf (708651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208875)

Yes, it does, but to defend a copyright in court or prosecute an infringement case, you generally have to be able to provide proof that the copyright is yours, and that you created the work first.

In other words, if person A sues person B on the grounds that B violated A's copyright, A has to be able to prove that his work predates B's work. The main legal proof is a copyright registration.

(And, for the record, a "poor man's copyright" is not legally valid in a court of law - it's too easy to fake. All you have to do to fake it is mail an empty envelope to yourself, and then seal it later with whatever you want.)

Snowball, hell (1, Redundant)

G0rAk (809217) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208523)

That argument has surely got no chance of flying. The OSX splash screen says that Apple own the copyrights on the software as does the pretty box the disks come in and all you need to assert copyright ownership is a mark on the product that says so.

That restricting OSX to apple approved hardware is anti-competitive might have a chance but even with a little hat that first snowball ain't gonna last long.

Re:Snowball, hell (1)

Skrapion (955066) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208793)

all you need to assert copyright ownership is a mark on the product that says so.

You don't even need that, but if you ever go to court, it helps your case. Having your copyright registered helps even more.

As others are saying, it may be difficult to sue for more than just damages if your copyrighted work isn't registered. But the courts aren't that inflexible. Even if Apple can't sue for statutory damages, I'm sure they can find something else to sue the infringing companies over, particularly if they can prove that the companies knew what they were doing is illegal, and it's hard to claim ignorance after the first time Apple sues you for damages.

Re:Snowball, hell (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208855)

all you need to assert copyright ownership is a mark on the product that says so.

"The use of a copyright notice is no longer required under U.S. law." Copyright Law Basics - Notice of Copyright [copyright.gov]

Re:Snowball, hell (0)

arminw (717974) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208967)

...That restricting OSX to apple approved hardware is anti-competitive might have a chance...

That doesn't even make sense, because that would mean Honda could be forced to allow the installation of their engines in Fords and if they did not, be accused of being anticompetitive.

Re:Snowball, hell (1)

fermion (181285) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209007)

The thing with psystar is that it is disruptive, but not disruptive in any useful way.

For instance, OSS is disruptive but it is also useful to the major players. Closed source and open source can coexist, and the major players make it so.

OTOH, all the major players depend on two things. The EULA and copyright. Copyright, in terms of software, was well defined by the Billg mistakes and the battles between MS and Apple. The system seems to be a point at which most can live with, and the current battles seem to focus on patents, which is not a point most of us can live.

What I don't understand is why any of the major players would want to undermine the EULA. There has been some talk of Psystar having some major backing, but who? Why would MS want to limit it's ability to practically give away the OS on a new machine, with the restriction that it can only be used on that machine and not resold. Certainly I know of no software company whose business model does not depend on a EULA.

These clones suck (3, Interesting)

DesScorp (410532) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208529)

I wasn't using a Mac during the last time Apple allowed clones, but several people I knew at the time all claimed that their clones were generally faster than the machines Apple sold. So now that I us OS X, I'd like some Intel clones... but not from these clowns. They sound like the SCO of cloners.

Re:These clones suck (2, Interesting)

I_want_information (1413105) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208645)

We had one of those clones -- a Power Computing machine. I don't know that I'd say it was faster than similar Apple-branded machines, but I will say that it didn't take me long to decide that it would be the LAST clone I'd ever buy.

There's a reason why they were cheaper... made from much cheaper components. The case was flimsy, the cables looked gerry-rigged to make them work with Apple monitors, everything about them just screamed cheap!

Re:These clones suck (1)

Divebus (860563) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208811)

The Apple clones were faster. As startups, they could hand pick smaller batches of components - expecting to only build 25,000 machines at a pop. They could cherry pick an entire run of one component and design to a known tolerance for the life of the manufacturing cycle. For Apple to build 600,000 machines of one model, they'd need to lower the performance expectation to accommodate component tolerances from several runs of the same part over many months.

I think it was StarMax with a 533MHz machine when apple was shipping 400MHz. The cooling air exhaust port felt like a hair dryer, but... hey... they did it.

Re:Hot Air Ports! (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208919)

Faster machine and space heating for the winter FTW!

This might save Psystar, but it won't help others (5, Insightful)

swillden (191260) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208539)

The way US copyright law works is that copyright exists automatically, no registration is necessary. However, registration *is* required before filing a lawsuit. If Apple really failed to register before suing Psystar, they might be able to get the suit dismissed. If the judge is particularly nice, they might even get it dismissed with prejudice, meaning it can't be brought again (though I can't see why a judge would do that).

However, that will in no way prevent Apple from registering their copyright and then filing suit against others. Nor will it prevent Apple from suing Psystar over alleged infringements of other copyrights (say, newer versions of OS X).

This is an ordinary bit of legal maneuvering by some attorneys who noticed an apparent procedural oversight by their opponents and who are attempting to capitalize on it to get at least a little delay, and perhaps even more. It's really not a big deal.

(IANAL, and I didn't even stay in a Holiday Inn Express, so the above is likely complete crap.)

Re:This might save Psystar, but it won't help othe (1)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208651)

There's an exception. You get a few months after "publishing" your work in which you can register your copyright *after* the offense and still sue for punative damages. I think it's like a 3 month window. So.. technically if OSX was released 3 months ago Apple could correct their mistake and still sue for punative damages.

Re:This might save Psystar, but it won't help othe (1)

kithrup (778358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208671)

I believe, but can't cite the law, that you can actually register up to the time of filing a lawsuit, to get statutory damages.

Re:This might save Psystar, but it won't help othe (1)

kithrup (778358) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208717)

Another poster provided information that contradicted me, so I am pointing out that I am wrong 8-).

Re:This might save Psystar, but it won't help othe (2, Interesting)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208713)

The way US copyright law works is that copyright exists automatically, no registration is necessary. However, registration *is* required before filing a lawsuit.

But the important thing to remember is that, even if you haven't registered, if someone infringes you can register and then file a lawsuit. You might not get the full advantages of registering before someone infringed, but having failed to register so far won't stop you. It can be done retroactively.

Re:This might save Psystar, but it won't help othe (1)

belrick (31159) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208965)

However, registration *is* required before filing a lawsuit.

I thought it was only required in order to have a certain type of damages awarded (which may make it economically infeasible to sue without have filed, but strictly speaking not necessary).

Weird claims by Pystar - their giant leap (1)

itsybitsy (149808) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208545)

The comment on the linked article is correct, copyright is created the moment you write your code. So Apple's covered there.

On the allegations of antitrust that might have some merit.

As a EFi-x user I like my hachintosh even if it's a bit of extra work. I also like my mac book pro even if it's more expensive.

The EFi-x (efi-x.com) device is interesting since they don't modify any of the Mac OS X code at all. They modify the BIOS of the motherboard and likely do some Virtualization Tricks (tm) to make Mac OS X think it's running on apple hardware.

Apple would - in my humble opinion as a NeXT, OpenStep and Mac user since 1985 - be better off opening their os software to third parties. It would be fantastic to see OpenStep 5.0, oh, er, Mac OS X 10.5 whip Vista's butt. Maybe when Steve leaves soon.

Re:Weird claims by Pystar - their giant leap (5, Insightful)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208683)

Yes. But would OSX be OSX if it ran on someone else's hardware.

As soon as you allow Joe Schmoe to install OSX he's going to want to start making demands. "Why doesn't my 15 year old network card work?" "Why doesn't my printer work?" "Why does my computer keep crashing."

The reason Microsoft got into trouble with Vista was largely in part due to pressure from system builders pressuring them to include hardware that wasn't actually capable of running Vista smoothly, or had inadequate driver support.

Opening OSX would be like kicking a house cat out into the gutter and expecting it to fend for itself. It's just not ready for the rediculous diversity of hardware that Windows is obligated to support by running on commodity hardware. That smooth "just works" will be descend into the same brand tarnishing sludge that is compatibility.

Re:Weird claims by Pystar - their giant leap (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208831)

As soon as you allow Joe Schmoe to install OSX he's going to want to start making demands. "Why doesn't my 15 year old network card work?" "Why doesn't my printer work?" "Why does my computer keep crashing."

Not at all. There's a very simple answer: "Fuck off, we don't support your hardware". It's very similar to the "Fuck off, you don't have the right to install our software on your hardware" answer they give now, so I'd be hard-pressed to believe that consumers would fight such an answer.

Re:Weird claims by Pystar - their giant leap (2, Insightful)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208989)

As soon as you allow Joe Schmoe to install OSX he's going to want to start making demands. "Why doesn't my 15 year old network card work?" "Why doesn't my printer work?" "Why does my computer keep crashing.

I understand that all those problems will become more relevent if OSX is on machines with random hardware, but I disagree with the result. I've seen people working on a theoretically well-tuned Mac in a lab, where the Mac was in a crashed state (well, the OS stopped responding) because it could not handle a regular-old USB peripheral drive, formatted for MacOSX (Don't know HFS or what). None of the users considered it a crash, even though the computer stopped responding for ten minutes, and they lost all their work. The fact that it was able to autorecover while keeping the desktop on in the background made it "not a crash".

I've had a lot of problems with Macs, and a lot of problems with PCs. Most people are more forgiving of Mac problems. Personally, I'm more forgiving of PC problems because I understand what's wrong more often. And I suppose that not understanding either makes Macs more comfortable to most people, even when they crash.

Re: Yes, Mac OS X on generic hardware is great! (5, Interesting)

itsybitsy (149808) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209013)

Mac OS X runs just fine on a Gigabyte GA-EP45-DQ6 with the EFix (efi-x.com) gizmo and YES IT is still Mac OS X. Can't tell the difference! 4 core processor, 8GB RAM... lots of disk (up to ten 1.5 tera byte drives for that motherboard). NVidia graphics board with 30" Samsung display (so gorgeous I have two, one on my mac book pro and will never go back to the smaller displays for my machines).

So yes, Mac OS X is just the same on "generic" hardware.

Apple could specify supported configurations and keep the drivers open. NeXT did this very successfully with OpenStep 4.3 years ago. In fact many years after NeXT was purchased by and took over Apple people were still writing drivers for OpenStep!

It can work. They've proven it before.

Microsoft needs to be whipped by a better system. Unleash the beast Apple. Unleash it for the good fight against Microcrap.

Re:Weird claims by Pystar - their giant leap (1, Insightful)

MidnightBrewer (97195) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208805)

OSX is whipping Vista's butt without running on commodity hardware. Mac adoption has been on the rise since Vista's release, due in part to Vista's success in losing the confidence of Windows users. However, OSX would fall into the same morass of problems the minute that Apple allowed it to run on any old machine, as users running on old hardware but lusting for new eye-candy attempted to crowbar OSX into their outdated rig. No thanks.

I've been bricked before (0, Offtopic)

jciarlan (1152991) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208555)

I've had my osx86 machine bricked by updates, not to the point of hardware failure, but to the point of unrecoverableness. There's actually a .kext file that they put in called "dont_steal_macosx.kext" or something similar, but I guess that's a risk you have to take with this kind of software

Re:I've been bricked before (1)

TD-Linux (1295697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208677)

That's what you get for pirating software.

I suppose there is a very small chance that you actually created your osx86 machine legally, but based on your tone I doubt it.

I don't blame Apple at all for this, the vast majority of their work goes into OS X - losing it would be a nearly unrecoverable disaster, except of course for the iPod.

Re:I've been bricked before (1, Troll)

Predius (560344) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208745)

Who said he pirated anything? I bought a boxed copy of Panther for my frankenmac.

Re:I've been bricked before (1)

jciarlan (1152991) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208753)

I guess you're right, I've been thinking about buying a license to 10.5 just because I believe pirating software is wrong, I just enjoy the novelty of "I paid $800 for my 2.6Ghz dual core mac!". I don't blame apple either, but I really do wish they would just put out a version of OSX that would run legally on a PC. I don't care if I don't get support. Literally all they have to do is stop bricking my machine with quicktime updates and I would shell out the $129 instantly

Re:I've been bricked before (2, Insightful)

Sancho (17056) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208755)

"Bricked" means "turned the hardware into a brick." It means, literally, that the hardware cannot be used for its intended purpose anymore. If you were able to reinstall, your hardware was not bricked.

Re:I've been bricked before (1)

jciarlan (1152991) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208853)

"not to the point of hardware failure"
I don't think apple has the power to get away with pushing updates that would destroy hardware

Re:I've been bricked before (3, Funny)

Sancho (17056) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208893)

Yeah, but that's like saying, "He killed me. Not to the point of death, but ...."

By definition... (5, Insightful)

GrahamCox (741991) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208579)

Psystar is also accusing Apple of bricking Macs that don't run on genuine Apple hardware

Since the definition of "Macintosh" is a computer built/branded/sold by Apple, and no-one else, this statement is nonsensical. It could say "Psystar is accusing Apple of bricking generic PCs that are attempting to illegally run OS X", but, like it or not, I would have thought they are entitled to do so.

Re:By definition... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208663)

It could say "Psystar is accusing Apple of bricking generic PCs that are attempting to illegally run OS X", but, like it or not, I would have thought they are entitled to do so.

I'm really leaning towards Pystar now. It's like buying a car, and when you turn the key you have to agree never to drive on the highway.

Re:By definition... (5, Funny)

TheoMurpse (729043) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208795)

No, it's more like registering a username on Slashdot, and then being told you're not allowed to use car analogies.

Re:By definition... (4, Interesting)

MSG (12810) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208697)

"Psystar is accusing Apple of bricking generic PCs that are attempting to illegally run OS X"

It is not illegal to run OS X on generic PCs. It is a violation of the license, but the license does not carry the force of law. At this point, I'm not even sure that it's been settled that licenses are enforcible, given that their terms aren't available prior to the customer paying for the product, which makes it a sale or purchase.

Re:By definition... (1)

dangitman (862676) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208869)

At this point, I'm not even sure that it's been settled that licenses are enforcible, given that their terms aren't available prior to the customer paying for the product, which makes it a sale or purchase.

But they are available prior to purchase. [apple.com]

Bizzare (4, Interesting)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208595)

A few months back I would have never bought conspiracy theory that Psystar was mearly a front for other companies who wanted to bundle OS X (think SCO - MS) but with their tenacity and resources I am starting to wonder who Psystar really is. Oddly even Apple has asserted this claim in court docs. Once this is over we will surely hear some interesting stories.

In Proof Of Stupid, Look No Further (2, Interesting)

rsmith-mac (639075) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208603)

Psystar is also accusing Apple of bricking Macs that don't run on genuine Apple hardware

I'm pretty sure only Apple sells Macs, and I'm also pretty sure Apple is using genuine Apple hardware. Ergo there is no such thing as a Mac with non-genuine Apple hardware. Pystar may sell a computer that can hobble on Mac OS X, but that is not a Mac. What Pystar means to say is:

Pystar is also accusing Apple of bricking their shoddy hardware which has been cobbled together to run Mac OS X

Of course the bricking claim is also bogus; Apple's firmware updates don't run on any kind of Hack (including Pystar's machines) so nothing can be bricked. At this point Pystar isn't even grasping for straws, it's a Hail Mary attempt when the football game ended an hour ago and everyone has gone home.

Re:In Proof Of Stupid, Look No Further (1)

speed of lightx2 (1375759) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208963)

I'm pretty sure only Apple sells Macs, and I'm also pretty sure Apple is using genuine Apple hardware. .

What do you mean by genuine Apple hardware? As in Intel processors, Nvidia cards,...?

Re:In Proof Of Stupid, Look No Further (4, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208983)

You don't understand because you don't follow legal precedents in copyright law.

Pystar are trying to make that claim that the Mac OS X bootloader detects their hardware and refuses to run on it. That's illegal - so says the Supreme Court - as it denies competition. That is, you and I are required to buy a computer from Apple and only from Apple if we want it to run Mac OS X. What's more, the Lexmark case has declared that code written to enforce monopoly control is void of copyright. Pystar would really love to have Mac OS X stripped of copyright.. that would make their business model a whole lot more profitable.

Why is this such an issue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208639)

Apple is a hardware company that doesn't want their name damaged by people turning out inferior machines on their proprietary OS. This is purely about another company wanting to get in on the Mac name which Apple spent a fortune promoting. They are free to make PCs or Linux machines why is it so critical that they make Macs? Could it be that they are popular.? I got handed a Mac clone from another company, I actually don't know the name of the company, by the company I work with. I was told it was faster than stock Macs. Well it turned out to be much slower than my old Intel Mac 2.0 it was supposed to be replacing and it wasn't stable. I handed it back after a day and went back to my old machine. They finally broke down and got me a proper Mac Pro and it's run like a champ ever since. Lesson, if you want or need a Mac buy a Mac. If you don't buy a PC or Linux system. If you want a cheaper computer there are plenty of cheaper PCs and Linux machines and the PCs will run far more software. I love my Macs but you couldn't give me a clone. My time has value and my experience is they tend to be cheapie knock offs. Macs aren't as over priced as their rep would claim so boasting of a cheaper Mac means it's probably a cheaper machine and more than likely it'll be slower and less stable. Just not worth the hassles. I know some one will rave about their amazing Mac clone but try something heavier duty than word processing or editing the family's vacation video and you might be surprised.

Re:Why is this such an issue? (1)

Zaphod-AVA (471116) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208841)

Because I would like to build my own machine that runs OS X.

I like and recommend Macs to those that would enjoy owning them. I own both Mac and PC machines, but I am extremely fussy about my hardware. I have always preferred to assemble my own machines, choosing high quality components. My custom machines have a much lower failure rate then store bought machines of any brand. If I take the trouble to buy a copy of OS X, and install it on my machine, I understand that Mac will not give me user support, that is only reasonable. Is it too much to ask for them to not actively attempt to sabotage my system?

Re:Why is this such an issue? (2, Interesting)

arminw (717974) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209067)

....Because I would like to build my own machine that runs OS X.....

Apple has known for a long time about people like you and have never sicced their lawyers on any of them and most likely won't ever do that. Only, if you started manufacturing them in your basement or garage, trying to make money, that their lawyers with spring into action.

(..to not actively attempt to sabotage my system...)

There is no evidence whatsoever that they do this, even with the iPhone, but their software is written for their hardware not yours. Therefore, if your hardware is not exactly like theirs, which is most likely true, then it is highly likely that their next update will not work correctly on non-Apple hardware.

Don't bust on Psystar (1)

fortapocalypse (1231686) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208679)

Sure they might be taking a desperate route to defend themselves, and sure they probably have backing from one or more of Apple's competitors, but I don't see why Mac clones wouldn't be good for OS X in the long run. Look at what happened in the 80s with IBM-compatibles (clones). That basically forged the way for Intel-based architecture to be mainstream that even Apple uses now, and basically made Windows the dominant force on the desktop from the 90s to today, even though Vista was a functional and PR nightmare. I use OS X at work and I'd love to use it at home but I just can't afford a Mac so I'm stuck with XP and Vista. I came close to buying a Psystar, but until there are more "Mac clones" and they become more mainsteam or at least not litigated against, I won't buy one. I hope that within a year or two that will change (but I'm not holding my breath).

Re:Don't bust on Psystar (2, Interesting)

TD-Linux (1295697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208775)

I don't see why Mac clones wouldn't be good for OS X in the long run. Look at what happened in the 80s with IBM-compatibles (clones). That basically forged the way for Intel-based architecture to be mainstream

What you say is true, however it really should be Apple's choice if they want to enable their OS to run on clones or not. Doing so would require a lot of additional work - supporting a wider array of platforms creates a tech support headache, for one. And failing to provide tech support would be unthinkable, as it is one of Apple's most prominent benefits.

Re:Don't bust on Psystar (1)

onefriedrice (1171917) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208895)

Look at what happened in the 80s with IBM-compatibles (clones).

Or, more relevantly, look what happened in the 90s with Mac-compatibles (clones). Those who keep insisting Apple should try to compete directly with Microsoft on generic PC hardware simply do not understand how Apple's business plan works.

Re:Don't bust on Psystar (1)

dangitman (862676) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208921)

but I don't see why Mac clones wouldn't be good for OS X in the long run.

But shouldn't that be Apple's decision?

Look at what happened in the 80s with IBM-compatibles (clones).

And look at what happened in the 90s with licensed Mac clones.

I use OS X at work and I'd love to use it at home but I just can't afford a Mac

Really? Then you must be running some cheap-ass PC hardware. Even if you can't afford a new one (even a mini?) - then used models abound.

Behind the Scenes (2, Funny)

Moblaster (521614) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208701)

Apple was complaining that there were parties unknown behind the scenes running Psystar because they could not have been able to challenge and sue Apple with such impugnity otherwise.

At least now we know it's SCO.

US Copyright Office search (4, Informative)

evilgrug (915703) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208737)

Mac OS X Leopard Version 10.5.
Type of Work: Text
Registration Number / Date: TX0006849489 / 2008-01-24
Application Title: Mac OS X Leopard Version 10.5.
Title: Mac OS X Leopard Version 10.5.
Description: Print material + CD-ROMs.
Copyright Claimant: Apple Inc.. Address: 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA 95014
Date of Creation: 2007
Date of Publication: 2007-10-26
Nation of First Publication: United States
Authorship on Application: Apple Inc., employer for hire; Domicile: United States. Authorship: new and revised text, illustrations and compilation; new and revised computer program.
Previous Registration: 2006, TX-6-325-148.
Pre-existing Material: Previous versions of "Mac OS" and "Mac OS X" operating system software code.
Basis of Claim: new and revised text, illustrations and compilation; new and revised computer program.
Copyright Note: C.O. correspondence.

Re:US Copyright Office search (1)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208867)

What if Pystar is using OSX 1.5.4, released on 30 June 2008?

That copyright is for 1.5.0, and I didn't see one for 1.5.1 or 1.5.4 in the database.

Does each published version need to be copyrighted?

Re:US Copyright Office search (1)

falcon5768 (629591) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208947)

I highly doubt it since for all purposes that could be taken further to the point of saying EVERY version update by every software publisher in the world invalidated their software.

Re:US Copyright Office search (1)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208993)

Maybe you are right and it doesn't matter.

But this is for published versions.

IANAL, but can they sue over a derived software product from a copyright registration for a previous version? How close does the newer version have to be to the older version?

I really don't think it would work in the reverse, registering a newer version to get the increased protection for an older version of the software.

Re:US Copyright Office search (2, Interesting)

beav007 (746004) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208999)

Actually, it doesn't say anywhere that it applies to 10.5.0. It says 10.5. - three times, it says that, in fact.

The question then becomes whether you can legally construe the registration for the major version to apply to the minor versions as well.

Conspiracy! haha... (1)

Pederson (1431413) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208763)

ha, it would be really funny if their actually WERE a number of powerful/large companies that were behind this, and prystar is actually backed by this legal powerhouse that found this 'problem' with OS X's copyright or whatever. I want some technology-base-corporation-scandals (between the corporations and not the consumers.. for once...)

Psystar should of.. (1)

A12m0v (1315511) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208771)

spend its money on developing a Mac OS X clone instead of on legal battles with Apple.
Some of the bits and pieces are already publicly available, that would of been a much wiser way to compete with Apple.
I personally would love for the Mac OS to remain exclusively on Apple's own hardware.

Re:Psystar should of.. (1)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208859)

spend its money on developing a Mac OS X clone

I'm sure that would take far more time and money than they can muster.

-jcr

Oxymoron. (0, Redundant)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208851)

Macs that don't run on genuine Apple hardware.

If it's not Apple hardware, it's not a Mac.

-jcr

PC rules! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208889)

I have known it. Apple is afraid that if people put Mac OS on non-apple computers and upgrade their hardware as they please, that people will be happy and everything will...'just work.'

Failed premise (1)

Meor (711208) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208927)

You don't need to file with the copyright office to have a copyright. Simply claiming copyright is enough.

I find this whole conversation funny (1, Insightful)

linesma (869062) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208933)

I find this whole conversation funny. Why? If it were Micro$oft suing Pystar, everyone would be lining up to defend them, not the other way around. What makes it so different? Individuals have been trained like Pavlov's Dogs to growl and show hate whenever the word Micro$oft or Winders is mentioned. I do not personally like Winders (I use Linux for everything but gaming), but I do believe it did play a role in standardizing computers. Have we become "toys" for slick marketing to not apply the same standard to both companies? Thank You (He steps down from his soapbox and hangs his head in shame. He defended the Antichrist after all)

Re:I find this whole conversation funny (1)

A12m0v (1315511) | more than 5 years ago | (#26209035)

how would Psystar manage to get Microsoft to sue it? by buying Vista and installing it on its hardware?

*sigh* needs more quality editors. (5, Insightful)

Meor (711208) | more than 5 years ago | (#26208943)

This is just an editor rant. I'm sorry, kdawson is just a horrible editor. First he posts "google is horrible they're not giving bonuses and feeding the masses dogfood; P.S. use linux" Then he posts this article which dozens of people have immediately spotted as B.S. I want my 7 minutes of reading Slashdot back.

Who's really upset about any of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26208997)

Is anyone who is not a Mac Fanboi protesting that "Psystar is bad and Apple is good?"

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