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What is a Hackintosh?


Question: What is a Hackintosh?

When Apple announced their switch away from the PowerPC architecture to Intel's processors and chipsets, many were looking forward to having the ability to run Windows software on Apple hardware and Apple's operating systems on their non-Apple hardware. Apple was able to eventually build their Boot Camp feature in Mac OS X 10.5 allowing Windows to run on Apple hardware. Those hoping to easily run Mac OS X on a standard PC don't have it so easy.

Even though running Mac OS X on a generic PC is not supported by Apple, it is possible to accomplish given the right hardware. A system that is made to run the Apple operating system is referred to as Hackitosh. This term comes from the fact that the software needs to be hacked in order to properly run.

Hackintosh computers have risen in popularity over the past year due to Apple's refusal to join into the netbook craze. With Apple's least expensive laptop computer costing $950, many people are willing to spend around $300 on a Windows based netbook, around $150 for a copy of Mac OS X and downloading some hacked bootloaders. This come in much cheaper than Apple's MacBook laptop yet give a functional albeit unofficial version of Mac OS X.

The trend has become so popular that a variety of sites are available that provide instructions on how to convert specific netbooks into a hackintosh. Boing Boing specifically has a Mac OS X Netbook Compatibility Chart that shows some of the most common netbooks available and how compatible their on at being converted to run Mac OS X.

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