Archive for December 2008

Hackintosh: Installing OS X on my PC – Triple boot osx, ubuntu and windows xp

My macbook laptop was recently destroyed in a car accident, and since I now had a lack of os x and a unused leopard license to my disposal, I decided to become a member of the OSX86 group and install OS X on my PC.

The way to go about installing OSX on your PC these days are fairly simple. You figure out what instruction set your PC supports – is it AMD or Intel, and does it have SSE2, SSE3? Then you download a prepatched distribution for your particular system, install a vanilla attempt, and start tweaking drivers to get your system working.

Here’s the specs of my system:

Asus P5K-E WIFI motherboard with intel P35 chipset, 1333mhz FSB
Intel Core 2 Due E6550 2.33 Ghz dual core processor
8gb Patriot Viper DDr2 memory @ 800mhz
NVidia GeForce 8600GT 256mb video card
1x WD Raptor 150GB 10k sata hdd, three partitions (liux ext3, windows ntfs, osx hfs+)
2x Seagate 750gb baraccuda storage drives, one NTFS, one FAT32

When I started this process I already had linux and windows running, which I wanted to keep. I tried both the iDeneb and Kalyway distribution and found iDeneb to work the easiest.

I used Ubuntu to create a partition for this install, and left it unformatted as a primary partition on my main hard drive. I popped in the iDeneb 10.5.5 dvd, used the Disk Utility to format this partition as a mac extended (journaled) partition, and customized my installation as follows:

- Kernel: Sleep
- Chipset: ICH*
- Video: NVinject256
- all the available applications (specifically we want osx86 tools)

Everything else you can install later.

Once the install was done it booted into osx (with the cd still in the drive).
From the “applications->iDeneb App->osx86tools” folder in finder I launched osx86 tools, and clicked “Download and Install Hardware Drivers”. This is basically pure awesomeness. It will prompt you to install probe utilities – do so, and then restart the computer. Once you’re back in osx, launch osx86 tools again, open the same Download and Install Hardware Drivers box, and it will start probing for hardware.

I selected “AD1988b” for my audio driver – experiment to see what works! Everything else was listed. IMPORTANT: Before installing, I REMOVED the listed Graphics controller by selecting it and clicking “remove item”, since I found that this driver conflicts with the already-installed driver I selected during setup.

Click “Download and Install”, and after a couple of dialogs your install would be complete. Reboot your computer (keep that disc in the drive) and you should have an awesome setup ready to go now.

Setting up multiboot

I was getting annoyed at having the dvd in the drive to boot osx and I wanted access to the other OS’s on the system. To enable this I wanted to reinstall GRUB on my MBR, which I did by using an Ubuntu live cd, and the help of Restoring GRUB and OSx86 installation guides. Restore GRUB to the main harddrive, then add osx to your grub list.

You should be all set now! Go on and install Quicksilver and enjoy OSx!

PS: Using Parallels desktop, you can turn your windows partition into a virtual machine inside OSx so that you can run all those expensive apps you bought for windows inside osx. its awesome!

The Ending of an Era.

With graduate applications sent out and another semester coming to an end, I can’t help but look back at where I came from. If I have to choose one expression that really influences and reflects on life, something that touched me, that changed my outlook on life and that reinforced my awe and wonder at our magnificent world, it would have to be the words of Albert Knag in Jostein Gaarder’s novel “Sophie’s World”:

“Life is both sad and solemn. We are let into a wonderful world, we meet one another here, greet each other and wander together for a brief time. Then we lose each other and disappear as suddenly and unreasonably as we arrived.”

My response to this was (and still is) a humble “Wow”. Gaarder expresses both the majestical highs of exuberance and the unthinkable but ultimately true end of life without judging or diminishing both. And is that not how life truly is? Although this quote deals on a first level with life as a whole, it is just as true for our daily lives. It amazes me to experience the daily comings and goings of people, the connections we make with humans that we meet one evening and afterwards, as we walk away, not realize that we will never see them again. The profound sorrow that is a part of all existence, but also the profound joy of every moment that we share amongst those we connect with. I sometimes wish that we can hold on to the beautiful moments, the great achievements and the times of joy and happiness, that we can freeze time, that we can relive our profound moments in more than just memory. But as this quote so aptly conveys, this is not the way of the world. But that is not a reason for despair or sorrow. No, it is just a motivation to cherish every moment for all that it encompasses. If we could relive times at our slightest whims, if we could get a second chance at life, maybe we would find that, instead of finding recaptured glory and awe, we are only diminishing the worth of the moment. Maybe the biggest factor in creating the exuberance and awe that we experience is the fact that we can’t relive it. Why would we walk the extra mile now if we can do it tomorrow? But still, our heart yearns for the chance to recapture and relive. And not in vain, for by doing so, I believe we keep the memories unstained and unspoilt, the memories of our “brief time” in this wonderful world. Although we all spend only a limited time here, this world in filled with so much emotion, so much strength and weakness, so much love and hate, so much exaltation and so much sorrow, that “wonderful” fails to describe the awe, humility, joy and love that we find here on earth. I would not exchange my memories for any riches or glory.