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Boot Camp = who cares

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johnhattan

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The new Apple machines can now multi-boot XP and/or have an XP partition on the hard drive.

Free clue: unless you have very special needs (like you're a developer deploying on multiple platforms), multi-booting different operating systems is too clunky for words.

Me: Okay, I finished writing and spell-checking a spreadsheet of earthwork calculations in my superior-to-Windows spreadsheet app on my Mac. Now all I need to do is paste the text into AutoCAD so that it'll print up with the rest of my stuff. Of course, AutoCAD only runs on XP, so I'll need to save my file out in an XP-capable format, save it on a key drive or a server because the drive formats are incompatible, shut down my machine, restart it in that inferior XP operating system, load the file, copy it to the clipboard, and paste it into AutoCAD. That should take ten minutes tops.

The bottom line is this. . .

Fact 1: The new Apple machines were always intended to be able to boot XP. There's a reason why it took approximately three minutes from the machines appearing on peoples' doorsteps to some kid getting XP running on one.

Fact 2: OS X was always intended to be able to boot on generic PC hardware. Apple has had betas of Intel-capable OSX out for months. After people got OS X booting on non-Apple machines, Apple made approximately zero effort to prevent it from happening when they went gold.

Now then, if you're gonna argue that Apple's all about ponytailed openness and isn't about securely marrying their hardware to their software, I say HA! Apple has ALWAYS worked hard to lock specific OS's into specific machines. The first thing MacOS has always done when it boots is to figure out what kind of machine it's running on and see if it's even allowed to boot on that machine. Whether it's done so that you'll get the best possible user experience by not running a pig OS on an underpowered machine or (more likely) to get you to buy new hardware is irrelevent, the fact remains that Apple has always worked hard to ensure that their OS will only boot on the machines that they want it to boot on.

But when it comes to OS X for Intel, they're suddenly caught twiddling their thumbs when they discover that any kid with a Dell can boot OS X on his machine?

Not a chance.

Fact is, Boot Camp is a stop-gap. A kludge. In the future, Apple's gonna come out with the following:

- A virtualization program that'll allow you to run XP apps from within OS X. Whether it works as a standard machine emulator (like Virtual PC or VMWare) that runs all your Windows apps in a box or if it's a bit more integrated like Apple's "blue/yellow box" solution of running pre-OS X apps remains to be seen. But you will be able to run XP apps directly on your Mac, including things like clipboard support.

- A virtualization program that'll allow you to run OS X apps from within XP. Whether it works as a standard machine emulator (like Virtual PC or VMWare) that. . .etc etc etc.

Both of those things are gonna happen. It's inevitable. And if Apple don't do it, someone else will. And then multi-booting between XP and OS X will fade away like all kludges do.
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In the future, Apple's gonna come out with the following:


There may be a number three option.

Quote:
Quoted from macosxrumours.com
But here's one tidbit that sources in Cupertino want us to get out to developers: rather than adding Windows application compatibility to OS X or even official dual-boot support to the latest "Macintel" computers....Apple's emphasis in the 10.5 era will be on resurrecting 'Yellow Box for Windows,' a set of Cocoa (and potentially also Carbon) API's for Windows that would allow Universal Binary applications to run on Windows with a mere 150MB software package installation. And best of all, there is no extra work to be done on the developer's part to get fully native, rock-solid stable performance from their Xcode-developed Universal applications on Windows!


Now this is interesting. I seem to recall rcently hearing rumours of Microsoft bringing .NET to the Mac (or at least parts of the CLI, and maybe C#), and now Apple may be doing the same with Cocoa. Whether this will check to see if it is running on Apple hardware under Windows before letting an app run, or will it allow UB applications to be run on "traditional" Windows installations is another story.

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It's significant not for the technical aspects but because Apple has now shifted from a paranoid delusional "full experience" provider to a provider of hardware that just happens to run XP as well.

Also, it can't hurt to fuck over Microsoft on a couple fronts at the same time. As for bringing back Rhapsody's Yellow Box, my prototype of Intel Rhapsody reveals that tech to be an enormous kludge. I do expect a similar virtualization technology to show up in Leopard though.

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Fact 1: The new Apple machines were always intended to be able to boot XP. There's a reason why it took approximately three minutes from the machines appearing on peoples' doorsteps to some kid getting XP running on one.


Actually it took several months since the Apple hardware uses EMIF instead of a BIOS. With bootcamp Apple added an EMIF module that looks enough like a BIOS to boot/run WinXP.

Quote:

Fact 2: OS X was always intended to be able to boot on generic PC hardware. Apple has had betas of Intel-capable OSX out for months. After people got OS X booting on non-Apple machines, Apple made approximately zero effort to prevent it from happening when they went gold.


Except for the TPM chip that MacOS X looks for. You can still install it on generic hardware or VMWare but it requires you to get some hacked MacOS X shared libraries. Since they're hacked versions of apple shared objects Apple tends to shut down sites that host them. Of course being how the internet is you can find them.

However I suspect you're correct on your conclusion. I expect in a post-leopard world Apple will add Windows virtualization to MacOS X. However, by doing so they may run into the classic problem OS/2 had: If you can run Windows application on a Mac why should vendors bother making a Mac native version? The you're in API catchup game with Microsoft. That alone may keep Apple from ever running Window apps under virtualization.

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Quote:
Fact is, Boot Camp is a stop-gap. A kludge. In the future, Apple's gonna come out with the following:

- A virtualization program that'll allow you to run XP apps from within OS X. Whether it works as a standard machine emulator (like Virtual PC or VMWare) that runs all your Windows apps in a box or if it's a bit more integrated like Apple's "blue/yellow box" solution of running pre-OS X apps remains to be seen. But you will be able to run XP apps directly on your Mac, including things like clipboard support.


The rumor sites claim "reliable sources" have said that 10.5 will support running a virtual machine with Windows or Linux on OS X. As always, take any info from the mac rumor sites with a grain of salt.

Quote:
Both of those things are gonna happen. It's inevitable. And if Apple don't do it, someone else will. And then multi-booting between XP and OS X will fade away like all kludges do.


Apparently Parallels have said they will announce a virtualisation product for Intel-powered Macs later this week.

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