[clug] Off topic: OS/X USB boot device for 'normal' PC'S

Arjen Lentz arjen at lentz.com.au
Wed Jun 25 03:23:49 GMT 2008

Hi Neill,

On 25/06/2008, at 12:08 PM, Neill Cox wrote:
> The license actually says "Apple-labeled computer". I think a lawyer  
> would interpret that as a computer labeled by Apple, not some random  
> piece of hardware with an Apple sticker.

A lawyer may well intepret it that way, but that's irrelevant.
A license is a contract, in this case between Apple Computer and an  
end-user. It has to be in precise unambiguous language, otherwise the  
lay user is quite entitled to intepret it within the bounds of what  
the text says.

Apple has plenty of expert lawyers. If they want to word it precisely  
to exclude unintended meaning, they're quite capable of doing so.
It serves no purpose to second guess what might have been intended,  
but from the above, one may actually infer that the wording is  
deliberate. In any case, the text may mean anything within the  
preciseness of the language that was actually used. And according to  
the text as it is now, any computer, labelled with an Apple sticker,  
satisfies the contract requirements.

I'll admit it's creative and *possibly* not what Apple intended, but  
that's not for us lay people to judge. We just use what we get.
Consumer protection also comes into play there. Consumers cannot be  
expected to be legal experts, so if the license is unclear or fuzzy,  
that's Apple's problem not the user's. It's entirely reasonable for a  
consumer to expect OS X to install and run on whatever machine,  
provided the hardware is supported by the drivers.

If Apple wanted to limit this, it could require proof of ownership of  
Apple-made hardware. This is entirely do-able and has been done in  
other instances, and thus again one may infer that imposing such a  
limitation was not actually Apple's intent in this case.

By the way, the 10.5 (Leopard) license actually allows virtualisation,  
although the underlying machine must still be Apple-labeled.

> I can't see Apple coming after you for doing this, just as  
> individuals tend to get away with making illegal copies of Windows,  
> but is this something F/OSS advocates should be suggesting?  Don't  
> we have enough people who already think that we're all pirates and/ 
> or communists?  If we expect other to respect our licenses,  
> shouldn't we reciprocate?

Look, let's not deviate from the actual issue at hand. This is *not*  
about illegally copying software.
If someone purchases a OS X 10.5 pack, they are quite entitled to  
possess that copy. Nothing illegal about it.
And they can also use it, within the EULA requirements, and so they  
might install it on their computer which is Apple-labeled,


> On Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 11:54 AM, Arjen Lentz <arjen at lentz.com.au>  
> wrote:
> The license says that OSX must be run on "Apple branded hardware".
> So you grab one of those nice Apple stickers, and plonk it on your  
> hardware.
> This satisfies the licensing requirement perfectly.
> If that was not what Apple meant/intended, they should rephrase  
> their licensing text ;-)
> In the mean time, it should jive.
> Cheers,
> Arjen.

Arjen Lentz, Founder @ Open Query
http://openquery.com.au/   (ph. +61-7-3103 0809)
Training for MySQL in  

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