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

Neill Cox neill.cox at ingenious.com.au
Wed Jun 25 03:45:08 GMT 2008

On Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 1:23 PM, Arjen Lentz <arjen at lentz.com.au> wrote:

> 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.

The way a lawyer will interpret it is highly relevant.  Words in contracts
often have a legal meaning at odds with their common usage.  Now I am not a
lawyer and unless you are neither of us really have anything more than an
opinion about what this may mean.

> 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.

Um, says you :). No disrespect intended, but I don't think either of us are
qualified to give definitive legal opinions.  If you are, then I aplogise,
but otherwise I'm still not convinced that a court would see it that way.  I
also think it very unlikely that an end user is going to end up in court
over this.

> 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,

I actually think this is the heart of the matter.  Apple are also very clear
that they are not selling you the OS X pack, they are licensing it to you
and you may only use it under their terms..  If you don't like their terms
then you can return the media for a refund.

Apple's intent with this license is quite clear.  They expect you to buy
Apple hardware to go with their software.  If they didn't care they wouldn't
say anything.  I can't say whether this is legal or not, but I think it's
very clearly against the intent of the license.  At this point it seems to
me to fall into the same category of all those creative interpretations of
when and how the GPL applies.

I think using software in a way that is clearly against the wishes of the
creator (be they an individual or a corporation) is wrong.  If I use GPL
software I play by the rules of the GPL.  When forced to use MS software I
abide by their license conditions.  I think Apple are entitled to the same


> Cheers,
> Arjen.
>  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 Brisbane,Sydney,Canberra,Melbourne,Adelaide,Auckland

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