GUIDE: OSX + Dell Latitude C840 - P1

I've written this guide to promote clarification on setting up an operating system such as Mac OS X on a x86 platform, such as the Dell Latitude C840. The most current HCL is available here for this mobile workstation. What I will be attempting with this set of tutorials, is a brief explanation on setting up your Dell Latitude C840 laptop to run Mac OS X 10.4.8, initially. You might say, well your guide is quite similar to the rest, what makes it so special - you're absolutely right, the initial part to installation of the operating system is just about the same as any other. The payoff comes when we begin to discuss specific attributes, packages, drivers or preferences for this specific laptop that should be applied. Quickly, allow me to just state that the reformed and/or it's contributors are not responsible for any loss of data, systems, equipment or other unnamed damages and cannot be held liable pursuant to your actions taken in conjunction with those outlined in this article. Additionally, users have been known to download the JaS 10.4.8 SSE2 + SSE3 Intel AMD DVDs through their favorite torrent site, but I must advise that this is considered gray/black hat and the only legitimate installations would be those installation DVDs with either Apple hardware or Developer DVDs available to software engineers attempting to port their product from PC to Apple. At little bit of background on the Dell Latitude C840 is the more important specifications you should take notice of:

  • Intel Pentium 4 Mobile 1.6 | 1.7 GHz
  • 512 MB Ram
  • HL-DT-ST RW/DVD GCC-4240N | CD/DVD/CD-RW Combo
  • AC'97 Audio Controller
  • nVidia Geforce 440 Go
  • 3Com 3C920 Integrated Fast Ethernet Controller (On-board)
  • Dell TrueMobile 1150 MiniPCI (Optional)

Let's take a look at what it takes to get her up an running:

  1. To start the journey, insert your Apple OS X 10.4.8 DVD into your installation CD/DVD/CD-RW drive to begin setting up a native installation. You will most likely need to select F12 at the bios loader to access the one-time boot options screen. Do this before the DVD attempts a read - select to boot from "CD/DVD/CD-RW Drive" to ensure that the DVD-ROM loads the system and you don't error out.
  2. This will take you to a prompt asking you, "Press any key to install Mac OS X, or press F8 got more options" - you want to just hit a key other than the F8 key on the keyboard. From there, your system will begin the boot process for the operating system. You will see a series of console encapsulated information streaming down the LCD screen, maybe even some errors. Pay this no mind, you're well on your way to loading the OS.
  3. You will begin to see light gray screen with a dark gray Apple logo. This is the psuedo-OS at work, storing itself in memory to allow you to format, load and reboot the machine with a fresh installation of the image from the DVD.
  4. The screen should turn blue and on it you should see a turning/swirling rainbow pinwheel. It might take a second for your system to load, but you'll know you've made respectable progress when you see a arrow cursor appear.
  5. Soon after that event, you will be brought to a dialog box that hosts the Apple logo and Mac OS X titling at the top. In this box, you are requested to pick a language. For the purposes of this tutorial, we will use the default, "Use English as the main language".
  6. You'll be forwarded to another dialog that has a blue and white 'rolling' candy striping, which will begin to load OS components. You should end up face-to-face with the Installer screen for Mac OS X (for example: Install JaS OS 10.4.8 AMD Intel SSe2 SSe3 Beta v2).
  7. At this Installer screen, we will move our cursor up the toolbar and choose "Utilities > Disk Utility". Once the frame appears, select the left cell and choose your harddisk (not a specific partition) that you plan to boot from.
  8. Move your cursor to "Erase" and in "Volume Format" select the "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)" option from the drop-down menu - leave the security options as the default unless you have a lot of time on your hands. Select erase and watch it do it's work both quickly and efficiently.
  9. IMPORTANT - Move to "Partition" and in the "Volume Scheme", select "1 Partition" as opposed to "2 Partitions" as is seemingly the DEFAULT with this installation. If you choose not to do this, you will undoubtedly incur a frustrating error on the initial reboot of your machine and operating system, so make sure this option has been attended to beforehand. Name the partition "System" and select "Partition" at the bottom right. A dialog box will appear asking you to confirm so again select "Partition". Let it run it's course.
  10. Select the red "x" at the lefthand top corner of the frame to exit the Disk Utility.
  11. You should have been returned to that Installer screen mentioned earlier in Step 7. Select "Continue" on this screen.
  12. Your next step is to "Select a Destination" - in this case you'll be setting up your OS on the System partition we've just created. Select "Continue".
  13. It is time to "Customize" your system. This option you need to select will allow you to select specific packages to be installed on your system at boot. From this installation, we're going to select only the following: Essential System Software, Additional Fonts, JaS Intel 10.4.8 ATA kexts included > 10.4.8.Intel.SSE2.SSE3 and Natit Nvidia Support > Natit.Nvidia.Support. Now, select Install. The system will attempt a DISC Check - I suggest allowing it to run, you you might otherwise run into corrupted binary code/packages in the hundreds. This system will begin to install once the previous has been accepted/bypassed.
  14. Now, you wait.

Voila! You'll have to reboot in no time. However, with this installation, don't expect to make it out of the hole just yet. We've got some minor things to do to get this system to run properly. I had you install the Natit video driver package beforehand to see if it will hopefully work for you - users of the C840 have mixed answers that they have reported. If it hasn't worked for you, stay tuned for Part 2 tommorrow, where we will go over several needed modifications to the kext tree to get your display online or system booting properly, setting up of the built-in Ethernet device and system optimization information.

6 Responses to “GUIDE: OSX + Dell Latitude C840 - P1”

  1. 1 carmine May 27th, 2007 at 7:28 pm

    io ho una geforce4 go 440 64mb not qi e ce

  2. 2 Sean Mar 31st, 2009 at 6:57 am

    Ok you exsplan how to install via OSX dvd but how exactly do you install without the dvd i only have a copied version of mac OSX from a friend and it is stored on my external hard drive but im running windows and cant seem to get it to install no matter what i do? Is there a reason for this or an answer if so can someone please get back to me via email or post i would greatly appreciate it. Much thanks Sean

  1. 1 theReformed » HOWTO: Mac OSX + Dell Latitude C840 - Part 3 Pingback on May 2nd, 2007 at 3:04 am
  2. 2 theReformed » HOWTO: Mac OSX + Dell Latitude C840 - Part 4 Pingback on May 6th, 2007 at 1:21 am
  3. 3 Internet Broker WebLog » Blog Archive » Living Business Solutions Ltd - - - - » Pingback on Jul 31st, 2007 at 12:00 am
  4. 4 HOWTO: Mac OSX + Dell Latitude C840 - P5 at theReformed Pingback on Aug 4th, 2007 at 2:17 pm

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