Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Another Hackintosh

So, my niece was having a few problems with her laptop and I bought her a new one. The eMachine e527 was on sale at the local MicroCenter for 279.99 and seemed to be a good fit for my accident prone niece. I wasn't sure whether to leave Windows on it, put Linux on it, or put OSX on it. After about 30 minutes, it was a hackintosh and running nicely.

Here is what you do.

First, I highly recommend grabbing a retail disc of Snow Leopard. It's only $30.00 and you don't have to worry about download/burn integrity. The next thing you ought to do is grab the latest Intel version of Empire EFI ( Download and burn the Empire EFI ISO. Then put the Empire EFI disc in your optical drive and reboot. You will come to a screen offering boot options. At this point, swap the disc in your drive bay for the OSX install DVD. Your next step will be to press f5, and then select the OSX DVD and hit enter.

If your hardware is at all supported you should come to the OSX installer. Install as usual and then swap the disc again. This time when you get to the Empire EFI boot selection menu, choose your HDD. Once at your new Macintosh desktop install MyHack (which is on the Empire EFI bootcd).

The list of kexts I used for the eMachine were:

*Note that I swapped the wifi card for a Broadcom 4311 which is natively supported by OSX.

Now, you will notice that the eMachines e527 laptop uses an Intel X4500MHD chipset. This is not supported by OSX, and as such we have to do some trickery to get a native resolution of 1366x768. First you download Chameleon RC4-AsereBLN-1.1.9. Install it as you usually would any other package. Next, grab ChameleonMR2. Move all of the files in the ChameleonMR2 release to the root of your HDD. This will patch the boot loader allowing you to use VESA at non-supported resolutions.

Open up and type sudo nano /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/

Now, reboot. All done. Welcome to a new Macintosh laptop.


Harry said...

Wow, why not just use Linux?


1) Download the image
2) Burn the image to disk
3) Install Operating System

Done. Free. Welcome to the future of Computing.

daks said...

Yeah, why worry about the need of hacking anything? Here's Linux to stay:

- Stable
- Mature
- Virus free
- Compatible
- Supported by a whole community (tens or perhaps hundreds of thousands people)
- Etc of many things I cannot remember now...

I do not see the need... of hacking OSX. No need, no need...

I used to be a redmond user, used to install only hackrosoft OS, and then like many others I discovered Linux, wondered what I could be doing today if only I could discover linux earlier... Never mind, now I know what I will be using in the future.

Chris said...

Reasons to not install Linux

1 Final Cut
2 Logic Studio
3 Any Adobe Product

I can go on....

SinsAligned said...

There is always an alternative app when it comes to GNU/Linux. And there is always the decision to install/use adobe products in Linux distros. Just because it is 'non-free' software doesn't mean you can't use it freely. It means you can't modify and distribute it freely. I don't know much of Final Cut or Logic Studio but if you know anything of Linux at all it would surely have to be that a Linux alternative is almost always more feature rich and, these days, many are becoming more user friendly.

Joe said...

I'm primarily a linux user but I do use tax cut on the mac once a year - and the kjamz karaoke program isn't available for linux, so there is an occasional need for mac. Hey, if I can do everything without microsoft, I'm happy.

Chris said...

@SinsAligned Are you kidding me, there is not a good video editor for Linux PERIOD. Unless of course you go the autodesk route and spend 20k+

And no there is nothing like Logic, or After Effects on Linux. Adobe stuff does not work very well under wine. Sorry if you are a creative content producer Linux is all but out.

Ford said...

First, you can run any Linux program in OSX via macports, which is a source based package manager for Macintosh OSX.

Second, Chris is right. There is some software that many of us rely on that is not available for Linux and is available for OSX.

@Daks, you are wrong about one thing sir. Linux is NOT virus free. There are at least 42 different bits of malware out there. The idea of "virus free" is an illusion created by the fact that most people never experience a problem. Proper system administration is required (this is true of OSX too).

scribe63 said...

It is a myth that if you are a creative content producer Linux is all but out.
Beyond that, there are tons of tools on Linux for content creation, in say, UbuntuStudio.

There is minimal creativity in logic, it's all just presets that every one reuse, so you always know it was done in logic.

These are just some basics.
jack, ardour, hydrogen, zynaddsubfx, qsynth, jamin, muse rosegarden, a midi keyboard and drum controller, and you are good to go.
There is also LMMS

Inkscape, gimp, scribus, openoffice-draw, blender

For Video i am partial to adobe premiere, but i haven't tried cinelerra again for a while, openshot is good also.

You can also do 3d animations in blender also.

r_a_trip said...


Unless the "accident prone niece" is a content producer in dire need of:

1 Final Cut
2 Logic Studio
3 Any Adobe Product

Then your arguments are a straw man here. Don't use your own situation as a blanket reason for disclaiming fitness of Linux on the desktop.

Chris said...

And this is the problem with the linux community you seem to think that rosegarden is a replacement for any DAW on the win/mac platform

@scribe63 "There is minimal creativity in logic, it's all just presets that every one reuse, so you always know it was done in logic."

yea right you have clearly never used logic, and I swear to god if one more Linux users suggests open-office draw as a replacement for illustrator.... cinelerra has the worst user interface of all time and openshot is not ready for real production. Blender does rock, and I would say it is ready to compete with Lightwave, Maya, but there is NO replacement on linux for After Effects, nor is there a video editor that can replace Final Cut, Premere, Vegas, but to say that about Logic just shows how ignorant the Linux community is sometimes. I have tried to switch to Linux for years, I even started the site but it is just not ready for production. Sorry....

@r_a_trip most likely the niece will use imovie, iphoto and garageband, None of these Linux has real replacements for. picasa on Linux is close to iphoto not its still not the same.

mckeeworking said...

Here's what I don't understand. A lot of big movie productions are made on Linux these days. So, there must be some program they're using.

Chris said...

Films are rarely edited on Linux, most films are editing on AVID usually on OSX. The rest are usually edited on final cut. Most visual effects in film are built using Linux tools, such as autodesk flame (100k+ to get in to this) or Nuke and Shake, also much of the 3d work is done on Linux. The large VFX houses build there own software, and other houses use Maya, Houdini, Softimage all run very well on Linux but are expensive. Linux box's also usually handle the rendering duties as Linux very much excels at this. The two biggest hurdles for Linux creative's are a decent video editor and a good motion graphics package IE After Effects.

Saint Abroad said...


Reasons to not install OSX:
2. 'nuff said.

You may as well have pirated the copy, as that's exactly where you stand legally.

Total cost of this exercise (for US citizens): up to $150,000 damages for wilful infringement.

Ford said...

@Saint Abroad,

This is not technically accurate. There is precedent to say that you have a right to install legally purchased software. If you buy your copy of OSX, and you do not pirate it... the only thing that you have done is break contract. This is a very serious thing, but it is no way illegal. In court, the terms could be argued. The EULA for Snow Leopard is hazy at best. It says "Apple branded," and Apple's registered brand is merely the white or rainbow Apple logo. Assuming that no other manufacturer's logo is visible on your computer, you are compliant. The only damages that Apple could levy would be in court cost and possibly the cost of a single Snow Leopard disc (29.99USD). The problem would be your own costs in this ordeal.

The reality is that this is legally gray. The next part of this reality is that it would be cost prohibitive to go after hackintoshers who use legal OSX discs. First, they are paying customers who most likely wouldn't buy Macs anyway. Second, you waste more money than you gain.

scribe63 said...

My response was more or less to your blatant and ludacris statement, that Linux is "Totally Out", when it comes to being creative and producing media content. Which is absolutely outrageous, and not true from a cost and creative perspective.

Maybe you need to define what type content creation you are specifically speaking about.

Before i pay $500 for logic pro, or use the free version that comes with the MAC, or buy, which ever is the price for M-Audio/ProTools LE combos these days, plus the cost for optimum hardware. Linux is an option and does have comparable applications and tools, for MIDI, Audio, Synthesis, Mastering, Graphics, Animations, etc...
Cost is just for compatible hardware.

Due to my approach for creating music, if i have to buy a MIDI/Audio application, my first preference would be ProTools LE and my second would be Cubase. Back in the day my set up was SAW Plus/Cubase with MIDI and Audio separate.

Do clarify how you produce your content, if use presets and or pre-made factory stuff, for sounds and effects in your production, or if you get into the nitty gritty and tweaking of things, or if you record live instruments.

My experience with logic, was from an engineering/production perspective in a studio. When the person that used it brought in thier tracks, i had to turn off all it's effects and compression to avoid all sort distortions, pops, and click from the presets they used. But i am sure a good sound can be gotten out of it without using presets, by tweaking stuff.

Like i said, for video editing you have a point. Once you can afford to pay for or know how to pirate those expensive software that you speak about, then go for it.

For learning and usge for most things, kino, cinelerra (it's interface aside), and openshot (even though it has some latency and crashes now and again) are viable tools at no cost. Shocks i remember when premeire use to crash a lot also. Scribus is comparable to illustrator, and openoffice draw does decent 2d/3d designs with layers. Both export to PDF.

All talk aside i would sure like to see this content could be done on MAC only.
Do post them


Chris said...

Honestly scribe63 I have no idea what most of your points are here. On another note basically someone did a terrible mix on Logic and now it sucks? It is WORLDS better than cubase. Every plugin has presets, so you could say that about any program. And Logic does NOT come with a mac.

What program on Linux can replace After Effects? Or Propelerheads Reason and when I say replace they need to be just as easy to use. Scribus is NOT comparable to illustrator as it is not even the same type of program. Maybe you are thinking indesign?

Oh also my Wave plugins don't work in Linux and that is a deal breaker.

Not sure what else to say, but if you are a professional web designer, Graphic designer, video editor, composer or audio engineer Linux IS OUT. Sad but true. Believe me I am rooting for Linux, but lets face facts here it is not always the right tool for the job.

Kenny said...


Yes, there is a good open source video editor, it's called Pitivi and it comes *by default* in Ubuntu 10.10. So I guess that argument is over.

Chris said...

Pitivi does not even have fade functionality, it is not even close to being able to do real editing and should never be included with Ubuntu. Maybe someone who actually edits video should discuss this.

Ford said...

@Chris, kenny, and others...
I do some video editing. Most open source programs for video editing are new, lacking in features, and bug ridden. It isn't that they are not properly envisioned. Many are well on their way to becoming serious contenders in that field, but they just are not there yet.

People can feel free to be overly dogmatic, and never scratch out living because of it. I work in computer repair, and when you are the only shop in town, people come to you with EVERYTHING computer related. You are then left to learn an entirely new discipline. The best tool for the job will win every time.

Chris said...

@Ford I 100% agree! Trust me I would love to switch to Linux and I am actually typing this from Ubuntu studio on my laptop. But to do everything I need Linux cant deliver. I would literally be out of a job if I got rid of my mac's.

Kevin Gillette said...

Final Cut (even Final Cut Express) is an excellent program. Some recent FOSS editors are getting very competitive, but like Ford said, they aren't nearly as mature. However, anything built on the MLT framework in particular will have a lot of bang for buck.

On the other side of things with Mac, most of the cheap video/dvd editors, such as iDVD are very much intentionally crippled, have an utter lack of useful features (but they do come with some watermarked themes). In general, if you're willing to spend $300 USD or more, you can get something decent for Mac/Windows. If you're spending less than that, FOSS is *already* better in every way.

In another 2 years, it's entirely possible that proprietary video software will only profit on reputation alone, and possibly licensed workarounds of MPAA copy-protection, since otherwise, the pace of open source development cannot possibly be beaten.

Ford said...

@Kevin Gillette,
The key there is "another 2 years".

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