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Is it possible to run Mac OSX server on a x86 PC ... ? Any thoughts ? (our general manager wants to aquire half a dozen mini macs for some servers and he wants some testing with the mac osx server but i haven't got the mac machine to test drive the mac osx server for a couple months... any thoughts if on how i can do this on a PC ?

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    Any thoughts? Sure, it's against Apple's agreements to run it on non-Apple hardware, and you're probably going to get people giving negative reaction on a QandA site for sysadmins, or at a minimum warning you that you should pursue this on Google without too much assistance here since it's a big gray area for hardware/OS hackers. A Mac Mini can be picked up relatively inexpensively to test on, or talk to an Apple sales rep for your region to see if you can work out a deal with borrowing one for testing. We have done that with laptops. Jun 18, 2010 at 17:37
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    eh... don't we all like a little weekend hacking :)
    – s.mihai
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:39
  • In addition you'll probably want a Mac for the desktop or a Macbook for administration purposes anyway if you're getting a significant number of Macs to use as servers. Get one now so you have a testbed and get acquainted with the platform. Jun 18, 2010 at 17:39
  • @s.mihai-weekend hacking is one thing. Recommending something legally iffy with a group of professionals is definitely against best practices, at worst it can be a career issue if someone googles us for a job prospect and sees we have ethical issues in the business. Apple has usually been pretty flexible for us in trying to make a sale. I'd recommend contacting their sales team for an eval of some kind. Jun 18, 2010 at 17:41
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    Just to add that if you get a mac to do your test, if you install Mac OS X Server on it, you can then use virtualization software (parallels, vmware, virtualbox) to run others Mac OS X Server and emulate a larger number of computer
    – radius
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:44

4 Answers 4

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Many information can be found on google.
Running Mac OS X on a non Apple hardware doesn't comply with Mac OS X license agreement. This is really not the right place to ask for this... there is dedicated website for this.

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  • yea... i was just looking for some helpful thoughts and links before the thread got deleted by the adimins
    – s.mihai
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:35
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    wiki.osx86project.org is the best place to start.
    – radius
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:37
  • the magic keyword is 'hackintosh' but if you're serious about possibly buying 6, just buy a single one and test it -- as there was a hardware refresh yesterday, nothing but a new purchase is going to be a valid test for performance. If it doesn't work, for your needs you repurpose it, sell it or make sure you're within the return policy.
    – Joe H.
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:55
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Mac OS X is only supported on Apple hardware. It is possible to install it on non Apple hardware have a look here. It may be easier (and safer) to just wait for the server to arrive.

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It's not supported, but that isn't to say there aren't plenty of guides detailing how it can be done. Here's the one I've used previously (edit: not in a work environment) which details the process quite thoroughly.

http://lifehacker.com/5351485/how-to-build-a-hackintosh-with-snow-leopard-start-to-finish

Biggest problem thou is always the hardware support; Apple put a lot of work into making OS X work with their hardware, but the guide details some parts that are known to work fine.

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  • i've found a couple VMware machines that do the trick but not with the server version of their software
    – s.mihai
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:51
  • Your link say : "Update: This guide has been superceded by a much easier method: Install Snow Leopard on Your Hackintosh PC, No Hacking Required.". Why don't give the right link directly ?
    – radius
    Jun 18, 2010 at 17:56
  • Because the guide I linked was the one I can verify works, however OP can make up their own mind as to which to use.
    – Omegatron
    Jun 20, 2010 at 20:49
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As radius said, it's a violation of Apple's terms. It's also quite a hack and wouldn't be an accurate way to evaluate the feasibility of the proper setup.

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