Category Archives: apple

Cheapest possible Hackintosh Mainboard and CPU

Here is some advice for penny pinchers and bargain hunters: the cheapest possible motherboard and CPU available for hackintosh (apple replica computers) out there.

Price in Europe: 69,47€
Price in the USA: $86.40

Mainboard: Gigabyte GA-H61M-S2PV

Screenshot 2013-12-12 14.11.45
41,48€ on Amazon Germany
$51.27 on Amazon US

CPU: Intel BX80637G1610 Celeron Dual-Core 1.6GHZ

Screenshot 2013-12-12 14.11.59
27,99€ on Amazon Germany
$35.13 on Amazon US

The iGPU (internal graphics card) is a Intel HD2000 iGPU which can be used with hackintosh kexts. There are only small modifications to be done, which are outlined in this forum post.

Apple Mac OS X 10.8.4 Update for Hackintosh

An update for Apple’s Mac OS X ML Mountain Lion was released – the 10.8.4 Update (OS X Build 12E55) features the 12.4.0 Darwin kernel, as wellas updated NVIDIA and AMD graphics drivers, updated audio and storage drivers as well as a new Wifi Diagnostics App. As tonymacx86 points out: “Be sure to back up any important data, and if possible clone your hard drive before applying the update”.

UPDATE: the Geforce GTX Titan, GTX 780, GTX 770 and GTX 760 seem to be supported out of the box with 10.8.4, as we heard from people trying out that cards.


Sapphire Launches Radeon HD 7950 Mac Graphics Card: Upgrade your Mac Pro or your Hackintosh!

Sapphire recently announced the Radeon HD 7950 Graphics Card that is an “Exclusive Mac Edition with AMD GCN architecture”. The Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 Mac Edition is compatible with Apple Mac Pro models from 2010 and later with an available PCI-Express x16 slot. Two six-pin power cables required are supplied with the card.

The card is said to boost GPU performance of existing Mac Pro models by up to 200%, which is especially interesting for people doing video and photography work on Apple Mac Pro machines.

The Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 Mac Edition is currently available for $479,00 in the US.


Exclusive to SAPPHIRE, the HD 7950 Mac Edition is based on AMD’s latest Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture. This highly acclaimed architecture delivers a significant graphics performance boost for Mac Pro users in a wide range of applications including gaming, audio or video editing and content creation. For example, gaming frame rates are increased by over 200%, general benchmark performance increased by around 30% and graphics intensive benchmarks increased by as much as 300% compared with the NV 8800GT commonly used in these machines (SAPPHIRE internal data).

The SAPPHIRE HD 7950 Mac Edition is equipped with 3GB of the latest GDDR5 memory, and its Dual Asynchronous Compute Engines (ACE) deliver up to 2.87 TFLOPS Single Precision compute power. It provides hardware support for Open GL 4.2 and Open CL 1.2 as well as AMD HD3D technology and APP acceleration.

While this is not so big news for Hackintosh owners, it is for people that have to work on an original Apple Mac Pro from 2010. For Hackintosh still the EVGA GeForce GTX 680 Classified, 4GB GDDR5, 2x DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort is the fastest card to get, featuring a chip clock of 1111MHz, shader clock of 1006MHz and RAM clock of 1502MHz.


Apple Mac OSX 10.8.3 brings AMD Radeon 7xxx: 7750, 7870, 7950, 7970 to Hackintosh!

Apple’s recent update of Mac OS X 10.8.3 finally brings AMD Radeon drivers (kext) to hackintoshers around the globe.

Here is some other update news of the recent ML update by Apple: About the OS X Mountain Lion v10.8.3 Update, which also contains various security fixes:

New Kexts:
nVida kexts (ver. 8.10.18 304.10.65a13) included.

As of March 24, 2013, the AMD Radeon HD 7970, 7950, 7870, 7770, and 7750 have been confirmed to work “out of the box” (without the need for additional drivers), while the AMD Radeon HD 7850 only works with specially edited kext files.

The fastest AMD Radeon (that is confirmed to work) is the the Gigabyte AMD Radeon HD 7970 OC 3GB GDDR5 DVI-I/HDMI/2x Mini-Displayport PCI-E 3.0 Graphics Card GV-R797OC-3GD


In other news: Sapphire launched Radeon 7950 based Mac Graphics Card, that is supposed to work out-of-the-box on a Mac Pro and supposedly also on Hackintosh computers.

Apple MacBook Pro Retina graphics performance is very slow: 18FPS

Apple MacBook Pro Retina 15inch Notebook GPU too slow for pro users?

According to Anandtech the 2880 x 1800 Pixel HiDPI Display of the new MacBook Pro Retina has to deal with so much pixels, the GPU cannot deal with that amount of information anymore. This results in slow performance and a jumpy interface (scrolling and zooming is very slow). Previous models of the MacBook Pro could display between 46-60 frames per second, while the MacBook Pro Retina is only capable of displaying 18-24fps. Mac OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion should improve this a little – but still under 30fps. According to Anand, the solution will be the upcoming Haswell and Broadwell chipsets from Intel, that will be released in 2013.

To quantify exactly what I was seeing I measured frame rate while scrolling as quickly as possible through my Facebook news feed in Safari on the rMBP as well as my 2011 15-inch High Res MacBook Pro. While last year’s MBP delivered anywhere from 46 – 60 fps during this test, the rMBP hovered around 20 fps (18 – 24 fps was the typical range). Remember at 2880 x 1800 there are simply more pixels to push and more work to be done by both the CPU and the GPU. It’s even worse in those applications that have higher quality assets: the CPU now has to decode images at 4x the resolution of what it’s used to. Future CPUs will take this added workload into account, but it’ll take time to get there.

For early adopters and for posers, the new MacBook Pro Retina might be a fit. For serious people using their computers to actually get work done, it might be better to get a MacBook Pro from the previous Generation, since the price drops are significant: the Apple MacBook Air MC968LL/A 11.6-Inch currently sells for $829 new (refurbished from $789), the Apple MacBook Pro MC700LL/A 13.3-Inch sells for $1050 new ($900 refurbished).

The Apple MacBook Pro MC975LL/A 15.4-Inch Laptop with Retina Display (NEWEST VERSION) starts at $2,089.99.

Update from WWDC 2012: Retina MacBook Pro with up to 16 GB RAM, 768 GB SSD (Retina!)

Great stuff folks – MacBook Pro Specs leaked short before they will be actually presented on the WWDC 2012: 15″ MacBook Pro with Retina Display!
This is epic, I am wondering how much people will get a new MacBook Pro soon, expect the prices of the previous models to drop dramatically: there is already a Apple MacBook Pro MD313LL/A 13.3-Inch Laptop selling (new) for $934, expect prices to drop even more…

here are the leaked specs and model numbers (thanks to 9to5mac)
MC975LL/A – MBP 15.4/2.3/8GB/256GB FLASH-USA
MC976LL/A – MBP 15.4/2.6/8GB/512GB FLASH-USA
MD831LL/A – MBP 15.4/2.7/16GB/768GB FLASH-USA

Recommended SSD Solid State Drives for your Apple Mac, MacBook Pro and your Hackintosh

Since the SSD technology already matured a lot and the drives are mostly more stable than Hard Disk, the only question remains on which drive to choose. Actually, the answer is more simple than you might have thought: go for the longest warranty.

The OCZ Vertex 3 is a very cheap and awesome piece of hardware (read the benchmarks here: OCZ Vertex 3 vs. Intel 520 SSD) but the Vertex 3 has one major problem: it features only 3 years of warranty. So what drives are currently offering more than 3 years? The OCZ Vertex 4 and the Intel 520 SSD drives, both the cutting edge of speed and durability offer 5 years of warranty.

OCZ Vertex 4 features the best 4K random performance, so this is the drive to look out for! highly recommended!

OCZ Vertex 4 features the best 4K random performance, so this is the drive to look out for! highly recommended!

Both drives feature a 5 year warranty, which shows us that the drives are really high quality.

The Intel 520 Cherryville Solid State Drives are built with duarbility in mind: Intel has a very good reputation when it comes to Solid State Drives - nanofunk can highly recommend this SSD for Hackintosh or Apple usage!

The Intel 520 Cherryville Solid State Drives are built with duarbility in mind: Intel has a very good reputation when it comes to Solid State Drives - nanofunk can highly recommend this SSD for Hackintosh or Apple usage!

Apple Mac OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion RC3 Released with some updates, 10.7.4 around the corner

Apple’s Mountain Lion Developer Preview was updated to version 12A193i (from 12A178q) weighing 1.45GB.

The Apple Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion Operating System got an update bumping the version number to 12A193i (from 12A178q). (Photocredits By KRO-Media Kristen Ortwerth-Jewell)

“With the Developer Preview, you can explore Game Center, Notification Center, Documents in the Cloud, new sharing capabilities, advanced security features, and much more”

Apple Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion includes lots of features from iOS, such as Reminders, Messages and Game Center. One noted update from the previous version of the Developer Preview is a Do Not Disturb setting to Mountain Lion’s Notifications Center, as outlined by 9to5mac, which allows users to block incoming alerts and banners.

Furthermore Mac OSX 10.7.4 Lion Update is around the corner: 11E53 is the current build that was seeded to developers. The previous release was numbered 11E52 – so a final public update is imminent. Apple notes that there are no known issues with this build but asks developers to focus their testing on graphics, iCal, Mail, Printing, and Time Machine.

If there are updated kexts is not known at the time of writing – it looks like we have to wait for the final release of 10.8 ML to get new graphics drivers, such as support for the 7xxx AMD Radeon GPUs with the Codenames Cedar, Caicos, Turks, Cape Verde, Pitcairn, Tahiti and New Zealand.

iPhone 5 might have new in-cell technology for updated multi touch display

via macrumors: Apple might be planning to use new “in-cell” display technology from Japanese manufacturers in the next-generation iPhone. “Compared with on-cell technology, touch panels that use in-cell technology can be made thinner because the touch sensors are actually placed inside the color filters rather than on top of them”

This would mean we can expect the new iPhone 5 to be much thinner than the previous iPhone 4S Model.

Adobe Releases Flash Player 11.2 and Air 3.2 – still kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero

Adobe released Flash Player version 11.2 and Adobe Air 3.2 but still did not fix the kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero issues.

Nanofunk reported on this on Jul 28, 2011 and again on Dec 22, 2011. Furthermore the issue was reported in the Adobe Bug Tracker and reproduced by many other users.

the log file (kernel.log) gets flooded with "kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero." messages

It is 8 months after we reported to the Adobe Forums and there was not even a single response from Adobe yet. I will start to boycott Flash Player from now on (currently removing it from my system). Here is a link to the Uninstall Flash Player Howto. Bye Bye, Adobe.

Apple OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion Developer Preview 2 released

Apple released a new Developer Preview after recently releasing DP1 to Developers. The change log shows that there are still a lot of unfinished edges in the OS, from Game Center to AirPlay to the Notes app.

Mountain Lion is said to run on the following machines:

Mac (mid 2007 or later)
MacBook (13-inch Aluminum, 2008), (13-inch, Early 2009 or later)
MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid-2009 or later), (15-inch, 2.4/2.2 GHz), (17-inch, Late 2007 or later)
MacBook Air (Late 2008 or later)
Mac Mini (Early 2009 or later)
Mac Pro (Early 2008 or later)
Xserve (Early 2009)

Here is the full NDA information of Apple OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion Developer Preview 2
(thanks to TheVerge for posting this


OS X Mountain Lion Developer Preview 2 Seed Note

OS X Mountain Lion Developer Preview 2 is prerelease software. Do not use this prerelease software in a commercial operating environment or with important data. You should back up all of your data before installing this software and regularly back up data while using the software. You will not be able to upgrade from the OS X Mountain Lion Developer Preview to the final release.

If an installation of OS X Developer Preview 2 fails, try using Disk Utility from a Recovery HD to repair the disk.

Architecture Requirements
The OS X Mountain Lion Developer Preview supports the following Macs:
• iMac (Mid 2007 or later)
• MacBook (13-inch Aluminum, Late 2008), (13-inch, Early 2009 or later)
• MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid-2009 or later), (15-inch, Mid/Late 2007 or later), (17-inch, Late 2007 or later)
• MacBook Air (Late 2008 or later)
• Mac Mini (Early 2009 or later)
• Mac Pro (Early 2008 or later)

Known Issues
• Installing OS X 10.8 over 10.7.2 or earlier with FileVault turned on may fail
• Upgrades over Lion Server will offer to migrate data again in Setup Assistant even though an in place migration has already succeeded.
• Entering your Apple ID in the Setup Assistant does not sign into iCloud
• Migration does not migrate RADIUS configurations
• Creating an iCloud account using a address in the Setup Assistant requires verification before it can be used in Mail, Contacts, and Calendars.
• Some Apple menu items such as Restart may not work when a sandboxed app is in the foreground
• Twitter accounts added in Developer Preview 1 will need to be re-added after installing Developer Preview 2
• The first time an unsigned or unidentified app is launched when “Mac App Store” or “Mac App Store and identified developers” is selected in the Security & Privacy pref pane, the exception mechanism may fail. Subsequent attempts to run the application with an exception will work as expected.
• iTunes no longer syncs Notes
• Notes shared via Messages may not include note content
• After quitting and reopening Messages, the message window is blank. Continuing a conversation will bring the data back.
• TextEdit may hang after enabling Documents & Data in iCloud preferences
• Screen Sharing in Messages does not work
• Screen Sharing sometimes fails when no users are logged in
• Mail’s photo browser cannot access the iPhoto library
• VoiceOver cannot access the Notification Center on some machines
• Documents stored in iCloud cannot be renamed in the open panel by setting an insertion point and typing. The document can be renamed only by overwriting the entire name.
• Back to My Mac doesn’t work for the first 5 minutes after rebooting
• Find My Mac is not enabled if checked in Setup Assistant iCloud setup
• To enable Find My Mac, turn on Find My Mac in iCloud preferences and then close and reopen the preference panel.
• DVD Player may not launch after inserting a DVD on some systems
• Some Nvidia GPUs limit the resolution on an external HD display to 1280×800
• Some AppleScript applets may not run when Gatekeeper is set to Mac App Store or Mac App Store and identified developers
• Selecting Open PDF from the Print Dialog displays the message “Error while printing”
• Network scanning does not work in Developer Preview 2
• The system may hang after several hours when an external drive is connected
• After entering your redemption code, the Mac App Store may not show download progress on the Purchases tab. Quitting and re-launching the Mac App Store will show download progress as expected.

Game Center
• In this seed, Game Center applications may only access the Sandbox environment. In the Sandbox environment:
◦ Game & Friend Recommendations are not supported
◦ Friends can view games in common but not friends’ other games
◦ Photos are not supported
◦ Email addresses are not verified during sandbox account creation, allowing multiple test accounts to be created
◦ Out-of-network friend requests are not supported
◦ Game matchmaking versioning restrictions are more relaxed
• If you’ve never set up a Game Center Sandbox account, you will need to create one. You may continue to use a previously set up Sandbox account. Note that when using Setup Assistant to create a GameCenter account, the account will be created in the Sandbox environment.
• To use Game Center in your game on OS X:
◦ You must include the “” entitlement in your Xcode project.
◦ The app must be signed, in order for the entitlement to take effect.
◦ You must install a provisioning profile that enables Game Center for your app.
• Code signing, entitlements, and provisioning profiles are all described in detail in Tools Workflow Guide for Mac.
• Multiplayer gaming with Game Center between iOS and OS X is not available in this seed.
• In the Game Center app, game detail information such as game provider, pricing, etc. is not displayed.
• In the Game Center app, search is not functional
• The local peer-to-peer GameKit API (GKSession, GKPeerPickerController, and related classes) is not supported
• APIs related to in-game UI (GKAchievementPanel, GKLeaderboardPanel, etc) have changed
◦ The new API is not compatible with the previous seed
◦ Games in development must be updated and recompiled

Bug Reporting
This build is being provided to you for testing and development purposes. Should you encounter any problems, please submit a bug report using the online Bug Reporter at <>. Please make sure to include “10.8 (12A154q)” in the bug title and description. This information will ensure that your bug is processed quickly.

When submitting a bug report, please make sure to include a Summary, Steps to Reproduce, Actual Results, Expected Results, the System Profile Report, and any other relevant information that is necessary to process the report.

IMPORTANT: Engineering requires additional information for crashing bugs, kernel panics, and hangs.

Crashing Bugs: Crash logs are required for crashing bugs. Crash logs can be located in ~/Library/Logs/CrashReporter and /Library/Logs/CrashReporter

Kernel Panics: Backtraces, which contain vital information for investigating kernel panics, are required for kernel panic issues. Backtraces can be saved to NVRAM on restart/shutdown, then copied to a panic log file on restart. This log file will be located at /Library/Logs/DiagnosticReportsThe
Hangs: When an application is hung, a sample should be provided. This can be done using the Activity Monitor (/Applications/Utilities/). To generate a sample using this utility, click on the hung application’s name, then from the View menu select “Sample Process”.

For complete instructions on submitting bug reports, please visit the Bug Reporting page at <>.

Thank you for your support.
Apple World wide Developer Relations

Auto-Submission of Diagnostic and Usage Data
By default, OS X 10.8 Developer Preview builds automatically send anonymous diagnostic and usage data back to Apple. This includes information about crashes, freezes, kernel panics, and information about how you use Apple and third-party software, hardware, and services. This information is used to help Apple improve the quality and performance of its products and services. If necessary, this setting can be disabled in the Privacy tab in the Security & Privacy preference pane.

Legal Notices
The pre-release software identified above is Apple Confidential Information and your use of such software is subject to your Registered Apple Developer Agreement and Mac Developer Program License Agreement. Distributing such pre-release software to anyone other than another Registered Apple Developer who is working for the same entity as you is considered a violation of your agreement with Apple and is damaging to both Apple and those who develop for the Apple platform. We sincerely appreciate your efforts to keep this pre-release software Confidential.
You agree that you will not export or reexport any of the software or Confidential Information received from Apple (a) into (or to a national or resident of) any U.S. embargoed countries (currently, Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, or Syria) without first obtaining proper authorization from the U.S. Government; or (b) to anyone on the U.S. Treasury Department’s list of Specially Designated Nationals or the U.S. Department of Commerce Denied Person’s List or Entity List. You also agree that you will not use said software for any purposes where prohibited by United States law, including, without limitation, the development, design, manufacture or production of nuclear, missile, chemical or biological weapons.



Confirmed: 16GB RAM Upgrade for Unibody MacBook Pros

I just confirmed that 16GB RAM modules will work in the early 2011 Macbook Pro Models – and in the other Sandy Bridge Models as well, including

* Macbook Pro Early 2011 (13″, 15″, 17″)
* Macbook Pro Late 2011 (13″, 15″, 17″)

Corsair RAM SO-DIMM DDR3 16GB / 1333Mhz [2x8GB] KIT CL9 Apple
EUR 123,13 in Europe, $116.98 in the USA.

Macbook Pro 16GB RAM Upgrade Modules Howto cheap compatible

Theoretically, other RAM Modules with the same specs should work as well, but I can definitely suggest and confirm the Corsair Modules to work, as they show “Mac Memory” on the German Amazon page and reviewers are reporting successful installs.

Please tell us in the comments section if other RAM modules worked for you. 16GB is currently the largest supported Memory Upgrade for the Unibody Macbook Pro. OWC still sells the same KIT for $239.99.

Booting and Installing Mac OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion on Hackintosh (and 10.7 as well)

Chimera Boots Mac OSX 10.7 and 10.8 Lion Mountain Lion OS Apple

Besides running hackintosh on Intel Sandy Bridge-E, there are more good news from the front:

Chimera, the bootloader that powers standard PC hardware to boot up Mac OS X, received an update allowing it to support OS X Mountain Lion. To obtain OS X Mountain Lion you need an Apple Developer Account that’ll cost you $99 per year, but of course your might already know where to find Mac OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion by yourself.

Today MacMan updated Chimera to version 1.8. For Mac OS X developers, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion support has been added. This version will be included in the next MultiBeast release. (via tonymacx86)

[SOLUTION] Apple Mac OSX SteamStartup failed with error 1: Failed create pipe:0

[update] Valve fixed the issues for on Mac OSX. We will keep the file mirror for Steam active, since there will be faulty updates in the future for sure. Thanks for all the nice responses and donate us some TF2 hats, if you want to thank us ;)

SteamStartup(0xf,0x0xbfffec4c) failed with error 1: Failed create pipe:0Ok here is the solution for all you people that suffer from the current bug since the last Update on Apple Mac OSX. Solution: Download an older version of and replace Steam in your Applications folder of OSX until a new patch has been released from Valve.

SteamStartup(0xf,0x0xbfffec4c) failed with error 1: Failed create pipe:0

This is generally a good (temporary) solution for various Steam issues on Mac OSX, if you need to get your TF2 or Portal fix. Just use an older version of
Download the old version of hosted by to access your games! (currently all “source” games are affected such as TF2, Portal2, CS, Left4Dead)

Steam ( fails on Mac OSX: SteamStartup(0xf,0x0xbfffec4c) failed with error 1: Failed create pipe:0

[update] Valve fixed the issues for on Mac OSX. We will keep the file mirror for Steam active, since there will be faulty updates in the future for sure. Thanks for all the nice responses and donate us some TF2 hats, if you want to thank us ;)

Just had this error after updating on Mac OSX Lion 10.7.2, and I am not the only one: it’s all over the internet – see the results on google (past 24hrs).

SteamStartup(0xf,0x0xbfffec4c) failed with error 1: Failed create pipe:0

As there were no reports on successfully solving the issues, I tried to solve it by myself.
Although, no luck yet. I will post updates to this issue, once it has been solved. In the meanwhile go Steam Support and paste the following (thanks to acidking)

[UPDATE] SOLVED! just download the mirrored older and you are ready to go until Valve fixes this!

Dear Steam,
Ever since your update on the 23rd of Feb, and I can’t play any Valve games through Steam on my Mac. I keep getting this error:
Error: SteamStartup() failed: SteamStartup (0xf, 0x0xbfffecac) failed with error 1: Failed create pipe: 0

Many are reporting the same issue on the forums. Please check it out ASAP.
Link to update in question:

Thank you.

Games affected: Team Fortress 2, Portal (2), Counter Strike.
Please post your comments and issues to this topic below.

AMD Cayman 6950 and 6970 support for Mac OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion (Hackintosh)

Cayman 6970 and 6950 on Hackintosh 10.8 mountain lion

The Cayman GPU works fine with the kexts from OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion, as reported by netkas. This means, the AMD Radeon 6970 and AMD Radeon 6950 work with Hackintosh – making the 6970 the fastest card currently supported by Hackintosh systems. Netkas further posted a patched x3000.kext that will solve the existing problems. Can’t wait to try this out myself. Will post updates here.

[Update 2012-3-11] netkas writes about Geforce gtx580 support out of the box. The netkas forum thread 6950 working NATIVELY in 10.8 !!! is currently 18 pages long and there are people getting it to run, some people are still having issues. The 6950 and 6970 running natively with the Mac Pro, as reported in the macrumors forums.

osxfuse: successor to macfuse brings NTFS and lots of file systems to Mac OS X

Since I wanted to use write-support for Windows NTFS drives on Apple Mac OS X, I was researching on alternatives and possibilities. I knew about the macfuse FUSE Project (File System in Userspace), but since it was not maintained anymore – what would one do?

Meet FUSEOSX (FUSE for OS X), the successor to MacFuse.

FUSE for OS X allows you to extend OS X's native file handling capabilities via third-party file systems. OSXFUSE is a successor to MacFUSE, which has been used as a software building block by dozens of products, but is no longer being maintained.

FUSE for OS X allows you to extend OS X’s native file handling capabilities via third-party file systems. OSXFUSE is a successor to MacFUSE, which has been used as a software building block by dozens of products, but is no longer being maintained.

As a user, installing the “FUSE for OS X” software package will let you use any third-party file system written atop “FUSE for OS X” or MacFUSE, if you choose to install the MacFUSE compatibility layer. As a developer, you can use the OSXFUSE SDK to write numerous types of new file systems as regular user space programs.

The most used extensions are SSHFS and NTFS-3G for Mac OS X, but there are lots of them out there.

Continue reading

How to get 5GB of free Dropbox space extra for free, using the beta client

[Update 2012-03-11] with the Experimental Forum Build 1.3.21 the total of free space was reduced to 3GB and the import of 3gpp files was added.

Dropbox: 5GB of free permanent extra space - extend

I just confirmed this and got some 5GB of free permanent extra space on my dropbox account: using the Experimental Forum Build and being part of the beta test concerning the new foto/video upload feature. The beta client is available for mac, windows and linux.

What’s new?

The “Dropbox Camera Import” feature automatically uploads your photo and video content, when plugging in a SD-card or connecting your smartphone. The autostart of the Dropbox importer did actually not work when I tried on Linux and Mac OSX 10.4. On Windows, you’ll need to have Autoplay enabled to get the automatic uploader working.

Dropbox Camera Import Photo Video 5GB Extra Free Permanent Extend

During this beta period, we are also offering additional free space to test automatic uploading of photos and videos. For every 500MB of photos and videos automatically uploaded, you’ll receive another 500MB space bonus, up to 5GB total. The Dropbox space you earn is permanent. You can use it for the life of your account.

[Update 2012-2-22] the latest version of the Experimental Forum Build is 1.3.17 that fixes a lot of bugs and issues. I updated the links accordingly. If you are getting started with Dropbox, use this referral link to get 250MB of extra free space on signup.

Sandy Bridge-E Intel 2011 Socket confirmed working with Hackintosh

[Update] Intel Socket 2011 does not only support Sandy Bridge-E, but also the upcoming Ivy Bridge-E Chipset, as outlined by one of our commenters. That makes the Socket-2011 Mainboards a perfect choice for a hackintosh system.

Many of us are waiting for an update to the Sandy Bridge (E) Chipset to the upcoming Intel Ivy Bridge (along with the release of new Apple Hardware), that would allow running the new Intel Chipset with Hackintoshed customac systems.

But what about Sandy Bridge-E?
Ivy Bridge will be Quad-Core. If you want more threads and cores, go for SB-E. Sandy Bridge-E as well as Ivy Bridge will have PCIe 3.0. SB-E has 40 PCIe lanes (compared to 16 lanes in Sandy Bridge) as well as 1600MHz memory speed (quad-channel memory) which should be around 33% faster in theory.

There are confirmed builds that can run Mac OSX 10.7 (Lion) as well as 10.6 (Snow Leopard) with the Intel Sandy Bridge-E (SB-E) X79 Chipset. Integrated Graphics are not supported, but who needs them anyway, since the AMD 6990 GPU or the upcoming 7990
Here is a list of the confirmed mainboards:

ASUS Asustek P9X79 Mainboard Socket S2011 hackintosh chimera

Asus P9X79 Deluxe (user: vonmolk)
$370 in the US, €299 in Europe

Pro: good build quality (compared to other versions of that board)
Cons: none. The Asus Rampage IV has even better build quality.

Gigabyte GA-X79-UD7 Mainboard Socket 2011 (ATX, DDR3 Speicher, SATA III, USB 3.0) Intel Hackintosh chimera

Gigabyte GA-X79-UD7 (user: machacks)
€297 in Europe, ??? in the USA

Pro: Awesome board! (nanofunk recommendation). Gigabyte has a longer history of hackintosh-capable boards, so get one of those.
Cons: none, really. Overclocking features could be better.

ASUS RAMPAGE IV EXTREME - LGA2011 - X79 - 8x DIMM - PCIe 3.0 Motherboards Hackintosh chimera

* ASUS Rampage IV Extreme (user: nfsking2)
$415 in the US, €369 in Europe

Pro: awesome build quality, extreme overclocking support.
Cons: expensive.

The MSI X79 Big Bang XPower II is suspected to work as well (once it becomes available). Theoretically, most of the X79 boards should work, we just have to wait and see what early birds (early adopters) are coming up with. Keep up the great work, ppl! (and don’t forget to share your experiences in the comments below)

Rumors of Apple iPad 3 to be released on February 24 2012

FocusTaiwan reports (via 9to5Mac) that Apple pushing its manufacturing partners to meet deadlines that would allow the company to launch the iPad on Steve Jobs’ birthday, February 24th.

According to the report, workers at several iPad component suppliers as well as manufacturing partner Foxconn will have limited time off during the usual Lunar New Year holiday. The Lunar New Year holiday itself falls on January 23rd next year, with workers generally receiving a number of other days off from work around that date.

Sources have been reporting a variety of rumored dates for an iPad 3 introduction, with some claiming a debut in the March-April timeframe while others have pointed to a February launch being in the works.

Apple last year launched new MacBook Pro models on Jobs’ birthday, although that unusual Thursday introduction was likely a convenient coincidence driven by the debut taking place during the Presidents Day holiday week.

[original via]

kernel[0]: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero – A never-ending story about Adobe failing to get their Flash Player and Adobe Air Plugin to work on Mac OSX in a “normal” way.

kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero
kernel[0]: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero

With Mac OSX Lion 10.7.0, a message was repeatedly showing up in the, so the logfiles would grow in size – sometimes around 100 MB per minute. This is especially bad for SSD owners. While the issue was reported over 6 Months ago, and Flash Player 11 solved the amount of errors in the console, still the message appears and slows down OSX 10.7 systems.

At least the release of Adobe’s Flash Player 11 solved the system freezes – but the Log message still is filling the kernel.log, so any debugging or search for errors is quite hard with that amount of data to read through.

If you are experiencing the same issues, please write your concerns to the Adobe Forums in the existing thread and alternatively also in the Apple Discussion Thread.

Nanofunk reported about this issue in july 2011, and we got over 60.000 unique visits to this post – so this is not a rare case, this is a serious bug with Adobe Flash and Adobe Air. We will post any updates to the situation to this blog, make sure to bookmark our feed.

See also:
* macrumors forum about kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero
* nanofunk: Mac OSX Lion 10.7 System Freezes: kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero (console message)


[Update] I posted to the Adobe Bugbase with a bug description. Hope they will respond now.

OSX Lion: “Can’t download the additional components needed to install Mac OS X” SOLUTION

Apple Mac OSX Lion 10.7
Since I had this problem several times when installing Mac OSX Lion 10.7.2, here is the simple solution: remove any RAM over 4GB. Keeping only 4GB RAM in the Mac (in my case a MacBook Pro) made the installer run flawlessly. It’s as simple as that.

OCZ Vertex 3 Fail: “Runtime corruption detected on SSD” and why SSD drives are not safe yet.

After almost 9 months with the OCZ Vertex 3 SATA-6GBPs (read about my OptiBay two-drive setup) and mostly no issues, the drive died on me. Starting with several GSOD (Grey Screens of Death) on my OSX Lion MacBook Pro, the drive became more and more unreliable.

Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel[0]: hfs: FindNextLeafNode: Error from hfs_swap_BTNode (node 9852)
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel[0]: hfs_swap_HFSPlusBTInternalNode: catalog key #54 too big
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel[0]: hfs: Runtime corruption detected on SSD, fsck will be forced on next mount.
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel[0]: hfs: FindNextLeafNode: Error from hfs_swap_BTNode (node 10370)
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel[0]: hfs_swap_HFSPlusBTInternalNode: catalog record #22 keyLength=32 expected=65568
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel[0]: hfs: node=10965 fileID=4 volume=SSD device=/dev/disk0s2
Nov 28 18:30:43 mbp kernel[0]: hfs: Runtime corruption detected on SSD, fsck will be forced on next mount.
Nov 28 18:30:43 mbp kernel[0]: hfs: FindNextLeafNode: Error from hfs_swap_BTNode (node 14503)
Nov 28 18:30:43 mbp kernel[0]: hfs_swap_BTNode: record #55 invalid offset (0x9B46)

It was getting slower and slower, reporting tons of errors in the Then, it did not reboot anymore. Even in an external USB drive enclosure the drive did not mount anymore. Contacting OCZ about this issue, they sent me an RMA number right away and told me they will replace the drive. Does this mean our data is not safe in SSD? What can we learn from this?

First of all, it is a myth that SSDs are more reliable than hard drives. Secondly, they are not even fully supported on OSX yet (see Should I use Trim Enabler on Lion for the OCZ Vertex 3? No!) – at least if you install the drives yourself (which is also what I would suggest, since Apple does not offer any decent SATA 6GBPs drives yet).

So where is the proof, you ask?

Proof #1: The Hot/Crazy Solid State Drive Scale (via Coding Horror)

Super Talent 32 GB SSD, failed after 137 days
OCZ Vertex 1 250 GB SSD, failed after 512 days
G.Skill 64 GB SSD, failed after 251 days
G.Skill 64 GB SSD, failed after 276 days
Crucial 64 GB SSD, failed after 350 days
OCZ Agility 60 GB SSD, failed after 72 days
Intel X25-M 80 GB SSD, failed after 15 days
Intel X25-M 80 GB SSD, failed after 206 days

As a commenter put it: “Average life of SSD = 227.375 days (based on Wills’ data)” – which is also what I can confirm.

SOLUTION: Backup early, backup often. Don’t rely on the SSD and make two local backups plus one backup in the cloud.

Proof #2: long-term study of SSD failure rates (via Tomshardware)

SSD vs HDD Failure Chart

SOLUTION: Buy drives that come with a very long warranty. Be prepared to let your drive replace for several times.

I am still waiting for my replacement OCZ Vertex and I will benchmark how fast it will die again. Since OCZ told me, it can take up to three weeks for my replacement to arrive, I bought myself a Seagate ST750LX003 750 GB SATA 600, Momentus XT, 8 GB SLC – it’s a hybrid 750GB HDD with an 8GB SLC cache. The drive shifts data that is used often in the 8GB SLC SSD space automatically. While the SSD part of this hybrid drive can also fail, the data won’t be lost and it will suffer just some minor speed loss (if it fails, since SLC is said to be more reliable than MLC chips). While this disk is now my main startup disk, i will go back to using the OCZ Vertex 3 again, once the replacement arrives. I just need to backup regularly – the speed gain is really worth the trouble.

iPhone 5 Prototype Hands-On: Fake or Real?

(via macrumors) Business Insider now reports that it has received word from a source who has claimed to have had access to an iPhone 5 prototype and offered some details on the device. We’ve been told this by an industry source who has been right about future Apple products in the past.

It has not been verified yet, but there are some leaked details, which are of course just rumors:

– 4-inch screen
– Aluminum back
– Capacitive home button
– “Flatter” form factor
– Much faster than current hardware, but poor battery life
– 10-megapixel rear camera
– Siri prototype known as “Assistant”, which had been the rumored name for the feature until its introduction

There are quite some good deals on the Apple iPhone 4S on ebay, an introduction of the iPhone 5 would let the price of the “older” models drop significantly (talking about the Osborne Effect)

iPhone 4S / Canon 5d MKII Side by Side Comparison

***You can download the full 1080p version of this video for a more accurate presentation.

Here’s a “fair” test between the iPhone 4S and the Canon 5D MK II. I made a little rig that allowed me to shoot both cameras at the same time side by side. All scenes are perfectly synced together so you can pause and scrutinize the frames! See photo of the makeshift rig in the photo area.

Exposure, shutter speed, frame rate and picture style were matched as close as possible between the two cameras. (I used the Zacuto Z-finder to help me adjust exposure for both iPhone and 5D)

This test shows that the tiny F2.4 lens and sensor on the iPhone are pretty nice. It even got a little depth of field!

I did not overlay the exact ISO and Stops 5D settings per shot. It was too much to keep track for this simple test. To be fair I matched 5D exposure to the iPhone so no “Cinestyle” / 24p here.

Here are the settings:

iPhone 4S

– AE.AF locked. That’s all you have!

Canon 5D MKII

– Canon 50mm 1.4
– ISO 160 ~ 640 (varied per shot to match the iPhone)
– F 7~22 (varied per shot to match the iPhone)
– Shutter 1/60th
– Auto WB
– Standard Picture Style
– 1080p 30


Apple Wild West UI Design (HaHa)

hahaha: gizmodo is totally right when stating “Yeee-haw, Apple buckaroos! Whooz ready for some good timin’, multitaskin’? Who wants their iPhone served up with a hot bucket’a grits? HOOOOOOOOOOO BOY. Jonny Ive’s deep in the hooch pan again? Saddle up, grab yer partner, and let’s make some truck-ugly apps!”

What happened to the GUI design guidelines of Apple? Why do we have to use western-style user interfaces – and why can’t we change the looks to something uhm less contemporary?

New Apple iPhone 4S – mainly lens improvements, but: great optics indeed! (plus: Siri A.I.)

Everyone’s talking about the new iPhone 4S that was announced by Apple recently. But is there more to it than improved optics? Even if not, the camera is a huge improvement over the previous model: 1080p video recording, 8 Megapixel photo sensor, f/2.4 aperture.

Behind all the updates, the most interesting is HSDPA support. In countries such as Austria or Japan, where HSDPA is widespread, this is a very welcome hardware upgrade. Still, why is there no HSPA+ support? In cities with a weak broadband coverage (everything above a few MB upstream) – such as Vienna, this is really akward. We still have to fall back to the Samsung Galaxy S2 i9100, which offers HSPA+ among other great features. So the “only” killer feature of the Apple iPhone 4S remains the greatly improved Camera – which is to question, concerning the price of such a gadget. An Amazon Search for the iPhone 4S yields no results, obviously, since the device is said to be available from mid October.

Our recommendations: wait for the iPhone 5 and get some real gear instead.

1) Get a Canon PowerShot S100 for Photo and Video
2) Get a SONIM XP5300 3G FORCE if you need a phone that actually works.

Apple Releases OS X 10.7.1 with Fixes for Video in Safari, Audio Out, Wi-Fi and More

Apple released Mac OSX Lion 10.7.1 updates today, with the following release notes:

The 10.7.1 update is recommended for all users running OS X Lion and includes general operating system fixes that enhance the stability and compatibility of your Mac, including fixes that:

– Address an issue that may cause the system to become unresponsive when playing a video in Safari
– Resolve an issue that may cause system audio to stop working when using HDMI or optical audio out
– Improve the reliability of Wi-Fi connections
– Resolve an issue that prevents transfer of your data, settings, and compatible applications to a new Mac running OS X Lion

For detailed information on this update, please visit this website:

There is not much fixed, at least not for the reported issues such as SSD TRIM support for non-apple SSDs and the well known flash issues.
Still, Seems more stable. There is a seperate update for 10.7.1 Server and another update specific to the latest MacBook Air and Mac mini models, adding a few additional fixes. (via macrumors)

Should I use Trim Enabler on Lion for the OCZ Vertex (3)? No! (Benchmarks inside)

We recently blogged, after purchasing two OCZ Vertex SATA3 Drives (240GB) and inserting them with an Optibay setting (2 Drives in one MacBook Pro; see our previous post: 2011 Macbook Pro and SATA III 6Gbps, Optibay: two HD drives – setup explained).

We also blogged that enabling TRIM is a good thing, although it seems that it seems to be not necessary on Sandforce based chipsets.

Since we still were experiencing freezes and Sandballs on our Mac OSX Lion 10.7 SSD Setup that were actually not related to TRIM, also the system did not feel as snappy anymore.

Conclusion: don’t use TRIM on OSX Lion 10.7, if you are using a Sandforce based SSD. Revert to the original driver and not only the Beachballs will go away, but also the system feels snappy again. See the below Benchmarks for real-life results (since AJA System Test does not work on internal drives, we can recommend using XBENCH to verify the figures for you).

XBENCH Screenshot with TRIM Enabled (using TRIM Enabler for OSX 10.7 Lion)
Screen Shot 2011 08 07 at 16 00 30

Screenshot of XBENCH without TRIM Enabler (Restored to original setting)

Screen Shot 2011 08 07 at 16 06 39

UPDATE: Grant Pannell ( reports on how to restore to the original settings.

Excessive Logging on Mac OSX 10.7 Lion: Repair the Keychain to solve the issues. ( deny file-read-data )

Lots of people complain about slow Mac OSX Lion performance, mostly caused by thousands of Log-Messages being written to the system log files. As Chief Tarun points out at the Apple Support Forums

I opened up the console app, and there were hundreds, if not thousands of logs just in the past 2 hours. And when I say ‘get info’ on Macintosh HD the used disk space is increasing every 5 to 10 seconds. This is the only concerning bug/glitch of noticed in Lion since upgrading.

I had exactly the same issue, checking my messages that told

“WebProcess(225) deny file-read-data /Users/foobert/Library/Application Support/Adobe/AIR/ELS/com.adobe.amp.4875E02D9FB21EE389F73B8D1702B320485DF8CE.1/ PrivateEncryptedDatak”

While one would think that uninstalling Adobe AIR would fix the issue, the problem resides at another point.


1) Open “”
2) Go To “Keychain Access -> Keychain First Aid” to repair your Keychain.

Now the console messages disappeared and the system runs in “silent mode” again.

[Update] you console Messages might also be due to a bug in Adobe Flash and AiR, causing the messages “kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero” to appear in You can read all about it in the nanofunk archives.

Mac OSX Lion 10.7 System Freezes: kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero (console message)

Some people experience system freezes on Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, but also on Snow Leopard: kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero.
The Error is visible with (“All Messages” respectively “kernel.log”)

To reproduce the issue:
1) click on “Clear Display” in
2) go to and the error will show up in the console.

The error must be Flash related. Sometimes, the whole System is unresponsive, freezing everything but the mouse. There is no official response from Adobe or from Apple, so we can only hope and wait. Please check your for this error and respond to any of the existing discussions.

Screen Shot 2011 07 28 at 11 52 25

[Update] the error message also seems to have surfaced in 10.6.4 already, as visible in the Apple Discussion Forums

[Update] installing the Adobe Flash Player 11.0 from Adobe Labs seems to at least minimize the freezes, but still the console messages appear.

[Update] i posted a poll on insanelymac to see which browsers and systems are affected. please also post your results there!

[Update] the new Beta 2 11.0.d1.98 of the flash player is out (thanks JP Hansen)

[Update] The Flash Player 11 is officially released. It seems though, that not all issues are resolved with Mac OSX Lion compatibility.

[Update 23.12.2011] more than 6 months after the issue was reported, (and we have Apple Mac OS X 10.7.2 and 10.7.3 in beta) there is still no update on this issue from Adobe. Please write your concerns to the Adobe Forums in the existing thread to have them fix the issues! Especially for SSD owners this is unacceptable!

Existing Discussions:

* discussion thread in the Adobe Flash Player Forums
* Thread in the Apple Support Communities Forum
* Thread on MacRumors Forums regarding Lion Freezes with kernel: IOSurface

[Update] I posted to the Adobe Bugbase with a bug description. Hope they will respond now. Please, support our effort by filing another report at the Adobe Bugbase!

[Update 2012-2-22] still, the ticket in Adobe Bugbase is open, although there were several patches and bugfixes to Adobe Flash Player 11.1 ( as of today).

[Update] Adobe recently closed the bug report. This is very bad news, since lots of people are experiencing this issue. I cannot believe how bad the Adobe support and bugfixing guidlines are.

Mac OSX 10.7 Lion updating annoyances: Scolling, Versioning and no TRIM!

While Apple’s 10.7 Lion OS looks much more like GNOME like any other previous version of OSX, is comes with lots of annoyances. People using an SSD drive might have to update, since it finally supports the TRIM command, there are also lots of annoying features you might want to get rid of:

1) No TRIM support out of the box if you are using your own SSD (not Apple’s)

Screen Shot 2011 07 22 at 10 36 06

This is ridicolous: TRIM only seems to work for Apple buit-in SSDs. There is a tool by that will do the trick: TRIM Enabler, which works for Lion and for Snow Leopard as well. You might want to consider enabling this feature, since TRIM will make your Solid State Drive last longer, due to less writes to the cells.

2) Mouse scrolling direction got reversed: how to revert

Apple decided to reverse the mouse scolling on 10.7 Lion, meaning you have to scroll your mousewheel up to actually move the on-screen content down. Here is a screenshot from System Preferences, where you can change that “feature” to the way it was before: simply uncheck the box left to “Move content in the direction of finger movement when scrolling or navigating”.

Screen Shot 2011 07 22 at 10 30 53

3) Disabling the “Resume” feature

The “Resume” Feature in Mac OS X Lion restores the state of the application windows, when re-opening an application. Since I definitely do not need this feature, here is a way to turn it off: just uncheck the left box next to “Restore windows when quitting and re-opening apps” in System Preferences -> General

Screen Shot 2011 07 22 at 10 58 34

4) Disabling “Versions” feature in Mac OSX 10.7 Lion

Versions should’t be a problem unless you are using Time Machine. MacRumors has a forum post on disabling that features.

5) Other (small) annoyances

Google Chrome does not get moved with an update ( Chrome vanishes with Lion 10.7 Update)

This is also very strange: the Google Chrome Browser did not get moved on my Lion update. I had to re-download Google At least the Application Support files got moved, so I did not lose any browsing history or bookmarks.

Dropbox needs to be reinstalled: special Lion build

The dropbox right-click features dissappear when updating to Lion. Download the Latest Forum Build of Dropbox that is Lion compatible (1.2.16 at the time of writing this entry)


Other interesting reviews about Mac OSX 10.7 Lion can be found here:

* Time Magazine on OSX Lion: “With OS X Lion, Apple’s Macs Enter the iPad Era
* Engadget: “Apple OS X Lion (10.7) review

Apple to Release Updated MacBook Air and Mac Pro & Mac OSX Lion 10.7 on July, 14th

According to 9 to 5 Mac and Macrumors, the “reliable tipster ‘Mr. X'” has revealed that Apple will be releasing new MacBook Air and Mac Pro models this week alongside OS X Lion. While Mr. X has not offered a specific release date, it appears that Apple may be targeting this Thursday, July 14th for the hardware launch alongside OS X Lion.

Macbook air mac pro lion 1

New hardware also means new kexts for the hackintosh community and possibly also price drops on refurbished Mac Pro systems and refurbished MacBook Air models.

Install Mac OS X Lion 10.7 on PC Hackintosh

Its now possible to Install Mac OS X 10.7 Lion on your PC with the standard Hackintosh techniques. That means, everything stays the same to get your hackintosh up and running, no worries. More information on the geeknizer blog entry or alternatively, watch the video below:

Steps to install OSX Lion:
1. Get the “GM” (Golden Master) of Lion via torrent
2. Get an EFI Boot Loader
3. Get a decent 8GB USB thumb drive and install the Golden Master on there.
4. Install using iBoot.

You can get detailed information on installing Mac OSX Lion 10.7 by reading the geeknizer blog howto.

[UPDATE] tonymacx86 showed how to Install OS X 10.7 Lion on any Supported Intel Core 2 or Core i based PC with xMove + MultiBeast. Furthermore, there is a Mac OSX Lion v10.7.2-HOTiSO that should also boot from any PC. Don’t forget that you need to buy Apple Mac OS X Lion from the App Store to legally use it.

Cheapest Hackintosh configuration: 235$ (145$ without monitor!)

We compiled a list of the cheapest hackintosh configuration with the cheapest currently available Hackintosh compatible hardware to date.

This is the configuration that makes most sense if you have a small budget. Graphics are Intel GMA 950 and the set is complete with monitor, mouse and keyboard. The drive is a 7200RPM 500GB HD. Here is the URL to the complete list: The cheapest Hackintosh shopping-list.

19.99$ Kingston ValueRAM 2 GB 667MHz PC2-5300 DDR2 DIMM Desktop Memory (KVR667D2N5/2G)
29.99$ GIGABYTE GA-8I945GZME-RH Intel 945GZ Socket 775 micro-ATX Motherboard w/Video, Audio & Gigabit LAN
89.99$ HP L2045w – LCD display – TFT – 20.1″ – widescreen – 1680 x 1050 / 60 Hz – 300 cd/m2 – 600:1 – 5 ms – 0.258 mm DVI-D, VGA (Refurbished)
  9.99$ SilenX IXM-2014 IXTREMA Pro 200W MicroATX Power Supply
32.99$ Hitachi Deskstar P7K500 HDP725050GLA360 – Hard drive – 500 GB – internal – 3.5″ – SATA-300 – 7200 rpm – buffer: 16 MB
16.00$ Lite-On Super AllWrite 24X SATA DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Drive – Bulk – IHAS124-04 (Black)
  4.80$ Masscool 90mm CPU Cooler for Intel Socket LGA775
14.99$ Processor – 1 x Intel Celeron D 330J / 2.66 GHz ( 533 MHz ) – LGA775 Socket – L2 256 KB – OEM
14.50$ ATX Mid Tower Aluminum Desktop Computer Case
  1.99$ I Concepts PC Trio Kit

The price for the complete set is 235$ (145$ without monitor!). We don’t think you will find a cheaper Hackintosh configuration out there.
Ah, one more thing: a very cheap mobile hackintosh notebook costs 229.99$: the Asus Eee PC 900A WFBB01 Refurbished Netbook.

Free To Play: Apple Mac Games that are free in Steam

The Apple Macintosh (MAC OSX) Platform is catching up with Windows regarding gaming – while this for sure is attributable to the Steam platform by Valve (which are responsible for great Games such as Portal 2), the latest (and cheapest) way to play quality games on Macintosh are to make use of the “free to play” feature of Steam:

Those games are free to download and free to play. Valve makes money if you are ordering additional items such as weapons, mods and so on. On the example of Team Fortress 2: if you ever spent a dime on the game (or would buy it now) you would get premium features: more Items, full “trading” (sell and exchange virtual goods), gifting, etc.

Team fortress 2

While this is a new approach to capitalizing games, this can be seen as a positive path, the gaming industry is taking. Why? Because the games have to be maintained longer and the communities around the games can emerge. This means: addons, mods, hacks and whatnot, resulting in “ludic artefacts” (as outlined in the german book “Gaming 2.0“). Also, the ludic artefacts of Team Fortress 2 on eBay are increasing daily.

Currently, the only two Mac compatible games are Team Fortress 2 and Spiral Knights. On Windows, there are much more titles available: Global Agenda, Spiral Knights, Alliance of Valiant Arms, Champions Online, Forsaken World, Team Fortress 2.

To play those Windows-only games on your Macintosh, you currently have two choices: either use Apple Bootcamp or use Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac. I can totally recomment Parallels Desktop, since the Version 6 has a very fast GPU and game performace (cf. Arstechnica about Parallels Desktop 6 Gaming Performance).

Happy gaming!

MacBook Pro Early 2011 freezes and kernel panics: revert to 32bit to have a stable system

As we already blogged some time ago, we had severe overheating issues and frequent kernel panics with our early 2011 models of the MacBook Pro Core-i7 quad. Still, after the updates there are crashes from time to time – the early 2011 models are far away from being stable machines to use for serious work.

After days of trying to figure out what is really the issue, we found that most of the times device drivers or other third party apps are mostly causing the crashes – but also CPU-intensive apps such as games sometimes bring the system down. Solution? Yes, there is one: change your system to a 32bit Kernel.

1) The bootup way (temporary solution, great for testing)

If you just want to test if changing to 32bit changes anything, you can reboot your mac and hold down the “3” and “2” keys as soon as you hit the power button. This boots up your Apple in 32bit mode temporarily. If the system

2) The Terminal Way (see the Apple Support Document for more information)

sudo systemsetup -setkernelbootarchitecture i386

if you need to change your system back to normal for any case, you can enter the following command into

sudo systemsetup -setkernelbootarchitecture x86_64

Just to make it clear: your applications will still run in 64bit mode, you can make sure this is the case by hitting cmd+i on the application icon and see if “Open in 32-bit mode” is checked. See this article from simplehelp with details and images on 32-bit mode. So why should I care then, you might ask: since drivers and 3rd party apps and extensions that are loaded on startup are most of the time the issue with system freezes and hangs, changing to a 32bit kernel did the trick for us and now we have a stable 2011 MBP quad-core system.

[UPDATE] 10.6.8 seems to work with 64bit kernel much more stable than 10.6.7. Still, to be on the safe side we are using the 32bit kernel and had no freezes yet.

2011 Macbook Pro and SATA III 6Gbps, Optibay: two HD drives – setup explained

Since we recently purchased two 2011 MacBook Pros (with lots of issues, as previously reported) we were wondering if SATA III 6Gbps drives would be supported. The short answer is YES, the longer answer is: only on the original Hard Drive port. Here are recommendations on which drive setup is best  suited for getting the maximum out of the 2011 Apple machines.

Which type are you?

  • the collector: two 750GB SATAII Drives
  • fast, but not furious: 256GB SSD SATAIII drive + 750GB HDD in the optical drive slot
  • the caretaker: 256GB SSD SATAIII drive + 500GB SATAII hybrid drive in the optical drive slot
  • speed enthusiast: 256GB SSD SATAIII drive + 256GB SSD SATAII drive in the optical drive slot
  • humongous and rich: 512GB SSD SATAIII drive + 512GB SSD SATAII drive in the optical drive slot

The recommended steps are to select your setup, get an OptiBay, choose an external casing for your optical drive and get your hands dirty. Read our recommendations and tell us which type you are!

The new MCE OptiBay was created for users who want as much hard drive capacity as possible inside their MacBook Pro, MacBook, PowerBook G4, iMac, or Mac mini. Period

Continue reading

Save Money with replica Apple Hardware: the good and the bad.

Apple original Hardware is very pricy. There are some items which can be bought as replica and are (almost) the same as their original counterparts. But which items should be bought as rebuilt?Good idea: Replica Apple Power Adapters (for MacBook, MacBook Pro, iPhone, iPad). Bad idea: Lithium-ion polymer battery packs.

We recently had bad experiences with non-Apple battery packs, so we can definitely not recommend getting them from another vendor. Good news: if your Battery is less than 300 cycles and lower than 80% of the battery health, they will replace it for you (if you have Apple Care or are within your 1 Year warranty). If not, stay tuned, we will post a guide on this very soon.

Apple replica/ rebuilt Hardware that actually makes sense to buy

1. Apple Magsafe Power Adapters (and G4/G3 Adapters as well)

Apple Magsafe Power Adapter Replica. Cheaper than the original, same quality.

The cheapest versions are EUR 27,98 for a AC Power Adapter für Apple MacBook Pro MagSafe 85W( even cheaper in the USA: $25.56!) and EUR 21,99 for a 60W Power adapter for Apple MacBook ( only $19.27 in the US!)

2. Apple USB Power Adapters for iPhone and iPod

The Apple original USB Adapter sells for $29 on the Apple Store, while a Multicharger Set (Car, Wall and USB) sells for €4.50 in Europe and $5.47 in the USA. Be careful! I selected items that we already ordered and tested before, there are “bad” replicas as well out there (see this example and read the comments on Amazon).



Apple Replica Keyboard. WTF is that a windows key?

Apple Replica Keyboard. WTF is that a windows key?


I will post my experiences with Apple replicas here if I have any news. Currenty, we can NOT recommend the following list of items as replicas:

  • Apple Replica Batteries. They mostly died on us too fast. (we will post a specific Apple Batteries Guide in some days)
  • Apple Replica Keyboard (not tested) – is this really available somewhere? WTF is this windows key? Although the Macally USB Slim Keyboard – ICEKEY has some good reviews, i like my keyboard to be an original. [UPDATE] the Macally Keyboard has severe driver issues. Not Recommended!
  • Apple Mouse Replicas: we ended up going hi-tech with the Apple Magic Mouse which is $67.99 – or just using the Logitech Value Optical Mouse which is $4.99, but can not be really considered a “replica”, since the Apple Magic Mouse has soo much more features (wireless, swipe, better optical resolution).