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Psystar Will Countersue Apple

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the take-that dept.

The Courts 1084

An anonymous reader sends us to CNet for news that Apple clone maker Pystar plans to countersue Apple. We discussed Apple's suit last month. "Mac clone maker Psystar plans to file its answer to Apple's copyright infringement lawsuit Tuesday as well as a countersuit of its own, alleging that Apple engages in anticompetitive business practices. Miami-based Psystar... will sue Apple under two federal laws designed to discourage monopolies and cartels, the Sherman Antitrust Act and the Clayton Antitrust Act, saying Apple's tying of the Mac OS to Apple-labeled hardware is 'an anticompetitive restraint of trade,' according to [an] attorney... Psystar is requesting that the court find Apple's EULA void, and is asking for unspecified damages."

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In a word... (4, Insightful)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#24757965)

/popcorn.

I really hope Psystar wins this one. Apple (and they aren't the only one, just the subject on hand at the moment) really needs to get told where to stick their monopolistic behavior. If you release a product to the market, then you have no business telling people what they can and can't do with it once they've bought it.

Re:In a word... (5, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 6 years ago | (#24757995)

If Psystar wins, it'll be a pyrrhic victory.

Apple will just kill retail sales of OS X upgrades, and do it all through the iTunes store. Won't prevent hackintoshes but it'll kill Psystar's ability to ride Apple's development efforts.

Re:In a word... (4, Insightful)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758065)

By "ride Apple's development efforts", you mean "purchase an Apple product at retail and resell it", right?

Surely you don't think Apple is losing money on the deal or being taken advantage of in any way. If anyone knows how to set retail prices high enough to guarantee profit, it's Apple.

Re:In a word... (5, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758111)

"purchase an Apple product at retail and resell it"

According to the EULA, the retail boxed copies of OS X are meant as upgrades to prior versions of OS X. Much like how MS sells upgrades of Vista from XP for considerably less than the full retail version (at least they used to.) Were a company selling PCs that were installed from non-OEM upgrade copies of XP, MS would have their heads.

Of course, if Psystar won here you would probably see an explosion of PCs sold with upgrade versions of Windows instead of full retail copies. Apple will just kill off the retail channel for upgrades of OS X.

Re:In a word... (3, Interesting)

WK2 (1072560) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758191)

Windows PCs are sold with OEM copies of Windows, which are cheaper than retail upgrade disks. If Pystar won this suit, MS might just stop selling upgrade versions. Or not. They would still have their technical measures, and most people wouldn't know about this suit anyway. Apple might implement technical measures to prevent their upgrades from installing without a prior version.

Re:In a word... (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758297)

I doubt they'd employ all the annoying technical measures MS has.

They'd probably just tie licenses to serial numbers, and establish a legal path for copies of OS X to make it impossible for Psystar to legally purchase copies of OS X without buying a Mac for each one they want.

Re:In a word... (5, Insightful)

Wesley Felter (138342) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758249)

A full OEM copy of Windows is actually cheaper than an upgrade copy, so MS provides no incentive to cheat the system.

Re:In a word... (5, Insightful)

korean.ian (1264578) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758131)

If Apple was a software company, then they wouldn't be losing money. Since Apple sells complete packages and makes most of their money on hardware sales, if Psystar wins, it could spell the end of Apple. Without Apple, no more OS X development. Parasites are never beneficial to anything but themselves.

Re:In a word... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758363)

If Apple was a software company, then they wouldn't be losing money. Since Apple sells complete packages and makes most of their money on hardware sales, if Psystar wins, it could spell the end of Apple. Without Apple, no more OS X development. Parasites are never beneficial to anything but themselves.

Hi korean.ian,

I really feel I should inform you that Apple has other products like the most popular portable media player available, the iPod, and the highly acclaimed iPhone. These products seem to be very profitable for Apple.

Now this may hurt their desktop and laptop hardware department, but it will also probably stimulate OSX software sales. I don't see how they are losing money by selling their OS upgrade discs at $130 each. They would only be losing potential hardware sales.

I've wanted to use OSX for a while now, but I don't want to spend the extra money on an entry-level Apple computer that will not perform as I need it to. I have a very nice system for $700 that can out perform any apple computer except the MacBook Pro and the Mac Pro. If this lawsuit goes in favor of PsyStar, I may be able to legally get what I want.

Re:In a word... (1)

rogermcdodger (1113203) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758151)

The retail cost of OSX is for an operating system upgrade to an already purchased system. Apple can price how they want and have chosen this model as it works for them. I doubt anyone outside of Apple knows it's real value, but I bet it has one assigned in accounting and I expect it is alot higher than $130. Apple weren't stopping them reselling copies of OSX. They only came in when Psystar started offering modified copies in order to sell their hardware.

Re:In a word... (0)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758155)

No, I think he means "install OS X without a license". Each copy of OS X is licensed to be installed on an Apple-branded machine.

Much like every copy of Linux is licensed for end use without modification unless source is made available.

Re:In a word... (1)

Naughty Bob (1004174) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758359)

No, I think he means "install OS X without a license". Each copy of OS X is licensed to be installed on an Apple-branded machine.

Much like every copy of Linux is licensed for end use without modification unless source is made available.

"Much like"?

Well, in the first instance I'm prevented from using what I've bought how I want to.

In the second instance, I'm prevented from benefiting someone else's work. Note your dissemblance- I can modify Linux however I like without releasing the source, if the modification is for my use. Your comparison is invalid.

Re:In a word... (3, Informative)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758497)

Why is the comparison invalid? You are free to install OS X on your own machine as long as you do not distribute the code! This is not because the license allows it, but because you are not commiting copyright infringement.

In this case PsyStar is both installing OS X AND distributing the copy they installed.

So the comparison is valid: distribution of copyrighted code is copyright infringement and is the power that allows copyleft to exist. And, incidentally, allows Apple to argue copyright infringement.

Re:In a word... (4, Interesting)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758219)

OS X is subsidized by hardware sales. The last time they sold an OS that wasn't subsized by hardware sales, it was OpenStep, and it sold for ~$800. ~$1600 if you wanted the development version.

Bullshit (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758447)

Bullshit till citation provided. Previous unrelated example has no relation to what is happening now.

Re:In a word... (1)

Kruid (646582) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758493)

Well, if their point of view is "anyone buying a clone could be buying Apple hardware", then yes, they are losing money (or at least profit opportunity).

Re:In a word... (1, Insightful)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758089)

Psystar isn't riding Apple's development efforts at all. They aren't trying to sell Apple's OS as they're own, they're trying to stand up to Apple's bullying that immorally (and hopefully illegally, but we'll see) says you can't run their OS except on their hardware. If all they can accomplish is forcing Apple to rework their distribution methods, I'll still take what I can get. Better than Apple being allowed to behave badly unchallenged.

Re:In a word... (4, Insightful)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758239)

What immorality are we talking about here? What illegality here?

Apple licenses their IP as they see fit, just like everyone else who owns IP. They license to those who happen to own Apple branded machines, just like the GPL licenses to those who distribute unmodified software, requiring modifications to be available in source form.

Violation of either license restricts what you can do with the product. In Apple's case, you aren't allowed to copy the OS from disc to computer, and in the GPL's case you aren't allowed to distribute your code.

Both extend logically from copyright.

Re:In a word... (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758241)

they're trying to stand up to Apple's bullying that immorally (and hopefully illegally, but we'll see) says you can't run their OS except on their hardware.

No, they're trying to play legal games to somehow suggest that the retail copies of OS X are not in fact upgrades, but wholly licensed full copies of the OS. They wouldn't dare try it against Microsoft, because the market for Vista machines is already flooded.

They want to push boxes with the shiny X logo on the front, in the hopes that some sucker will buy one and go whining to Apple when their system goes tits up.

Re:In a word... (0)

DECS (891519) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758263)

Yes, and next sue Disney for having an immoral and illegal monopoly over licensing Mickey Mouse merchandise.

Surely the "moral thing" to do is just let the Chinese clone everything in America so you can bask in the glow of buying a 99 cent version of everything at Walmart thanks to slave labor.

The fact that five people found you insightful makes me sad.

Will Google's Android Play DOS to Apple's iPhone? [roughlydrafted.com]

Re:In a word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758411)

And if Psystar wins, what will happen when nothing works on OS X anymore? Apple succeeds by locking the supported devices and platforms to their exact specifications on their own OS. Take this away, and we'll see the quality of Apple systems fall rapidly. Along with the increased market share leading to more security exploits, I see little good in the long run coming from this. If Psystar wins, Mac will turn into Windows, where nothing can get done to improve the system later because of fears of support and backwards compatibility.

Re:In a word... (1)

tomtermite (246492) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758481)

Just buy Windoze... where is the anti-competitive behavior?

Damn Nissan for not letting me put a Ford engine in my Bluebird!

Re:In a word... (1)

korean.ian (1264578) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758485)

Apple hasn't cared about hackers running OS X on whatever hardware they like. If the did, then sites like the OSx86 project would find nasty letters threatening them with a takedown.

However, when a company like Psystar decides to start making a dent in Apple's (slight) market share then surely it's not unexpected that Apple responds as they are. Ask yourself this: if there were no Apple, would there still be a Psystar?

If they win (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758457)

Apple may not be allowed that option. Remember they are challenging Apple on Monopoly grounds. If they win Apple can be mandated to do or not do certain things that wouldn't apply to normal companies. Same sort of deal with MS. Normally, the government has no ability to tell a company that they can't bundle certain things with their products, or must provide options to turn them off. However, because of MS's monopoly status, they can and have. If Apple lost a similar suit, they could face similar restrictions. Thus they wouldn't necessarily be able to just say "Ok fine, you can't buy our OS without our special software and DRM." The government might say "No, you have to sell normal install discs without prejudice to how they are used."

Re:In a word... (1)

Kamokazi (1080091) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758053)

Begin HP/Dell/etc. is backing Psystar conspiracy theories in 3..2..1....

Re:In a word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758235)

I'd say it's a linux company. Psystar sells hardware with OS X. Apple doesn't like that. Psystar forces them to court. Wins. Apple eventually goes out of business. No more OS X. So Psystar starts selling machines with Linux pre-installed.

Re:In a word... (2, Interesting)

Kamokazi (1080091) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758333)

You forget something...Apple still makes money on just OS X. and if this goes through, Dell, HP, etc. will probably be buying up licenses to sell to consumers (after some driver R&D and tech support training). Apple can continue without its computer hardware sales, no problem. It may have to tweak the price of OS X a bit to compensate, but I think it will be just fine.

Re:In a word... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758479)

You are the one forgetting something.
Apple is a hardware company, not a software company. The OS upgrade they sell is to support hardware they manufactured.
DO you get all pissy that you can't install your TV's firmware on other TVs?

Re:In a word... (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758113)

Wow. I thought Psystar was going to get crushed, and then suddenly I see their angle. They might have a case here.

Re:In a word... (0)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758311)

They would have a greater case if they sued Microsoft for anticompetitive tying; forcing the purchase of Vista in order to acquire XP.

In this case the only chance they have is if they can prove that their OpenPCs are Mac compatible; but because they are not (requiring the use of outside software and slight modifications to the OS X DVD) they can't claim the same protections that Compaq had when they made the original IBM-PC clones.

Re:In a word... (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758451)

I wasn't under the impression that people are required to carry older products under the law. I think auto manufacturers are supposed to provide parts for their vehicles for so many years and such, but I'm not sure it is illegal for Microsoft to stop selling XP.

In this case the only chance they have is if they can prove that their OpenPCs are Mac compatible; but because they are not (requiring the use of outside software and slight modifications to the OS X DVD) they can't claim the same protections that Compaq had when they made the original IBM-PC clones.

That might be the entire basis for their case. Apple has gone out of their way to make sure people can't put OS X on whatever hardware they want, and it can only be accomplished with some hackery.

Does Apple have the right to say their software may only be used on Apple hardware? That is for the courts to decide.

Re:In a word... (3, Insightful)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758413)

Wow. I thought Psystar was going to get crushed, and then suddenly I see their angle. They might have a case here.

Bloody nonsense. Psystar claims that Apple prevents them from selling computers. Reality is that Dell, HP, and all the other companies are quite successfully selling computers without MacOS X, and if Psystar wants to sell the computer, they can just do the same as Dell, HP and everyone else in that business and install OEM copies of Windows, or Linux, or whatever other operating system they can find where the copyright holder is willing to give them a license, or write their own OS like Apple did.

Don't you think if there was any legal angle that could force Apple to license their OS, Dell wouldn't have gone after them at least a year ago?

Re:In a word... (3, Insightful)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758137)

The law says monopolies are legal, so therefore monopolistic behavior is legal.

What is illegal is anti-competitive behavior.

And... we have this construct called intellectual property and laws that tell us what we can and cannot do with intellectual property. It powers copyright, which gives the GPL it's ability to provide copyleft (if you violate copyleft, you have also broken copyright for example).

In this case Apple is using a specific IP to it's advantage; copyright means Apple specifically limits what copies an end user can make (for example, they cannot redistribute copies without additional licenses from Apple). In this case Psystar does not have the license from Apple to distribute copies. On the barest of technicalities then Psystar has no license to distribute the single copy included on each OpenPC.

The EULA is very clear that the distribution license for OS X only allows for a single copy on an Apple branded machine, and OpenPCs are not Apple branded. To use the GPL as an example, it would be the same case if OpenPC preinstalled a modified Linux kernel without providing the source.

Re:In a word... (1)

Cylix (55374) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758273)

First sale doctrine tells me I can sale it regardless.

Particularly, Microsoft v. Zamos, is of interest with regards to this case.

However, if they are bypassing some upgrade restrictions then that would be the appropriate angle. However, nothing is wrong with selling an item you have purchased.

Re:In a word... (5, Informative)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758397)

First sale doctrine allows PsyStar to resell copies of OS X, but not install it on their PCs!

MS vs Zamos is of interest ONLY if PsyStar was strictly reselling OS X. More interesting is Jacobsen vs Katzer, where the Artistic License is an enforceable copyright restriction. In this case the issue is whether the OS X EULA contains an enforceable copyright restrictions:

1) "Single Use and Family Pack License for use on Apple-labeled Systems"

2) "General. The software (including Boot ROM code), documentation and any fonts accompanying this License whether preinstalled on Apple-labeled hardware, on disk, in read only memory, on any other media or in any other form (collectively the âoeApple Softwareâ) are licensed, not sold, to you by Apple Inc. (âoeAppleâ) for use only under the
terms of this License, and Apple reserves all rights not expressly granted to you."

3)"Single Use. This License allows you to install, use and run one (1) copy of the Apple Software on a single Apple-labeled computer at a time. You agree not to install, use or run the Apple Software on any non-Apple-labeled computer, or to enable others to do so."

Re:In a word... (3, Insightful)

speedingant (1121329) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758329)

/popcorn.

I really hope Psystar wins this one. Apple (and they aren't the only one, just the subject on hand at the moment) really needs to get told where to stick their monopolistic behavior. If you release a product to the market, then you have no business telling people what they can and can't do with it once they've bought it.

How is Apple monopolistic? Is Microsoft & Linux not competition? Apple only owns 8% of the market, hardly monopolistic.. They can charge whatever they like if people pay for it. And if you don't like that, go buy a Dell.

Re:In a word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758401)

How is Apple monopolistic? Is Microsoft & Linux not competition? Apple only owns 8% of the market, hardly monopolistic.. They can charge whatever they like if people pay for it. And if you don't like that, go buy a Dell.

How is this a troll, mods? I think this poster was making a very valid point. And I agree, if you can't afford Apple, then you have to settle for something else.

Re:In a word... (0)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758335)

I really hope Psystar wins this one. Apple (and they aren't the only one, just the subject on hand at the moment) really needs to get told where to stick their monopolistic behavior. If you release a product to the market, then you have no business telling people what they can and can't do with it once they've bought it.

I think you will be disappointed. And seriously, guys, who rated that post as "insightful"?

Re:In a word... (1)

tomtermite (246492) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758463)

You don't per chance work for a gun manufacturer?

Frosty Piss... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24757971)

... not actually apple j00ce!

Wow. (2, Interesting)

Scott Lockwood (218839) | more than 6 years ago | (#24757973)

I wish I had balls that big. I also hope they win. It would be awesome to legally be able to run OS X on the hardware of MY choice, rather than Apple's.

Re:Wow. (1)

amdpox (1308283) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758037)

Yes, legal hackintosh would be nice... somehow, though, I doubt they'll win. Apple (obviously) has a good legal team, and while their behaviour could be considered anti-competitive, I don't think that will hold up in court - they offer the OS and hardware as a single product, with the software purchased off the wall clearly designed to "upgrade" a slightly dated Mac. Let's hope the little guys win.

Re:Wow. (1, Interesting)

DECS (891519) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758319)

Also keep in mind that if Paystar could legally dismiss Apple's license terms simply on the basis of demanding that it has some sort of moral right to make unfettered profits from another's work without respecting the owner's license, it also means the GLP can be dismissed by any corporation who doesn't want to follow it because they think they can make more profits ignoring it.

So Tivo, Linksys, Motorola, etc similarly could continue to ignore the GPL and use Linux code without opening it up.

Careful what you wish for in your moment of greed, you might get it.

Will Google's Android Play DOS to Apple's iPhone? [roughlydrafted.com]

Re:Wow. (2, Informative)

vux984 (928602) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758393)

it also means the GLP can be dismissed by any corporation who doesn't want to follow it because they think they can make more profits ignoring it.

No that's not true.

If a company decides to ignore the GPL, their legal problems aren't really from violation of the license, but from violation of copyright.

Remember, by DEFAULT Tivo, Linksys, etc have no right to redistribute GPL code. The GPL is what grants them the right. So if they decide to redistribute without adhering to the GPL they are violating copyright.

Re:Wow. (1)

Aetuneo (1130295) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758459)

Not exactly: the issue is that Psystar is buying a product, doing things with that product, and reselling the product, albeit in a slightly different form. There is no demand for "some sort of moral right to make unfettered profits from another's work without respecting the owner's license." Now, if Psystar was not paying Apple for each copy, this would a clear case of piracy, and illegal, would would be an example of "mak[ing] unfettered profits from another's work without respecting the owner's license." It's more similar to the cases of manufacturers telling eBay to prevent people from reselling their product, claiming copyright infringement (as I recall). In other words, once you buy a product, you are not allowed to resell it, or do anything to it which the manufacturer objects to - and, if this stance is shown to be legal, you'll quickly see EULAs on hardware forbidding upgrading it (currently, all they can do is refuse to support user-modified products).

Re:Wow. (1)

speedingant (1121329) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758351)

The fact is that they have all to gain, and nothing to lose. If they lose, they can just apply for bankruptcy and start up another business. No big issue if its a publicly listed company.

Re:Wow. (2, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758499)

Yes, I would be Awesome for people to tell me how to run my company even thought I am not a monopoly.

Let's see what the courts have to say (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24757979)

They do make an interesting point for the courts to wade through. Even though I like Apple for technical excellence, I would very much like this lawsuit to go to completion and see what the courts think. If they rule against Apple -- and if -- big if -- Apple is supposed to not break products intentionally, it would mean a change in the business model for the OS software. The technicalities of the "if" would be complex, as we all know.

-srr

Balls of Steel (1)

carterhawk001 (681941) | more than 6 years ago | (#24757987)

If psystar wins this showdown, it will be a whole new playing field. After all, why by an expensive XServe when you can just emulate OSX Server?

Re:Balls of Steel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758069)

Emulate?
You'll be able to straight-up install and RUN XServe.

Re:Balls of Steel (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758193)

XServe is hardware.... not software moron.

I think you mean "You'd be able to straight-up install and RUN OS X Server".

Re:Balls of Steel (1)

Kamokazi (1080091) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758291)

Actually I think most people buying an XServe buy it for the looks. I mean seriously, OSX Server? You can turn a Linux Eee PC into a more functional server.

Re:Balls of Steel (1, Troll)

DECS (891519) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758405)

Bad example, as the Xserve costs pretty much what a comparable server from Dell costs, it just includes a Server OS. Your Dell server needs a separate license for Windows Server. When you add in CALs, an Exchange/file server can easily cost more in software than it does in hardware.

I did a comparison last year and found that a Dell PowerEdge with similar specs to the Xserve cost less than 10% more:

Dell $6506 vs Apple $5495

but when you add in Windows Server, Exchange Standard, and the required CALs to support 100 users, the Dell ends up well over $10,000 more. The Xserve comes with an unlimited license to Mac OS X Server.

Dell $17,206 vs Apple $5495.

I'm sure you can spec out a DIY PC box that saves you a few hundred in hardware, but you can't make Windows server licensing cost less.

Of course, you can also use Linux or other free software, but if that was your intent, you don't need to steal Apple's software in the first place. Even so, Apple's Xserve hardware is attractive enough that buyers do get it and install YDL.

Apple's Open Calendar Server vs Microsoft Exchange [roughlydrafted.com]

Will Google's Android Play DOS to Apple's iPhone? [roughlydrafted.com]

I've always wondered... (5, Interesting)

JWman (1289510) | more than 6 years ago | (#24757997)

If Apple would ever come to be regarded as evil as Microsoft is. I personally believe that Apple's business practices would make them far worse than MS if they had 90% of the market instead of 7%.

They are able to survive because they are filling a niche market, leading me to believe that they will not be a serious competitor to MS anytime soon.

In the meantime I await the continual improvement of linux to cause a critical mass of marketshare so that vendors will finally start giving it proper support....

Re:I've always wondered... (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758035)

In the meantime I await the continual improvement of linux to cause a critical mass of marketshare so that vendors will finally start giving it proper support....

Well, I've moved from hating Ubuntu to using it at home. That's a start.

Re:I've always wondered... (2, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758127)

I agree. Apple's tactics are pretty horrid, yet they seem to get a pass from the fan-boys for some reason just because their products are shiny.

It amazes me how often on Slashdot I read that Google is evil, and Apple is great. Apparently people aren't paying attention to their actual business practices in either case.

Re:I've always wondered... (1, Troll)

DECS (891519) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758475)

Your argument would have more weight if you stated one.

What are these "horrid tactics," licensing software for less than Microsoft does? Trying to get iTunes users to try Safari on Windows? Releasing software updates faster than most rivals? Processing hundreds of vulnerability reports within a couple months? Lay it on the line if you have a grief, don't just suggest evil lurking were none does.

What's Next from Apple: New iPods Sept 22, iPhone OS 2.1, iTunes 8.0 [roughlydrafted.com]

Re:I've always wondered... (1)

Telvin_3d (855514) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758495)

You fail to follow your own logic through to the end. The answer to the pass that Apple gets is in your question.

People buy Apple products because they like shiny stuff. A large part of the reason that Apple stuff is shiny is because they control the entire experience. Control=Shiny=Happy customers. Less control (for whatever reason) tends to mean less shiny which leads to less happy customers, thus support for continued control.

Really, the opposition to Apple's policies confuses me. It's not like the company or Jobs is sneaky or underhanded about their methods or agenda. They have been open about their intention and market strategy for the last quarter century. Google gets a hard rap when they don't play nice because their image and social contract is based on openness. Apple has never even pretended to play by those rules. They deliver exactly what they promise, the good and the bad. If you don't like it, you are free to buy someone other companies computer.

Also, as a side point, every time there is an article about the piss poor service or quality at some hardware or software company there are always people saying that that is to be expected when you buy the cheapest brand all the time. Then they go on to say some company should take advantage of the market segment willing to pay a small premium for quality. Guess what, that company is Apple. If you want the quality (and you obviously do, otherwise you would not care if it was available to general PC buyers or not) pay the premium. If you don't want to pay the price, go with the cheaper alternative.

I'm hearing steel against wood (-1, Redundant)

maynard (3337) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758031)

bang! bang! bang! bang!

Oh, oh - I think Pystar just nicked out a gouge out on the side of that windmill.

Raminfications (5, Interesting)

sincewhen (640526) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758057)

This would have interesting ramifications if the countersuit was to succeed, and Apple forced to change the licencing restriction so that anyone could legally run OSX on non-Apple hardware.

I don't belive it would be in Apple's corporate culture to embrace such a change and push OSX as an alternative to Windows - they are making too much money doing what they currently do.
So I assume that means they would try to tie the OS to their hardware with code. Which may be enough to preserve the current situation - while it wouldn't stop hackers, it would discourage the vast majority of people.

Appliance != Software Monopoly (4, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758063)

The argument by Apple is going to be made that they are an appliance manufacturer and that they sell the OS and support the OS only for the appliances they sell. They offer it for sale as an upgrade to their appliance for those who do not wish to purchase a new appliance and as a convenience to their consumers.

So they are not a monopoly by any means but they cannot argue that a third party cannot support that software as long as it does not imply support or cause any damage to existing company.

Anticompetitive practice != Monopoly (4, Interesting)

langelgjm (860756) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758247)

I don't think the argument is that Apple is a monopoly, but rather that they're engaging in anticompetitive behavior - tying the purchase of one product (the OS) to another (the computer).

I don't see how Apple could ever be compelled to provide support on any hardware it doesn't deem acceptable. If they were to lose, maybe the outcome will be that if you sell an OS, you don't have the right to restrict its use to particular hardware.

Re:Anticompetitive practice != Monopoly (1)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758325)

Rihgt and I think thats the argumen that they should stick to. That they are being anticompetitive by not allowing others to SUPPORT the OS in a greater sense. That's what the argument will come down to. If the software can be installed on other hardware and it causes no harm to the parent company, why are they forbidding other companies from supporting it or making a profit from supporting it? I actually wish them alot of luck even as an Apple user; I'd like to see Apple become stop shunning it's open source connection and start embracing a bit more.

Re:Anticompetitive practice != Monopoly (1)

UncleTogie (1004853) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758345)

I don't see how Apple could ever be compelled to provide support on any hardware it doesn't deem acceptable.

The same way Microsoft handles equipment not on the Hardware Compatibility List: [microsoft.com]

They'll tell you to take it up with the equipment manufacturer.

Re:Appliance != Software Monopoly (1)

Zebra_X (13249) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758251)

They are fundamentally not an appliance manufacture. Almost all of their products that carry OS X can be end user upgraded (without violating any sort of contrct with apple) which effectively nullifies the argument that their hardware are considered applicances. They also run other operating systems, a user configureable option as well.

Re:Appliance != Software Monopoly (2, Insightful)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758407)

Funny, a KitchenAide mixer is an appliance and it can be end user upgraded into a blender, mixer, chopper, grinder, etc.

Re:Appliance != Software Monopoly (1)

poopie (35416) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758259)

but they allow 3rd parties to sell hardware and write device drivers for their "appliance" -- neither of which they can directly support.

And... they encourage 3rd party software development that integrates with their OS ... which they can't directly support.

Personally, I think that since Apple now runs on what is in effect commodity hardware, this argument won't hold water any more. In the past, they could say that someone illegally copied their proprietary hardware. But... since OSX boots on commodity hardware and is just restricted by software to not run on non-Apple servers out of the box... it seems anticompetitive to me.

Re:Appliance != Software Monopoly (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758487)

And that's all fine and good, but if I buy a copy off the shelf, I should be able to do whatever I want with it.

Suppose you sell hammers, and then as a convenience to customers sell replacement / upgraded rubber grips for your hammers. What happens if someone comes along, sees those grips, and then decides they would work great on his hatchet, and so he buys a pile of your grips puts them on his hatchets and then re-sells them.

Do you, as grip manufacturer, get to squawk about how those grips are just for your hammer customers?

The fact that you made them, and sold them, shouldn't constrain what I do when I buy them, even if that isn't your intended purpose.

The slow courts (2, Insightful)

TechwoIf (1004763) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758073)

Too bad this case will take several years before anything is decided and appealed. Then an another year for any beneficent for consumers if ruled in favor of competition, that is if any competitors are still left in business.

Blam! (-1, Redundant)

poopie (35416) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758081)

This could be the most interesting court case on Slashdot since SCO vs. IBM -- looking forward to PJ's analysis on groklaw

Those who forget history (2, Insightful)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758095)

are doomed to repeat it.

Apple has been successfully shutting down clone makers for 25 years. Some immediately, some after several months, but always successfully. Psystar will choke on the stack of precedents.

Re:Those who forget history (1)

Zebra_X (13249) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758215)

They have had success in the past - but now they have a significantly higher market share than in years past. The courts may take this dominance into account.

Re:Those who forget history (2, Insightful)

Len (89493) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758221)

I haven't forgotten history - I remember IBM & Amdahl, for instance.

Those who forget history... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758289)

are doomed to make overstatements like this.

For a couple of years, Apple _licensed_ the Mac OS to third parties (Power Computing, UMAX/SuperMac and some others). Apple only 'shut down' Power Computing by buying out their Mac clone business for $100 million.

This is going to significantly undermine any 'appliance' argument they make.

Re:Those who forget history (4, Interesting)

Torinaga-Sama (189890) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758303)

That was before they were really running on commodity hardware. When an Mac was a physically different piece of hardware from an abstract perspective (different processor, running a different instruction set) they could more easily make the case, since they've flipped to the 86 platform, I don't think their case will be as strong.

Those who remember history (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758391)

are doomed to watch it be repeated.

History teaches us that we do not learn from history.

Asking for unspecified damages... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758101)

In other words, a whole heck of a lot.

This was probably their plan from the beginning, to make money not by selling the systems themselves but by suing the hell out of Apple when they (predictably) tried to put a stop to it. Apple fell for it hook, line, and sinker.

Quite frankly I love it.

Re:Asking for unspecified damages... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758225)

Except the mystery step in this plan before profit is "beat apple's lawyers in court" which is by no means easy or cheap.

Tilting at windmills..... (3, Funny)

fishthegeek (943099) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758133)

In other news Don Quixote was recently introduced as the new president of Psystar.

Re:Tilting at windmills..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758465)

You should see who they have on retainer. Apparently they hired this hotshot lawyer with spiky hair and like 5 murder cases under his belt. During opening arguments, he annoyed the judge by shouting "OBJECTION!" for no reason.

They were morons to hire staff from Wright & Co, attorneys at law.

SCO plans fizzled, on to plan B? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758145)

Remember how SCO had some major cash infusions from Redmond? How much do you want to bet Paystar has the same "donation"?

Re:SCO plans fizzled, on to plan B? (1)

Achromatic1978 (916097) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758197)

Remember how Apple had some major cash infusions from Redmond?

Wait, what's your so-called point? Nice conspiracy theory, though.

Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (1, Insightful)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758157)

Seems the private business haters on /. got queued awful fast.

Apple is not being monopolistic and they have every right to prevent a 3rd party from selling their product.. If I have a restaurant, I have the right to REFUSE TO SERVE you. If I make a product, I have the right to refuse to allow you to sell it at your store.

The EULA is intended for individuals, and while they might strike parts of it down, the judge should side with Apple's right not to allow a 3rd party to manufacture a product containing Apples' products.

However, any restriction on the end user from running OS X should be removed. Apple should just not warrantee the OS on non-Apple hardware. So if you don't have a Mac and you have a problem with your copy of OS X, Apple can just say "Tough Shit".

Re:Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (5, Insightful)

rwillard (1323303) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758331)

If I have a restaurant, I have the right to REFUSE TO SERVE you. If I make a product, I have the right to refuse to allow you to sell it at your store.

This isn't Apple refusing a customer in your restaurant, this is Apple saying that once you've bought the food from the restaurant you can't then go outside and sell it to someone you meet on the street. It's completely different, and the first sale doctrine gives Psystar the ability to do this.

Re:Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (2, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758419)

this is Apple saying that once you've bought the food from the restaurant you can't then go outside and sell it to someone you meet on the street

Well not quite. Not at all really. That would be you taking your Mac and selling it, since the license to OS X came with it (and is bound to it, like MS does to damn near every copy of Windows.) Unless you want to suggest that Psystar could do this if they bought a Mac for every Psystar unit they sold, which would be hilarious.

Those copies of OS X on the shelf? They're the equivalent of upgrades. The EULA requires that you have a license to OS X already, and said licenses are only sold with Macs. Notice that you could not, at all, buy Intel copies of OS X 10.4 off the shelf. All the copies available retail were upgrades for PowerPC machines.

Re:Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (1)

erikina (1112587) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758365)

What if I went to your restaurant and bought your meal -- then resold it? (At a cheaper venue)

You have every right to not sell to someone. But once you've sold it, you don't have the right to tell them to not resell it. IMO.

Re:Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758431)

Then how do you explain the line "Not for individual retail sale" on fun-size candy bars or cans from a six-pack?

Re:Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (1)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758367)

Why?

Psystar PAYS for Apple products. It's none of Apple's business how Psystar uses OS X as long as they do not pirate it.

Re:Yeah, let's tell Apple how to do business (4, Informative)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758409)

"If I make a product, I have the right to refuse to allow you to sell it at your store."

No, sorry, you do not. You have the right to refuse to sell the product to me - which to an extent prevents me from selling it. However, you have no legal or moral right to force me to not sell your product after I have legally purchased it from you, or someone you have authorized to sell it.

Once you put an item on the market, your control of it is gone. If you do not like that, do not sell it.

"The EULA is intended for individuals, and while they might strike parts of it down, the judge should side with Apple's right not to allow a 3rd party to manufacture a product containing Apples' products."

The right of first sale arguably trumps Apple's EULA. Quite a few states do not even allow EULAs to remove certain rights of the user/middle man.

Who's Paying the Legal Bill at Psystar? (5, Interesting)

mpapet (761907) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758163)

These events alone will generate $1MM+ (million??) in legal bills. We all know Apple won't stop until psystar is closed and will use it as an example to every american with a similar idea. You know, heads on a stick at the city gates and all that.

So, where's psystar's money coming from?

If Apple wins... (5, Interesting)

QZTR (1351145) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758181)

Will it be because they're right, or becuse they're rich?

An interesting potential precedent (2, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758213)

If this works, then people could make clone Nintendo game units, Sony game units and the like, opening the door for a new level of "fair use" doctrine.

Re:An interesting potential precedent (2, Informative)

sincewhen (640526) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758285)

I don't think so - There is a difference between commodity hardware (which you may need to patch the OS to run on) and custom hardware protected by a large number of patents.

Re:An interesting potential precedent (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758491)

Ah but there are emulators to work around the details.

goodluckwiththat (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758279)

I have a feeling this tag will be among the top 10 soon, if not already.

Retail, OEM, or upgrade? (1, Interesting)

Schmool (809874) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758353)

The big question here is what kind of product the boxed version of Mac OS X really is.

- Upgrade -
Given that one may officially only install the product on "an Apple-labeled computer", and every Mac comes preinstalled with OS X, a case could be made that the boxed version is really an upgrade. This is however hard to defend as the AppleTV is an Apple-labeled computer and runs a version of OS X, but it would be illegal to run Mac OS X on an AppleTV.

- OEM -
When you buy a boxed Mac OS X, you can only install it on Macs that meet the requirements. Support through Apple is minimal, you're expected to have bought AppleCare for your computer, which then gets you OS support as well. This could pass for some form of OEM deal.

- Retail -
Retail, ie. "buy the product, and do with it as you please" seems like the least plausible option. There is only one Mac OS X Leopard Client, and for most customers it costs $129. This is way less from what Microsoft charges for their full featured 64-bits Vista retail version. Has Apple ever been known for their bargains?

I think Psystar might be mistaking the boxed version for a retail version. In the unlikely case that the win the case however, I can see Apple creating a full retail version and an upgrade version, with the full retail version being > $1000, so that it won't make any sense for Psystar to sell the systems anymore.

Who owns YOUR property? (1)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758369)

If I buy a copy of OS/X upgrade and I abide by the law and do not sell copies of it, who is Apple to tell me how to use it? Yea, sure, the EULA *tries* to create conditions of use, but I as a US citizen have rights under copyright law.

At issue is how much control do the makers of things we buy have over how we use them. IMHO, Apple should loose big. HUGE.

Why can't... (1)

kootsoop (809311) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758375)

Psystars and Ybruthars just get along?

Apple can lick my taint. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24758381)

I might have actually purchased a license from them if they would just let me.

Until then: http://www.insanelymac.com/ [insanelymac.com]

Hopefully... (1)

tthomas48 (180798) | more than 6 years ago | (#24758417)

I can only hope this is a beginning of a return of regulation to t he markets, and will help foster a truly competitive marketplace. Breaking up all these cartels will be great for the flounder US economy.

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