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Hackintosher's new line: Linux and T-shirts

Psystar refuses to die

Reducing security risks from open source software

The irrepressible Hackintoshers that earlier this month were pronounced bleedin' demised, only to respond with a Pythonesque "I'm not dead yet!" cry of defiance, have reemerged with a new business model: T-shirts and Linux boxes.

Mid-month, Florida's Psystar was slapped with an injunction by the US District Court for the Northern District of California that forbade the company from selling copies of either Mac OS X or any software that would enable said OS to run on non-Apple computers.

That would seem to include Psystar's boot-loading Rebel EFI utility. However, in a recent post to their company's website the Hackintoshers told their undoubtedly dwindling fan base that they had "voluntarily suspended" their Rebel EFI sales while they ask the court for clarification on whether or not they can resume offering it.

They also announced that they would soon resume selling computers, but that "they will be bundled with your choice of Linux operating system."

Psystar T-shirt advertisement

Rapier wit is not a Psystar hallmark

And if you think that this is Psystar's admission that the Mac OS X battle is over, think again. "Our hardware [is] specifically chosen such that it is known to be compatible with OS X (via Apples own drivers or open source offerings online)," the post continues. "This makes it easier to get up and running with your favorite XNU based operating system, including Pure Darwin."

Despite the court's ruling, Psystar still maintains that a purchaser of software - read: Mac OS X - has the right to use it wherever they wish. As they explain it: "A publisher cannot forbid you from reading a book in the bathroom or listening to a music disc while riding your bicycle."

Clearly, the Floridians continue to have a difficult time understanding the critical distinction between software licensing and software purchasing.

Although Psystar's revenue stream from computer sales is - temporarily, they claim - dammed up, they've opened two other fiscal sluices: T-shirts and donations.

For either $14.99 or $15, depending on where you look on their website, you can pick up a sure-to-be-cherished souvenir of the whole Apple/Psystar dust-up: a black T-shirt with "I sued Psystar" on the front, backed with "...and all I got was a lousy injunction."

Psystar donation requests

A novel business model

In an even more poignant stumble down the boulevard of broken dreams, Psystar is also requesting donations, presumably to help it with that $2.7m settlement it entered into with Apple a month ago, or with their own legal bills.

Conspiracy theorists who continue to believe that there are shadowy deep pockets behind the entire Psystar imbroglio will likely see the donation request as a clever ploy to create a distracting diversion.

Others may regard the request for financial benediction as yet another indication that the Floridians have anointed themselves as noble warriors of justice, deserving of both admiration and alms.

Psystar's website limits contribution amounts to $20, $50, or $100, but we're willing to bet that if you'd like to give more, the company - and its legal team - would be more than willing to accept any offering.

And no, contributions are not tax-deductible. ®

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