Psystar could take Apple legal fight to US Supreme Court

Earlier this week, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld an earlier lower court ruling that determined PC maker Psystar could not sell or copy Apple's Mac OS X operating system or sell any PCs that had the Mac OS pre-installed. You might think that Psystar might throw in the towel and let that appeal court ruling stand. But according to a story on Computerworld, the lawyer that represents Psystar is not yet ready to give up its fight against Apple.

In a statement, lawyer K.A.D. Camera (yep, that is apparently his name) said, "This is far from over". He added, "There is at least one more round, perhaps two." One of the options available to Psystar will be to ask all of the judges in the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to consider the ruling again. In Wednesday's decision, just three of the appeal court's members were involved in deciding the case in Apple's favor. The other, and obviously final, option would be to ask the US Supreme Court to hear the case. Camera indicated that at the moment Psystar had not yet decided on which option to take.

Camera also claims that in the final analysis, this case is bigger than just Psystar wanting to sell PCs with Apple's operating system inside. He states, "The principal issue in the case is Apple's limiting Mac OS X to its own hardware. But this is more than only Psystar. It could determine whether the likes of Dell can sell machines that run OS X."

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39 Comments

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Where do these guys get all this money? Are they bored or something? I support their case though. Apple shouldn't have to make OS X work with other hardware, but it shouldn't be illegal to restrict it from running on non-Mac hardware.

I have seen a lot of comments about "if this were Microsoft..." I say it's different, Microsoft never sold the complete widget. Apple's software is no different then proprietary software on a TV or some other device. Should all electronic devices be required to share their software? Also, there is nothing technically wrong with MS developing their own hardware paired with Windows and dominating the industry. The DOJ only has a problem when their monopoly illegally uses practices to create and keep the monopoly.

These Psystar guys are morons. Wasting time and money on something only they and a few basement keyboard warriors give a **** about.

I love how people say "we'll take this all the way to the US Supreme Court!"

What these people apparently don't realise, is that they can only petition the court to hear the case. The Supreme Court alone decides whether to hear it, or leave it at the lower courts.

mattking said,
I love how people say "we'll take this all the way to the US Supreme Court!"

What these people apparently don't realise, is that they can only petition the court to hear the case. The Supreme Court alone decides whether to hear it, or leave it at the lower courts.


Huh? "Taking this all the way the the US Supreme Court" means exactly what you said, it means that they present it to the Supreme Court in hopes that they will decide the case. That is why their lawyer said they had at least one more round (taking it to all of the district judges), or maybe two (the Supreme Court). I think he understands the law and procedures much more than you give him credit for.

this is interesting! apple owns the OS they made (OSX) they should be ok to do what they wish! if they want it closed to only Hardware they sell then yes that's there right! Yes there hardware is overpriced.

I think its sad that the EU jumps down microsoft's throat every chance they get to sue them for essentially everything(including their browser, media player, etc with their os). When apple not only gets to walk away doing it, but forcing the OS to be on their hardware alone. -_-

SilverL said,
I think its sad that the EU jumps down microsoft's throat every chance they get to sue them for essentially everything(including their browser, media player, etc with their os). When apple not only gets to walk away doing it, but forcing the OS to be on their hardware alone. -_-

That's what happens when you own most of the market.

SilverL said,
I think its sad that the EU jumps down microsoft's throat every chance they get to sue them for essentially everything(including their browser, media player, etc with their os). When apple not only gets to walk away doing it, but forcing the OS to be on their hardware alone. -_-

Tends to happen WHEN YOU HAVE NO REAL CHOICE.

Why is it so unbelievably hard for people to understand you'll get treated differently when you practically own the market and can dictate any terms most of the computers today run?

If Apple owned 90% of the market, the tables would be turned. Not hard to realize it it?

Sorry, apparently it is.

daPhoenix said,

Tends to happen WHEN YOU HAVE NO REAL CHOICE.

Why is it so unbelievably hard for people to understand you'll get treated differently when you practically own the market and can dictate any terms most of the computers today run?

If Apple owned 90% of the market, the tables would be turned. Not hard to realize it it?

Sorry, apparently it is.


Apple's Macs own 100% of the hardware for Mac OS X market =).

one way for apple to fix them is to make it's own version of osx for x86 & x64 pc's . then there wouldnt be a market for Psystar

I would love to see Apple be forced to allow other PC vendors to sell OS X pre-installed on a normal PC. We ALL know that if Microsoft decided tomorrow that they were going to sell their own PC hardware and Windows 8 could only run on that hardware, that there would be lawsuits out the wazoo.

I hope Psystar can win should they take it to the Supreme court. This would benefit consumers big time.

Ninja Grinch said,
I would love to see Apple be forced to allow other PC vendors to sell OS X pre-installed on a normal PC. We ALL know that if Microsoft decided tomorrow that they were going to sell their own PC hardware and Windows 8 could only run on that hardware, that there would be lawsuits out the wazoo. I hope Psystar can win should they take it to the Supreme court. This would benefit consumers big time.


agree if microsoft done the same thing the FTC would be on there a$$ like fly's on horse poop

Ninja Grinch said,
I would love to see Apple be forced to allow other PC vendors to sell OS X pre-installed on a normal PC. We ALL know that if Microsoft decided tomorrow that they were going to sell their own PC hardware and Windows 8 could only run on that hardware, that there would be lawsuits out the wazoo.

I hope Psystar can win should they take it to the Supreme court. This would benefit consumers big time.

Windows market share would also drop big time

Well this is rather silly...
Apple has every right to set whatever rules they want and nobody can tell them otherwise.

Clearly this is just lawyers wanting to cash in because there is no way in hell Psystar is going to win this case.

Astra.Xtreme said,
Well this is rather silly...
Apple has every right to set whatever rules they want and nobody can tell them otherwise.

Clearly this is just lawyers wanting to cash in because there is no way in hell Psystar is going to win this case.

But Microsoft can't? This ruling, if it was changed, would only benefit the customer... why would you hope for something that would not benefit the customer, but would in turn, make the company more of a controlling factor, and screw the customers right over?

shakey said,

But Microsoft can't? This ruling, if it was changed, would only benefit the customer... why would you hope for something that would not benefit the customer, but would in turn, make the company more of a controlling factor, and screw the customers right over?

Usually, I'm very pro-consumer/small business. However in this case, I have to be on Apple's side. This isn't a draconian ruling (like software patents, for example). This is simple case of Apple making something, and only allowing it to be used on something they wish. I see this as very fair indeed. Apple have no obligation to sell their OS at all, infact. The consumer issue doesn't really come into play at all here, regarding the software that is Apple's IP.

Now, if Apple ONLY allowed MacOS on "their" hardware, I would have a VERY big problem with that, since you legally own the device. I am a firm believer that there should be a blanket law that states that all boot-loaders/BIOSes/EFIs of any electrical device (that includes my TV, toaster, microwave, phone, PC, etc) should support third party OSes, even if it invalidates the warranty.

shakey said,

But Microsoft can't? This ruling, if it was changed, would only benefit the customer... why would you hope for something that would not benefit the customer, but would in turn, make the company more of a controlling factor, and screw the customers right over?

What does Microsoft have anything to do with this?
Apple's business is built around their hardware and software as a pair. An outsider can't just break those apart and dictate what a business does with their property. It just doesn't work that way.

You don't seem to realize that Apple isn't forcing you to buy anything, so saying they are "controlling" and screwing their customers over is just ridiculous.

They are gonna fail due to the fact that you CANNOT buy MacOS. It only comes installed on a new Mac. If you purchase the OS, it's an upgrade, it's not licensed for install on a computer that did not come with it installed, ergo only Mac's can have it..

Apple doesn't care if you make a hackintosh.. But to start violating the EULA and selling it for profit, ya, that's not gonna fly.

Actually...

http://hints.macworld.com/arti...php?story=20090926175114867

"...the standard version of Snow Leopard is a bootable "full install" disc that doesn't actually check for the presence of Leopard in order to install. This also means that if, at a later time, you want to wipe your hard drive and reinstall Snow Leopard, you won't have to first install Leopard and then run a separate Snow Leopard upgrade on top of it. (That sound you hear is a thousand IT managers sighing with relief.)"

koppit said,
Actually...

http://hints.macworld.com/arti...php?story=20090926175114867

"...the standard version of Snow Leopard is a bootable "full install" disc that doesn't actually check for the presence of Leopard in order to install. This also means that if, at a later time, you want to wipe your hard drive and reinstall Snow Leopard, you won't have to first install Leopard and then run a separate Snow Leopard upgrade on top of it. (That sound you hear is a thousand IT managers sighing with relief.)"

I never denied the disc contained a full install that doesn't check, but the EULA clearly states that it can only be installed on a system previously containing a prior version of MacOS.

Ryoken said,
They are gonna fail due to the fact that you CANNOT buy MacOS. It only comes installed on a new Mac. If you purchase the OS, it's an upgrade, it's not licensed for install on a computer that did not come with it installed, ergo only Mac's can have it..

Apple doesn't care if you make a hackintosh.. But to start violating the EULA and selling it for profit, ya, that's not gonna fly.

Guess what dummy? I can go on the Apple website and buy OSX 10.6 "Snow Leopard" as a DVD and install it on any compatible hardware!

KingCrimson said,

Guess what dummy? I can go on the Apple website and buy OSX 10.6 "Snow Leopard" as a DVD and install it on any compatible hardware!

Yes you can, but you are violating EULA you agree too when installing it.

Apple doesn't care if you do it.. as an individual.. But another company breaking the EULA by installing it on a product they are gonna sell, Apple isn't gonna stand for that..

Ryoken said,
I never denied the disc contained a full install that doesn't check, but the EULA clearly states that it can only be installed on a system previously containing a prior version of MacOS.

The EULA you are talking about there is exactly what Psystar is fighting against here. They are claiming that it should be invalid because of the fact that it ties OS X exclusively to Apple hardware. The thing is, there is legal precedent on Psystar's side here. http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/...nvol=908&friend=nytimes

I think Apple is right, there's no way that Psystar isn't backed up by a large pc manufacturer (maybe Dell?)

It seems whilst Apple have a minority market share tying hardware and software together is perfectly fine in the eyes of the law.

As/if Apple's market share grows this position would obviously have to change... after all, if Microsoft turned around and said that the next version of Windows would only be available on Microsoft hardware there would be people screaming everywhere.

While I don't see why anyone would really want OS X over Windows 7, they should take this case further. If all else fails, they can set up shop in some third world country where Apple can't touch them.

Enron said,
While I don't see why anyone would really want OS X over Windows 7, they should take this case further. If all else fails, they can set up shop in some third world country where Apple can't touch them.

Which one? nearly all third world countries are berne convention signatories - that treaty forms the basis of international copyright law which in turn forms half the basis on which EULAs spring from (the other half being contract law).

Plus, do you really want to anger off an entity with 50 billion dollars in the bank in a country where the typical politician or police-captain makes $250 a year and can't count on social health care to fix his ailing child's malaria? Psystar is a couple of guys in a garage: they're not IBM or HP, they don't have near the clout to go against any big firm unless the law is clearly on their side.

Not that I think Apple is running around buying politicians (at least, no more than any other multinational corporation) but you probably want to pick your fights in a country where corporations aren't openly ****ing on the little guys. See Coco-cola in 1980s Columbia.

evn. said,
Psystar is a couple of guys in a garage: they're not IBM or HP, they don't have near the clout to go against any big firm unless the law is clearly on their side.

I seem to recall people saying something similar about Apple and Microsoft when they first started out.

roadwarrior said,

I seem to recall people saying something similar about Apple and Microsoft when they first started out.

Apple wast trying to go head-to-head against IBM in a patent war when it was "the two staves" in a garage, and even if they were: the sorts of things being patented now (and protected) have changed quiet a bit since the 1970s.

Well, I personally would like to see Mac OS X available on non-Apple hardware. I do own an iMac. However, I agree that the hardware is extremely overpriced. Before anyone hounds me about having bought an iMac....quite simply, I just wanted something different from using Windows for years and I've already tried Linux and didn't like it.

Anyway, rest assured that Apple will obviously fight this tooth and nail. The overpriced hardware is where Apple's money comes from along with iPhone sales now. I hope Psystar will fight this all the way to the end and I hope they win.

Steve B said,
I do own an iMac. However, I agree that the hardware is extremely overpriced. .

I'm not sure a PC all in one with the same specs from Sony/Samsung would be cheaper.

evo_spook said,

I'm not sure a PC all in one with the same specs from Sony/Samsung would be cheaper.

I pretty sure apple tries to hold their price the same price for a longer time when other computer lower their price. So I think they can make it much cheaper.