Lion discontinues support of Rosetta

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Apple has dropped support for Rosetta, the system allowing PowerPC applications to run on Intel-based Macintoshes. After having made the switch for their machine architecture five years ago, it comes as no real surprise that the company is choosing to kill Rosetta off at this point. When OS X Lion releases publicly, currently expected to happen in July, Rosetta will not be present, as MacRumors confirms. Choosing whether to upgrade to Lion and lose PowerPC-exclusive applications or whether to remain with an older version of OS X (Snow Leopard will be the final version of Mac OS X to support Rosetta) is a difficult prospect for some users. Quite how they choose to progress remains to be seen, though it is possible that someone will capitalize on this opportunity and find alternatives to the specialized software that is still in use on Snow Leopard and other versions of Mac OS X. Over at Macworld, suggestions have been posted as to what could be done to handle the issue for those who need to use Rosetta. Currently, the only ideas that seem viable are the following:

  • Creating a dual-boot Mac. This means having two installs of Mac OS X (for example, Snow Leopard and Lion, or Lion and Tiger), and using the older version of OS X for PowerPC applications. This may be a hassle but it is feasible to do, and would mean that you could use the latest version of OS X for most work, and then use an older version in order to control PowerPC based applications.
  • Remain with Snow Leopard. While Snow Leopard will not be the latest version of Mac OS X, it still supports features such as the App Store and will work flawlessly after the release of Lion. Quite how acceptable this option is varies depending on the end users and their reason for upgrading to OS X Lion.
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