Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Operating Systems Software Businesses Apple

Bounty For Booting XP on the Intel iMac 348

An anonymous reader writes "The race is on. You can try to get the bounty for booting Windows XP on iMac. At this moment there is $2773 waiting for the winner. However several people have brickified their iMacs when playing with EFI." I imagine those tech support calls are hysterical ;)
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Bounty For Booting XP on the Intel iMac

Comments Filter:
  • by TripMaster Monkey ( 862126 ) * on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @09:59AM (#14547817)

    From TFA:
    If it is determined impossible to boot Windows on the Mac by March 23, 2006, all donations will be donated to a charitable cause (please send suggestions to
    Here's a suggestion for a about a charity for all the poor saps who've hosed their iMacs trying this stunt? ^_^
    • by ettlz ( 639203 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:09AM (#14547885) Journal
      in a twist of irony. Or the EFF.
  • I'm sorry (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:01AM (#14547827)
    Who would want to boot Windows XP normally?
  • Brickified? (Score:4, Informative)

    by SpooForBrains ( 771537 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:02AM (#14547832)
    Not to be too picky, but the correct word, I believe, is "bricked". Although whether there's an actual dictionary definiton of the word in this context I do not know.
  • the opposit (Score:2, Insightful)

    by servo335 ( 853111 )
    I would prefer to see booting osx86 on a non intel mac then ruining a perfectly good mac with xp.
    • I can just imagine what a mess the lack of compatible drivers would be. Not to mention Apple would have to do everything in thier power to try to shutdown the people responsible.
    • Re:the opposit (Score:3, Interesting)

      That'll probably have to wait until Apple is selling an Intel-compatible version of OS X. At the moment they sell machines with one loaded, but they only come with recovery disks, not full installers. (And the recovery disks are probably locked to that particular model, which limits your options when you hack.)

      The next version of OS X will have it on the DVDs, and that is when the real hacking will commence...
  • by FullMetalAlchemist ( 811118 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:06AM (#14547866)
    [...]However several people have brickified their iMacs when playing with EFI.

    Aha, but don't worry, just ask these nice people [] to add bricks to their existing set of architectures [] ;-)
  • by SlickCow ( 196542 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:07AM (#14547871) Homepage
    What I want is to boot MacOS on my PC. How about a bounty for that?
  • by Randall311 ( 866824 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:12AM (#14547903) Homepage
    Therefore getiing XP to boot natively won't happen. There is still a chance at booting Windows Vista though, as it supports EFI. The only thing to overcome is the ACPI requirement that Vista has. The intel chip and mobo inside the iMacs stupport ACPI, but of course it has been removed from Apple's version of EFI. Find a way to get ACPI support onto the Mactel's EFI, and you should be able to have a dual boot config with Windows Vista.
    • I'm sure macs support ACPI, i seem to remember that even the PPC ones did...
      The difference however, is that they support ACPI and MS-ACPI which is quite different (and the reason why linux acpi support doesn't work on some machines, since it strictly follows the intel acpi specs)
    • Correct me if I'm wrong, but the only part of XP that needs the BIOS is the bootloader.

      So, only one of two things need to happen: Either someone rewrites NTLDR for EFI systems, or someone needs to create a fake BIOS enviornment. The LinuxBios people had a way of faking a real BIOS to boot XP, so going EFI -> Linux -> Windows might be possible also.
      • I'm no hardware hacker, but the way I see it, we could just get one of these BIOS things from an old dell and sort of hotwire it into the motherboard, or uh maybe this daughterboard thing that Wikipedia talks about. I learned everything that I know about hardware architecture from Wikipedia. ITS SO GREAT. Anyway, it would be like using an Atari ST with the Magic Sac. [] Except backwards. And upside down. Kind of like putting a VW engine in a burned out Benz.
  • by Knytefall ( 7348 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:13AM (#14547907)
    From Dave Schroeder, posted to cid=407&entryid=407 []

    By following these steps, the iMacs that had difficulty with certain EFI modules appear to have been restored to a functioning state:

    1. Disconnect the internal hard disk
    2. Disconnect the iMac from AC power
    3. Plug in AC while holding the power button
    4. Power up the iMac and zap NVRAM (cmd-opt-P-R)
    The hard disk can be reformatted and the operating system restored.
    • Why do you have to reformat the hard disk? Although it's nice there's a solution, getting inside the iMac to disconnect the HD (or do anything else other than add RAM) is a real chore from what I've heard.
  • Why? Seriously (Score:2, Insightful)

    by G4from128k ( 686170 )
    I've always heard that I would "need" Windows for something or other. In my business it seemed prudent to own/install a copy of Software Windows and so a bought a succession of versions starting in the early 90s.

    In more than 10 years of having a copy of Windows, I've needed it all of 3 times (using content on 2 MS-only CD-ROMs and some MS-Access work). Now I don't even need the emulator -- I bought a Pentium-III laptop at a garage sale for $10. It's sat unused now for 3 years.

    I can understand the
    • Re:Why? Seriously (Score:5, Insightful)

      by LurkerXXX ( 667952 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:27AM (#14547989)
      Right, because no one else has other software needs than yours.
    • Re:Why? Seriously (Score:5, Insightful)

      by NutscrapeSucks ( 446616 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:32AM (#14548033)
      Turn your argument around. Nobody really "needs" a Mac in the first place. We could get everything we need to get done on a standard Windows PC, but instead we buy Macintoshes because we *want* to, not because we need to.

      Surely you will admit that there are some very popular Windows packages that have not been ported to the Mac. As well about a million inhouse and vertical software packages designed for Windows. A lot of people in the Mac community see this as something that would be legitimately useful to them, and not just "because it's there". They're doing this because they think it would add value to their Mac system.

    • Wine? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by millahtime ( 710421 )
      Now that macs use an intel chipset and the backend is BSD based, can't one just use wine to run their MS apps? Just like in freebsd/linux/unix? When I get my MacBook that is one of the first things I will be taking for a spin.
      • If Apple is smart, they are working on a port of Wine written to Aqua, that would allow Windows apps to run seamlessly from within OS X and interact with OS X apps. That would certainly fix their 5-year Microsoft Office support problem.
    • In my business

      what business?

      Lots of good software in a lot of fields, like engineering (the one I can cite examples off the top of my head), has no mac replacement.

    • There are plenty of apps out there that only run on Windows. You may not use any of them, but that doesn't mean that they don't exist.

      As a user of a combination of PC, Mac and Linux for my 'home' development stuff, the most obvious app that has kept me doing a fair amount of the work on Windows is the EMS Postgresql Manager. Sure there are Mac/Linux apps for developing on Postgresql databases, but in my view there's none that even remotely come close for user friendliness. And I'm not going to use clunky ap
    • It is not a waste of hardware. I tire of this damn complex some mac-heads have. OS/X isn't the end all of operating systems.

      There are those of us who would like to have a computer that can boot all the operating systems. As it stands now the most limited as to where it can boot will be the OS/X system. Eventually someone will get it to boot on a PC but then your forever stuck trying to get drivers.

      So the best solution is to get Windows on the Mac. It will be the most difficult. Then probably one of the
    • I have several devices and applications which only support Internet Explorer 6 as a web client.

      While a majority of the functionality is there when I connect with Firefox or Safari, I cannot complete all the tasks I need to get the job done. In addition, the vendor typically refuses to provide me with any support unless I'm using IE6 on a Windows computer (no virtual pc, either).

      Once I upgrade to a Windows-friendly Mac, I can get rid of that extra case under my desk. Also, with the possibility of multip
    • by pavon ( 30274 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @12:10PM (#14548766)
      If you do webdesign, you need to check your pages in Explorer.
      If you do application software, and your users are on windows.
      If you do embedded software, and the dev kits are windows only.
      If you do electrical design, you will probably need to run OrCAD.
      If you do drafting, you will probably need to run AutoCAD.
      If you teach and your school requires a specific application for grades.

      Since MS Office was ported to the Mac, most business people will probably be able to get by without using windows. For graphics work, all the professional tools are also on the Mac, so they can get by just fine as well. There are also many good audio tools as well, although most professionals use a mix of Mac and Windows software (plus that one that boots up without a seprate OS).

      However for many people, they really don't have that option. Even if there are replacements apps on the Mac that are as good or better than the windows based industry standards, compatibility with others pretty much forces you to have a copy around.
  • Xen and Vanderpool (Score:3, Interesting)

    by affinity ( 118397 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:19AM (#14547946) Homepage
    Does the "Core Duo" processor include the Vaderpool virtualization extensions.
    And if Xen is able to use Vanderpool to transparently support WindowsXP/2003 then, would using Xen be the best way to go, with out having to deal with the Boot issue.
    • No it wouldn't (Score:3, Informative)

      by Andy Dodd ( 701 )
      1) domU instances don't get access to the graphics hardware. If you want hardware video acceleration, virtualization is currently not an option. There's a chance that you can do it in a case where your system has multiple video cards, but so far there is no solution for concurrent access to the same video card.

      2) dom0 instances (generally considered the "host") OS actually run under Xen too. Apparently (according to the Xen mailing lists) dom0 OSes actually need more modifications than domUs. Thus, it
  • by pvera ( 250260 ) <> on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:19AM (#14547950) Homepage Journal
    1.Walk it into any Apple store or Apple authorized repair shop.
    2. Tell them your mac stopped working.
    3. When they ask you for the symptoms, tell them it showed a spining ball in many colors, like a rainbow. Then it beeped. Then it told you to reboot in many languages.
    4. When you rebooted it, it refused to power up.
    5. The proper answer to any probing questions is "uh, I don't know."

    Under any circumstances are you to give the impression that you know more about macs than the guy taking your repair order. If the contents of the drive are an issue, take the drive out, connect it to another machine and delete the partitions. Check out the "user installable parts" document for your mac, it will tell you the exact procedure for pulling a drive without voiding the warranty. For the first generation iMac G5 it even tells you the color of the 3 screws that you need to remove, I bet that has not changed with the Intel version.
    • Check out the "user installable parts" document for your mac, it will tell you the exact procedure for pulling a drive without voiding the warranty. For the first generation iMac G5 it even tells you the color of the 3 screws that you need to remove, I bet that has not changed with the Intel version.
      Actually, the Intel iMacs (and 2nd-gen G5s) are much harder to work on than the 1st-gen ones.
    • Wrong. There is no warranty-safe user access to the iMac HDs. You can't get past the iSight cable or something. All it allows is memory under warranty, which is actually less than my iBook allows (memory+AirPort)
    • s/Under any circumstances/Under no circumstance/g;
    • The new iMacs (since they added the iSight) are nearly impossible to open. The only thing even a rather handy person can do is add RAM. It's dissapointing really, considering how easy the original iMac G5 was to open.
    • Yes, lets advocate fraud. Good one.
    • by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:46AM (#14548149) Homepage Journal
      Or alternatively, you could call them and tell them what actually happened. That way they can diagnose the fault, and fix it. In the event that the person you talk to is someone who reads Slashdot and is therefore convinced that someone experimenting with different commands on their computer is actually doing something illegal, immoral, or just "against the Man(tm)" and that Apple is perfectly within their rights to not honour a warranty under such circumstances, you ask to speak to their supervisor.

      There is no reason why typing commands at a prompt should completely brickify a computer. Result in data loss? Yeah. Mean you have to reinstall the OS? That's fine. But render a computer utterly incapable of being restored to a usable state by the user? Absolutely not. We're not talking about plugging the AC cable into the Firewire slot here, or dropping it from the top of the Empire State Building, we're just talking about experimenting with the subsystem that boots the computer in order to try to, legitimately, boot another operating system.

      This isn't a slam against Apple here. I suspect these machines do, indeed, have a by-pass somewhere in them to restore the firmware (there's already a supposed fix circulating which may actually be the solution), and there are plenty of companies that also make it relatively easy to brick their systems (would it be too fucking much to add a $5 ROM to your $800 laptops that contains a "good" version of the firmware in case there's a problem with the flash?); far from it: I have great difficulty believing Apple would refuse to honour a warranty over such an issue, and I suspect, ultimately, they'll have a KB article up soon enough ensuring users can fix the issue themselves. In the event they do not, I'd be surprised if they're not seeing this as a design flaw, rather than a user issue.

  • by colin_n ( 50370 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:20AM (#14547957) Homepage Journal
    I just got a message from a friend of mine saying I have been /.ed . Now my life is complete
  • by digitaldc ( 879047 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:24AM (#14547974)
    However several people have brickified their iMacs when playing with EFI. I imagine those tech support calls...

    UserX: Hi, is this Apple tech support?

    Tech Support Operator 213453098: Yes, how can I help you?

    UserX: Well, I was trying to win a contest by booting Windows XP on my iMac and then totally brickified it.

    Tech Support Operator 213453098: Oh that's too bad, can you please start from the beginning?

    UserX: Okay, I had XP copied to a disc, I put it in the iMac and fiddled with the EFI a bit to boot XP and all of a sudden I had a screen with a bunch of letters and numbers on it. I tried to hardboot it and get back OSX, but it I brickified it.

    Tech Support Operator 213453098: So you corrupted your iMac to the point will it will not boot at all?

    UserX: No, I got so mad I just threw a brick at it - now it's just a pile of sparking wires and smoking plastic.

    Tech Support Operator 213453098:
    Please hold, let me transfer you to our anger management department. You estimated wait time is... thirty-five .... minutes. Have a great day, sir.
  • by toupsie ( 88295 )
    You can already boot XP on your Intel Mac [].
    • by mh101 ( 620659 )
      They mean installing and booting it natively, so you can dual-boot OSX or Windows, not simply running it in an emulated or virtualized environment.
      • They mean installing and booting it natively, so you can dual-boot OSX or Windows, not simply running it in an emulated or virtualized environment.

        Why is dual booting better than running both at the same time? This would not be a emulated environment but a virtualized one. There is no need to emulate the Intel chip. I am looking forward to VMWare jumping on the Intel Macs.

        • It's not just the Intel chip that's the issue. Things like graphics card access and hard drive access *are* emulated, or at least abstracted and go through additional APIs. SLOW.

          I've run VMWare many times on x86 hardware and it runs VERY SLOWLY when you need to access the hard drive, usually because the "hard drive" is actually a fragmented file sitting on the host OS hard drive, which is the only convenient way of setting it up.

    • Uhm, I think they mean natively, not through an emulator.

      Or were you trying to be funny?
  • by Conanymous Award ( 597667 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:42AM (#14548118)
    I actually first thought the topic was "Get booty for bounting XP..." Now there's a challenge for nerds!
  • by Caspian ( 99221 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @10:43AM (#14548123) insensitive clod!
  • $1337. And have them write the check entirely in Leetspeak.
  • by digitaldc ( 879047 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @11:00AM (#14548247)
    A bounty for booty ye say?

  • Has anyone gotten Linux booting on one of those things yet? I expect it'd be a lot easier, and being able to dual boot between Linux and OSX is a lot more interesting to me than being able to dual boot between OSX and Windows. Maybe not interesting to anyone else, but certainly to me.
    • I plan on ordering an intel mac once I get confirmation that linux is booting on them and what the steps are if it is different then the normal install with a liveCD. But if that takes to long I might just have to give up. I can't wait forever for a new machine.
  • Is that one of those Clint Eastwood 'dead or alive' bounties?
  • have brickified their iMacs...

    If you can so easily brickify your Mac into a difficult-to-impossible to recover state, then the Mac is poorly designed and needs improvement.

  • Excellent (Score:3, Funny)

    by joeytsai ( 49613 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @11:43AM (#14548556) Homepage
    This is a very good idea. Clearly, there are not enough machines that run Windows XP right now; any effort to increase its use is certainly for the best.
  • by DECS ( 891519 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @12:24PM (#14548903) Homepage Journal
    EFI isn't the only problem for the new Macs to run Windows. I wrote an article that looks at a range of problems: html []
  • by mkiwi ( 585287 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2006 @02:43PM (#14550261)
    This is a really great story. Here is my example Apple tech support call:

    Apple: Hello, Apple Tech Support this is iMac, how can I help you?
    Nerd: My new iMac Core Duo won't boot up.
    Apple: Ok, could I get your name and telephone number?
    Nerd: ...Ok (gives name and telephone number)
    Apple: Hmmm....
    Nerd: What?
    Apple: Have you called about problems with this computer before?
    Nerd: Yes. It's been very buggy.
    Apple: I'm showing 10 other tech support calls and 10 replacement iMac's sent to you.
    Nerd: Yeah, like I said they are really buggy machines.
    Apple: You know what? Do I look stupid? DO YOU THINK WE WEREN'T TOLD THIS WOULD HAPPEN?
    Nerd: Well I just....
    Apple: (interrupts) Stop messing with the EFI!!!
    Nerd: But I WANT to boot Windows!! How else am I supposed to do it?
    Apple: I think we need to start seeing other people.
    Nerd: What... WHY?
    Apple: I need some space, and I feel like you can never be honest with me.
    Nerd: I'm honest with you most of the time....
    Apple: It's over guy, get a new girlfrield. Maybe you can go back to Dell, I hear she's available.
    Nerd: But iMac you are so sexxxy!! You're breaking my heart!
    Apple: No, you are literally breaking mine. My motherboard > you. (click)
    (Nerd goes into corner, cries, and calls Dell.)
    Dell: Hello you have reached Dell Tech Support.
    Nerd: My iMac just dumped me, I need a friend....

Perfection is acheived only on the point of collapse. - C. N. Parkinson