No one loves a hackintosh more than me. So I was very sad to read that Mac OS 10.6.2 breaks Atom-based netbooks that have been hacked to run Mac OS X. Hackintoshes, as they're known.
Wired has confirmed the bad news: 10.6.2 drops support for the Intel Atom processor. That's the one found in most netbooks.
Apple essentially slammed the door shut on a loophole that allowed creative users to install OS X on small, light and cheap netbooks from Dell, EEE, HP and Lenovo. Hackers using Mac OS X on up to 20 different Atom-based netbooks will have to stop at Mac OS 10.6.1.
According to Stell's blog installing Apple's 10.6.2 update causes netbooks to permanently hang at the gray Apple logo at boot – essentially bricking the machine. Here's a video of a MSI Wind U100 trying to boot 10.6.2 that is stuck in a continuous reboot.
It's a bummer, but I can't say that Apple didn't give us any warning. On November 2 Apple suddenly dropped support for the Atom processor in a developer build of 10.6.2 only to restore it again in build 10C535 three days later. The release version of 10.6.2 is build 10B504.
Apple's assault on the netbook is shaping up to be a classic game of cat-and-mouse with the hackintosh community, not unlike Cupertino's recent fued with the Palm Pre and iPhone jailbreakers. The Hymn Project is another classic example of Apple's Spy vs. Spy tactics
If you're a hackintosh wielding daredevil you'll to have to stick with 10.6.1 on your Dell Mini 9, Vostro A90 or Eee 1000H until a workaround comes along.
Picture and tip: Wired