Dreaming Of a White (Snowy) Leopard

11 06 2009

It’s faster than Leopard.

It’s got new hot technologies like Grand Central and OpenCL.

It’s incorporating 64-bit experience right into the core.

In short, I want it. No, scratch that. I desire it.

But putting Leopard on x86 beige PC boxes and Atom netbooks hasn’t been without issues and lots of talented hackers reigning supreme in geekdom have invested time and sweat or even blood so that lower-tier geek wannabe’s like me can get a little taste of OS heaven. And now comes Snow Leopard.

Now why would someone whose only consumer electronic that comes from Apple is her 80 gig iPod classic and whose netbook is the only computer that could be classified as latest tech, dare to dream of an OS that’s clearly out of her league?

Dock Exposé.

Finder totally re-written in Cocoa.

Ability to scroll within a stacks grid.

Ability to browse through a pdf/document file and play media right in Finder’s icon view.

But most importantly; significantly reduced installation foot print.

That 6 GB of HDD space savings alone got me misty-eyed as I listened to Bertrand Serlet’s accented English (being a francophone, I’d rather he spoke in French) as he unveiled Snow Leopard’s finest points to the audience in this year’s WWDC.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed for that little bitsy promise by netkas : Snow Kitty Will Like It


iWork ’09

10 06 2009

Being a windows user, I’m used to Microsoft Office and it’s the first set of apps that I installed in my MacBook Mini to get productive. I don’t know if it’s just the MacBook Mini’s fault (not enough ooomph) but Office:Mac 2008 is like Molasses. See vid below, showing how long Word:Mac 2008 takes to launch:

Plus I totally don’t buy the “Ribbons” thing; for netbooks with limited screen space, this would only eat up what valuable little vertical LCD real estate you’ve got.

From the previous Mac World conference video when iWork ’09 was introduced, Philip Schiller’s demo of iWork ’09 piqued my interest. And so, given that the only apps installed on my MacBook Mini that came from Microsoft is Office:Mac 2008 , I thought I’d dump Redmond for good and go South à la Pomme all the way.

But since I’m running a mere hackintosh, I don’t quite think it logical to go all legit and buy Apple software. Shelling out $79 would sound ironic. So, I just downloaded the trial version of  iWork 09 from the Apple website – lucky enough, this downloadable version is actually already a full version but just needs a serial number for it to run beyond the 30-day limit.

click on the paper bag with the Apple logo under “Buy”

if you want, you can click here and see… 😉

Now look at these screenshots:

What can I say? I’m in love with Pages ’09, just compare that menubar to this “Ribbon”:

Imagine what would be left of that page that would still be viewable if it were taken on a netbook with just 1024 x 600 resolution?


MacBook Mini On A Diet

3 06 2009

I don’t know if it’s just the OC me or the HPs choice of hard drive for the Mini but I’m hating the boot up time on my MacBook Mini.

My iPod classic’s Stopwatch has recorded 00:01:34.733.

Excruciating. Especially when compared to the MacBook Wind’s 00:00:35.052.

Should I blame it on the unconventional 60 GB 1.8″ PATA HDD that runs on a measley 42,000 RPMS? Yeah, probably. But then do I just sit down and condition my psyche till I reach the Acceptance stage? Oh, no! That won’t do.

Luckily, though I may have called it officially “over” between MacBook Wind and me, I still regularly visit the forums at msiwind.net, thinking that I may be able to use some tips/tricks/hacks on the Mini as well. And true enough, one such post caught my attention: “Slimming OS X

I just followed that guide, taking extra meaure not to delete kexts that I need for my external DVD drive and Remote Disc, and voilà!

From the pitiful 00:01:34.733, I was able to go down to 00:00:44.160!

And also, it would be helpful to save all the kexts and fonts and other stuff you’ve eradicated from your system into a folder somewhere, burn it to DVD so you have a back up just in case you’d need to restore the files.

Function Key

2 06 2009


For some reason, sleep/resume has never been a problem for me with Mac OS X Leopard on the HP Mini 1000 and even after updating to 10.5.7 a couple of weeks back, it’s still working great as always.

And then I discovered something that made me more in awe of the beauty and gorgeousness that is the MacBook Mini! I can go put the machine to sleep by pressing Fn + F1. Of course I can still just choose to close the lid and off to dreamland it’ll go.

Another Fn + F1 will wake the Mini up 😀

Pressing any key will wake the Mini up.

For hackintoshes, laptop hackintoshes more specifically, the Fn combo keys usually make one of the big problems in terms compatibility. For example, when I started off with iDeneb 10.5.5, installing the IntelGMA950 kexts would indeed put my screen on the right 1024 x 600 resolution but it would mean losing the ability to use the brightness controls (Fn + F3/F4) . So knowing that Fn + F1 sleep works is a comfort.

Wipe Out, Reinstall, Update

1 06 2009

Now I can say that I truly know MacBook Mini’s heart (and guts)


1) Install iDeneb 10.5.5 – ICHx; ACPI; Cpus=1 fixes (I don’t bother to specify video as IntelGMA950 since this will be taken care of later anyhow)

2) After install, once in OS X (resolution still squashed 600 x 480), enable root user (Directory Utility > Edit > Enable Root User) and login to root.

3) Install OSx86_Essentials on your main OS X HDD, checking “Apply kexts” and “PC_EFI Chameleon”. Run DSDT patcher and make sure there’s a copy of the resulting “dsdt.aml” file in your “/” directory. While you’re still logged in as root, (don’t apply all the kexts yet) instead go to /System/Library/Extensions folder and delete the ff:

– AppleIntelGMA950.kext
– AppleIntelGMAGA.plugin
– AppleIntelGMA950GLDriver.bundle
– AppleIntelGMA950VADriver.bundle
– AppleIntelIntegratedFrameBuffer.kext
– ApplePS2Controller.kext
– AppleACPIPS2Nub.kext (if it’s there in your Extensions folder)

4) Run the 10.5.7 Combo Updater (you can do this while still logged in as root or switch to your own user account; I usually switch to my user from this point onward). Do not restart yet after update installation is don. Install VoodooPS2Controller first. Restart.

5) You’ll be back at your desktop, resolution is still squashed but your keyboard & trackpad will be functional. Install the kexts. Restart.

Note: you can opt to install the kexts batch by batch; i.e. vid kexts first, then network related kexts, then system kexts like sleep, OpenHaltRestart, etc., so on and so forth or, if you want, one by one, restarting your mini after each kext application just to be sure/diagnosis purposes. Coz sometimes, when I install them all at once, not all become functional immediately – in which case, I just re-apply the kexts and restart and so far, that’s worked fine on my setup.

I also disable deep sleep to get rid of the “sleepimage has garbage” message on boot up and also regain HDD space.

In terminal:

$ sudo pmset -a hibernatemode 0

then delete sleepimage file in /Private/var/vm.

Here are all the stuff I used on my mini (click them to download):
video kexts (updated: now links to rebundled “QE_VidKexts.zip”)
all the other kexts (updated: now links to “my1001TUotherkexts.zip” which has Natit.kext removed from the bundle as it ‘s been moved to “QE_VidKexts.zip”)
VoodooPS2Controller installer

Take Mini Outta the Dark

30 05 2009

hp logo is back!At long last! My Mini’s officialy unconfused now. It’s no longer mistaking itself as a Compaq Mini at boot up, thanks to afudos.

As I look back at my little experiment with bios editing via DMI edit, my guilt / conscience is racked with “shoulda-woulda-coulda” (kinda like an All Saint’s song, huh?).

1) If I had downloaded the afuwin utilities from this link, shoved it in a bootable USB key (which has become bootable because of FreeDOS; more on this in a later post), I could’ve backed up my Mini’s original bios as a .rom file on this same USB key.

2) Then I could’ve edited my bios with DMICFG.exe, running from the same bootable USB key without any worries at all aside from, of course, carefully following the guide on which particular info I could chang; no more, no less.

3) So, the moment I realized that editing my bios for it to pretend to be a MacBook2,1 or a MacBookAir1,1 didn’t help just like all AppleSMBIOS, SMBIOSEnabler, SMBIOSEFI kexts that I’d tried previously, I should’ve been able to just boot into FreeDOS again grâce à la same USB key and type in the prompt:

C:\> afudos.exe <name-of-bios-rom> /p /b /n /c

and hit Enter.

4) After that, I could’ve just reboot the Mini and find my HP logo restored in all its blue glowy presence.

But then again, I wouldn’t have done what I did if I could’ve just been less of an obsessed hackintosher.

It’s the Effing Effort That Counts

28 05 2009


Right now, I’m installing Windows XP on the HP Mini 1000. I’ve partitioned the measley 60 GB 1.8″ PATA hard drive of the netbook, giving 4 GB to Bill Gates’ most ubiquitous OS as of the moment — ok, the most ubiquitous OS ever in the world. My external DVD drive has been wheering away for almost an hour now — oh, it’s stopped and I’m being asked to click on Next and then enter my product key whose all 25 characters I’ve practically memorized by heart — and gone over 1 reboot already.

Why am I doing this anyway? Didn’t I vow to love and cherish MacBook Mini forever? And that means with only Leopard as our main OS? Well, I’d been dumb enough to screw up the HP Mini’s bios with DMI edit – it’s now a Compaq and not an HP. I’m thinking reflashing the bios will restore the HP logo; I’d still have to find out once I get into Win XP and run the WinFlash utility from HP.

Silly me; I wanted so hard to cling on to MacBook Mini that in avoiding to obliterate Mac OS X, even just for a while, I even thought running Redmond’s baby via Parallels would do the trick and save me both from the agony of seeing XP (and using XP) and installing it. But it appears that one cannot flash the bios with a utility that’s made to run only on Windows in a pseudo Windows environment courtesy of virtualization. Nope. Nah-uh.

So, after 1 hour and 27 minutes, Win XP is “registering components” – registry! Ewww! Bleurk!

Aside from the obvious fact that I’m showing symptoms being Obsessive-Compulsive by wanting to get back the HP logo on my boot splash screen, what other purpose would having Win XP on the Mini serve?

I’ve decided to keep Win XP for good. Yes. As much as I hate it, until I find a way to teach myself how to create a BartPE bootable UFD, I’m stuck with this setup so I can:

1) update my bios – because the obsessive compulsive in me cannot stand not being able to stay up to date.
– I’ve flashed my bios to F.13 and it’s still a Compaq logo! =(

2) uTorrent on the MacBook Wind takes infinity (no kidding, there’s the infinity loop symbol alright for estimated download time). People have always said, at least those peeps on the net, that torrenting is always faster in Windows. So I’m gonna try.

3) On the MacBook Wind, streaming is also slow. Flash is notorious in Mac OS X, I’ll have to see in Windows. So there.
— Darn it! I just prepared the other bigger partition for OS X, and then just for kicks, tried to boot into Windows first, and here’s what I get:

“Error loading operating system”

Super: I’m absolutely thrilled.