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Stop Mac hacking; It's Windows time

Well, that went quicker than anticipated. Almost as soon as Apple introduced Macs that use Intel processors, people wanted to know when a Mac would run Windows. There were even hacker competitions to see who could get Windows to run on a Mac first.

Now Apple itself has joined the fray--after saying it wouldn't be party to such efforts. The company today introduced its first software program for running Microsoft Windows XP on Mac computers.

The 83MB (!) free download (Apple calls is a beta program) has been dubbed "Boot Camp" and will eventually become part of the next Mac OS X version, which goes by its own codename, "Leopard." Company officials said they don't plan to actually sell or support Windows, but Apple had gotten enough requests from users who liked its systems but wanted Windows that they decided to release Boot Camp.

It's not for all Macs, obviously. You need an Intel-based Mac, with the latest version of OS X and all the latest firmware updates. And clearly you'll need a Windows XP installation disc to get going (Apple says you need XP SP2 in either home or professional flavors).

And in a sideways swipe at Microsoft, Apple has made a point of warning Boot Camp participants that running Windows on their Macs will introduce any security issues that might affect Microsoft's dominant OS. Here's what the download site says:

"Word to the Wise: Windows running on a Mac is like Windows running on a PC. That means it'll be subject to the same attacks that plague the Windows world. So be sure to keep it updated with the latest Microsoft Windows security fixes."

Interesting developments. We'll get Boot Camp into the GCN Lab and tell you how it runs. If you get to it first, use the Comments link below to let us know what you think.

Posted by Brad Grimes

Posted by Brad Grimes, Joab Jackson on Apr 05, 2006 at 9:39 AM


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