How To Build Your Own Mac For Just $500


Photo: Hip Hop Blog

I use my Apple netbook almost every day.You heard me right. Netbook. Not MacBook Air or MacBook Pro, but a 9-inch Dell that’s tricked out to run OSX gracefully and without issue.

People have been doing this for years. There are numerous walkthroughs online to tell you how to do this for yourself.

For a small initial investment and a little bit of work, anyone can build a brand new Apple computer. Why not you?

One of the most popular computers to convert into a Macintosh is the Dell Mini series. In fact, Ed Gain started to spread the word about how to do it.

What follows is a highly abbreviated version of tricking out your Dell to run OSX. Since it’s a technical process and might lead to some questions, you’ll want to head over to Ed’s site to get them answered.

Until then…

First of all, understand that your new Hackintosh will exist outside the realm of Apple. If something goes wrong, you can't take it to the Apple Store to get it fixed, so take good care of your computer.

What you need to get started.

  • Dell Mini 10v with at least 8GB of hard disk space
  • Mac OS X Snow Leopard retail disc
  • Intel-based Mac with DVD-ROM drive and USB port
  • 8GB or larger external USB drive (hard disk or flash drive)
  • NetbookBootMaker (available here)
  • NetbookInstaller (available here)

This is the integral part to creating your Hackintosh. For essential details, please see the link below.

There are more details to configure before you save and finalise. See the link below for more.

Now let the installation run as normal. It will take a while, but never fear -- you're so close to the end.

Restart and you're now successfully running OSX on a netbook!

Still have questions? These are essential resources now that you've liberated your Dell with Apple software.

My Mac Netbook: Hackintosh news and updates.

OSx86 Project: An insanely helpful forum to help you debug any issues you might have after building your Hackintosh.

Lifehacker's Hackintosh page: They keep it current as new updates come out. If you want to build a Leopard Hackintosh, there will likely be instructions here soon.

Don't want a netbook? Check out how Lifehacker built a hacked-up Mac Mini with their own parts.

Hacking a Dell to run OSX is good. But stealing Tumblr users' data is bad.

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