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Old November 24, 2011, 04:54 AM
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Default Best way to get a cheap MAC

So I work in IT support, but I've never really used a MAC before outside of some physics labs in University. I'm starting to get more and more house calls reguarding MAC computers, and I'm also seeing a lot more job adds saying familiarity with MAC computers is a requirement.

So I'm looking to get some kind of OSX based machine to mess around with and get more familar with. I see some macbooks on ebay and such for $300-400, but they're usually 2006 models with some problems.

Is there any other cheap ways of getting anything to play around with that has OSX?
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Old November 24, 2011, 05:11 AM
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The cheapest legal way really is buying a used Mac, more then likely a mac mini even. Beyond that you're looking at the illegal hackinstosh route that sometimes isn't that easy to pull off.
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Old November 24, 2011, 05:16 AM
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Yeah I definitely want to go the offical route of getting into it. I never looked into Mac minis I'll check them out.
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Old November 24, 2011, 12:57 PM
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Apple's online stores tend to have refurbished items as well (Which are also re-certified for AppleCare and will be under warranty). They tend to have some decent prices from time to time as well.
Here's the link:
Refurbished Mac Notebooks & Computers - iMac, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac Pro Sale - Apple Store (Canada)
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Old November 24, 2011, 04:29 PM
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If you do go with hackintosh route, look into iBoot & Multibeast first. If you follow its HCL and build your rig accordingly, it's not difficult to get it up and running. The only pain in the ass thing I found was wifi.
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Old November 24, 2011, 04:32 PM
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Or you can take the really easy route and "hack" VMware Workstation to support OSX installs. I know it was possible for 7.5, not sure about 8.0. Runs Snow Leopard without issues.

To be legal, you should purchase the OS X installation disc.

I believe VirtualBox also has OS X support (by default) but haven't tried it.
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Old November 24, 2011, 04:48 PM
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nooo dont join the dark side :(
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Old November 24, 2011, 05:04 PM
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Hackintosh with iboot + Multibeast is fun to play with assuming you have compatible hardware. Otherwise you can VMware it.

Newegg has an old Macbook with Leopard on it for $499 right now. You could probably upgrade the RAM and HDD to something better, update OSX and you'd have something decent.
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Old November 24, 2011, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Full Speed View Post
So I work in IT support, but I've never really used a MAC before outside of some physics labs in University. I'm starting to get more and more house calls reguarding MAC computers, and I'm also seeing a lot more job adds saying familiarity with MAC computers is a requirement.

So I'm looking to get some kind of OSX based machine to mess around with and get more familar with. I see some macbooks on ebay and such for $300-400, but they're usually 2006 models with some problems.

Is there any other cheap ways of getting anything to play around with that has OSX?
I was thinking the same thing and found this unit but it's pretty much end of life :

Newegg.ca - Recertified: Apple MacBook MB061LL/A Notebook Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0GHz 13.3" 1GB Memory DDR2 667 80GB HDD 5400rpm DVD/CD-RW Combo Intel GMA950
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Old November 24, 2011, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed103194 View Post
nooo dont join the dark side :(
Really? you have to bring the OSX/Windows war into a thread which wasn't going there?

OP- Some of the older MacBooks/MacBook Pros tend to be good if you find the ones via retailers selling used as well that don't have a crap ton of hardware issues. I'd still personally buy from Apple's refurbished due to the warranty issues, but I'm just liking the safety factor there..

Hackintosh can be good, but keep in mind it's finicky for the most part (Lots works, there's some factors which don't and can seriously affect SOME users). I tried to go that route and said screw it in the long run, it wasn't worth the headaches. VMware would be my #2 choice in lieu of buying refurbished.
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