Home made Macintosh for under $240

[Steve] sent in this great step by step writeup on how to load Macintosh OSX onto an MSI wind. The MSI wind can be found pretty cheap, roughly $140. It has a 1.2Ghz Atom processor, SATA, and 6 USB ports. Its a pretty decent system for the price. Add a hard drive, DVD ROM and some RAM and you ‘ve got a complete system. You might have to update the bios to install the new operating system, there are more details about that on in the writeup. The only real drawback is that you have to run the USB in 12mbps mode instead of 480mbps.

There are lots of little tips to keep you from hitting roadblocks, so follow the steps closely or you’ll have to redo it. Since downloading the modified version of OSX is probably illegal, [steve] suggests that you go buy a copy of OSX just to try to balance it out.


  1. BLKMGK says:

    I would REALLY like to setup an OSX PC, something beefier than this one, but hardware selection is a real chore so I’ve held off. I just might be tempted to do this though as cheap as it is! Would love to see more step by step guides like this one :D

  2. Hellmark says:

    Uhm, where can Winds be had that cheap? When I’ve seen them, they’ve been in the $300-400 range, starting out.

  3. andrew says:

    @hellmark: desktop wind, not laptop.

  4. Hellmark says:

    Ignore that last comment. Ignorance on my part.

  5. george says:

    any idea on what the performance is like? i’d love to see a YouTube video of what it looks like if anybody else does it. 1.2ghz doesn’t seem to fast, but the price point is great.

  6. Per Jensen says:

    It’s not 1,2 GHz – it’s 1,6 GHz Please correct this.

  7. drummi says:

    blkmagic, I did the same thing with a Dell Optiplex 620. 3-ish gig CPU makes it a little tiny bit snappier…

  8. larlar125 says:

    Haha, i was looking through and thinking, “Hey, thats pretty neat!” then i noticed the 12 mbps part…


  9. rafael says:

    can any video or sound card be added

    other ways its just cool not super cool

  10. Mr Novack says:

    The motherboard has not PCI slots on it for upgrades, and the ram is laptop ram. Its more likely a laptop motherboard in a case, say, The MacMini.

  11. strider_mt2k says:

    Folks have been installing OSX on the netbooks and the on board hardware is pretty much the same so this makes perfect sense.

    I just built an awesome home file/print server using this exact box.
    It’s a barebones so you have to BYO ram and sata HD/optical drives.

    and yep it was 139.99 from newegg.

    Mine has 2gb ram, 2TB of storage and is running Windows XP Pro from a 16gb compact flash card.

    When the drives spin down and the printer goes to sleep the whole rig draws about 30 watts and the fan is barely making any noise at all.
    (according to my ups display anyway)

    great stuff!

  12. barridh says:

    You would get a pretty reliable OSX machine for 1/5 of the money: Just buy a Dell Optiplex slimline PC, tinker a bit, and off you go.

  13. strider_mt2k says:

    barridh yes please compose a list of all the things we could have done _other_ than this.

    that would be useful, right?

  14. LOL @ Strider_mt2k

  15. pjnofrills says:

    Anyone know if you can get any wireless Mini-PCI Express cards to work with this by any chance?

  16. I believe all Intel ones are automatically recognized, I do know that several cards work so it wouldn’t be too difficult to get it working, the pci works exactly the same as a normal laptop, so anything that has been proven to work with OSX will work with this.

  17. justpaul says:

    If you can get your hands on the MSIWindosx86.iso disc(torrent). Then it should be easier to install Leopard 10.5.4 on the MSI. The disc was made for the msi wind laptop but should work on the board here.
    I used this disc on my Dell Mini 9 and everything worked except for hibernation.

  18. splitsplut says:

    Gotta love that new iPhone 3G s, might get one if I can find a good AT&T plan with it

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