AppleI was in the market for a new PC and, with all the hype, I thought it might be interesting to try the Mac life for a while.  I certainly wasn't brave (or feeling flush) enough to splash out on a nice Mac Pro, so instead, with a little help from a friend, I built a Hackintosh!  For those not in the know, new Mac desktops and laptops run on Intel hardware, and with a little bit of work, you can convince OSX to run on commodity PC hardware.

I'll post my thoughts on Leopard later, but in the meantime, I thought some might appreciate a how-to.

Installation Guide

So, first of all, I essentially followed this guide.

Hardware

I bought the following hardware from Ebuyer for about £350, which isn't bad!  They're not the best, nor the cheapest site out there, so it may pay to shop around.

Qty Item Quick Find Cost
1 Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L iP35 Socket 775 8 channel audio ATX Motherboard 143176 £51.32
1 Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Energy Efficient 95W edition Socket 775 (2.40GHz) G0 Stepping L2 8MB Cache OEM Processor 131823 £102.02
1 Crucial 2GB kit (2x1GB) DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 Ballistix Memory Non-ECC Unbuffered CL4 Lifetime Warranty 119279 £28.93
1 ASUS 8800GS 384MB DDR3 Dual DVI HDCP HDTV out PCI-E Graphics Card 131823 £59.56
1 Thermalright Ultra-120 EXTREME CPU Heatpipe Heatsink 128983 £29.77
1 Scythe Kama PWM 120mm Cooling Fan - 4pin connection [see notes below!] 138599 £7.77
2 Antec Pro 80mm 3pin Double Ball Bearing Case Fan 54152 £8.84
1 Corsair 550W VX Series PSU - 120mm Fan, 5 Year Warranty 132563 £47.19

I had a slight bit of bother getting the Scythe 120mm cooling fan to work with the huge Thermalright heatpipe heatsink.  After some scratching of the head, and then a few minutes with a hacksaw, I had a solution.  As you can (hopefully) see from the photo, I had to cut out the plastic at the screw holes between the front and back of the fan.

<photo here>

Installation

<to do - but follow the guide>

Graphics / Sound Drivers

<to do - but follow the guide>

Keyboard Layout

If you're using a standard PC keyboard with a UK layout, you might find that not everything works as expected.  For example, perhaps when you type double quotes (") by pressing shift-2, you get an at symbol (@) instead.  Ukelele is a keyboard editor, but you don't actually have to install it.  Instead, just use the "Logitech UK Intl" layout that comes with it.  To install it, simply open the Ukelele archive and drag the "LogitechU.K.Intl.keylayout" to /Library/Keyboard Layouts.  Next, open System Preferences, then International, and select the "Input Menu" tab.  Scroll down the list, and tick the new Logitech entry.  If you don't see it, try logging out and back in again.  Tick the "Show input menu in menu bar".  You should now see a small keyboard icon (or flag depending on your old keyboard layout) in the top right menu bar.  Click the icon and then select the new Logitech keyboard entry.  Et voila!  Open TextEdit and verify that everything works as you would like.  Finally, untick the "Show input menu in menu bar" option and close the preferences window.