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Why is it that you can run all sorts of operating systems on PCs (such as Linux, Windows, UNIX, BSDs, etc) but can't run Mac OS / Mac OS X?

Conversely, why can't you run anything but Mac OS / Mac OS X on Macs?

How come things are this way and why not just go with one standard??

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closed as not constructive by surfasb, 8088, Daniel Beck, Sathya Sep 13 '11 at 5:37

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can run windows on OS X via bootcamp. I recall some people use rEFIt to run linux or more than 2 oses on a mac.

Apple used to use PPC at one point (and there were ARM, MIPS, and other architectures -and you can run any OS compiled for them on those - windows might run on arm, and historically ran on alpha and others), so there was a distinct difference - modern macs apparently have a fan control chip which OS X checks for when installing/booting to prevent OS X from running on other systems.

So.. the difference? what difference? There is none. Macs are X86 based systems. PCs are x86 systems - they have mostly the same interfaces with different rates of adoption .Its all standardised, just with minor differences that would be there anyway.

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Macs are running x86 for now. Probably will not be the case in a year or two. Same goes with Windows. Windows 8, when release, will run on both ARM and x86. – SgtOJ Sep 13 '11 at 5:31

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