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I'd like to emulate a Mac on my windows computer to run programs like Textmate. Is there any way to do this without using something like VMWare and emulating the entire OS?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

There are projects to run the Mac OS on a PC, this is sometimes called a "Hackintosh". You're not going to find official support from Apple on this, though, and you'll have to be comfortable with breaking the OSX license, which I believe only licenses the software on official Apple hardware.

But yes, it can be done, for the whole system.

However, to specifically answer your question, there's no way to run one single program from a Mac environment in a windows environment.

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Yes, it is possible if you use specific hardware. Your best bet for information is to take a look at OSX86 Project.

But, if this is just for one application, I would recommend using emulation as there is no point in installing a whole OS for it.

However, this is not legal as it breaks the Apple EULA.

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if it's illegal, you shouldn't promote it here. – Molly7244 Jan 2 '10 at 22:07
I do believe it's legally grey, assuming of course you bought OS X. – Phoshi Jan 3 '10 at 1:19

You cannot legally virtualise Mac OS X client. From Snow Leopard's EULA:

Subject to the terms and conditions of this License, unless you have purchased a Family Pack or Upgrade license for the Apple Software, you are granted a limited non-exclusive license to install, use and run one (1) copy of the Apple Software on a single Apple-branded computer at a time. You agree not to install, use or run the Apple Software on any non-Apple-branded computer, or to enable others to do so.

You can, however, legally virtualise Mac OS X server, but only on Apple hardware.

This License allows you to install and use one copy of the Mac OS X Server software (the "Mac OS X Server Software") on a single Apple-labeled computer. You may also install and use other copies of Mac OS X Server Software on the same Apple-labeled computer, provided that you acquire an individual and valid license from Apple for each of these other copies of Mac OS X Server Software.

That's not to say you can't do it illegally, I've seen many torrent images that include a "tweaked" Mac OS X VMware image and the VMware Player.

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You want something like Wine for OSX programs. Sadly I dont think such a program exists, or if its even possible to emulate a space in which a single OSX program could run inside Windows.

You could obviously buy a Mac, but im assuming you are not made of money. Other than that there are essentially two other options; build a hackintosh, which is basically installing OSX on PC hardware. Or run OSX as a virtual machine inside Windows.

I didnt realise the latter was possible untill a few days ago I read an article about it from Lifehacker. The link below is from the article to a website whith instructions on how to setup OSX to run on Windows as a Virtual Machine.

Obviously, you need a legal copy of OSX to do this and as others have mentioned, its a grey area legal wise but I dont think you will run into any trouble with Apple. You will also need a copy of VMWARE 7. I did read you dont want to use this but its the simplest way of doing what you are trying to achieve. Its certainly easier than building a hackintosh.

Good Luck with your project :)

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