Netbook with Snow Leopard

For almost a year, I’ve been trying different Linux distributions on my Dell Mini 10v.  Lately, I decided to try something in the BSD family.


Dell Mini 10v

I’d tried a similar project a couple years ago.  At that time, I’d set up a Dell Inspiron 1525, a cheap laptop I’d chosen because the hardware neatly mirrored a MacBook of that time.  My intention had been to load Linux, but a friend had clued me in on the Hackintosh concept.  My experience was that it was amazingly easy to get the OS first installed, but then incredibly difficult to get it running perfectly.   The webcam always worked, but the wi-fi was hit-or-miss. First the sound wouldn’t work, and then just the microphone didn’t work.    Eventually everything worked properly, but when I installed software to support my Blackberry, the wireless network cut out.  Ultimately, I’d spent several full weekends getting it running, plus quite a few week-nights.

At this point, my Inspiron is working fine.  But, I’m careful not to upgrade anything.  It’s an attention-getter at work.  When people ask, I tell them that it’s a fine hobbyist project.  However, if you just want to have a Mac … go out and buy one from Apple.

So here I am trying the same stunt with my tiny netbook.  Fortunately, there’s an excellent tutorial over on Gizmodo.  Folks are hacking all kinds of netbooks, but it sounds like the Mini 10v is ideally suited for this adventure.

The result was … easy.  I purchased a new copy of Snow Leopard and then walked through the tutorial.  It took a couple hours but most of that time was spent waiting:  waiting for the download of the netbook bootmaker, waiting while reformatting the hard drive, waiting for Snow Leopard to install. And the result .. worked.    After the reboot, I had a working copy of 10.6.3.

I immediately opened “Software Update” to bring in all the latest code.   This was all too good to be true, and sure enough, the result wouldn’t boot.

I reinstalled and then updated everything except the 10.6.6 update.  Now I’ve got everything except the App Store.  The microphone, sound, and camera works.  The SD reader slot works.  Wi-fi works just fine.


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