So, regular (ha) readers of this blog will know I usually like to keep up to date with the current technologies regarding software in the IT world, so why then, am I still running Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) on my trusty MacBook?

[ad name=”AdBrite”]

Has Apple dropped support for Power PC applications too early?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Well, the decision not to upgrade came a few months ago when I heard a rumour that the following were not going to be included in Lion:

  • Front row
  • Java
  • Rosetta

Now lets look at these in a bit more detail, starting with Front row. This was pretty much Apple’s attempt at making any Mac into a large iPod. It was designed so you could use your Mac as a media centre, easily allowing you to navigate through your iTunes library, from the comfort of your armchair with the use of a remote control. This wasn’t as popular as expected, and Apple have decided to drop it from OS X starting with Lion.

Next, Java. It’s important to note, that Apple doesn’t own Java, and by removing it from the default install won’t make too much of an impact, it just means that if you need to run a Java based program, then you’ll need to visit the Java website and download the Java runtime environment, and everything should just work.

But really makes me want to stick with Snow Leopard is the fact Lion has no option to install Rosetta. Back in 2006, Steve Jobs announced that Macs were switching from using Power PC processors to Intel ones. As the two processors use a different set of instructions, programs needed to be rewritten to use the Intel instruction set. Some programs (Adobe Creative Suite 2 and Microsoft Office:mac 2004 for example) were expensive to buy and/or didn’t have Intel compatible versions on the market yet. For this, Apple created Rosetta, a Power PC compatibility layer, which allowed PPC code to run on the newer Intel Macs. It worked so well, some users were oblivious to the fact the system was even emulating another!

A dialogue more people will be seeing over the next few months!

A dialogue more people will be seeing over the next few months!

Looking at the app store comments for Lion, many of the comments seem to be regarding the fact that Adobe programs from the CS2 range no longer work, others complain that Office 2004 isn’t working. It seems that Apple’s prediction that no-one in 2011 will be using PPC applications might have been off a little!

Now, I don’t have many PPC only applications running on my Mac, but it would be nice to be able to run one should I need to. Also, on my very slow internet connection, I can’t really be bothered to wait hours for this update to download only for it to break applications that haven’t been updated for a long time!

On the plus side, I guess it means people will stop using MSIE 5 on Macs now 😉

Is the lack of PPC support affecting you? Leave a comment or answer the poll above.