Dell Mini 9: The Perfect Hackintosh

I recently wrote about putting OS X on the HP Mini 1000. It was a fun project, but the thing had a few fundamental problems:

1. The OS X install wasn’t a true OS X install. It was a cracked version of Leopard that has been customized for the hardware

2. Updates were impossible to run because of this.

3. It was unstable.

So I put the HP (which I still regard as the nicest netbook out there) up for sale, sold it, and bought a Dell Mini 9. The Dell Mini 9 is super easy to install OS X on. Gizmodo and others have great guides on how to get it done. The process uses a retail 10.5 install disc, which I purchased outright. Since it is a retail copy, updates are no issue.

The Mini 9 may have been designed to be a hackintosh. Almost everything – sound, wifi, Ethernet, even the Fn keys – work out of the box. The 3rd party drivers really just tweak a few minor things.

The Mini 9 feels more like an Eee PC than a Mac, though. The keyboard isn’t nearly as nice as on the HP, but I can live with that. The system is stable and fast.

Big-time tech writer Andy Ihnatko recently installed Leopard on one, and here is what he had to say about it: