Mac OS X Public Beta

In September 2000, Mac users could get a taste of the future with the Mac OS X Public Beta. For sale for $29, the release was plagued with problems, but showed off the Aqua interface and the marriage of NeXT’s technology with the classic Mac OS. It features several applications that didn’t ship as part of Mac OS X, including HTMLEditor, Sketch and Music Player.

This release also features an Apple logo centered in the menu bar. The logo didn’t serve any interactive function in the user interface, and the OS X team quickly put the Apple menu back in its rightful place, letting it take over many functions found in the “Special” menu.

The beta expired on May 14, 2001, and running it today requires manually setting the system clock to a time before that date.

The Mac OS X Public Beta never had an “official” code name, but internally it was known as Kodiak.

View all entries in the Aqua Screenshot Library or check out OS X’s default wallpapers, updated for 5K Retina displays.

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