North Korea borrows liberally from Apple's OS X in new 'Red Star OS' update

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2015
In what is reportedly the third major version of the secretive country's homegrown Linux distribution, North Korean software makers appear to have looked toward Cupertino for inspiration.

Red Star OS
North Korea's Red Star OS. | Source: ComputerWorld


New screenshots from visiting computer scientist Will Scott show an OS X-style interface complete with a reflective dock, gray-gradient application frames, and blue Aqua controls. The shots were first published by ComputerWorld.

Developed by the Korea Computer Center, a Pyongyang-based information technology research center for the North Korean government, Red Star OS formerly featured a Windows-like desktop. Scott --?a visiting professor at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology --?purchased the software at an official KCC retailer in the capital during his stay.

Red Star OS
North Korea's Red Star OS. | Source: ComputerWorld


Red Star OS is localized for North Korea, which uses slightly different terminology and spelling than its neighbor to the south. Development is said to target low-powered hardware, requiring only a Pentium III processor running at 800 megahertz, 256 megabytes of RAM, and 3 gigabytes of hard disk space.

In addition to localized variant of WINE, which allows some Windows applications to be run on Linux, Red Star OS contains a customized fork of Mozilla's Firefox browser that can be used to access the country's heavily restricted intranet.

Red Star OS
North Korea's Red Star OS. | Source: ComputerWorld


The new operating system is not the first Apple connection to North Korea -- late dictator Kim Jong-Il was said to be a fan of the company's products. The U.S. government famously sanctioned the country in 2006 by, in part, banning the sale of Apple's iPod music players to the regime.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 56
    I smell a lawsuit coming =)
  • Reply 2 of 56

    If North Koreans have this, just Imagine what sort of OS samsung runs on their headquarters, in the South.

    OS S 10.9.1, with the famous S-fari browser, and S-tunes. Not to mention the fantastic IDE, sCode, the sBooks app, s-messages, s-photo, s-movie etc.

  • Reply 3 of 56
    kenfused wrote: »
    I smell a lawsuit coming =)

    Apple has no jurisdiction to sue in North Korea. Apple's Lawyers will be murdered if flew to North Korea to sue the state.
  • Reply 4 of 56
    jrobjrob Posts: 49member
    This can only mean one thing... N Korea has finally perfected its long-range nuclear missile technology. Why else would they so brazenly tempt Apple to declare thermonuclear war?
  • Reply 5 of 56
    Seems like Comrade Kim has learned well from Samsung - and yes, it looks much better than any Winblows out there.

    Congrats, NK!
  • Reply 6 of 56
    jrob wrote: »
    This can only mean one thing... N Korea has finally perfected its long-range nuclear missile technology. Why else would they so brazenly tempt Apple to declare thermonuclear war?



    [VIDEO]
  • Reply 7 of 56
    ceek74ceek74 Posts: 323member
    Visually similar to China's "hammersickle" OS.
  • Reply 8 of 56
    I smell a Rocket coming =)
  • Reply 9 of 56
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    This is embarrassing for Linux GUI designers. Seriously though, Elementary OS is pretty slick for Linux.
  • Reply 10 of 56
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,632member
    So Sammy got a contract with the NK govt?
  • Reply 11 of 56
    crowleycrowley Posts: 5,648member
    If North Koreans have this, just Imagine what sort of OS samsung runs on their headquarters, in the South.
    OS S 10.9.1, with the famous S-fari browser, and S-tunes. Not to mention the fantastic IDE, sCode, the sBooks app, s-messages, s-photo, s-movie etc.
    Because North and South Korea are so famous for their peaceful cooperation?
  • Reply 12 of 56
    Looks like Scott Forstall's got a new job.
  • Reply 13 of 56

    North Korea borrows liberally from Apple's OS X in new 'Red Star OS' update


     

    Yeah. And? We know that Koreans are copyists. 60 years of being cut off from the rest of humanity wouldn’t change that. 

     

    Good to know they have software to run on the country’s seven computers, though.

     

    Originally Posted by MazeCookie View Post

    Apple's Lawyers will be murdered if flew to North Korea to sue the state.

     

    Literally.

  • Reply 14 of 56

    Can't wait for Kim Jong Un to look at Red Star OS:

    kimjongunlookingatthings.tumblr.com

  • Reply 15 of 56
    kkerstkkerst Posts: 330member
    Welcome to 2002 North Korea.
  • Reply 16 of 56
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by kenfused View Post



    I smell a lawsuit coming =)

    I think we should consider this as exception .... :smokey:

  • Reply 17 of 56
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pedromartins View Post

     

    If North Koreans have this, just Imagine what sort of OS samsung runs on their headquarters, in the South.

    OS S 10.9.1, with the famous S-fari browser, and S-tunes. Not to mention the fantastic IDE, sCode, the sBooks app, s-messages, s-photo, s-movie etc.


    ROFLMAO

  • Reply 18 of 56
    Originally Posted by kkerst View Post

    Welcome to 2002 North Korea.

     

    At least they know quality when they see it.

  • Reply 19 of 56
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,972member
    ceek74 wrote: »
    Visually similar to China's "hammersickle" OS.

    China wasn't a soviet republic.
  • Reply 20 of 56
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,399member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

     

     

    Yeah. And? We know that Koreans are copyists. 60 years of being cut off from the rest of humanity wouldn’t change that. 

     

    Good to know they have software to run on the country’s seven computers, though.

     

     

    Literally.




    At least that proves that North Korea and South Korea have something in common. :)

     

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