Inside Apple's Intel-based Dev Transition Kit (Photos)

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Versions of Apple's $999 Intel-based Developer Transition Kit began arriving on the doorsteps of several Mac OS X developers earlier this week, offering the first material evidence that the company will adopt the two-way serial interface known as PCI-Express in future Macs.



According to reports, the systems identify themselves as Apple Development Platform (ADP 2,1) and sport a 3.6 GHz Intel Pentium 4 with 2 MB L2 Cache, 800MHz front-side bus, and 4 DIMM slots -- two of which are occupied by 512MB 533MHz DDR2 Dual Channel SDRAM modules for a total of 1GB of SDRAM.



Sources said the system's graphics card identifies itself as an Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900 (GMA 900). Some other reports have placed an Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 800 (GMA 800) inside the units. It's unclear if those reports are inaccurate, or if Apple is shipping the systems with slightly varying specs.



Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the development systems is their PCI layout, which implies that Apple will likely adopt the PCI-Express interface by the time it ships its first Intel Macs. In addition to two vacant 33 MHz, 32-bit PCI slots, the systems pack a single 1X PCI-Express slot and a single 16X PCI-Express slot -- the latter of which comes occupied by a Silicon Image Orion ADD2 card offering DVI-D compatibility.



For its drive interface, sources say the development systems include a total of 4 Serial ATA (SATA) connectors. Two of the connectors are free, one is wired to a 160GB/7200rpm SATA hard disk drive and the other dangling. A 16x DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW optical drive is connected to an ATA chain.



These development-based Intel Macs appear to be shipping in a slightly modified aluminum Power Mac G5 enclosure that sports an altered cooling system consisting of a different fan configuration. Located at the rear of the unit are two USB 2.0 ports, a Gigabit Ethernet connector, and one FireWire 400 port. On the front of the unit developers have access to a headphone jack, one USB 2.0 port, one FireWire 400 Port and a micro switch that comes mounted next to the power switch and can be activated by a paperclip. However, its function is unknown.



Also shipping inside the development kit packages is a keyboard, mouse, power cable, keyboard cable, and Mac OS X 10.4.1 for Intel DVD. Sources so far have reported absolutely no luck in their attempts to boot the included copy of Mac OS X for Intel on other PC systems. In their attempts to do so, they have reportedly been met by error messages stating that the PC hardware configurations are not supported by Darwin -- the underlying UNIX-based foundation to Mac OS X.



Developers who signed up to receive Developer Transition systems are actually renting the $999 hardware from Apple for a period of approximately 18 months. Apple requires that the developers make plans to return the systems to Apple within a week of December 31, 2006.



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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 68
    sunilramansunilraman Posts: 8,133member
    <specwhore>



    that kit for us$999 sounds like a good deal if you were a consumer, mac os 10.4 on intel was ready and running, and you didn't have to join ADC



    fuck me. some nice specs in there, in a cool looking g5 tower. 6-months to a year to complete the transition, and fresh Macintesh's should be cool.



    i'm going to sit it out and resurrect some old pc parts lying around to use while my iBook g4 is prostituting itself to other family members



    i can survive on windows2000 a few hours a day (it's got broadband now) for another year , as long as i get a few hours of my Tiger on the iBook g4 a day.



    </specwhore>
  • Reply 2 of 68
    denmarudenmaru Posts: 208member
    A microswitch? Hmm... I wonder what this one will be for...



    I think these driver-problems are Apple-based problems. Maybe they think that if they don´t make any drivers for Darwin, there is no way that the INtel-Version could be installed on a beige Box.



    I´m checking the supported hardware on Darwin....





    Edit:

    Guys, check out THIS --> http://www.opendarwin.org/hardware/

    site, and if you have a x86 machine that fits, well... would be interesting what Darwin says then... :3
  • Reply 3 of 68
    marcukmarcuk Posts: 4,442member
    Won't someone press the goddamn microswitch to see what it does?



    ferchrissakes - it's a reset button
  • Reply 4 of 68
    louzerlouzer Posts: 1,054member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Denmaru

    A microswitch? Hmm... I wonder what this one will be for...



    I think these driver-problems are Apple-based problems. Maybe they think that if they don´t make any drivers for Darwin, there is no way that the INtel-Version could be installed on a beige Box.



    I´m checking the supported hardware on Darwin....





    Edit:

    Guys, check out THIS --> http://www.opendarwin.org/hardware/

    site, and if you have a x86 machine that fits, well... would be interesting what Darwin says then... :3




    Who cares what the microswitch is for. Hey, maybe its one of those speed boost things you used to see on 486's to double/half the MHz on the chip! (You remember the cool ones, right? with the little digital display on the front showing the speed of the computer!) That's what we need! A speed doubler for those P4s! Or maybe its a switch to force the fans on so you can get better circulation and warm up your office quicker on those cold mornings.



    As for running on any PC, don't you think someone has already tried it on a PC that's running Darwin? It'd be kind of stupid to just shove it into any ol' computer and say "Hey, work!" rather than checking the compatibility list.



    BTW, does anyone know if there's a way to turn off Rosetta in these things? Just wondering from a programmer's standpoint, to see if developers can turn it off so they can verify their code is completely running as Intel, rather than some of it being run through the emulator (the way OS 7-9 did when it went PPC).
  • Reply 5 of 68
    will the new macintels have firewire 800?
  • Reply 6 of 68
    jamiljamil Posts: 210member
    check out thinksecret, successful win xp install (although can't handle the resolution of a 23 in display) and pictures.
  • Reply 7 of 68
    denmarudenmaru Posts: 208member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Louzer

    [B]Who cares what the microswitch is for. Hey, maybe its one of those speed boost things you used to see on 486's to double/half the MHz on the chip! (You remember the cool ones, right? with the little digital display on the front showing the speed of the computer!)



    Yes, indeed, I remeber them. I still have one lying around...



    Quote:

    As for running on any PC, don't you think someone has already tried it on a PC that's running Darwin? It'd be kind of stupid to just shove it into any ol' computer and say "Hey, work!" rather than checking the compatibility list.



    Well, I´ve seen far dumber things in my life...
  • Reply 8 of 68
    nanonano Posts: 179member
    Apple probably made a program on the Instaler or modified Darwin so that it looks for all the right hardware or it won't install.
  • Reply 9 of 68
    onlookeronlooker Posts: 5,252member
    I guess that means (confirms) if the developer boxes were arriving now that those DELL laptops were actually running pear PC as most of us thought. Add that to the fact that these developers have tried to install it on x86 machines with no luck.
  • Reply 10 of 68
    xoolxool Posts: 2,460member
    I wish I could rationalize buying -- strike that, renting -- one of these dev rigs. But with my current ADC-based display and G5 tower, I don't have room for another tower. Might make a mean closet server though.
  • Reply 11 of 68
    boogabooga Posts: 1,080member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Louzer

    BTW, does anyone know if there's a way to turn off Rosetta in these things? Just wondering from a programmer's standpoint, to see if developers can turn it off so they can verify their code is completely running as Intel, rather than some of it being run through the emulator (the way OS 7-9 did when it went PPC).



    Unlike the 68k emulator in the PowerMacs, Rosetta is an all-or-nothing thing. Either the entire app is running Rosetta, or it's not. While that may simplify things, it means that if even one of your Photoshop plug-ins are PowerPC, you'll be running the whole thing in emulation.



    At least, that's what the documentation on Apple's site seems to imply.
  • Reply 12 of 68
    smirclesmircle Posts: 1,035member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Louzer

    BTW, does anyone know if there's a way to turn off Rosetta in these things? Just wondering from a programmer's standpoint, to see if developers can turn it off so they can verify their code is completely running as Intel, rather than some of it being run through the emulator (the way OS 7-9 did when it went PPC).



    This is not comparable. Rosetta works on the application-level in an all-or-nothing way. While the 68K emulator of old was transparent and could kick in whenever you were exectuting 68K resources, Rosetta will terminate a PPC-application that tries to call into a x86-plugin or vice versa.
  • Reply 13 of 68
    junkyard dawgjunkyard dawg Posts: 2,801member
    LOL Luzer - return of the "Turbo" button! I loved those things! I don't think I ever could detect any difference with Turbo mode on or off, it was like it was just a cool scoop on the hood of a Trans Am that didn't do anything at all.



    Of course Apple wouldn't call it "Turbo," they would call it the "EMP," as in, "Extreme Mac Power". When you're rendering something in Photoshop and you need that extra little push to get it done on time, just shout out, "EMP! Hit the EMP NOW!"



    Heh.
  • Reply 14 of 68
    aquamacaquamac Posts: 585member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by chris000001

    will the new macintels have firewire 800?



    I can't imagin them not having it.
  • Reply 15 of 68
    crees!crees! Posts: 501member
    The only reason I would have Windows installed is since I design websites they need to be tested on all platforms and browsers. That's about it. Well.. maybe a little CS action here and there.. but that's about it. Man.. wouldn't that be great. Have native Windows emulation and playing CS on your Mac. That's the day. Well.. having CS ported to Mac would be the day.. but until then...
  • Reply 16 of 68
    louzerlouzer Posts: 1,054member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by crees!

    The only reason I would have Windows installed is since I design websites they need to be tested on all platforms and browsers. That's about it. Well.. maybe a little CS action here and there.. but that's about it. Man.. wouldn't that be great. Have native Windows emulation and playing CS on your Mac. That's the day. Well.. having CS ported to Mac would be the day.. but until then...



    Yeah, that would be great! CS all day and all night! Man, I'm about to wet my pants right here!!!



    Just one question. What the hell is CS?
  • Reply 17 of 68
    louzerlouzer Posts: 1,054member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Junkyard Dawg

    LOL Luzer - return of the "Turbo" button! I loved those things! I don't think I ever could detect any difference with Turbo mode on or off, it was like it was just a cool scoop on the hood of a Trans Am that didn't do anything at all.



    I think the only use it was for was backward compatibility (PC users rejoice!) for some older software, mostly games, that used the CPU's clock as a timer, rather than an actual timer. You know, so if you've got the game running at 66MHz, those Tetris blocks just come screaming down the screen even at level 1! Stuff like that.



    Hey, while we're talking the good ol' days of PC hardware, remember how all those PCs used to come with keys and locks on them as well? "That's right, you need a key to start up that sucker!" We had some of these in our office, and it was hysterical when I found out that they all used the same key! (that's OK, turned out all our desks used the same key too, I guess it was to keep the cleaning staff out of our stuff!).



    I know, you're all on the floor now. Or at your computer going "Vroom! Vroom! Rev that baby up to its Max, baby!"
  • Reply 18 of 68
    gene cleangene clean Posts: 3,481member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Louzer

    Yeah, that would be great! CS all day and all night! Man, I'm about to wet my pants right here!!!



    Just one question. What the hell is CS?




    Counter Strike, I guess? 8)
  • Reply 19 of 68
    salmonstksalmonstk Posts: 565member
    What is a BIOS???
  • Reply 20 of 68
    spyderspyder Posts: 170member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by salmonstk

    What is a BIOS???



    Basic Input/Output System.



    You know, going to google and typing in BIOS isn't that hard.
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