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Will XP melt your Mac?

Marc Perton
03.20.06
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Now that narf and blanka's solution for booting into XP on Intel Macs is out in the wild and people are using it to actually run XP on their Macs, some bugs are showing up. That's not surprising, and we fully expect to see fixes within the near future (though we don't expect Colin to start handing over cash for each bug fix). One rumored bug should, however, give you pause before you decide to use this as anything more than a proof-of-concept: according to a thread on MacRumors, the current XP install doesn't include a fan driver, which means your Mac's fan never goes on. That may not be a big issue if you're using an iMac for limited periods in a well-ventilated space, but if you're planning on running XP on a MacBookPro, you may find things getting mighty hot. We're not dissing narf and blanka here; they won the contest and deserve their $13,000. But you may want to be a little careful before trying out their solution at home.

Update: Well, you can't say Mac users don't hunt down rumors and quash them quickly (though some are, of course, just as guilty of spreading rumors)! It appears that the fans in Macs do indeed go on regardless of which OS is running, though there is apparently some concern about how the fans are regulated by software over time. Several commenters have pointed out that even in some earlier Mac models, running non-Apple OSes (i.e., Linux) could result in the fans running constantly, due to a lack of Apple power-management software. So, the good news seems to be that, no, XP won't melt your Mac. The bad news? Your fans may whirr constantly, causing a bit of noise pollution, and possibly draining your batteries before their time if you're using a MacBookPro. We do have every confidence that narf, blanka and the rest will resolve this issue -- and probably for a lot less than $13,000.

[Thanks, Syl]

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