OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion – First Impressions

So I grabbed the developer preview 1 for testing and to ensure myHack 2.1 would work with it. Here are my first impressions.

First and foremost the obligatory screenshot from my primary hackintosh workstation – installed using myHack 2.1 & my extra’s from lion:

myHack Pro running OS X 10.8 DP1

All my system’s hardware works exactly as it does in Lion. One of the advantages to using clean methods of installation, a properly edited dsdt.aml + smbios.plist, and kernel extensions that do not interfere with the vanilla system extensions across OS versions.

My 2 cents on Mountain Lion: iOS lovers users will likely love it, OS X lovers will be largely unimpressed but still happy.

Preview 1 appears to be fairly stable, certainly more stable than 10.7’s DP1. I have heard reports of some minor issues from some people but I haven’t encountered anything serious myself yet.

Notification Center is the one feature I have the most positive anticipation of. It is a great idea and I am eager to get away from growl – I really do not like the dated feel of growl nor the direction they have taken the project in. The problem I have with Notification Center for now is that it is virtually useless on any practical level for non-iOS users until third party app developers start to utilize it – or someone comes out with an app that will catch growl notifications and forward them to it. The menu-bar icon for it strikes me as being a far cry from the typical apple aesthetics, but not intolerable. The way they have integrated notification center into the desktop with the “Lion Linen” is sleek though, and I do appreciate that aspect of it. I look forward to seeing how this turns out in the final product.

A lot of people are raving about the new native airplay features on ML, I don’t have anything to try these with myself so I can’t comment but it does ‘look cool’ and will probably be very useful for those with apple tv in particular. I imagine many people will also appreciate the new iCloud integration, I myself have my own server that I sync with and as such have no intention of using the iCloud service.

Aside from what I have mentioned above there are some minor changes here and there, some new apps here and there but nothing that reaches out and grabs my ‘wow’ response personally. Possibly because I am not an iOS user I don’t find them particularly useful or perhaps I was just hoping for more. There will be a million blog posts about these individual apps they have added to the system with complete reviews, but as I am personally disinterested for now I won’t cover them here.

My biggest complaints so far: Apple is forcing you to go through app store for OS updates now, and apparently does not allow non-signed apps to run. If this will be the case in the final release or not is hard to say. Looks like the app store updates are a guarantee, and many users will likely prefer it this way… I myself have tried to avoid the app store but will likely finally fall in line with the apple empire – doesn’t seem like I have much of a choice left. I think people are going to throw a fit if they don’t allow non-signed apps to run on the final release though I suspect it may just have something to do with “GateKeeper” being buggy and unfinished, but only time will tell.

Probably thing thing that will bother the hackintosh world the most is the fact that Apple is removing ALL 32bit support from ML. While those of you, like myself, with modern systems made in the last 2 or 3 years won’t be effected by this, there are still a large number of users running legacy systems that require 32bit kernel extensions for some components to work. Some groups have indicated that they will attempt to port some of these 32bit extensions to run on 64bit kernel but when/if this will happen is impossible to say with any certainty at all.

So far it feels just like lion with a bit more polish on top and a few new apps – with minimal core changes to the OS itself. Not as significant as the changes from leopard > snow leopard > lion.

Well that is all I have to say for now… more to come in the future.

Happy Hackintoshing!

3 thoughts on “OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion – First Impressions

  1. I generally wait for the final release and don’t mess with the previews. I like to stay current as Apple tends to drop support for anything more than one generation behind. This won’t be good for Snow Leopard users. As far as I have read, everything I am using will work with ML. I have seen some unhappy posts from people with early Mac Pros.

    It’s good to see you have the 6870 working. I wasn’t aware it was supported. I have a ASUS 5770 that works out of the box.

    • I only have it on a secondary partition for testing purposes. Your assessment is correct, in DP2 we can now see many ‘legacy’ systems just won’t run it. ML now requires SSSE3 support in the CPU and the upgraded graphics subsystem will eliminate many systems from ML compatibility. Even if they have a supported CPU, they have to have the right OGL/OCL support.

      Also anyone running SL/L with VESA modes on unsupported graphics cards by tweaking the frame buffer can forget about ML – it simply will not run without graphics acceleration period.

      The advantage is for people with more modern graphics cards this is a definite boost in performance and stability, the disadvantage is anyone with an older graphics card is going to be stuck using SL or Lion until they upgrade their hardware.

      The 6870 works oob since 10.7, it’s a nice card, though a small tweak to the frame buffer and port config is needed to get it working perfectly. Conversely my Nvidia 9800GTX+ still works fine in ML via GraphicsEnabler and the HD3000IGPU in my sandy bridge hackbook works great in ML too, in fact noticeably better than it does in Lion (though it works pretty well in lion aside from some occasional artifacts).

  2. Quote:
    My 2 cents on Mountain Lion: iOS lovers users will likely love it, OS X lovers will be largely unimpressed but still happy.

    Probably thing thing that will bother the hackintosh world the most is the fact that Apple is removing ALL 32bit support from ML

    Yes..I’m the victim :D (My Graphic & My USB WiFi Dongle won’t work without 32.
    Sadly, for me: Snow Leopard 10.6.8 is the one to keep (for now at least)