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Psystar sells Snow Leopard virtualization to third-parties

In spite of an ongoing legal dispute with Apple, clone Mac maker Psystar Monday announced plans to license its virtualization technology for Mac OS X to third-party hardware vendors.

The new Psystar OEM Licensing Program will allow Intel machines to run Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard. The announcement is a bold move likely to catch the ire of Apple, which plans to start its trial against the Florida-based company in January 2010.

The new program will allow manufacturers to have hardware certified by Psystar, and allows use of the company's Darwin Universal Boot Loader. The software will allow manufacturers to install Snow Leopard by inserting the disc from Apple — no additional steps would be necessary, the company said. The software supports up to six operating systems on one machine.

"Psystar's vision of open computing is to provide users with the freedom to choose which OS's they install on their hardware," the company said in a press release. "The Licensing Program will allow computer manufacturers the opportunity to ship the certified systems pre-configured with DUBL and OS of choice including Windows 7, Windows Vista and several flavors of Linux. These systems would also be compatible with Mac OS X Snow Leopard and receive normal software updates through the use of 'Safe Update" technology."

Details on the licensing program, including cost, were not immediately made available.

The company already offers non-sanctioned systems pre-installed with Snow Leopard. The company touts their hardware is "not a Mac, it's for everyone."

As Psystar and Apple prepare for their coming court date, the saga between the two companies has seen its share of twists and turns. Last week, a member of the Psystar defense team withdrew himself from the case.

Weeks ago, Apple requested that the court allow Snow Leopard to be included in the upcoming trial's relevant information. The motion was likely an effort by Apple to bring a separate suit, filed by Psystar against Apple in Florida over Snow Leopard. Apple's request, which would have re-opened the case's discovery period, was denied, and the trial remains on track for a January 2010 start date.