Followup to Adventures with a CustoMac: Installing Mac OS X Mavericks on Asus P8Z77-V PC

Mavericks installed on CustoMac. NB: MBPr on desk and PowerMacintosh 8500/120 on right.
Mavericks installed on CustoMac. NB: MBPr on desk and PowerMacintosh 8500/120 on right.

Last summer, I wrote about my experiences installing Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion on my Asus P8Z77-V and Intel i7-2700K PC here. What I neglected to say at the time was that an alarming number of creeping instabilities led me to ultimately abandon running Mountain Lion on my PC and return to Windows 7.

I later learned that some of these instabilities were likely linked to a bad PSU and video card–both of which were replaced by the manufacturers under warranty (awesome kudos to Antec and EVGA). With the new PSU and video card, my PC returned to 100% stability under Windows 7. This made me wonder if I could try rolling out a Mavericks installation on my PC.

Also, I wanted to use Mac OS X’s superior file content search technology and other third-party textual analysis tools in my research. I have a MacBook Pro 15″ retina (MBPr), but it lacks the hard drive capacity for my accumulated research files. The comfort that I feel in the MacOS environment and the need for lots of fast storage led me to turn my attention back to turning my PC into a CustoMac (aka “hackintosh”).

This time, I wanted to streamline and simply my setup as much as possible and incorporate components that should work out of the box (OOB). Toward this end, I reduced my hardware configuration from this:

  • ASUS P8Z77-V LGA 1155 Z77 ATX Intel Motherboard (disabled on-board Intel HD 3000 video and Asus Wi-Fi Go! add-on card)
  • Intel Core i7 2700K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor
  • Corsair XMS3 Series 16GB DDR3-1333MHz (PC3-10666) CL 9 Dual Channel Desktop Memory Kit (Four 4GB Memory Modules)
  • evga 01G-P3-1561-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti 1024MB GDDR5 PCIe 2.0 x16 Video Card
  • Antec High Current Gamer 750W Gamer Power Supply HCG-750
  • Corsair Vengeance C70 Gaming Mid Tower Case Military Green
  • Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus Universal CPU Cooler
  • Samsung 22X DVD±RW Burner with Dual Layer Support – OEM
  • Intel 128 GB SATA SSD
  • Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EARX 1TB IntelliPower 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5″ Internal Hard Drive – Bare Drive
Using on-board video and no ASUS wifi card.
Using on-board video and no ASUS wifi card.

to this:

  • ASUS P8Z77-V LGA 1155 Z77 ATX Intel Motherboard (using on-board Intel HD 3000 video and removing Asus Wi-Fi Go! add-on card)
  • Intel Core i7 2700K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor
  • Corsair XMS3 Series 16GB DDR3-1333MHz (PC3-10666) CL 9 Dual Channel Desktop Memory Kit (Four 4GB Memory Modules)
  • evga 01G-P3-1561-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti 1024MB GDDR5 PCIe 2.0 x16 Video Card (removed to simply setup and save power–who has time for gaming?)
  • Antec High Current Gamer 750W Gamer Power Supply HCG-750
  • Corsair Vengeance C70 Gaming Mid Tower Case Military Green
  • Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus Universal CPU Cooler
  • Samsung 22X DVD±RW Burner with Dual Layer Support – OEM
  • Intel 128 GB SATA SSD
  • Three Western Digital HDDs for file storage and work space. 
IoGear GBU521 and TP-Link TL-WDN4800 from Microcenter.
IoGear GBU521 and TP-Link TL-WDN4800 from Microcenter.

Also, I added two new components that were recommended from the TonyMacx86 Forums:

  • TP-Link 450Mbpx Wireless N Dual Band PCI Express Adapter (TL-WDN4800). It works in Mavericks OOB.
  • IoGear Bluetooth 4.0 USB Micro Adapter (GBU521). It works in Mavericks OOB.
DSC01487
ASUS’s Wi-Fi Go! card works great in Windows 7, but it caused problems with my Mavericks installation.

As noted above, I physically removed my 560 Ti video card, because I wanted to simply my setup for installation purposes. Also, I removed the ASUS Wi-Fi Go! add-on card, because despite disabling it in BIOS, the Mavericks installer seemed to hang on a wi-fi device while attempting to set its locale (a setting that determines what radio settings to use based on the country that you happen to be in). After I removed the Wi-Fi Go! card, I had a nearly flawless Mavericks installation process (NB: removing the Wi-Fi Go! card required removing the motherboard, turning it over, removing a screw holding in the Wi-Fi Go! card, turning the motherboard over, and unplugging the Wi-Fi Go! card).

These are the steps that I used to install Mavericks on my PC:

  1. Follow TonyMac’s Mavericks installation guide for making an installation USB drive and installing Mavericks.
  2. Following installation of Mavericks, boot from your USB drive, select your new Mavericks installation drive, arrive at the desktop, and run Multibeast.
  3. Select these settings in Multibeast:
    1. Quick Start > DSDT Free (I left all pre-selected options as-is. Below are additional selections that I made.)
    2. Drivers > Audio > Realtek > Without DSDT > ALC892
    3. Drivers > Disk > 3rd Party SATA
    4. Drivers > Graphics > Intel Graphics Patch for Mixed Configurations
    5. Drivers > Misc > Fake SMC
    6. Drivers > Misc > Fake SMC Plugins
    7. Drivers > Misc > Fake SMC HWMonitor App
    8. Drivers > Misc > NullCPUPowerManagement (I don’t want my machine to go to sleep)
    9. Drivers > Misc > USB 3.0 – Universal
    10. Drivers > Network > Intel – hank’s AppleIntelE1000e
    11. Customize > 1080p Display Mode
    12. Build > Install
  4. Repair Permissions on Mavericks drive from /Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility
  5. Reboot
  6. Run Chameleon Wizard (this will fix a problem that you might have with connecting to the App Store)
  7. Click SMBios > Edit > Premade SMBioses > choose MacPro 3,1 > Save
  8. Reboot
  9. CustoMac should now be fully operational!

In order to arrive at the above instructions, I read a lot of first hand experiences and third party suggestions on TonyMac’s forums. I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the amazing community of CustoMac builders who take the time to share their thoughts and lessons and equally so to the tool-builders who create amazing software including UniBeast, Multibeast, and Chameleon Wizard!

I would suggest that you remember that there is not always one path to a successful build. I distilled a lot of posts into my successful build. Your experience with similar hardware might take a different path. Reading others experiences and trying their suggestions experimentally can lead to your own successful discoveries. Thus, I took the time to try out different configurations of hardware until settling on the stripped down approach with on-board video and OOB networking gear. I tried several different installations: a failed Mavericks installation with kernel panics (Wi-Fi Go! card installed and wrong Multibeast configuration), a successful Mountain Lion installation (barebones and correct Multibeast configuration), and a successful Mavericks installation (detailed above).

Obviously, MacOS X can run on a wide range of PC hardware given the correct drivers, configuration information, etc. Apple could do great things if only Tim Cook and others would think differently and move beyond the tightly integrated hardware-software experience. Apple’s engineers could do great things with building better operating systems that adapt to a person’s hardware. Given the chance, they could challenge Microsoft and Google with a new MacOS X that is insanely great for everyone–not just those who can afford to buy new hardware.

Now, back to using some of the tools that I use in my research on a computing platform that I enjoy:

Social Disconnection: Choosing the Online Networks that Suit My Needs without Causing Excessive Distraction

The decision to disconnect from some social networking sites is what I call social disconnection. The commitments–time, social capital, and energy–of social media can take away from real life work and personal commitments. Furthermore, there are addictive qualities to some of these networks that require energy to resist and this can create other kinds of anxiety beyond your own use of these social networks. Social disconnection is about finding the networks that suit each of us best instead of connecting to the most popular or as many as possible.

Social disconnection for me is about finding the right balance and types of social networking to support my personal and professional relationships. My thoughts in this post concern my experiences and are in no way meant as a prescription for others to simply disconnect themselves from social media. I believe that we all have to find the networks where we feel comfortable, contributing, and supported.

Over the years, I have tried out different forms of social media including earlier forms like AIM, Friendster, and MySpace. Most recently, I had accounts on Google+, Facebook, Academia.edu, Flickr, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Over the past few weeks, I have culled this list to only three: Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn. I have included my thoughts below on why I deleted accounts on some sites and maintain accounts on others.

I began my social disconnection project by unplugging from Google+, because it was the most low stakes account to delete. Google+ was a virtual ghost town from my perspective (perhaps if I had Google Glass my perspective would be different). I rarely saw any updates from people in my Circles. Furthermore, the Google+ UI elements in Gmail and YouTube were a nagging distraction to me. I have now exited the ghost town and the irritating Google+ update indicators of nothingness are gone from my Google property experiences [instructions for downgrading from Google+ here].

Next, I disconnected from Facebook. This was more difficult for a number of reasons. First, I joined Facebook at the beginning of fall semester of 2005 and shortly thereafter my friend Tessa “broke my Wall virginity” on September 4, 2005. Two other friends at Tech had convinced me to signup for an account on TheFaceBook.com, because it was cool and everyone else was doing it. In the beginning, it was an interesting experiment in keeping connected and staying in the know, but as time passed and more people joined Facebook, it increasingly became more annoying and distracting. There is the troubling semiotics of the “Like” button. There are many daily Facebook tasks of social convention. There are the time-consuming conversations (sometimes very rewarding while at others very draining) and going no where debates. There are the unending supply of accomplishments of others that make me feel like I have my foot on the gas but my tires don’t get traction. While these things might seem like trifles, they weighed on me in big and small ways. I would spend time thinking of the right way to respond to someone. I would research things to make sure that I could contribute to a conversation meaningfully. I would want to say the right thing, but agonize over how to say it. While I tried to curtail the time that I spent on these things or change my news feed settings to better suit my update needs, I couldn’t strike the right balance to keep Facebook from eating up too much time and energy. Finally, I held on to my Facebook account through my time as SFRA Publicity Director and SFRA Vice President. With those responsibilities removed, I didn’t see as strong a reason to stay connected through Facebook. So, I downloaded my data and deleted my account [instructions for permanently deleting your Facebook account are here].

Then, I disconnected from Academia.edu. I never spent a lot of time on Academia.edu, but I always felt uneasy with this social network for sharing your work with others in your field. While I like the idea of open sharing of research and tracking the use of your research, I know that these things cannot happen for free. While the site was founded by Richard Price, about as academic an academic you can be with a PhD in Philosophy, it is a business funded by venture capitalists. It will only continue to exist if it makes money, and I wonder what role the data supplied by academics sharing all of their published and unpublished work on the site will play in the eventual ramp-up of monetization as the site continues to mature. Even though it has a grandfathered “edu” domain name, it is not an educational institution and it is not affiliated with any. Then, there’s the issue of time commitment. To use academia.edu effectively, you need to build your profile and upload your research. This takes time and energy away from working on publishable papers–still the hallmark of getting hired. While I see that the possibilities of communication and collaboration are great in a system like that provided by Academia.edu, the time and effort investment has an uncertain return on investment. The site has a lot of potential, but it has an uncertain future. I deleted my account following these instructions.

I don’t mean to sound like a social networking recluse, but I am concerned about how much time and energy I expend on these sites. I believe that by social disconnection from some sites I can remain focused on my work and better use the remaining social networking sites that I remain connected to. These include Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.

I chose to stay with Twitter for sharing information with others and creating reminders of data for myself, because it is a public platform. Facebook and Academia.edu are largely private networks–you have to have an account to access them. While you can use Twitter privately, I have almost continuously used it as a public platform since I signed up. For me, it is easier to keep up with information relevant to my work and follow my friends on Twitter than on Facebook. However, if I ever change my mind, it is relatively easy to deactivate my account by following these instructions.

I have been using Flickr for a long time to share and backup my photos online. In the past, I have paid for a Pro account, but Yahoo’s changes to Flickr’s storage space have opened up even more options for using their service. I have also connected Flickr to my WordPress blog so that I can easily post updates with photos/sets from Flickr, which in turn is publicized on Twitter. However, it is easy enough to delete my Flickr account by following these instructions if things change.

LinkedIn is a site that I have only been using since late last year, and I have not been using it nearly as much as I feel that I should be. Unlike the other social networks that I have used and those that I continue to use, LinkedIn focuses on business and professional relationships. It might come in handy when seeking work. For folks in the humanities, it is particularly important to consider keeping an up-to-date profile and building appropriate connections to others through the site in addition to keeping a version of your multipage CV as a one-page resume. For these reasons, I am keeping myself plugged into LinkedIn. However, it is easy enough to delete a LinkedIn account by doing this.

My choices were governed by what I can and cannot do on a daily basis. They are not motivated by my colleagues, friends, or family on these different networks. If you want to connect with me, you know how.

A Prime Example Why SOPA Will Endanger the Internet: Spiteful Big Corporations

The other big news this past week besides SOPA was MegaUpload.com’s MegaUpload Song on YouTube:

Universal Music Group (UMG) had a conniption fit, because some of their signed artists provided testimonials for MegaUpload, a file sharing site that makes it easy to share files with others.

Despite MegaUpload having every right to use the testimonials in their music video advertisement, UMG used a tool provided by YouTube/Google for big media to easily remove copyright infringing content to nuke the MegaUpload Mega Song. However, UMG had no right to do this, which made it a violation of the DMCA and worth $150,000 in favor of MegaUpload.

According to Wired.com’s Threat Level Blog here, UMG admits that they used Google’s filtering system, but they claim that their use of it does not violate the DMCA. Essentially, they ADMIT that they were fucking with MegaUpload!

Now, if SOPA were to go into effect and entire domain names were wiped from the Internet and all of the sites hosted on those domains, I can see in my crystal ball that many more episodes like the one taking place between UMG and MegaUpload will take place. The collateral damage will be those of us who use the Internet on a daily basis for our work and enjoyment.

I don’t want corporations to have more power over what I do online especially when they don’t own what I do or the work of others. They don’t own the infrastructure that they will be given so much control over.

What does this sound like to you? To me, it sounds like theft. Big media is so twisted over its defeats over its iron grip over culture that it now wants to steal back that control through legislation aimed at the people’s culture. We, the people, cannot stand for this kind of dickery. Big media corporations are not above human failings, and as UMG has demonstrated, they will use any means necessary including hijacking democracy and insider agreements to control our culture.

Science Fiction Research Association Now on Google+, Also Connect with Us on Facebook and Twitter

Yesterday, I launched the Science Fiction Research Association’s (SFRA) Google+ page, which you can find here. Like the organization’s Facebook Page and Twitter Feed, the SFRA Google+ page is another way that we can circulate information about the organization and our annual conference (in Detroit in 2012) while also facilitating engaged discussions about research and teaching science fiction and fantasy across all media.

Dynamic Subspace Hit Count Bump Thanks to Jules Verne’s Birthday

I was surprised yesterday to see a two-fold increase in my daily site traffic, but I quickly found the culprit for this additional traffic: Jules Verne’s birthday. In 2009, I posted a call for papers for the annual Jules Verne Society meeting here. That post received many hits from search engine result pages even though I haven’t really written about Jules Verne on the site besides that post. That post was ranked on some of the major search engines, which drove a little extra traffic my way. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any party favors to give out or more substantial Verne articles for my visitors to read. I will have to think of something significant to write about Verne before his birthday next year.

At Apple, the Platform Is the Engine of Growth – NYTimes.com

Today’s New York Times has an interesting article by Steve Lohr about Apple’s ability to shift its business strategy while being a tech giant. According to Michael A. Cusumano of MIT, “Apple has hit that magical combination of gradually shifting from a product to a platform strategy” (qtd. in Lohr par. 6). There are of course challenges to Apple’s approach from Google. Read the full article here: At Apple, the Platform Is the Engine of Growth – NYTimes.com.

 

R2-D2 Special Edition Droid Phone by Motorola (But R2 has been with me for years)

Apparently, Motorola, Google, and Verizon have teamed up to produce the Star Wars Empire Strikes Back Special Edition Phone. You can learn about it at the official site here (if you follow @droidlanding on Twitter), or see a picture of the phone here (it looks like a flat, rectangular R2-D2).

That’s cute and all, but I’ve been R2’s buddy since the first generation iPhone:

In all honesty, I’ve been thinking a lot about Star Wars merchandising lately. I’m troubled by it, by my participation in it (yes, I just mailed off my five UPCs for the vintage, rocket firing Boba Fett), and its lasting effect on life to the present (collecting, playing, maintaining interest in movie tie-in toys). I am going to write more on this in the future, but I want to scan some old Christmas and Birthday photos first, so that I can use them in my essay.

For the time being, consider Star Wars and ESB Producer Gary Kurtz’s interview here, in which he says: “The emphasis on the toys, it’s like the cart driving the horse. . . . If it wasn’t for that the films would be done for their own merits. The creative team wouldn’t be looking over their shoulder all the time.” Now, I’m off to Wal-Mart to see if they have any of the new vintage Star Wars action figures in stock.