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Home Customer Resources Ask Jacob Can Mac OSX and OS 9 run on the same system?

Ask Jacob

Can Mac OSX and OS 9 run on the same system?

Monday, September 20, 2010 / Laptops & Notebooks, Mac OS 9 / Classic

I have bought one of the original tangerine 300 Clamshells so that my grandchildren can play some of the old Mac programmes I have such as “Grandma and Me”. However, the laptop has OSX installed and will not accept the programme because I cannot turn it on to Classic mode without installing OS9.

Is it possible to install OS9 alongside the current operating system or would I have to do a clean install and thus lose all the programmes which are already on the Clamshell?

Thank you,

OS 9 can be installed onto the same hard-drive as OS X. OS 9 does not share any files with OS X so there is not an issue with files being over written.

One thing to keep in mind though, after you install OS 9, the computer will start booting up into OS 9. You will need to use the Startup Disk control panel under the Apple menu to switch back to OS X. Depending on the OS version installed, you may need to run software update to get a version of that control panel that will let you boot OS X.

Also, some later grey labeled OS 9 Installers, could install OS 9 Classic through a OS X installer, making it very simple to upgrade.

Hope that helps,

One Response to “Can Mac OSX and OS 9 run on the same system?”

  1. Allen

    Keep in mind, also, that Classic will only operate on PowerPC processors (such as G4 or G5) running Mac OS X 10.4 or earlier. There are some emulators out there that can run Classic on Intel processors, but personally I never used one to gauge performance, and I am told that they may be too much trouble for casual use.


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