Blog Post

Classic on Intel Macs, courtesy of SheepShaver.

I’ve gotten Mac OS 9.0.4 up and working on an Intel Mac, running off of SheepShaver. I can get out to the internet via ethernet or my workplace’s wireless network, so it looks like TCP is working fine. I can’t see the AppleTalk zones of my workplace though, though, so all printing looks like it’ll need to be set up via LPR. In terms of speed and screen redraw, it’s not that swift but it should be fine for a person who just needs to run one or two Mac OS applications.

Installing SheepShaver was fairly easy. I needed a Mac OS 9 CD (9.0, not 9.1 or 9.2.x.), a copy of a compatible Mac OS ROM (I used MacOS ROM 1.6 from MacOS ROM Update 1.0; use TomeViewer on a PPC Mac to extract the ROM from the installer,) sufficient space on my hard drive and a copy of SheepShaver (available from http://www.gibix.net/projects/sheepshaver/files/SheepShaver-2.3-0.20060514.1.MacOSX.tar.bz2.)

I started off by launching the SheepShaverGUI program, which is a graphical program used to configure SheepShaver’s settings as well as make the disk images that SheepShaver uses to boot off of. I built a one gig-sized disk image, set that as my boot volume, set my ROM’s location, then had SheepShaver boot off of my OS 9 CD by selecting “Boot From CD-ROM” on the Volumes tab in SheepShaverGUI and hitting the Start button.

From that point, it was like a normal installation of Mac OS 9. Within SheepShaver’s window, the disk image showed up mounted like a normal hard drive. I selected that and installed OS 9 onto it. After that, I applied the Mac OS 9.0.4 update normally. That’s as far as SheepShaver supported, so I shutdown OS 9 and started customizing the settings. Here’s the settings I’m using with SheepShaver:

For Ethernet, using slirp will let you share OS X’s network connection.

Notes:

1. This isn’t like Classic, where OS 9 and OS X applications co-existed on the screen. OS 9’s running in its own X11 window.

2. The OS X hard drive shows up on the Mac OS 9 desktop as a drive called “Unix”. You can copy things from the Unix drive into the Mac OS 9 environment and vice-versa.

3. There’s some weirdness with the Unix drive, where it won’t show some folders. Specifically, it doesn’t show the Mac OS 9 “Applications (Mac OS 9)” or the “System Folder” folders, which is quite bizarre. Nothing I’ve done up to this point makes either folder (even renamed!) visible on the Unix drive.

4. If you have an OS 9 Desktop Folder on your Intel Mac’s drive, SheepShaver will pick up on it while mounting the Unix drive and show whatever is in there on your Mac OS 9 desktop as generic icons. This puzzled me for a bit, before I remembered that on Mac OS, every mounted drive had its own Desktop Folder and everything in those folders from all mounted drives showed up on the desktop.

5. Looks pretty stable, though as noted before, it’s not the swiftest. When I took a peek at Apple System Profiler, the hardware it reported itself running on was a Power Mac 9500 series, with a G4 processor, running at 100MHz.

117 Responses to “Classic on Intel Macs, courtesy of SheepShaver.”

  1. elf_gaffer

    Thanks! Very useful. Does anyone know if there is a Kiosk version of Sheepshaver available? I need to be able to let students use the Mac OS 9 aps I am running without getting into rest of my system.

  2. Hey thanks!So im just trying to play a couple old favoritie games that could never be made for any other platform quite the same: the original risk, space station pheta and perhaps a coupe others.
    I cant get them into the os9 environment, only way i have been able to even see thm in there is putting them into my osx applications folder… and then it says they cants be opened…
    any links on how to get internet to work as well?
    Thanks!

  3. I have tested this software fairly extensively and have concluded that it is not very stable and is unsuitable for use for anything that is mission critical. Interesting to dicker with, but that’s about it.

  4. so i am really confused as how to use this software. i open up the program and the mac os 9 is in its own window…but how do i get my classic programs to show up on the desktop of the mac os 9..? how do i get them to open?

  5. Dan Barowy

    Anyone who is getting the “Cannot map first kernel data area” problem– it has to do with permissions. Adding the user to various superuser groups did not solve the problem, but making the SheepShaverGUI application setuid root did. Standard disclaimers about doing setuid root apply here.

    sudo chmod u+s /Applications/SheepShaver-2.3/SheepShaverGUI.app/Contents/MacOS/SheepShaverGUI

    FYI, the command above should all be on one line.

  6. Duncan Barr

    I’ve got SheepShaver (SS) up and running on my Intel MacBook, and can start up Mac OS 9.0.4 from an iMac installation disk, but can’t run my OS 9 app because I can’t see how to install Mac OS 9.0.4 onto the hard disk (I get an error telling me I can’t install onto this computer). Mac OS 9.0.4 runs off the CD, so as soon as I try to eject the CD I get a message telling me I can’t do this because the files needed to run the OS are on the CD.

    I visited another site that said I had to have a generic Mac OS 9 CD (could it be my iMac disk is machine-specific and not generic?). I also see that in Rich Trouton’s article at the top of this page he used a disk image (macos9.dmg) for his volume in SS-GUI. I tried the same, but SS still wanted to run OS9 from the CD (even though I specified “any” under “Boot from”). Am I wasting my time? Should I hunt down a truly generic Mac OS 9 CD, or is there something I’m doing wrong (I’m a geologist after all, not a programmer)?

    I think all you folk are doing a great job sharing your ideas and experience over the ‘net. The app I want to run is an excellent geological logging program (AppleCore) which is only available for MacOS9. Any suggestions you might have to help me get OS9 up and running in SS will be very gratefully accepted – and shared widely amongst the geological community. Many thanks!

  7. David Mousley

    “There’s some weirdness with the Unix drive, where it won’t show some folders. Specifically, it doesn’t show the Mac OS 9 “Applications (Mac OS 9)” or the “System Folder” folders, which is quite bizarre”

    Replace the folders with new ones. This behavior is erratic, I had different results even with reinstalling. Rebuilding the desktop might work too, I didn’t try that. To rebuild the Desktop hold down Option and Command while OS 9 is booting.

    There are no dates on the page, so I don’t know if this is old news or good news.

    DWM

  8. David Mousley

    “There’s some weirdness with the Unix drive, where it won’t show some folders. Specifically, it doesn’t show the Mac OS 9 “Applications (Mac OS 9)” or the “System Folder” folders, which is quite bizarre”

    Replace the folders with new ones. This behavior is erratic, I had different results even with reinstalling. Rebuilding the desktop might work too, I didn’t try that, To rebuild the Desktop hold down Option and Command while OS 9 is booting.

    There are no dates on the page, so I don’t know if this is old news or good news.

    DWM

  9. David Mousley

    “There’s some weirdness with the Unix drive, where it won’t show some folders. Specifically, it doesn’t show the Mac OS 9 “Applications (Mac OS 9)” or the “System Folder” folders, which is quite bizarre”

    Replace the folders with new ones. This behaviour is erratic, I had differrent results even with reinstalling. Rebuilding the desktop might work too, I didn’t try that, To rebuild the Desktop hold down Option and Command while OS 9 is booting.

    There are no dtaes on the page, so I don’t know if this old news or good news.

    DWM

  10. Andrew Williams

    I have got Sheep Saver working quite well on an intel based apple. It seems to be OK on ethernet with other OS9 macs too but the links to volumes seem very fragile. You can see files for a time but then the link is broken when you try to access them.

    Any one got any answers to this?

  11. Hoss on Hon

    FYI, there’s a one-click “Classic-On-Intel” installler going around some of the torrent sites. It that puts a preconfigured SheepShaver install (fully functioning with the roms etc) along with a Classic disk image in a folder named “MacOS9” in the applications folder of your startup disk. It has networking and a shared (OSX) volume with ZERO config. (it also gets around the problems with the basilisk/sheepshaver settings files being hidden in the top of the user home directory). It’s got three versions, a minimal “pico” version (24meg download), mini (79meg) and full (250?). All but the pico have networking, quicktime, and support for almost all applications (except for some qd games).

  12. Reason

    Bruckwine, don’t copy applications directly through the “Unix” file system in Sheepshaver. This seems to lose resource forks meaning the applications won’t work.

    Instead, use Appletalk networking or mount the Sheepshaver image directly in OS X (shut down sheepshaver first) and copy the applications into Sheepshaver using OS X.

    Another approach is using stuffit, which will preserve resource forks correctly.

  13. finally got around to “play” some more. Creating an img on a PowerbookG3 and putting the system on it and using that file to boot, started MacOS 9 under SS (on MacBook 10.4.9)

  14. bruckwine

    I also have the disk image problem…nothing I try seems tog et Sheepsaver to recognize apps whether read/write or sparsed. Damn frustrating!! So I have a working OS 7.5 9thanks John) but I can’t install anything! Aaargh!

  15. Hi,
    I wonder if someone can help me. I have a MacBook Intel 2GB int.
    OS9 runs fine but not a single sound is heard, 512 int. is all SS manage my programs needs more. Is there a way arond this problems?

  16. could you please also tell me how to create the disk image for the OS9, or does sheepshaver creates it automatically. Under the volume tab there is a create… button, and an add… one, which one should I use to create the disk image? and where should I create it? The last thing, does sheepshaver automatically install the OS in the volume that I created and do I have to format it during the installation?
    thank you very much for the help
    Marco

  17. Hi,
    I wondered whether one can install SheepSaver on an Intel-Mac which already has boot-camp windows partition on it, without messing up it all. This is because I didn’t quite understand if Sheep Saver creates another partition.
    Thanks
    Marco

  18. Gary Williams

    I have a bunch of documents written with Fullwrite professional in os9 Classic. So I need to get Classsic up and running on my Intel MacBook Pro. Has anyone ever used Fullwrite Professional for documents would throw rocks at Microsoft word. I’ve got about 10 years of Business files and documents running on Fullwrite so I have to go forward.

    WHAT IF……I took my older 17 inch Macbook start-up software and did a clean install on the new intel Macbok Pro? I’d have to wipe the drive clean before starting. I’m so new to this stuff you guys might be laughing but I’ll do anything to get CLASSIC running on my new Macbook Pro. Comments?

    Thanks

    Gary [email protected]

  19. Gaijin

    Why ask why? I love this program! If you don’t see why someone wants to use it, then it isn’t for you. But no point in making derogatory remarks.

  20. I followed pretty much all that Rick Trouton instructed, but so far no luck in getting the SheepShaver to install Mac OS 9 in my new intel MacPro desktop. I got this error message every time I tried, “SheepShaver error: Cannot map first kernel data area: Permission denied.” Can anyone help me overcoming this hurdle?

  21. Ihave a iMac DV with Mac OS9.04 clean installation. As second computer I have a Macmini. I have tried the following without any success:
    1. Copy the OS9 ROM from the installation disk on to the macmini.
    2.Copy the OS9 ROM from the Systemfolder to the Macmini.
    3. I used Tomviewer to copy the ROM but I cannot find or open teh ROM with the program.
    4. I used Mac OS ROM Update 1.0 to update the ROM. It said nothing to do.
    5. I used copyROM to copy the ROM. It did copy a ROM of 4Mb but it did not work in Sheepshaver.
    6. I tried to boot from the Mac OS9 installation disk with sheepsaver. No success.

    All of the above gave the error: Unsupported ROM type.

    Help!!!!!!!!!!

  22. I have SheepShaver up and running with system 9.0.4 installed. I also have IE 4.5 running and hookin up through my Airport on my MacBook Pro. However, I’m having no luck having the Sheepshaver recognize any System 9 programs to install. I tried burning the files to a DVD and installing – no luck. The sharing folder only allows icons that say they can’t be opened. How do I install programs into the Sheepshaver window? I need to have several files running for class soon. When I put the CD or DVD in the Mac drive, it shows up on the OS X desktop but I can’t get it into Sheepshaver. Any help? Thanks.

  23. Oops, I take that back, mounting the SS hard drive image in OS X doesn’t automatically update what OS 9 sees when you change drive contents. Sorry about that confusion.

  24. I did as the author suggested, and got OS 9 working just fine using an original retail CD, ROM from the rom updater package, and the ‘create image’ function of SheepShaver.

    The image created by SS is mountable from OS X and I do file sharing through that. It can be mounted while OS 9 and SS are running.

    You can rebuild the desktop while OS 9 is booting in SS by holding down the Option + Apple keys (I’m on a PowerPC G5 dual core Apple computer).

    Everything works wonderfully except slirp, which doesn’t like most of the web servers out there and keeps dropping connections. E-mail on port 25 works great though. It’s only web surfing that’s giving me problems. Don’t use IE 5, as it will just freeze. Use Netscape Communicator as it will prompt you when there are network issues, without crashing.

    Get rid of the default “when a new window is opened” web page settings that are in the browser, or you risk hanging any of the OS 9 web browsers.