Mac OS X on a UMPC: first ink, some thoughts and challenges

22 Comments

MacumpcI should probably start out by clarifying what I’m doing. Or rather: what I’m not doing. I don’t intend to create a step-by-step guide on how to install Mac OS X on a Samsung Q1 Ultra Premium. I also won’t be running the OS on the device for long. I simply want to get a feel for what it would be like to carry and use a UMPC with Mac OS X. Many readers have clamored for a Mac Tablet and aside from the Axiotron Modbook, this is the closest you can get today. The Q1 Ultra Premium has enough oomph in the 1.33 GHz Core Solo and the 2 GB of RAM I installed to even make this viable. I don’t expect everything to work but it should prove an interesting experiment to see how usable the full Mac environment will be on a device with small keyboard and a 7-inch touchscreen.

I’m still plugging away at getting things to work so it’s far too early to make judgments. As some folks mentioned in the comments, people have been doing this for some time on the Sony UX series. What’s interesting to me is that when I looked into how they fared, I found an immediate difference in how the Q1UP is working. The touchscreen actually works on the Samsung. Yes, the calibration is a little off, but it’s usable.This surprised me because I was under the impression that Mac OS X only supported inking with a Wacom digitizer tablet. Yet last night, I saw the Ink option in my System Preferences and then realized I could do this:Inkinosxonq1upIs the ink usable? Too early to say but I suspect not likely. Could it be if Apple spent some development time in this area? I think so.In any case, I have plenty more work do to and again, I suspect I’ll never get everything working. I was having issues upon rebooting but some fiddling with the active partition setting through Terminal now has it booting up just fine. I do have sound and it’s interesting to note that the touch volume controls on the Q1UP do control the volume just fine. The dual-function stick also works well: I can use it as a cursor with the left and right mouse buttons, or I can hit the Mouse button and put the stick in joystick mode for scrolling. The keyboard also works but the Ethernet jack and WiFi card don’t just yet. I thought was I without connectivity when I realized that my EV-DO modem would likely work. Sure enough, after installing the VZ Access software, I was able to get online. Here’s a sticky wicket: where’s the Apple (command) button on this thing? ;)

22 Comments

Kevin C. Tofel

Nearly everything I needed as I recall. Bear in mind this was 18 months ago. ;) I had connectivity, joystick control, mouse buttons, and keyboard all working. Touch was obviously working but I didn’t have any software that could easily take advantage of it. The biggest think I learned from the experience – Mac OS X is as well designed for a 1024 x 600 screen as Windows is. Meaning: it’s not really. Windows and dialogs are simply too big and it got a little unwieldy, so I went back to Windows XP. Then Vista. Then 7. Then Android. Poor little UMPC! ;)

johnkzin

Did you ever get the ethernet and wifi to work?

And, are you willing to say what method you used to get this going? (what hackintosh package or set of directions, etc.)

Alexander

Hey there!
Were you able to calibrate the touchscreen after all?
I’ve already tried like tons of different software, and it’s only found and recognized by eGalax touch drivers but they don’t work(and block whatever’s built into the system).
Any other ideas?
(tried tabletmagic, axiotron’s modbook drivers – no luck)

Brook

Now that I have a Viliv S5, I am looking to try mac os on the Samsung Q1UP, would you be willing to share your experience, I cannot justify buying a mac again, so would love to recycle some old tech.

Thanks for any help you may be able to provide

Wally Rodriguez

I am typing this on my new Q1 and I am very interested in the steps needed to run osx on it. Shame that don’t want to share this info.

I own a Modbook and have been enjoying it quite a bit, but I would really like to have something that runs osx in the UMPC form factor.

I would really like to encourage you to share this info with those of us that are not as knowledgeable.

Thanks!

Ed

Does the Q1 have a Windows key? That would be the Command key.

If not, well, I think you can map it to something else in Settings.

Sven

Perhaps worth mentioning – while the handwriting recognition engine in the Newton supported cursive, InkWell in Mac OS X does not.

College Teacher

Dude! I’d buy dozens of Q1’s if they ran OSX. I’m responsible for science lab instruction of thousands of undergrads per semester, and we’re currently buying HP 2710 convertible tablets. Our test of Axiotron Modbook was… “disappointing”. I hope you will get this completely functional, and then market them. I’ll buy 40 or so units. Just send me the invoice. :^)

kerry

This is hella awesome, I would never get rid of my beloved Macbook Pro, but i’ve been looking into building up a second or third mac from PC parts and now something like this comes along…I love it.

Well done sir, do let us know how things progress.

PJ

Hi Kevin. I’ve been reading and following up vigorously about Samsung Q1 ultra premium for past few weeks and I stumbled up on your blogs and videos. I’ve been reading and watching your articles ever since and I just want to say thanks for all the good info. I guess I’m just having a hard time deciding whether to get this device or not. I guess it’s not too popular in Korea, since one of my friend who currently works for Samsung in Korea told me to wait, indefinately, before I buy it. I just want to make sure I get some direct input/advice from many different sources as possible before I shell out $1300, which is about half of my paycheck (ugh..), for Q1 ultra premium. I guess I just need to hear from you, directly, how you think about Q1. I know you’ve posted many blogs and videos specifically for Q1, which I read and watched, but, since it’s been couple of weeks (I think) you had that device, I thought you might have more things to talk about the device. I don’t have any specific questions, yet, but just want to know how you think about the device in general. What is Q1’s strength & weakness? Who is the target consumer for this device? Is it an ideal note-taking device? How do you like it so far?

PJ

Hi Kevin. I’ve been reading and following up vigorously about Samsung Q1 ultra premium for past few weeks and I stumbled up on your blogs and videos. I’ve been reading and watching your articles ever since and I just want to say thanks for all the good info. I guess I’m just having a hard time deciding whether to get this device or not. I guess it’s not too popular in Korea, since one of my friend who currently works for Samsung in Korea told me to wait, indefinately, before I buy it. I just want to make sure I get some direct input/advice from many different sources as possible before I shell out $1300, which is about half of my paycheck (ugh..), for Q1 ultra premium. I guess I just need to hear from you, directly, how you think about Q1. I know you’ve posted many blogs and videos specifically for Q1, which I read and watched, but, since it’s been couple of weeks (I think) you had that device, I thought you might have more things to talk about the device. I don’t have any specific questions, yet, but just want to know how you think about the device in general. What is Q1’s strength & weakness? Who is the target consumer for this device? Is it an ideal note-taking device? How do you like it so far?

jmoney

well. I have a motion le1700, everything runs very smoothly, except the soundcard. Inking is great with tablet magic, etc. have been running it for a few months actually. Curio is great, evernote is missing ink (the missing functionality, but coming), text input is ok using keyboard input menu, and I set it up to put inking everywhere on menubar and toggle it on/off when needed. Only real issue I have is that tablet magic enables at will on startup, and I need to plug in a mouse to enable sometimes. Regardless it’s pretty slick, but…. I just upgraded to a dual-core le1700 (love the screen-size form-factorand I haven’t been able to get the digitizer working because it has an internal sprint card unfortunately. Ultimately I went back to xp tablet and I am fine with it. I love customizing xp to the hilt plus I already have a macbookpro and others. I guess I just want a macbookpro tablet, but it doesn’t exist, and the modbook is pretty much vaporware in my book. They have had so many issues getting production going, everyone is up in arms. It’s a shame, and a little pricey. It’s fun none-the-less. Selling my solo though… anyone?

Dion Forster

Very interesting indeed! I have a UX with XP (which has traditionaly been my ‘spare’ notebook when I travel, just in case my Macbook died).

When I use a ‘regular’ keyboard with OS X I have always pressed the Windows key to emulate the Apple key… But I’m sure you knew that! ;-)

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