Snow Leopard 10.6 on MSI Wind U100 netbook

This is not a how-to guide, tutorial or walk-through, I just list the kexts and settings needed to get Snow Leopard 10.6.0 or 10.6.1 up and running on an MSI Wind U100 netbook. Even though I haven’t personally tested it, the kexts should also work in the Wind U100 plus model. Up to OS X 10.6.1 the Atom 270/280 CPUs are natively supported by the Darwin kernel a.k.a. the vanilla kernel. There are rumors that this may change in a later release of OS X. In fact, Apple already seeded an OS X 10.6.2 developer version with Atom support disabled.

Added 11/10/09: Do NOT update to 10.6.2 as Apple deliberately disabled Atom CPU support and your MSI Wind netbook will go into a reboot loop or simply crash! You’ll need a modified kernel to run 10.6.2 or higher on an Atom CPU! If you’re fluent with Terminal, you might as well install the 10.6.2 update and reinstall the old kernel, see this post for more information. I tried it and it works fantastic!

I suggest you use one of the USB based installation guides to start off with.

BIOS settings

It may not be neccessary but make sure you enable AHCI disk support in the BIOS (see advanced tab).

Kernel Extensions

To run 10.6.1 on the Wind properly there’s quite a number of kexts involved. This is the list of kernel extensions needed:

AHCIPortInjector.kext
AppleACPIPS2Nub.kext
AppleIntelGMA950.kext
AppleIntelGMA950GA.plugin
AppleIntelGMA950GLDriver.bundle
AppleIntelGMA950VADriver.bundle
AppleIntelIntegratedFramebuffer.kext
fakesmc.kext
IOAHCIBlockStorageInjector.kext
NullCPUPowerManagement.kext
RealtekR1000.kext
SleepEnabler.kext
VoodooBattery.kext
VoodooHDA.kext
VoodooPS2Controller.kext
VoodooPowerMini.kext

Download kext archive here.

If you’re using a USB based installation guide, make sure you put all those kexts in your Chameleon RC3 (or newer) /Extra/Extensions (E/E) folder on your USB stick, even though not all of them may get loaded at that point. You probably will need a USB mouse and keyboard to complete the OS X installation.

Post installation tweaks

Once Snow Leopard installation is completed and you installed Chameleon RC3 on your Wind’s internal drive make sure to load the grey kexts (see screenshot, click to enlarge) from /S/L/E. I’m always using Kext Helper b7 to do this but OSX86Tools works as well. Keep the kexts marked red in the /E/E folder on the Wind but remove the grey kexts from /E/E because you just installed them to your /S/L/E folder.
wind_kexts

You may have to re-apply all the AppleIntel* kexts after an OS X update if your screen resolution falls back to 800×600 mode.

The following files have to be copied to the /Extra folder on your USB installation stick and to your Wind’s internal hard drive:

com.apple.Boot.plist for MSI Wind U100
SMBios.plist
DSDT.aml – this DSDT needs BIOS revision 1.0E Wind U100 and may not work with earlier/later BIOS revisions or different Wind models! DSDT is patched to fire an event if the lid is closed (important for sleep).

Download the files here.

Wi-Fi/WLAN

If you’re still using the original wireless card Realtek RTL8187S that came with the Wind, you’ll need Realtek’s wireless drivers for OS X too. To auto-close the Realtek WLAN Client Utility you may use the included AutoCloseRealTek Automator script. To load it at startup you have to mark it to open at login. It will then automatically close the WLAN Utility after 20 seconds which is usually enough to connect to your pre-configured Wi-Fi access point.

Download WLAN archive here.

For the record:

  • I’m only using 32-bit kernel mode (-legacy flag in com.apple.Boot.plist)
  • Internal camera works very well using Photo Booth (you may have to press Fn-Camera to activate it)
  • Sleep works when closing the lid or pressing the power button or after a specified inactivity timeout
  • Display is running in native 1024×600 mode
  • QE/CI is working for the GMA950 GPU (Test: Start FrontRow. If the screen stays black, QE/CI is not working)
  • Bluetooth is working (you may have to press Fn-Satellite-Dish to activate it)
  • Wireless is working (you may have to press Fn-Satellite-Dish to activate it)
  • Internal memory card reader works
  • Internal speaker works and volume/mute can be controlled with the Fn-Keys
  • Internal mic is not working
  • CPU energy management (a.k.a. SpeedStep) is working thanks to SuperHai’s VoodooPowerMini.kext (verified using x-CPU.app by netkas). Make sure it’s enabled in the BIOS as well!
  • Sound and SpeedStep still work after waking from sleep
  • Boot time is about 35 seconds, waking from sleep is instant

I haven’t tested the external VGA port and the external sound connectors. Even though sound works using VoodooHDA I personally don’t like it and I’m still looking for another way to get sound working.

Once everything is running smoothly, you may want to add these lines to your /Extra/com.apple.Boot.plist on your internal drive:

<key>GUI</key>
<string>No</string>
<key>Timeout</key>
<value>2</value>
<key>Legacy Logo</key>
<value>Yes</value>

This will speed up booting and you’ll also get the nicer logo, IMHO.

Please refer to the appropriate forums for detailed installation support.

41 thoughts on “Snow Leopard 10.6 on MSI Wind U100 netbook

  1. I was successfully able to update to 10.6.2. I just had to reinstall the 10.6.1 kernel in order to get a bootable system. As far as I can see, everything is working, including QE/CI and SpeedStepping.

  2. There’s no 10.6 kext available (yet) for this PS2 trackpad that supports things like double-tapping to emulate a left-click if this is what you mean. Apart from that it’s working pretty well.

  3. I have tried to install the kexts, but now I get a blank screen after I booted; I forgot to add the kexts on my installation USB stick, and hence ended up doing the kexts installation post-install.
    I read somewhere that I might need to add a valid GFX string in some com.apple.Boot.plist file, and a working “graphics enabler/injector”, but I am not sure what that is, and how to do this;
    should I try and do the installation all over again to get it right, or is there a simpler way of doing this?

  4. I posted the plist file you need for the Wind U100 in this post. But if need installation support, you better ask in the appropriate forums.

  5. Thanks for the Kexts! I finally got the native resolution back after being stuck on 800×600 for no apparent reason. All I did was to install your Kexts using KextHelper and reboot.
    Karim

  6. Hi, I used your hints to install Snow Leopard on an MSI Wind U100 Plus (with Atheros WLAN chipset – working directly und Snow ;-).
    I have only one problem: the webcam is not working well. Starting Photo Booth, I just get a black window. Which of the kext is for the webcam?

    Kind regards

    Karl

  7. Karl, the internal webcam doesn’t need a kext. It works out of the box. The problem is, I have no idea why it’s working great for me but not for you. Maybe the U100 plus camera has a different firmware or even is a different model. Are you using DSDT? Did you activate the webcam with the function keys?

  8. Hi Jan,
    yes, I use DSDT. Maybe I have to turn it off? It is interesting that in Photo Booth, the little orange light on the left of the camera “burns”, but the Photo Booth window keeps black …
    Any idea on this?

    Kind regards

    Karl

  9. This is the data I get from System Profiler for the webcam.

    BisonCam, NB Pro:

    Product ID: 0x0203
    Vendor ID: 0x5986
    Version: 0.02
    Speed: Up to 480 Mb/sec
    Location ID: 0xfd500000
    Current Available (mA): 500
    Current Required (mA): 500

    If yours is different, then it may be something on the firmware/hardware level. There are some posts that say v0.03 doesn’t work with Mac OS, only v0.02 does.

    Cheers,
    Jan

  10. Hi Jan,
    yes, this seems to be the problem – my profile is identical. Only the version is 3.08 ….
    Is there any chance to downgrade the firmware??

    Kind regards

    Karl

  11. Is there any reason the grey kexts can’t be loaded also from the E/E folder? Also are all these kexts compatible with Leopard as long as the fakesmc is swapped?

  12. Golbez, this is just a personal preference. Most can be loaded from E/E as well but a few have dependencies on other modules.

    Cheers,
    Jan

  13. Hi Jan, thanks for this. I’m just wondering what the following kexts do, as I have seen other tutorials that exclude them, I’ve also found that when excluding the GMA bundle/plugin files, I don’t face resolution errors anymore

    AHCIPortInjector.kext
    AppleIntelGMA950GA.plugin
    AppleIntelGMA950GLDriver.bundle
    AppleIntelGMA950VADriver.bundle
    IOAHCIBlockStorageInjector.kext
    NullCPUPowerManagement.kext

    Cheers!

    LIC

  14. Hi LIC,

    The NullCPUPowerManagement disables (nulls) the Mac OS CPU speedstep kext as it is not compatible with the Atom CPU. That’s why I use the VoodooPowerMini kext to re-add speedstep support.

    I have no idea what the bundles do. Sometimes I have to install the GMA950 kexts/bundles twice and reboot in between to get the native resolution back (after installing a Mac OS update). It’s kinda weird but it works.

    The AHCI kexts are related to the I/O controller hub and add support for several ICHs and make sure internal drive icons don’t show up as external drive icons.

    Cheers,
    Jan

  15. 1 more quick question:

    Any reason why you picked VoodooPowerMini over VoodooPower? Can you explain the difference please?

    Thanks again!

  16. Hello, and thanx a lot for the great tutorial !

    Can someone please share, if the microphone is working, and (if necessary) how does one make it work ?

    Thanx a bunch,

    Cheers

  17. Microphone is working by using SliceVoodooHDA and its prefpane, go on insanelywind.com/forum you will find everything you need for your osx on u100

  18. Hi – great job, installation went smoothly, unfortunately there`s one BIG problem: Network don`t work, no WLAN, no internal LAN, no Apple USB to Ethernet adapter, nothing. The main problem seems to be that I can`t access Network Settings in System Preferences. Whenever I click on the icon, it says “Loading Network” but nothing happens, the systems runs slower but you can do everything, to stop the process or even try to restart or shut down you have to kill the beast !
    Anybody got any idea ??
    By the way, it`s a U100X in original configuration with BIOS EN011IMS Ver.10A

  19. Any chance someone is willing to post a step by step tutorial, I would like to put OSX 10.6 on my U100 Wind, I have a retail osx dvd 10.6 and bought an airport card to replace the realtek if that is better. I would like to dual boot Win 7 Ultimate w OSX 10.6 , my last attempt worked to a degree but I went back to Win 7. Really looking for some help in a simple tutorial

  20. hi which version did you intalled … ?? i tried the hazard 10.6.2 and it dont work at all ….
    installation was workin and first start it say problems with my cpu oder some …. could be that the version is normaly in 64 bit mode … but how do i change it to 32 bit … and your patch for atom processors is in that version included …. if you can give me an answere would be damn nice :)

  21. some times wen i start my mswind in osx 10.6.1 it is starting the screen resolution on 800×600 but most of the times it runs in 1024×600
    is anybody having the same problem?

    Regards Peter

  22. i installed everything and (until now) Leo seems to work fine.. i’ve only a problem: audio device isn’t detected (at now, it happened only 2,3 times).
    after installing the kext linked is this page, after using this 2 other kext (AppleAC97Audio.kext and AppleAzaliaAudio.kext) I still have a mute u100.
    Any suggestion?
    thanks in advance..

  23. google for:

    “snowywindosx”

    which is the newest modded installation dvd specially made for msi wind 100, enjoy!

  24. Ruuning U100 on 10.6.1–everything works apart from external display. It detects the display, shows standard wallpaper, but no icons or dock. I can move my mouse pointer to the left of my laptop screen and it goes on the external one then. Anyone had the same problem as well? Or should I just reinstall everything?

  25. I was wondering if you could instruct me on how to run AutoCloseRealTek.app. I am so happy to have found this as realtek wireless network utility is always open on boot up. I tried to just doubleclick, but does not work. I’m on 10.6.5.

  26. Blad thanks for the realtek driver. I’m 14 and broke so i never really had the option of replacing the wifi card. But that ting works a treat

  27. I installed Leopard on MSIwind 100U. was successful. But screen resolusion I need is 1280×600

    I get only 800×600

    can anybody tellme how to solve the issue and make the screen full? I appreciate any help

    I am new in osx. Kindly help me to fix the screen resolution

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