Apple, Psystar Reps To Meet In Court

Apple filed its copyright infringement suit against Psystar earlier this month, charging that Psystar has been selling Macintosh clones in violation of Apple's software license.



Attorneys for Apple and Mac clone maker Psystar will meet for the first time before a judge in October to discuss terms and procedures for Apple's copyright lawsuit against Psystar, according to court records.

The attorneys will meet before U.S. District Court judge William Alsup at a case management conference slated for Oct. 23 in San Francisco, according to the records. The case was originally scheduled to be heard by a magistrate judge but, in a sign of its importance to the computer maker, Apple requested that it be placed before a regular district court judge.

Apple filed its copyright infringement suit against Psystar earlier this month, charging that Psystar has been selling Macintosh clones in violation of Apple's software license. Apple is asking the court to order Psystar to stop selling Mac clones and to recall units it's already sold. Psystar officials have not returned calls seeking comment.

Psystar claims its Mac clones cost about one-quarter to half of what Apple branded systems sell for. In defense of its clones, the company charges that Apple marks up the cost of the hardware on which its operating systems ride by as much as 80%.

One version of Psystar's Open Computer features Apple's Leopard OS X 10.5 operating system ported onto generic PC hardware that includes an Intel Core2Duo processor at 2.66 GHz, a 250-GB hard drive, and an Nvidia GeForce 8600 GT graphics card.

The system is priced at $804.99. A similar, Apple-branded computer would cost at least $1,500. The problem: Apple's end-user license agreement expressly forbids installation or sales of its operating systems on third-party hardware.

Internet real estate sites show that the building that houses Psystar -- a Doral, Fla., property that is essentially a distribution warehouse -- is on the market for $4.6 million.

One ad for the property, which makes no mention of Psystar, notes that it's a 47,000-square-foot "warehouse/office building." The ad boasts that the property is "priced for quick sale" and adds that it includes "space for bulk, rack and bin storage, aisle space, receiving and shipping space, packing and crating space, and office space with bathrooms."

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