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Does Apple have a software life cycle plan showing support?

4275 Views 22 Replies Latest reply: Oct 13, 2011 4:05 PM by okader RSS
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antdude Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Oct 2, 2011 12:51 PM



Something like and ... I cannot seem to find it. I was told that Mac OS X 10.5.8 is no longer going to be updated?


Thank you in advance.

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.5.8), 2.4 Ghz
  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10 (114,780 points)

    It's not likely we'll see anymore 10.5 updates, & I don't think Apple has such info available, at least I've never run across it.

  • Allan Eckert Level 8 Level 8 (39,420 points)

    Double posting the same problem is frowned on and also confusing.



  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (45,670 points)

    Apple don't have an official, published lifecycle statement for the OS- at least that I'm aware of, but for some time now they've always supported the current and previous OS releases from a security update standpoint. That would mean that with 10.7 as the current OS you can expect to continue to see updates for 10.6 until such times that 10.8 becomes the norm. Don't expect to see updates for 10.5 and earlier.


    That's not absolute, though, since there have been cases where the current - 2 version has received software updates, but you shouldn't plan on it.


    From a hardware standpoint, Apple considers machines 'vintage' at 5 years past that model's discontinuation date, and obsolete at 7 years.

    Access to parts may be limited/restricted for 'vintage' systems and not available (at least outside of the secondhand/refurbished market) for 'obsolete' machines.


    This is consisent with what you're seeing in the OS releases. All 'G4-class' (and earlier) machines are considered 'obsolete' and most 'G5-class' machines are now in the 'vintage' level with recent OS releases such as Lion being Intel-only and no longer supporting PowerPC applications via emulation (whereas Snow Leopard, which did support Rosetta and was released 4 years after the PowerPC -> Intel transition, did support Rosetta).

  • Klaus1 Level 8 Level 8 (43,415 points)

    There is a hint here of 7 years:


    Vintage and obsolete Apple products:


    Obsolete products are those that were discontinued more than seven years ago. Apple has discontinued all hardware service for obsolete products with no exceptions. Service providers cannot order parts for obsolete products. These include ALL G4 models. If the same time scale applies, the G5's will be obsolete in 2013.

  • a brody Level 9 Level 9 (62,045 points)

    And don't let the "obsolete" status deter you from running the said machine.  Plenty of old G3s are still in use today.  Some 20 year old macs are still in use as well.  It may take a little more time to maintain them, such as replacing PRAM batteries every 4 years, finding hard to find replacement parts as old ones fail, supporting old peripheral standards, but for some, there is never a replacement software good enough for them.

  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (45,670 points)
    The thing that bugs me is not speed, but support. MS still supports XP (SP3) today and a couple more years. Apple seems to dump their softwares fast. :/


    Actually, let's look at that, shall we?


    XP went out of 'mainstream support' in April 2009. It's currently in 'extended' support for commercial (read: paying) customers. Are you paying Microsoft to support your XP system? Are you paying Apple to support your 10.4 system?

    Furthermore, XP was available at retail until June 2008 - just 10 months before mainstream support expired. That's not so great. Even worse is the fact that XP was available to OEMs until October 2010, some 18 months after mainstream support expired. That's a winning combination if ever I heard one.

    Yes, XP came out in 2001, so you could argue that it had 7 years of support, but it's not Apple's fault that there was a 6 year gap between XP and Vista, nor that Vista had such a poor uptake.


    In fact, if you look at the official policy, Microsoft provide mainstream support for '2 years after the sucessor product is released'. Given that Apple, historically, have released OS updates every 18 months or so (give or take), and that they support the current and previous OS releases, you can see Apple have an 18 month policy while Microsoft has a 2 year policy. Not all that great a difference in the overall scheme of things.


  • Klaus1 Level 8 Level 8 (43,415 points)

    Apple update their operating system more frequently that Microsoft do.


    One of many reasons why Apple OS X is so good.

  • Klaus1 Level 8 Level 8 (43,415 points)

    Sorry, I meant upgrade.


    Presumably Microsoft's updates are security related in order to correct their virus-ridden buggy systems.

  • okader Calculating status...

    To me the problem is not how old is the sofware? but how old is the hardware? i have a 2000 toshiba laptop that i can install windows vista on and it works fine but i cant install lion or snow leopard on my power mac that was made in 2007! with windows i still can use windowsXP just fine right now while my leopard on my power mac doesnt have an up to date flash player or an up to date ms silverlight plug-in.

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