Please consider a donation to the Higher Intellect project. See or the Donate to Higher Intellect page for more info.

Mac OS X Server

From Higher Intellect Vintage Wiki

Mac OS X Server 1.x is basically the first production release of the Apple Rhapsody project, which is the PowerPC port of OPENSTEP designed to run on the Macintosh. The OS X Server operating system does not use the aqua appearance of the later released OS X, nor is it compatible with later OS X software.

Mac OS X Server features the same heavy-duty technologies that do the grunt work on the Internet. Built on core open technologies like Mach, BSD, and 100% pure Java, Mac OS X Server lets you run a multitude of existing applications from Day One. The Mach 2.5 microkernel and a full BSD 4.4 environment implement most of the Portable Operating System Interface (POSIX) APIs for easily porting standard Unix server applications. Mac OS X Server also gives you a fully compatible version of the Java Virtual Machine (JDK 1.1.6), tightly integrated with the native object model and threads for astonishing stability and efficiency.

Mac OS X Server is based on the battle-tested, rock-solid Mach microkernel, giving you the benefit of uncompromising Unix-style process management. Protected memory puts each service in its own well-guarded chunk of dynamically allocated memory, preventing a single process from going awry and bringing down the system or other services. Preemptive multitasking ensures that each process gets the right amount of CPU time and system resources it needs for optimum efficiency and responsiveness. You can easily stop and restart any service at any time without affecting the rest of the server.



Good news for IT professionals: Mac OS X Server includes a fully native port of the open-source Apache 1.3.4 web server, the #1 HTTP server on the World Wide Web.

Unrivaled in terms of sheer functionality, speed and reliability, the Apache web server software runs everything from the web site for the World Wide Web Consortium to the web site of the British Monarchy.

In a 1998 cover story on the phenomenon known as open-source software , Forbes magazine called the Apache server “a technical marvel that commands more than 50% of the booming market for Web server software.” In web time, August 1998 was eons ago. Since then, the Apache server’s market share has continued to skyrocket: The Netcraft Web Server Survey (February 1999) tabulated responses from 4,301,512 web sites, and found that 2,350,748—an astonishing 55%—were using Apache Servers. Web Performance Fastest Apache Web Server.

Last year, Apache not only won the hearts and minds of webmasters, the Internet’s most popular web server swept the awards, too—including Network Magazine 1998 Product of the Year, C|Net Award for Internet Excellence, ServerWatch 1998 Hall of Fame and NewMedia Magazine 1998 Hyper Award. And now Apache is a core component of Mac OS X Server.

QuickTime Streaming[edit]

QuickTime Streaming Server on Mac OS X Server lets you start up a streaming digital video channel—with news, entertainment and education programming—on the Internet. QuickTime Streaming Server on Mac OS X Server can serve hundreds of stored files to more than 1,000 concurrent users, and can reflect live broadcasts to more than 1,000 QuickTime 4 users. And since Apple is pledged to making the QuickTime Streaming Server source code available to whomever wants to improve it, the technology will continue to evolve thanks to the applied collective brainpower of the open source community.

A note on streaming—seeing is believing

There are basically two types of streaming—HTTP streaming and RTP streaming—and QuickTime does them both.

HTTP streaming works by downloading an entire movie to your hard disk. QuickTime has supported HTTP streaming for over a year. QuickTime streaming files formatted for HTTP via the Apache Server work so well on both Macs and PCs that—in addition to a large Macintosh user base—QuickTime HTTP streaming has attracted millions of Windows users as well. Fact is, the quality of QuickTime HTTP streaming is one of the reasons why the release of the Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace trailer turned into the biggest online download event in history.

Just-in-time streaming

RTP (for real-time protocol) is a just-in-time streaming technology that keeps your computer in constant touch with the server running the movie. Digital data is transferred and displayed—and discarded once you’ve seen it. Though a 3-10 second cache of data is stored to compensate for occasional network “burps” that might otherwise compromise quality, at no point is the entire movie stored on your computer. The difference? HTTP streaming is great for short movies and anything else you intend to play over and over again. RTP streaming, on the other hand, is ideal for full-length movies and live events. With a combination of industry-standard streaming protocols and cutting-edge compression technologies, QuickTime 4 delivers perfectly synchronized audio and video streams.

What you need to get started

If you’ve already installed the QuickTime Streaming Server Preview which shipped with Mac OS X Server, you’ll need to download a general kernel update—recommended for all Mac OS X Servers—and QuickTime Streaming Server 1.0. Minimum requirements are a Power Macintosh G3 computer or Macintosh Server G3 with 256MB or more of RAM, 1GB of hard disk space, and a software update to Mac OS X QuickTime Streaming Server 1.0. The recommended system, of course, is the heavy-duty 400MHz Macintosh Server G3 with 1GB of RAM, 9GB hard disk, 4-port Ethernet card and the software update to Mac OS X QuickTime Streaming Server 1.0.


Transaction management, dynamic data access and content-generation capabilities—plus fabled ease of use—are some of the strengths that make Apple’s WebObjects the #1 application server on the market. WebObjects earned this reputation running on Unix and NT; watch what happens now that it runs on Macintosh.

Apple’s cutting-edge technology for building flexible, scalable network applications, WebObjects handles all your application server requirements—including load balancing, state management, HTML generation and Java client interoperability.

Adobe Systems, Inc. uses WebObjects for online product registration. Aetna US Healthcare used WebObjects to build the first interactive web enrollment application for a nationwide managed care company. Bellsouth uses it to give its customers up-to-date phone bill and payment information, while the Standard & Poor's full-featured financial web site offers WebObjects-based planning tools, investment plans and customized information services.

WebObjects 4 offers great functionality for power users: WebObjects Builder gives you drag-and-drop control over HTML layout; Interface Builder provides control over Java applets; and Project Builder lets you build Java, ANSI C, C++ and Objective-C projects.

With support for simplified construction of user interfaces and direct connections to existing applications and data resources, WebObjects 4 makes it a snap to create new network applications that deliver industrial-strength performance. And with features like Direct to Web code-free development, creating great new solutions has never been easier. (Just wait till you see what Macintosh developers do with that capability.)


From now on, wherever you happen to be on a network of Macintosh computers, your Macintosh can be there with you. NetBoot makes it happen.

Watch a QuickTime movie of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs using NetBoot on Mac OS X Server to run streaming video off a Macintosh Server G4—and play it on 50 iMacs at the same time. Note that Jobs is using an iMac with the hard disk removed to prove his point that with 100Mbps Ethernet, users can boot and run applications off a server faster than they could off their own hard disks.

With NetBoot, Mac users enjoy an authentic Macintosh experience. NetBoot keeps track of individual users and their preferences. Students, for instance, could access their personal desktop from anywhere on the network. No matter which Mac they use to log on, they get the same personal desktop. For an individual user, it's like having your Mac follow you around.

Benefits for IT Professionals

For IT managers, NetBoot makes managing a network as simple as managing a single Macintosh. The best part is, all iMacs (and now all G3s) leave the factory NetBoot-ready—and so do all Macintosh applications.

Tested in the computer labs at Dartmouth College, the University of Michigan and the Hacienda La Puente Unified School District in Southern California, NetBoot has a number of benefits for IT professionals.

NetBoot computers don't require local configuration, so setting up a network of iMacs is a snap. NetBoot also allows networked iMacs to run the same system software and applications stored on the NetBoot server; updating the server once automatically updates all the iMacs on your network.

Instead of installing a new application on every iMac on your network, you just install the application once on the server, and—boom, every iMac on your network has got it. And adding new iMacs is simple. Just plug in the Ethernet cables and the iMacs are ready to go; NetBoot configures them automatically.

You control the System Folder

NetBoot server gives you powerful tools to control and protect your network. These include Macintosh Manager, the server administration tool that lets you set system policies for controlling user access to applications, AppleShare volumes and printers—in effect, to define the parameters of the user experience. As an IT manager, you'll find that NetBoot turns your job from constantly putting out fires to actually managing a network.


Mac OS X Server simplifies the process of sharing files and allocating network resources with Apple File Services (AFS). AFS comes with a server administration tool that’s as friendly as the Macintosh; basic setup takes just minutes through an easy-to-use interface.

Setup isn’t the only thing that’s fast about this new software. Based on performance tests conducted by Apple, when large files and folders are copied over 100Mbps Ethernet, a 300MHz Macintosh Server G4 running Mac OS X Server with Apple File Services handily beats a 400MHz Pentium II server with Windows NT 4.0.

Besides extremely fast file transfers, Mac OS X Server includes a native implementation of the Apple File Protocol (AFP), allowing it to share HFS+ volumes with any AppleShare client over TCP/IP or AppleTalk. Letting authorized users work collaboratively via an AppleTalk network, your intranet or the Internet.

Perhaps best of all, Apple File Services share the same administrative console. So wherever you happen to be, you can exercise complete control over your workgroup’s network environment—remotely—from any web browser.

Release history[edit]

Version Code name Date OS name
Mac OS X Server 1.0 Hera1O9 March 16, 1999 Rhapsody 5.3
Mac OS X Server 1.0.1 Hera1O9 April 15, 1999 Rhapsody 5.4
Mac OS X Server 1.0.2 Hera1O9+Loki2G1 July 29, 1999 Rhapsody 5.5
Mac OS X Server 1.2 Pele1Q10 January 14, 2000 Rhapsody 5.6
Mac OS X Server 1.2 v3 Medusa1E3 October 27, 2000 Rhapsody 5.6

The 1.0.2 version is incorrectly referenced as 1.1 in some places.


  • No FireWire
  • Only supports built-in video cards, or Apple-supplied video cards
  • No DVD-RAM support
  • No software RAID
  • Devices can only be detected on one USB port at a time


This will cover some notes about installing the OS X Server operating system.


Beige G3 systems as well as the blue & white G3 tower and G4 towers should run OS X Server without issue. You must also ensure the hard drive size being used for the OS X Server boot volume is no larger than 8GB. If you pre-partition a larger drive giving the first 8GB as OS X Server, this may work for you.

64MB RAM is the minimum but 128MB or higher is recommended.

Error: Desktop folder on the startup disk could not be created[edit]

This error is displayed when performing the initial OS 9 side booting of the install media and you're using a badly created CD image. The error blocks the boot process before the Finder is available. The "Pele1Q10" image found at the Winworld site and other archives is confirmed to boot properly.

Old World G3 can't boot OS X after PRAM battery failure[edit]

If you install Mac OS X Server on an Old World ROM based Macintosh without a working PRAM battery, the boot settings pointing to the UFS volume will be lost if power is removed from the system. You must either enter Open Firmware and manually point to the mach_kernel boot file or boot from the OS X Server installer CD and using the System Disk utility to select your existing UFS partition.


Change appearance to NeXTStep[edit]

You should be able to change the interface appearance back to NeXTStep using "defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSInterfaceStyle NeXTStep" in the terminal. If that doesn't work, try replacing "defaults write" with "dwrite".


External Resources[edit]

See Also[edit]