10 years ago today, Apple released OS 9

Fri, Oct 23, 2009

Apple History, Finance, News, Rumors

On October 23, 1999, Apple released OS 9 (codename: Sonata), and I have fond memories (well, memories) of trucking over to my college bookstore and picking up a copy. I even remember that the cover of the box was green.

Some of the new features introduced in OS 9 included the introduction of automatic system software updates via the control panel (which continues on to this day), CD burning, Keychain password storage, Sherlock 2, and the addition of the “Window” menu to the Finder. It’s kind of mind boggling to think about, but OS 9 also enabled the Mac to finally support files over 2GB. Man, talking about coming a long ass way in 10 years – and it makes you wonder what feature of today we’ll be laughing at in 2019.

Interestingly, Apple still has a support page up for OS 9.



4 Comments For This Post

  1. Jared Says:

    I think Avid video editing systems still use OS 9.

  2. Alex Says:

    I do too. For games.

  3. BDD Says:

    Jared: the Beige G3s came with Avid Cinema, which allowed use of the A/V Personality card and composite/s-video input to edit video. I still use mine (and an old version of Final Cut Pro that I picked up for $10) to digitize old VHS videos. There are pro versions of Avid software, but I’ve never messed with them.

    I’m going to be writing an article for Low End Mac about personalizing OS 9 for a more modern look, feel, and operation. With the advent of the Classilla web browser, older Macs running OS 9 will still be useful for many more years of operation.

  4. Peter Says:

    The box for Mac OS 9 was white, with an orange 9 and a magnifying glass for Sherlock. The Mac OS 8.5 box was green.

    Not all Beige G3’s came with Avid Cinema and not all Beige G3’s had the AV card.

    I no longer use OS 9 for games. Now I play the old classic games on Windows XP (gasp!) through Boot Camp on my Intel iMac because the old games were all hybrid CD’s. So now I can play those old classics at full speed on an Intel Mac, without having to run Classic Environment on my old iMac G5, which would require a boot into OS X Tiger.

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