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SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2020 5:52 am
by Elyus
I've been playing around with the beta for macOS 11.0: Big Sur.

The good news is that SheepShaver builds and runs just fine!


There are a couple considerations though:

1. This is running on Intel, so it's not too surprising that everything's fine. Not much has changed since Catalina. I'm sure we'll have more trouble when ARM-based Macs start to appear. I do have hope that it will survive the transition for a couple reasons, although only time can tell. In its favor:
  • Rosetta 2 should provide support for a while, and
  • SheepShaver on Raspberry Pi and other ARM builds show a lot of promise.
2. Big Sur is a lot more locked-down than Catalina in some ways.
  • Its more proactive about forcing privacy and permissions, at least as far as I remember from my little use of Catalina. Sheep will refuse to run without being given disk access, even building from within Xcode. At present, when people install it in Big Sur, they'll need to manually add a rule for Sheepshaver to have full system access.
  • There are a number of ways to workaround the issue (for instance, launching from terminal to leverage its api calls for permission), but a couple ideas for addressing it in code: a) SheepShaver could request access to the files and folders it needs after reading the preferences or b) adopt Apple's sandboxing structure and consolidate how Sheep stores its files (needed for Gatekeeper, App Store Signing, etc. although not needed for things like notarization).
Some other tidbits:
  • I don't like some of the changes Apple is implementing to the OS. One example is that System files are forbidden from changing from a default install, and are verified by checksum regularly! Kernel extensions are going away soon. I get the benefits to security, but I don't want it to become iPadOS.
  • Big Sur is exceedingly, horribly buggy at present. In my opinion, it's hardly worth even trying to test with this beta for developers needing to port their apps. Just my experience so far.
In general, I was glad to see SheepShaver run, but I feel everything else is just ok, not good or bad. The end of Mac OS X, and the move to macOS 11 feels more significant to me than Apple advertised, and I have mixed feeling about the ARM transition, but we'll see where this goes.

Anyone else playing with the macOS 11 beta or perhaps applying for a Dev Transition Kit?

Re: SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:19 am
by Ronald P. Regensburg
Elyus wrote:The good news is that SheepShaver builds and runs just fine!
- Can you tell us which source code you used for building?
- Does my latest version 2.5 build for Catalina (15 March 2020) run in Big Sur?

Re: SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2020 3:08 pm
by rscaboyke

Your 2.5 build for Catalina runs just fine in Big Sur


Re: SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2020 3:29 pm
by Ronald P. Regensburg
With your Retina screen, you may want to use the advanced scaling algorithms that are available for version 2.5.
See: ... uilds_only

Re: SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2020 6:12 pm
by Elyus
Regarding the source repo, I built from a fork of kanjitalk's latest code.

Re: SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Tue Jul 14, 2020 1:58 pm
by podolsky
Same here, SS appears to run just fine in Big Sur Beta. I ran some rather demanding image mining routines and could not detect any difference between BSB and Catalina. Be aware, that if you install BSB to a disk that drive is not back compatible to any previous version of MacOS without a fully erasure, as per this Big Sur release note:

If macOS Big Sur 11 beta is installed into the same APFS container as previous versions of macOS, system software updates can no longer be installed on the previous versions of macOS. (64411484)

So, install BSB onto its own drive....

Re: SheepShaver on macOS Big Sur

Posted: Sat Aug 08, 2020 3:12 am
by kanjitalk755
My fork is ready to build for Apple Silicon.
But I think it won't work correctly because not debugged yet.