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Jul 06, 2017 SheepShaver comes with MAC OS 9 ROMs that don’t work. You can delete those. Copy the newworld86.rom to the SheepShaver directory. Rename the newworld86.rom to “Mac OS ROM” with no extension. Use 7zip to unzip the Apple Mac OS file. It creates a Apple Mac OS 9.0.4.ISO file. Copy the Apple MacOS 9.0.4.ISO file to the SheepShaver. SheepShaver is an open source emulator of PowerPC based Macintosh computers. Using SheepShaver it is possible to emulate a Macintosh computer capable of running Mac OS 7.5.2 through 9.0.4. SheepShaver is a PowerPC (PPC) emulator which allows you to run Mac OS 7.5 up to Mac OS 9.0.4 on various platforms, such as on Windows. SheepShaver started as a commercial project in 1998 but is now open source since 2002. Sep 11, 2014 Sheepshaver Package for Windows Web Site Other Useful Business Software Duo is more than multi-factor authentication (MFA) Secure the workforce with MFA, device trust, adaptive access policies, secure remote access, and SSO to protect on-prem or cloud applications. This repository contains the BasiliskII and SheepShaver projects. It is an attempt to centralize the individual development efforts that have gone on in the absence of the original cebix/macemu repository owner.

It has been a few years since I last experimented with old Macintosh systems on my PC using Mini vMac, Basilisk, and SheepShaver due to work and other commitments. When I decided to start these virtual machines again recently, I am still amazed to see the user experience these operating systems provide and their capabilities given the limited hardware configuration at the time. This article will showcase some old Mac applications that left an impression on me as well as some of my interesting findings.

Original Mini vMac

The original release of Mini vMac (downloadable from http://minivmac.sourceforge.net) emulates a Macintosh Plus that has 4MB of RAM running on a 8MHz Motorola 68000 processor. It can run up to System 7.5.5, available as free download from Apple at http://www.info.apple.com/support/oldersoftwarelist.html

A wide range of office software was available for System 7.5.5:

WordPerfect Works version 1.2, MacDraw, MacPaint and The Print Shop, a banner/letter/card printing utility:

What is the difference between a Draw and a Paint application, e.g. between MacDraw and MacPaint? Many computer users nowadays would not be able to answer this question. The basic difference is that, a Draw application stores shapes as vectors so that they won’t be pixelated and can be further manipulated once the drawing is saved. A Paint application, however will store shapes as pixels and any further manipulations will have to be done pixel by pixel.

PowerPoint and Sum-It, a spreadsheet utility:

An HTML editor for the Plus, in black and white. Try to use HTML5 and CSS on this….

MacWeb is among the few web browsers that can run on the Plus. As Mini vMac does not emulate a network card, it can only open local HTML files:

A nice looking clock on Mini vMac:

Despite the low configuration, various multimedia applications were available. Imagine designing posters and flyers using Photoshop on a black and white screen:

It can open modern graphics files also. The following is a photo of the Eiffel Tower, opened under GIF Converter:

This is probably very hard to find nowadays – MacroMind MusicWorks allows you to compose songs:

And MacroMind VideoWorks allows you to design nice animations that are playable on the Plus:

Another VideoWorks video, this time with audio:
Surprisingly there is a text-to-speech tool called Voice Box available for the Plus. After much effort I managed to grab a working version and make the Plus speak. See the following video and notice how the application says “Goodbye” when you choose to quit.

It is amazing considering that the audio on a Macintosh Plus is generated using a 8-bit DAC at 22kHz sampling rate. The PC did not come bundled with sound hardware, other than the PC speaker, until years later.

The above clips were captured using CamStudio for Windows. Although CamStudio supports recording of audio output from the speaker, attempting to select Option > Record audio from speakers results in an error message “WaveoutGetSelectControl() failed.”. This error is mentioned in the official website, with no solution available. I also tried a suggestion of recording from the microphone using the Stereo Mix option, only to find that no such option exists on my machine. It could be due to Windows 8, or due to the Mac Mini Bootcamp drivers for Windows. In the end, I used a stereo audio loopback cable that connects the speaker output port to the line-in port, and the audio was recorded perfectly.

What would a computer be without some games? Well, there were plenty of games, both text and graphics, for the Macintosh Plus. I downloaded many of them from an abadonware website and install on my vMac:

Bouncing Ball, Cross Word, the famous Hangman, and StuntCopter in particular:

And who could forget the famous Prince of Persia game. It comes with sound too, on the Macintosh Plus:

The screenshots show the game progress from the start of Level 1. The graphics still look nice and real on a monochrome monitor! Of particular note is the copyright protection where the prince has to drink a potion matching the first letter of a specific word in the manual before he can proceed to the next level. In those days a paper manual was all you need to prove ownership of a game, no product key, no server validation and what not! Unfortunately time has changed and I was able to provide a cheat sheet online describing the expected letter:

There was a long jump at the beginning of level 2. On a PC, you would need to stand right at the ledge and press Ctrl, Shift and the arrow key. The prince would then jump to the other side, hold on to the ledge and climb up. However, on mini vMac, the Ctrl key is the host key which activates Mini vMac control mode. To jump across the gap, you need to press Ctrl-K to enable Emulated Control Key mode, and then use either the Alt key or the Windows key to jump longer.

You will need to fight against several guards after this screen. Take that that since the emulated SHIFT key seems to get stuck after a while when running Mini vMac on Windows 8, causing the prince to walk slowly or unable to fight, it is better to use a Windows XP or a Windows 7 machine to enjoy a smooth and playable game.

Somewhere near the end of level 2 you will notice 2 potions, one is poisonous while the other increases your strength. Which one to drink? On a color monitor, they would be indicated by different colors. However, on the Macintosh Plus monochrome monitor, you simply have to take a guess:

The corresponding screen when playing on Dosbox. The red potion on the right is the one the prince should drink!

Talking about Dosbox, is there a similar possiblity of running PC apps on the Macintosh Plus? Yes! This is made possible by Soft PC which emulates a 80286 with 640KB of RAM running MS DOS 3.30, as reported by Norton Commander’s System Information and Microsoft MSD utility:

The left screenshot shows SoftPC starting up on System 7.5.5, which is considered as an abnormal situation reported by Mini vMac. What exactly is abnormal? Is it because we are simply running MS-DOS on a vintage Mac? I guess the answer is due to Soft-PC trying to initialize or access some hardware not emulated by Mini vMac.


Despite the limited configuration, a variety of games can run and are playable on SoftPC, such as AlleyCat and ParaTrooper:

Dyna Blaster cannot run and simply causes a screen distortion, resulting in me having to restart Mini vMac:

Imagine how you would design Turbo Pascal units and work with Microsoft Visual Basic for DOS’s form-based applications under a 512×342 monochrome screen:

How did I get these DOS applications to appear in Soft PC in the first place? Soft PC provides three ways, configurable from the Setup menu, for the emulated PC to access data, via floppy disk, hard disk, or a network drive. Emulating a floppy drive requires access to a physical floppy drive, which is not emulated by Mini vMac. When setting up a new emulated hard drive, Soft PC will create a hard drive image file on the system drive. I tried to use HFVExplorer copy the disk image to my PC, use WinImage to add files to the image and import it back to the emulated Mac. However, it does not work because the Mac resource fork is lost during the copying process, and the modified image is not recognized by SoftPC as a hard disk image.

The easiest way is to use HFVExplorer to copy DOS applications onto a folder in the Mac hard drive and configure Soft PC to emulate a network drive pointing to that folder. As long as the folder does not have a lot of files and approach DOS 3.3 file system limitation, it will work.

Sheepshaver Pc

Soft PC also emulates a PC mouse. However, when mouse emulation is enabled, the speed is too slow to be used. The DOS keyboard mapping in Soft PC is also weird and I am not sure where to configure it correctly, other than by trial and errors. Some DOS applications also appear to run in monochrome, but perhaps due to poor design, it is difficult to distinguish between certain screen elements (e.g. selected menu with a different background color).

MacShell, a terminal for System 7.5.5, albeit not useful because it only accepts simple command like man:

Finally,an attempt to run Mini vMac under Mini vMac, which fails due to lack of memory:

Custom Mini vMac with more RAM and colors

The following shows System 7.5.5 running on Mini vMac with 256 colors. This version of Mini vMac is taken from a set of custom-built versions of Mini vMac that have up to 8MB of RAM and 16-bit colored graphics (download a copy here)

Turbo Pascal under Soft PC now presents itself with it classical white-on-blue IDE:

Prince of Persia works well and looks similar to its PC counterpart under a 8MB Mini vMac with 256 colors:

With the added RAM, Prince of Persia II can now run beautifully with colors:

Photoshop now works in colors too:

Unfortunately, with 8MB of RAM, Soft PC refuses to start up, complaining Divide Overflow error. Does this sound like Turbo Pascal’s Runtime Error 200 where the CPU speed exceeds 200MHz?

Mini vMac appears to run this time, complaining about missing ROM file:

However, even with the correct ROM image and hard disk, the emulated Mac could not boot up and just show a black screen. My guess is that the failure could be due to the lack of capabilities in the emulated video card.

Basilisk II

Next on our list is Basilisk II which can run up to System 8.0.1 on a 68k Mac:

It can also run System 7.6.1 in color:

Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint and Word 6.1, the last version that can run on System 8:

Basilisk emulates a network card and makes it possible to access the Internet from System 8. To do this, you will need to install the custom network driver provided by Basilisk as a protocol for the network card which you are using to access the Internet. The driver should work out of the box under Windows 7 and older. On Windows 8, Microsoft forces users to use signed drivers and does not allow the installation of unsigned drivers as a custom network protocol:

Fortunately, the requirements of signed drivers on Windows 8 can be disabled by using the following BCDEDIT commands and rebooting the computer:

bcdedit.exe -set loadoptions DISABLE_INTEGRITY_CHECKS
bcdedit.exe -set TESTSIGNING ON

iCab, IE4 and WannaBe browsers for System 8, if you managed to get Ethernet to work:

Most of these old browsers are too slow and buggy to be used on modern websites, due to the introduction of new HTML elements that are not understood by the browsers. In the above example, IE4 displayed the closest representation of Wikipedia that would be shown by a modern browser.

Unfortunately, I did not have the chance to try the Audio CD player in System 8 this time. It used to work with an audio CD when I tried it years back, but my Mac Mini now does not have a CD/DVD drive and Basilisk’s CD-ROM driver does not work with a virtual CD-ROM drive emulated by Daemon Tools or other similiar tools.


System9.0.4 is the last classic Macintosh version that can officially be emulated on a PC using SheepShaver. This is because System 9.1 requires the Memory Management Unit (MMU), which is not emulated by SheepShaver. Recently I found a post which claims that it is possible with some modifications (and perhaps some associated problems). I have not tried this, however.

The About screen of System 9.0.4 under SheepShaver:

Microsoft Word 98, the last version to support System 9, with the well-known Office Assistant, running on SheepShaver:

Classilla is the only actively maintained web browser that still supports System 9 till this day. It sends a mobile user agent by default so that most web servers will return less heavy content suitable for low-end devices. In my experience, it is quite fast and displays many modern web pages nicely, including Wikipedia:

The equivalent web browsers on a PC would be Dillo or D+ Web Browser. I use them on my Windows 98 machine with just 32MB of RAM to browse the modern web and they work quite smoothly.

This is a screenshot of MacWeb browser when running on System 9 showing Google search page. How much junk have we added to the Internet? HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, Flash and whatnot. All that needs to be shown for a Google home page is just a text box and two buttons:

I also tried the Mail application (which is actually Outlook Express) that comes with System 9. Unfortunately, it does not work with modern mail services such as Hotmail, Yahoo Mail or GMail. Although the software seems to support SSL and SMTP authentication, attempt to configure and log on to the mail server would simply crash SheepShaver, hang at “Connecting” forever, or report authentication errors. I guess the problem is related to SSL authentication, but without the time to verify and confirm this, the only way to get the Mail application to work is to find a provider that doesn’t require SSL (which is very hard nowadays) or to use a local mail server such as hmail and configure the server to accept unencrypted connections.

The last screenshot in this article puzzles me. I use MacWeb from System 9 to browse Wikipedia and always receive an error page indicating “Unconfigured Domain”. The error is persistent and Wikipedia website is still accessible from other browsers, including other System 9 browsers. Why is this the case since browsers only request for HTML content from the server and render them? While older browsers may fail to display modern contents, I would never expect them to display a domain error message for a totally functional site. This question is left as an exercise for the readers.

See also:
Installing System 7.5.5 on Mini vMac
PCE/macplus, the ultimate 68K Macintosh emulator
System 6.0.8 on a vintage Macintosh SE with 4MB RAM

Mac OS 9 for OS X/macOS

Run classic Mac OS apps in OS X/macOS A similar system that runs System 7 How to use it Customization What it contains Acknowledgments Support and contributions

An easy way to run 'classic' Mac OS applications under OS X/macOS

Under OS X or macOS, software written for the 'classic' Mac OS (i.e. versions 6 through 9) can only be run through software that emulates Macintosh hardware from the 1980s and 1990s. The most advanced of these emulator programs is SheepShaver. SheepShaver is no longer supported by its original author, Gwenolé Beauchesne, but updates are available from an active support forum at E-Maculation, and the program is actively maintained by a programmer who uses the name kanjitalk755.

This page provides a fully functional SheepShaver system that runs Mac OS 9.0.4 (US English version). Unlike other SheepShaver-based systems, it makes it relatively easy to exchange files between SheepShaver and OS X/macOS, and makes it easy to print from Mac OS applications to OS X/macOS printers, or to create PDF files on the OS X/macOS desktop. It requires macOS 10.12 Sierra or later.

Note: For the sake of clarity, this page refers to 'OS X/macOS' but the app runs only under macOS 10.12 Sierra or later, not under earlier versions that were named 'OS X.'

To install this system, download and expand Mac OS 9.zip. (The file is about 620MB in size; it contains a 1.5 GB hard disk image file.) You may copy the Mac OS 9 application to your Applications folder or run it from anywhere else. (Updated 10 February 2021 with a current version of SheepShaver.)

If, when you start the application, you see a long error message that includes the string 'translocation', then you must move the application to some other folder (and, if you want, move it back) before you run it. This is the effect of a new macOS security feature. The easiest thing to do is copy the application to your Applications folder.

An older version, with a slightly different feature set suitable for single-user systems (or for installation in the home folder of different users, is available here.

For a similar system that runs Mac OS 9 under Windows, see another page.

A similar system that runs System 7.6.1 in BasiliskII

I have created a similar, experimental system that runs System 7.6.1 under the BasiliskII emulator. You may download it in System761.zip. The System761 application works in essentially the same way as the Mac OS 9 application described elsewhere on this page: you may copy files to System 7 desktop by dropping them on the System761 icon. See the How to use it section below for further information. Note the special instructions for temporarily mounting disk images for installing or copying software in System761.

The System 7.6.1 app was updated 10 February 2021 with an updated version of BasiliskII.

If you insist on going back to System 7.5.5, download the similar but much less automated System755.zip.) It doesn't include the convenient file-transfer and printing features in the 7.6.1 version.

How to use it

I assume that you know something about Mac OS and don't need any advice from me. A few points are worth mentioning.

You can hold down the Option key while launching the application in order to access an options menu. See below for some details.

The Mac OS 9 system includes a startup script named ~MacOS9BackgroundScript. This script is used for transferring files from the host OS X/macOS system to the desktop of Mac OS 9.

As in all SheepShaver-based systems, you may use the Unix folder for transferring files to and from Mac OS 9. However, this system has other methods.

To run your own applications in Mac OS 9 (or System761), you absolutely must copy the application to the Mac OS 9 (or System761) emulated disk itself (or some other disk mounted in Mac OS 9 or System761). Do not try to run your application from the 'Unix' folder. Your application will not run, and will produce an error message instead! Do not drag an application directly from the 'Unix' folder to the destkop: that does not copy the application to the Mac OS 9 (or System761) system disk.

To transfer a file from OS X/macOS to Mac OS 9, drop the file on to Mac OS 9 app. After a few seconds, the file should be copied to the Mac OS 9 desktop. The original file remains on your OS X/macOS host system.

To transfer a file to OS X/macOS from Mac OS 9, use the standard SheepShaver method of dropping the file into the Mac OS 9 Unix folder; a copy of the file will appear in your OS X/macOS Documents folder.

To print from Mac OS 9 to your default OS X/macOS printer, simple use the File/Print menu in your Mac OS 9 application, and print with the default desktop printer, 'Print to OSX/macOS.' After a pause, the document should print to your default OS X/macOS printer.

To print from Mac OS 9 and select an OS X/macOS printer for the current print job, follow the instructions immediately above, but choose the desktop printer named 'Select OS X/macOS Printer.' After a pause, a popup list of OS X/macOS printers should appear; choose the one you want.

To create a PDF file in OS X/macOS when printing from Mac OS 9, follow the printing instructions above, but choose the desktop printer named 'PDF to OSX/macOS Desktop.' The resulting PDF file on the OS X/macOS desktop will have an arbitrary name based on the current date and time.

Screen and other options are as follows:

To toggle between windowed and full-screen mode, press Ctrl-Option-Enter. The custom build of SheepShaver used in this application uses this key-combination instead of the standard SheepShaver toggle key (Ctrl-Enter).

To use full-screen mode by default, hold down the Option key when launching Mac OS 9, and set the screen size option to full-screen. When SheepShaver starts up, use the Monitors control panel to set the screen resolution to the resolution that matches your OS X/macOS screen.

Multi-user systems:This application works in a multi-user system if installed in the Applications folder of the Mac's hard disk. If you want to enable the multiple-user features in OS 9, use the Extensions Manager control panel, and switch the extensions set to the one with 'multiple users' in its name and restart. You may then set up the OS 9 system for multiple users in the same way you did with a real Mac.

Starting with the version posted 10 August 2017, this application includes an additional feature that allows each user in an OS X/macOS multi-user system to create a second disk image that will be accessible in Mac OS 9 only to that user. Hold down the Option key when launching the application to access this and other options.

Sheepshaver Mac Os X


This system uses a special build of SheepShaver that does not use the Preferences pane. Instead, hold down the Option key when starting the app, and use the menus. Most of the menu items are self-explanatory.

To change the window size, hold down the Option key when starting the app, and choose the option to change the screen size. When SheepShaver opens, you will probably need to use the Monitors control panel to select the size that you want (especially if you select the full-screen option).

To add or replace a disk image with the Mac OS 9 system, shut down the Mac OS 9 app and drop a disk image file on its icon. After dropping a disk image file you will be prompted to perform the next steps.

Note: This method should work smoothly with disk image files that have the file extension .dmg, .dsk, .iso, or .toast. If your file has the extension .cdr or .hfv or .img, the app will ask whether you want to mount the disk in the system (as you probably do) or copy it to the Mac OS 9 desktop. If your disk image has some other extension, change it to .dsk and use the Finder's Get Info (Cmd-I) window to make sure that the old extension is not still being used.

For disk images used for games or software installation: If you want to mount a CD-ROM image that will let you install a game or other software, shut down the Mac OS 9 app, then drop the image on the Mac OS 9 app. Then follow the prompts to add the image as an additional disk, and choose the option to leave the image in its present location and link it to the application. Then, launch the Mac OS 9 app and install your game or software. Then shut down the Mac OS 9 app and either delete, move, or rename the disk image that you added and no longer want to use in Mac OS 9. The next time you start up the Mac OS 9 app, the disk image will no longer be on the desktop.

Again, the disk image must have the extension .dmg, .dsk, .iso, or .toast. If you drop an image with any other extension, then Mac OS 9 will try to copy the disk image file to its hard disk, which is not what you are trying to do. What you are trying to do is mount the image as a disk for use in the system.

To add or replace a disk image with the System761 system: Two methods are possible. Either hold down the Option key when starting the application and follow the prompts; or, if you only want to mount a disk image temporarily, create a folder on your home folder named 'System761 Disks' (without the quotation marks). Drag into that folder the disk images that you want to mount in System761, and launch the System761 app. When you no longer want to mount those disks, move them out of the folder or delete or move the whole folder.

Other customization options will be described if you ask for them.

What it contains

The Mac OS 9 application contains a standard US-English Mac OS 9 installation, without features that can't be used in this system, such as filesharing. It also includes a large number of standard Mac OS applications, plus some Control Panels, Extensions, and Scripting Additions. It adds two desktop images that are used by the supplied AppleScripts.

When the Mac OS 9 app starts up, it creates (if it has not already done so) a SendToMacOS9 folder in your OS X/macOS Documents folder; this folder is thus visible in the Unix folder in the Mac OS 9 system.

The file-transfer system uses the ~MacOS9BackgroundScript script described above. The Files from Host folder in the System Folder uses a CopyFiletoMacOS9 folder action script found in the Scripts:Folder Action Scripts folder.

Sheepshaver Download Mac


This system is built on software provided by many people who are more expert than I am. The AppleScripts used in this application could not have been written without the help of many experts at Macscripter.net.

Support and contributions

Please do not ask me to help you customize the 'classic' Mac OS or advise you about any applications. Please ask for support in the E-Maculation support forum for SheepShaver. If you want to get in touch with me about the AppleScript used in this system, then please visit this page.

Sheepshaver Raspberry Pi

If you find this system useful, please feel free to make a contribution via PayPal from the link on this page.

Edward Mendelson (em thirty-six [at] columbia [dot] edu, but with two initials and two numerals before the [at] sign, not spelled out as shown here).


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