Quicken Might Work Under Lion Thanks To Embedded Rosetta Libraries

Quicken Might Work Under Lion Thanks To Embedded Rosetta Libraries

Apple may be considering licensing Rosetta to developers whose software might otherwise be left behind in the transition to Lion.

With OS X Lion, Apple will finally leave behind its RISC baggage and ditch Rosetta, the dynamic translator software that allows software written for the PowerPC architecture to run on today’s Intel Macs.

From an end user’s perspective, that shouldn’t make a huge difference for most of us. Most developers have upgraded their software at this point to support x86 architecture. Some companies, though, still use Rosetta for some of their tasks… and come Lion, that software just won’t work.

Intuit — maker of Quicken for Mac 2007 — found themselves in just such a pickle. They did the math and found that it wouldn’t be cost effective to write the program from the ground up without Rosetta. As such, they have worked closely are trying to work with Apple to bake certain Rosetta libraries right into the latest version of Quicken for Mac, so it’ll be compatible with Lion.

From a Quicken user’s point of view, the bad news is that Intuit’s work in this arena won’t pay off until the end of the summer, if at all, so if you can’t live without Quicken, you won’t want to be an early upgrade to Lion.

That said, it’s good to know that developers could have some option available to them if they just can’t afford to rebuild their software from the ground up: Apple might be able to work with them to provide a solution.

Update: When we wrote this article, we thought the embedded Rosetta libraries were a done deal, as opposed to something Intuit was just pursuing. We apologize for the error, and have amended the article accordingly.

  • Guest1

    Great…just more of an excuse for that crappy company to stay DECADES behind the times in rewriting their software. Intuit – GET TO IT! 

  • Robin

    Won’t some enterprising 3rd party make Rosetta available on Lion? It works so well I have no idea what software I have that uses it.

  • Cultomac

    should it say “should NOT make a huge difference to most of us”?

    I also read that they were HOPING to get this working but that there was still quite a bit of worry that it might not come to fruition…was this actually corrected or just a “simplifying” of the earlier story?

  • Dorje Sylas

    I’d been nice if Apple licensed out Classic as well. Seriously if they aren’t going to support it let a 3rd party pick it up and put it into guest sandbox.

  • Tallest_Skil

    “Apple may be considering licensing Rosetta to developers who are too fricking lazy to port their code to a modern base and who you should therefore stop buying products from.”
    There, I fixed the story.

  • rfsfo

    Which version of quicken is Brownlee referring to.  My understanding that the latest version (Quicken Essentials for Mac) is not rosetta dependent.  I wish he would be more specific in authoring this article to avoid unnecessary consternation by his readers.

  • CharliK

    i hope by ‘new version’ you mean a return to a decent version of Quicken for Mac. Cause that whole “Quicken Essentials” is a joke. it is useless. 

  • Max Ellis

    Rosetta is a tiny library, though. I can’t imagine it takes much effort for Apple to support. Not every program I use is still under active development, or has a suitable replacement.

  • rfsfo

    No true, Quicken Essentials is a nice piece of software.  It’s stable, has a nice UI and features everything 90% of user need.

  • John

    Maybe Apple could come to a similar agreement with the AppleWorks developers ;-)

  • R007P007

    I use quicken essentials for mac and it is GREAT. Would the author of this article please clarify. He clearly should have done his research and made the distinction.

  • Bill F

    Is Quicken Essentials the electronic checkbook that Quicken is?  I don’t care about internet connectivity for account input but I do enter data from bank and credit card activity to forecast monthly cash flow.

    (I did look into Mint and would advise “don’t touch it” You have to enter id and password for all your financial sites and that is as open to id and financial theft as it gets.)

  • iRikal

    Switch ti iBank. Cheaper, more feature rich and even works with Canadian banks without having to trifle with it. Brilliant work.

  • ericinLA

    “Apple is whipping recalcitrant developers with switches to use the modern code base, despite the fact these devs are (barely) supporting a five-year-old product that users cling to only because their more recently-released product sucks eggs” is what you meant to say, I’m sure.

  • ericinLA

    He’s referring to Quicken 2007, like the article says. Sigh…

  • Hoser Man

    I already transferred my files to iBank. Everything works good so far. Screw Inuit.

  • Anony Mous

    “Apple is completely screwing the end users out of their investment in older software for no good reason whatsoever by arbitrarily removing the automatic PPC emulation functionality, which otherwise does no harm by being present. Smug, self-righteous Apple fanbois everywhere are cobbling up lame developer-centric justifications as this completely unnecessary action taken at the user’s expense proceeds.” FTFY

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his wife and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

(sorry, you need Javascript to see this e-mail address)| Read more posts by .

Posted in News |