10.6.8 Software Update on OSx86, or The Slowest My Hackintosh Has Ever Been


The bad news: After installing the 10.6.8 software update, my hackintosh booted in slow motion.

The good news: I fixed it (and I’ll explain how).


This is an OSx86 post.  The OSx86 community is dedicated to running Apple’s advanced OS X operating system openly on standard x86 hardware, not just Macs.  It’s a fascinating project that has kept me busy for years learning about Unix operating systems and gaining an appreciation for OS X.  It has made me, a .NET developer by trade, into a dedicated Apple enthusiast.  You can find out more at http://www.osx86project.org/.

Running OS X on your PC hardware is tricky; OS X must be customized to fit everyone’s different hardware.  Most of the work that goes into the OSx86 project is dedicated to ensuring hardware compatibility.  You can find my hardware specs InsanelyMac.com profile here. Edit: hardware configuration at the end of this post if you don’t want to look at my profile.

How I got here

I installed the 10.6.8 Software Update from the Software Update menu.  Performed the usual steps (removed SleepEnabler.kext from /Extra, ran KextHelper to patch up my /System/Library/Extensions and rebuild Extensions.mkext, etc.) and rebooted.


After the first reboot, the Airport icon in the menu bar showed that a wireless network card couldn’t be found, and attempting to open network preferences took minutes to execute.  In fact, the entire system was reminiscent of post-2000 Fred McGriff running the bases on a gapper (sloooooooowwwww).  A second reboot actually “enabled” my network card again (that is to say that System Profiler once again recognized my Atheros Wireless-N card), but I still couldn’t join a wireless network and my machine was perpetually knee-deep in cold molasses syndrome.


As is par for the course, I headed over to netkas.org for a helping of post-update fodder, and sure enough, it seems that Atheros cards were negatively affected by the update.


Per the comments by netkas and others on netkas’ 10.6.8 Software Update post, I (backed up and) replaced the following kext with their 10.6.7 brethren:

  1. IOPCIFamily.kext
  2. AppleACPIPlatform.kext
  3. IONetworkingFamily.kext
  4. IO80211Family.kext
More importantly (it seems), I had to replace /System/Library/SystemConfiguration/Apple80211Monitor.bundle with its 10.6.7 alter-ego as well.  To be honest, I performed these steps (kext/bundle replacement) in one fell swoop, and there seems to be evidence in the comments on netkas.org that simply replacing the aforesaid Apple80211Monitor.bundle is sufficient for patching up the Atheros wireless card issue.
One reboot and I was back to good.

A few thoughts

Netkas remarked that the IOPCIFamily and AppleACPIPlatform kernel extensions are similar to Lion’s.  I just installed Lion on my system this weekend and didn’t have any issues, which leads me to believe that Apple80211Monitor.bundle was the sole cause of my issue.  I will replace the aforementioned kexts with the 10.6.8 versions and report back.

And speaking of Lion, I’ll be posting my thoughts on running Apple’s latest iteration of OS X on the OSx86 platform in a bit.  Until then, thanks as always to netkas and the rest of the OSx86 community.

Edit: My Hardware Configuration

Here is a synopsis of my hardware configuration:

Hardware –Case: iStarUSA Nitro AX-S Full Tower Server 1.0mm Steel -Power Supply: Rosewill RP500 –Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L Rev. 2.0 -Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 2.33GHz OC’ed to 3.20GHz (stable) –Graphics: Nvidia GTX 250 512MB Memory: 8GB (4x2GB) HyperX 1066 DDR2 SDRAM (2.0v @ 5-5-5-15)

OS X –10.7.0 Lion: Vanilla installation using Chameleon 2 RC5 on 500GB 7200RPM 6GB/s WD SATA HDD –10.6.8 Snow Leopard: Vanilla installation using Chameleon 2 RC3 on 80GB WD SATA HDD –Media: 1.5TB Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 6GB/s SATA HDD –Time Machine: 1TB external USB HDD

4 thoughts on “10.6.8 Software Update on OSx86, or The Slowest My Hackintosh Has Ever Been

  1. Thanks for the tip! Replacing the Apple80211Monitor.bundle with my 10.6.6 version made the wifi and my system start behaving again right away, even before a reboot. There were a few odd little glitches in the display of the wifi menu such as showing connected in the icon but then saying “Airport not configured” when you click on it. Rebooting made it work as normal 🙂

    This was driving me crazy for several days so thanks again for the help!

  2. I was looking on the Internet for days and replacing tons of files and installing endless applications. You, sir are a HERO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. I know this is an old post, but just wanted to let you know that replacing JUST Apple80211Monitor.bundle will probably solve the problem.
    I have a hack running Snow with Broadcom 432B and, for some reason, I had the same problem with massive slowdowns and with both the WiFi and Ethernet not working after upgrading from 10.6.7 to 10.6.8. But replacing Apple80211Monitor.bundle with the one from 10.6.7 did the trick.
    Thanks a lot!

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