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Archived - Mac OS 9: System Requirements

This article provides the system requirements for running Mac OS 9.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

In order to install and run Mac OS 9, you will need the following system configuration:

  • Mac OS-based Apple computer with a PowerPC processor (PowerPC upgrade cards and 680X0 processors are NOT supported. See note below). Mac OS X Server IS NOT supported (MacOS.app). NetBoot images on Mac OS X Server are supported, but require a Mac OS 9 license for each NetBoot client.
  • 150 MB to 250 MB for an easy install (though a universal install can be up to 400 MB) of free disk space, depending on options selected, and drive size and format.
  • 40 MB of RAM (32 MB of physical RAM, with virtual memory set to at least 40 MB).


The minimum amount of RAM will let the computer perform only at minimum speeds. Installing additional RAM will increase the system performance.

With virtual memory turned off there may be up to a 10 MB difference in RAM usage. This difference is normal and due to code-mapping. 


Note on upgrade cards: The phrase "PowerPC upgrade cards and 680X0 processors are NOT supported" means:

  • Apple computers with a PowerPC processor upgraded by an Apple processor upgrade are supported.
  • Apple computers with a PowerPC processor are supported.
  • 68k computers with Apple logic board upgrades are supported, e.g. a Quadra 800 upgraded with a logic board to a Power Macintosh 8100. These are really PowerPC-based Apple computers, not 68K computers.
  • 68k computers are not supported.
  • 68k computers upgraded with PowerPC processors are not supported.
  • Non-Apple computers with a PowerPC processor (clones) may work, but are not tested by Apple and are not supported.
  • Apple computers with a PowerPC processor upgraded by a non-Apple processor upgrade may work, but are not tested by Apple and are not supported.
Last Modified: Nov 28, 2011
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  • Last Modified: Nov 28, 2011
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