We may drop OS X 10.4 and PPC support from future EPD releases

We’ve had a number of recent internal discussions about EPD during which the phrases “that won’t work on OS X 10.4” or “does upstream have PPC support?” came up quite often. For example, a recent discussion about the importance of relocatable EPD egg installs sputtered because we realized Mac OS X 10.4 doesn’t support RPATH settings in binary headers, which meant we’d have to do something special just for that platform.

Once we realized this commonality, we next wondered how important OS X 10.4 and PPC support actually is for the EPD user community. Thus the point of this blog post: to get some community input. This is your chance to speak up if you need OS X 10.4 and/or PPC support. I can’t promise that a single ‘yes’ will sway our decision making, but certainly the more people who speak up, the more likely we are to try to continue the support.

11 thoughts on “We may drop OS X 10.4 and PPC support from future EPD releases

  1. avatarAlex Martelli

    It’s painful to say it, but I think it’s probably a smart decision to drop support for PPC and 10.4:-(. My last working PPC box (a once-proud Powermac, sigh) is enjoying a quiet retirement in the role of family entertainment-center’s master (and even so, I’m starting to worry about the lack of PPC support from such stalwarts as hulu and netflix, natch…); and I have no 10.4 left — 10.5 family license packs are so cheap I upgraded everything in sight. Sad (I have nothing but sweet memories of PPCs and Tiger), but, tempora mutantur, et nos mutamur in illis:-(

  2. avatarRob Hetland

    I think that, if 10.4 and PPC support are hindering progress in other important ways, as suggested, they should be dropped.

    I think PPC support could be dropped sooner. You may wish to wait until the next release of 10.x to drop 10.4 support. As I understand, this will be a primarily a performance enhancement release, that will also drop PPC support.

    Note that you are not blocking users from the code, just access to the easy installation. PPC/10.4 users will always be able to install from source, if absolutely needed.

  3. avatarRobert Pyle

    My main machine is a dual G5 PPC. It’s fast enough for the foreseeable future, and, as a retiree who has watched my retirement savings diminish by more than one-third in the past year, I do not plan to replace it any time soon. I would be sad to see EPD for the PPC disappear.

    I left 10.4 behind a long time ago, so not supporting it is a non-issue for me.


    Bob Pyle, Cambridge, MA

  4. avatarRalf Gommers

    Support for 10.4 for a little longer would be great. The release of 10.5 is only a year and a half ago after all. But if you decide not to support 10.4 anymore I’ll still be a happy user, and will upgrade my OS if needed.

  5. avatarJonas

    I have phased out 10.4 entirely but several of my computers are still G4-based. However, as my usage of python is mostly limited to scipy, I could live with using older versions of EPD until most of my computers have been replaced with Intel systems.


  6. avatarDave Peterson

    Thanks for the feedback so far, we are paying attention to your comments. I just wish things weren’t so evenly balanced between keeping PPC or 10.4 support. 😉

    Looking back on our internal discussions, I think most of the really hard issues are with 10.4 support, rather than PPC. The PPC issue is more of a time/resource one. At this point, I’d say it seems more likely for us to drop 10.4 than PPC, but that decision isn’t final yet. Please keep your comments coming!

  7. avatarChris Barker


    Pathetic as it is, we still use a few of our old legacy Classic apps — to support that we are running 10.4 on PPC. I’m hoping that that will no longer be required in about 6 months or so, but who knows?

    So, the longer you can support it the better.

    For the record, by dual g5 still feels quite speedy, so I’m in no hurry to upgrade that, thought the switch to 10.5 would fine, if it weren’t for Classic support.

    Oh, and I’ve been struggling with keeping 1.3 support going — there are still a few dinosaurs around here!

  8. avatarjelle

    +1 dropping 10.4

    I can vividly imagine that moving to 10.5 support only would make your live a lot easier, such that by the same effort you can produce output of better quality. Go for it!

  9. avatarJohn C. Beckerle

    I am using OS 10.4 with classic becausef all of my previous software is on OS 9 and earlier. For that reason I cannot switch to the intel chip. Also, purchasing a new computer is a real budget problem. Please make corrections keeping OS 10.4 with classic active and upgraded. I am beginning to use Python via Enthought.

  10. avatarMuhammad Alkarouri

    I am currently using OS X 10.4 on a Mac Mini Intel, which is a relevantly recent product. I am considering upgrading at some point in the near future, but I would like to make a general point.
    I find the expectation to upgrade immediately on Apple machines not to my taste. I would find it more understandable if software vendors wait for a couple of versions. In this case, I guess that Snow Leopard will probably be out by the time the next EPD release is out.
    I know it is much easier to support two versions of Linux as their turnaround is much quicker.

  11. avatarDave Peterson

    We’ve announced that we’re officially dropping PPC support in EPD. Instead, we’ll focus those resources on working towards an x86_64 (amd64) build for OS X.


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