Psystar Won't Let You Reinstall Leopard By Yourself

A MacFixIt reader had a very interesting email exchange from Psystar's support, who told him that they don't want customers installing Leopard themselves. Here's the quote from the support team:

We absolutely do not support customers attempting to install the Leopard operating system on our Open Computer themselves. This is due to a difficult process that we go through to get Leopard to function on our computers. We encourage you to purchase an open computer, and select the option to have Leopard Pre-installed. Currently, (shipping the computer back to us) is the only option available. If the HDD dies, you can ship it to us for $50 plus shipping, so we can replace it for you.

If we look at the only viable way to install a Leopard on a vanilla OS X machine right now, which is using a hacked version of the OS, this decision makes sense. Psystar can't very well distribute hacked versions of Leopard with every computer. The most they can do is give out copies of the real Leopard, which is uninstallable as-is. But that's not what they said before.

Back when we first heard about them, they claimed this:

The highly extensible OpenMac is a configuration of PC hardware capable of running unmodified OS X Leopard kernels. If you purchase Leopard with your OpenMac we will not only include the actual Leopard retail package with genuine installation disc, but we also include a Psystar restore disc for your OpenMac and we will preinstall Leopard for free so you can begin to use your computer right out of the box.

What happened here? Are they still going to include a restore disc? If so, that might run afoul of Apple and/or the guys who came up with the hacking method in the first place. If you're going to have to mail your hard drive in every time there's a problem, this might be too much trouble for the money you save. [Macfixit]