Differences between US and Japanese version of Mac OS X?
December 4, 2006 5:03 AM   Subscribe

Are there significant differences in the retail versions of Mac OS X sold in North America vs those sold in Japan?

I'm living in Japan and helping a friend set up a Mac that was given to him. It's a G4 cube that was never used and still has OS 9. I was going to pick up a cheap copy of OSX 10.3/4 from the likes of eBay or something, but I am finding much cheaper deals back in the states.

Now I know that both the US and JP versions can be configured for the preferred default language to use with menus, etc.. But I was wondering if there are any other parts of the OS that will always remain in the original language, and if so, would these make it hard for a non-english speaker to be running an english version of the OS? (I'm guessing he'll use it mostly for web browsing, iTunes, and not too much else).
posted by p3t3 to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
I can't tell you with any certainty that there's no difference at all, but I am running an American version of Mac OS X on my Japanese MacBook, and it runs completely in English and would not present any difficulties at all for someone who only speaks English. I've updated with retail versions purchased in the US and in Japan, and never run into any problems. In addition, I install the same versions from the same disks onto my wife's computer, and she runs them completely in Japanese without any issues at all. So I would say that you are ok.
posted by donkeymon at 5:23 AM on December 4, 2006

I was able to install an American bought generic Tiger (10.4) install DVD on a Japanese ibook. No problems at all for the native speaker (who didn't speak English fluently and was less savvy with computers) to choose Japanese as the prime language and create a user. After that, setting up the special keystrokes for hirigana was a snap.
So no, I know of no problems with installing a genuine OS X disk, regardless of origin. It wouldn't be "an english version" it would be OS X with Japanese (nihongo?). And yes, Tiger will run on the Cube.
posted by now i'm piste at 6:31 AM on December 4, 2006

Caveat: Tiger will run on a Cube, but if it's stock, it has nowhere near enough RAM. I think Tiger's minimum requirement is 512 MB. It'll run with that, but 1 GB would be better. The Cube will hold 1.5 GB.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:43 AM on December 4, 2006

There's only one version of the OS X install disk, and it includes all languages and all localisations wherever you buy it from.
posted by cillit bang at 6:59 AM on December 4, 2006

Response by poster: Cool, thats what I was hoping.

And thanks Devil's Ranger for the added info. I was expecting to throw a bit of RAM in as well, but I'm trying to be as frugal as possible with upgrades since I don't think it's going to get much use.
posted by p3t3 at 7:06 AM on December 4, 2006

« Older How to set up a US Dollar account from the UK?   |   Keynote for the Web Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.