Taken from bits of the site that were recoverable from archive.org. Maybe incomplete.

23 November 2014 update: As you might know, Rhapsody is the precursor to Mac OS X. Given how expensive a Mac was for a college student, I spent an inordinate amount of time trying to figure out how to get something like Mac OS X running on commodity hardware. I had no idea that in about a year’s time Apple would once again support Intel CPUs.

I’ve recently gotten Rhapsody to install on a i386 box, and I’ve been at least somewhat please with the results. However, it appears that the install is broken, at best. Here are the steps that I took to get Rhapsody installed:

Find hardware that is actually supported

If you take a look at the supported hardware list for Rhapsody, you’ll very quickly notice that there isn’t much hardware that Rhapsody will work on. Because of this, it takes a little bit of time to put together a machine that it’ll work with. I just happened to luck out and have all of the parts handy, but I don’t doubt that others might have a difficult time obtaining all of it.

Attempt to install Rhapsody “normally”

This consists of installing rhapsody up to the point where it wants to reboot. The options are fairly self explanatory, but make note of the fact that the first time around on the driver configuration screen, it wants the driver to support the cdrom and the second time it wants the one for the hard drive. This is a minor point, but apparently somewhat important.

Boot into Single User Mode

Restart the machine as it instructs, and you might be greeted with a cryptic error: “Can’t find $LBL”. This means that bootloader can’t find a working configuration in either the Default.table or Instance0.table in /private/Devices/System.config and thus has a fatal error. For me, this meant that the installer failed to set those files up properly. Never fear though, it’s not too bad. This just means that we’ll have to pop into single user mode and fix the problem ourselves. At the boot prompt, type “mach_kernel -s” (no quotes). After some things scroll across the screen, we’ll soon reach a nice root prompt to work with.

Bring up the Hard Drive in rw mode

Single user mode mounts the drive as read only by default, so we’ll have to fsck it briefly and then mount it with write turned on, this is just a matter of doing “fsck -y && mount -w /”.

Fix the Default.table

Rhapsody should have already mounted the cdrom automatically because there is an entry to do so in /etc/fstab. We’ll go find a sample Default.table in /RHAPDODY_INSTALL/private/Drivers/i386/System.config (I think, I might have forgotten the name) and copy that to our /private/Devices/System.config file. Then we just open up the System.config file with our favorite text editor (vi and pico come preinstalled) and edit the Boot drivers list to taste. Then modify the active drivers list to include the video card that you put in the machine. You can take a look at the drivers available in the /private/Devices directory.

Fix the Drivers to not require the drivers disk

Now, we need to go into each of the directories from the drivers that we’ve loaded from the boot disk and add this line to it’s Default.config file: “Instance” = “0″

This will keep Rhapsody from prompting you to put the drivers disk into it when loading. Normally, Rhapsody should just fix this by prompting for the disk and copying it over after you start for the first time, but I experienced kernel panics as rhapsody did this and hosed the installs.

Fix the /etc/fstab file and remove cd

Now the kernel loader should be happy with what you’ve done, so we just need to fix one more thing. Comment out the fstab entry for the cdrom drive in /etc/fstab file by putting the “#” in front of it. Don’t forget to remove the cd also. Save the file and reboot. If you made a mistake on the Default.table file, then you’ll need to go back into the installer using “mach_kernel -s” from the boot disk, mount the disk again and then fix the file until it works.

Use configure.app

Configure.app should now pop up and walk you through the rest of the install. Presto! You should now have the Rhapsody DR2 base system installed.

Use installer.sh to Install other packages

At a later point, you may want the developer packages, etc installed. You can do this by insterting the CD-ROM, going into /RHAPDODY_DR2 (or wherever it mounts it) and finding .pkg files you want to install. You can just use installer.sh packagename.pkg to get the software installed.

Get more software

If you have the developer tools installed, you can compile quite a bit of stuff, but http://www.peanuts.org/peanuts has a fairly large repository of stuff. You can find it under MacOSX (Rhapsody later became mac os x server). The packages that have PI (the p stands for “ppc” and the i stands for “intel”) are installable, as are the one with just the “i” designation. The Omni Group have made OmniWeb 3 available on their ftp server in archives if you need a web browser.