SnowLeopard and ATI

Going to share my expirience with ATI cards in  SnowLeopard

2600PRO/XT and 3870 known to have problems with qe/ci/opengl, you need to remove ATIRadeonX2000.kext to get at least resolution change working.

4850/4870/4870×2/4890 works (4890 needs patched x2000.kext for qe/ci/ogl), just need to add dev-id into ATI4800Controller.kext.

this list will be updated when more tests will be done.


  1. Teddy
    September 5th, 2009 | 5:32 pm

    Please help. I am lost.

    I am using a MacPro 1,1
    Installed “Enabler for Nvidia and multiple ATI cards”
    Plugged in Sapphire 4850 with VGADVI dongle
    Removed 7300GT
    Modified ATI4850Controller kext info.plist strings like this:
    0x94401002 0x944a1002 0x94421002
    Getting gray screen on startup.

    Can anyone help pls?

  2. gnomesgames
    September 5th, 2009 | 9:25 pm

    Good to know :), so what is the easiest way to know if they are enabled ?

  3. Ale
    September 7th, 2009 | 12:06 pm

    no I didn’t fix it yet…. I think we need some sort of modified kext to use correctly the HD 3870… and at this time it doesn’t exist

  4. C0h1b4
    September 7th, 2009 | 1:27 pm

    The new Chameleon RC3 now supports loading of alternate VideoROM image. I think this will fix some problems but needs testing.

  5. amiganer
    September 8th, 2009 | 12:17 am

    tried the ROM File from the original ATI 2600 XT (128 k) by using the VideoROM function of chameleon RC3 -> no chance!

  6. ledon
    September 8th, 2009 | 9:49 am

    your method QE/CI no work for me, i have powercolor hd 4850 512mb with hdmi/vga/dvi,any idea for me,thanks

  7. andeify
    September 13th, 2009 | 12:28 pm

    gainward 4850 512mb – no joy, ive tried all the methods that boot in 64bit

  8. andeify
    September 13th, 2009 | 4:53 pm

    ok i got it working no QE/CI – not installed the QE/CI pkg yet, the only problem i have is that my ethernet stopped working. its all 64bit btw

    NET – Attansicl1eEthernet.kext (P5QL-Pro MoBo)
    GFX – EvoEnabler.kext and DevID’d ATI4800Controller.kext

    and im using the EFI partition method, GFX stuff is in S/L/E/

  9. paxos
    September 13th, 2009 | 8:04 pm

    Still no luck with 3870 and snow leopard

  10. September 14th, 2009 | 1:19 am

    has anyone tried using the older triakis framebuffer kext for the 2900/3870 with snow? I vaguely remember seeing an easy installer .pkg for it so might be worth a try deleting all the ATI kexts and giving it a go…

  11. andeify
    September 15th, 2009 | 5:48 am

    After installing EvoEnabler.kext and editing ATI4800Controller.kext i have it running with qe/ci! Only problem im having is when it wakes from sleep the graphics go messed up. I can see the cursor, but i cant click on anything or i cant see the result from clicking.

    is there a fix? or has anyone else come across this problem?

  12. Almte
    September 15th, 2009 | 9:12 pm

    Hi netkas, I have an Asus EAH4890 in System Profiler:
    ATI Radeon HD 4890:

    Chipset Model: ATI Radeon HD 4890
    Type: Display
    Bus: PCIe
    Slot: Slot-1
    PCIe Lane Width: x16
    VRAM (Total): 1024 MB
    Vendor: ATI (0x1002)
    Device ID: 0x9460
    Revision ID: 0x0000
    ROM Revision: 113-B7710C-176
    EFI Driver Version: 01.00.318
    Resolution: 1680 x 1050 @ 60 Hz
    Depth: 32-Bit Color
    Core Image: Software
    Main Display: Yes
    Mirror: Off
    Online: Yes
    Quartz Extreme: Not Supported
    Display Connector:
    Status: No Display Connected

    Everything OK with the first monitor (DVI, digital), but I have other connected via DVI-VGA, analog, and my iDeneb 10.5.8 does not detect it. What I need to do?
    Thanks in advance.

  13. Oscar
    September 16th, 2009 | 9:23 pm

    Hi! I successfully installed SL on my pc but i cant figure out how to change the resolution on my ati hd2600pro and i have been trying to play around with patches and removing kext and everything i could find. Anyone who knows about a patch that can be run or some other way of making it work? Im running a core 2 quad q6600 and a gigabyte p35 ds3 motherboard if that helps. Thanks!

  14. Jasjeet
    September 17th, 2009 | 5:17 pm

    I have the Sapphire ATi 4850, and cannot get this to work, can someone please help me.

    ive tried DevId’d Info.Plist in ATI4800.kext and EvoEnabler installed in S/L/E folder with Kext Utility.

    Please help, i cant get it to work

  15. tebats
    October 2nd, 2009 | 7:25 am


    I have enabled QE/CI on Powercolor 4850 using deviceid in ATI4800.kext, QE_CI_Exotic_cards_10.6.1 and EVOenabler.kext but it only works on HDMI and VGA and DVI cannot be detected. Any ideas?


  16. slimbada
    October 3rd, 2009 | 11:02 pm

    still waiting for 3870 support in snow leo. will it ever be supported

  17. Tii09
    October 5th, 2009 | 9:33 pm

    Hey netkas
    You are my last person to ask!
    I have a Sapphire 4850 512MB!
    I followed your steps adnd everything… worka fine!
    But the fan of the card turns off just right after I got on the desktop after booting!
    My card overheats and makes weird noises!
    What can I do?
    I modified the GPU BUIS already, so that the fan is actually supposed to be on all the time… but it turns off still!
    Help me please!

    ////hmm. try to use bios from anotther 4850 card

  18. Nomaj
    October 12th, 2009 | 6:43 pm

    OK… what about mobility 3650 under SnowLeo?


  19. lennypenn
    October 14th, 2009 | 11:36 am

    …a what about this:

    You can find this for the HD3870

    Does it function?



  20. zak
    October 24th, 2009 | 3:07 pm

    Hi there,

    I am having a problem with snow leopard. I have ATI Radeon HD 3870. When I installed the snow leopard I have a problem of not being able to increase my resolution higher than 1680.
    I was able to go to 2500 under 10.5.

    I read the blog and people suggested I have to delete the keks file to make it work. I can not find the ATI4800Controller.kext. file they are suggesting. Can someone please explain it to me how do I fix this problem.

    I looked everywhere but can not find this file. Please help me…..

  21. Jeff
    November 29th, 2009 | 2:12 pm

    First, thank you for such great work!
    I have an Apple 4870 card because I need the Display port for LED Cinema Display. What kexts should I be using because it is an actual Apple Video card from apple store. I get kernel panics after network kexts load. Thank you, I hope you can help. System 10.6.2, Loader 10.5. Wouldn’t apple drivers just work with this card?

  22. Grunf
    January 31st, 2010 | 9:52 pm


    > You can find this for the HD3870

    Just installed it on GA-965P-DS3 (rev1.0), 10.6.2 (10.6.0 works too) and it rocks! 🙂

    Both DVIs are working (second one conected to VGA over DVI2VGA adapter), both monitors recognized, not sure about Quartz Extreme, though – no info in System Profiler.

    32 bit only! 🙁

    Does enyone know how to check for QE?

  23. InToVectors
    February 20th, 2010 | 12:11 pm

    Hi Netkas,

    Quoting you from this post :
    So, obviously a reason is simple, opencl on radeons in SL uses compute shaders and they are available only on 4000 gpu series.

    Anyway for a HD 3870, OpenCL is out of the question. That’s fine with me.
    But what is stopping QE/CI on HD 3870 from working in OS X 10.6.2 ?

    See my quest here :

    I first removed ATIRadeonX2000.kext as per your instructions. But that didn’t help.
    But the card was working in Safe Mode, so I threw together a couple of commands to remove all kexts from /S/L/E that were not loaded when booting to Safe Mode. It worked, because without specifying -x I could boot to the desktop and use SL.
    Then I started moving kexts back into /S/L/E by group, to find the trouble maker(s).
    Luckily the ATI drivers are right behind the Acard* and ALF kexts, and when I moved the group of ATI* kexts (except the ATIRadeonX2000.kext) back in, that is where my Desktop disappeared again.
    So I knew there was one more party pooper in the ATI* kexts group.
    It turned out to be the ATIRadeonX1000.kext. Which is beyond me.
    So for my HD 3870 to display the desktop in 10.6.0 – 10.6.2 I had to remove both ATIRadeonX1000.kext and ATIRadeonX2000.kext from /S/L/E.

    The Finder menu bar is not transparent, but the drop down menus are.
    Dashboard has all the spiffy animations.
    I can play full Chess games now (was only 2 moves in Safe Mode then a lockup).
    Only the Apple OpenGL Software Renderer is available.
    VLC doesn’t play my DVD discs, only a black square and sound.

    I’m perfectly happy with the performance of the HD 3870, because I’m not a 3D gamer.
    I’m looking this weekend into buying a NVidia GTX 260 or GTS 250, but with this just being an experiment until August to see how far I can get with iPhone development, I’m not trying to spend any money.

    Hope you can shed some light on what exactly is causing the problems between a HD 3870 and ATIRadeonX*000.kext, and the chances of getting ATIRadeonX2000.kext working and with QE/CI enabled with a HD 3870 on 10.6.2.
    I was under the impressions that 10.6.2 came with drivers for the HD 3870.

  24. Romario
    March 4th, 2010 | 6:21 pm

    Hi there!

    I have a 2900 XT with 1024 MB. How can it be run on Snow Leopard? I tried the old way with franklin and nothing. I hope for your help! Tell me if it does not actually run on MAC

  25. Romario
    March 6th, 2010 | 10:58 am

    How do I run the 2900 XT on snow leopard? Previously in 10.5.8 it was solved with the help of wonderful ATY_Franklin.kext ..

  26. Romario
    March 6th, 2010 | 10:59 am


    How do I run the 2900 XT on snow leopard? Previously in 10.5.8 it was solved with the help of wonderful ATY_Franklin.kext ..

  27. Steve
    April 3rd, 2010 | 3:36 am

    Newbie 2600HD Question.

    Trying to get my PCI 2600Pro to work with SL. Is there a guide anywhere with the kext? I have looked every where, sorry for my ignorance.

    Running Asus P5WDH thanks

  28. methou
    July 24th, 2010 | 7:31 am

    Add mobility HD 3650 support!

  29. cybercap
    July 25th, 2010 | 11:39 pm


    I’d like to connect my sapphre HD4980 via displayport and try to enable 10bit

    what is the kext/driver to install and is the 4890 working good (QE/CI) in SL 10.6.4 ?


  30. August 3rd, 2010 | 3:35 am

    Hello Netkas!

    First of all thank you for all the work and help. But i need desperate help installing quartz… I have an ATI HD 4890 and did a fresh install of snow leopard, then i installed the QE_CI Package, Then installed 10.6.4 combo update, rebooted and i cannot seem to get quartz to work. I am begging for some guidance please!

  31. Tom
    August 8th, 2010 | 5:12 pm

    How to enable second display on HD4850 (DVI/HDMI/VGA) 512MB HDMI, when DVI works with EvoEnabler, DevID in ATI4800Controller.kext in OSX10.6.2 x64?
    BTW: In 10.6.4 card GeForce 8600GT and 4850 doesn’t show any display connected so I got blank screen. Why?


  32. pstate
    August 11th, 2010 | 5:47 pm

    Tons of respect to netkas and all OSx86 engineers! you know who you are 😉

    I’m perfectly satisfied with 10.5.8 and my HD 3850 and ‘am patiently waiting for support for HD3850 in SL, please don’t give up, give us some delicious code to feed to our Hacks.

    I love my 3850, don’t want to throw it away.

  33. BSandy860
    September 3rd, 2010 | 4:03 am

    Hello netkas!

    I succeeded with the installation and I am able to boot using “-v” to Snow Leopard. As this thread is about just ATI, so my question is simple.

    I have the ATI Radeon 4870 1GB and I installed it using the ATI enabler from the customise. When I go to “About my Mac”, under Graphics/Displays it shows 4890 instead of 4870, the resolution is full 1920×1200 so that’s good.

    Do you think it’s a driver problem? because I see the color washed and when I play movie I see points running throug and the colors are washed. any ideas?

    I see in the beginning of this thread that you mentioned to inject “dev-id into ATI4800Controller.kext”. How do I do that? Do I have to install the OSX again or I can do it from the system?


  34. BSandy860
    September 3rd, 2010 | 2:35 pm

    just need to add dev-id into ATI4800Controller.kext.

    can anybody tell me how to do that? I see alot of people talking about kext etc. but I still don’t know how to do it. I’m a windows guy and I don’t know much about coding and programming,

    help will be appreciated

  35. duffer
    November 9th, 2010 | 9:20 pm

    hey, does someone tried to run these on Mobility 4850 (+crossfire each 1GB) Dev ID 944A 1002?

  36. Nik
    December 19th, 2010 | 2:02 pm

    I’ve a HD 3870. Is there any chance it’s working now, netkas?
    I’ve been desperately trying to get it to work with snow leopard. Please Help.

  37. gelot2
    January 21st, 2011 | 10:03 pm

    We beg help with Ati Radeon 3870.
    No longer have strength to fight, wait and hope.
    We understand you’re busy. But you have a heart not made of stone.
    We all understand. Tell the truth.
    Will there be our day?
    Congratulations on your last holidays!
    Help. We are many, the suffering!

  38. February 19th, 2011 | 11:02 pm

    […] […]

  39. Albus Dumbledore
    April 25th, 2011 | 7:49 pm

    Please can anybody tell me if ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5165 has support on snow leopard??? … thanks in advance

    //no support

  40. tommort1992
    August 30th, 2011 | 4:37 pm

    Hi, was just wondering if since this post any more has been discovered about the 3870 and Snow Leopard. It’s a good card and it’d be a shame to have to upgrade it to get hardware acceleration. it’s more than powerful enough for my needs. I have been searching all over the internet to try and get a solution. If there is no solution, does anyone have an alternative card for a budget user. (I’m currently a CS student so don’t have much money for this. I could probably go to £50 but £20 would be preferred).

  41. tony
    November 12th, 2011 | 3:29 pm

    Well my 2600 pro is not fully working on SL 10.6.2, i can change resolutions but still without see transparent bar…. can anyone tell me what to do next …. appreciate any help

  42. netkas
    November 15th, 2011 | 11:29 pm

    Nothing, it will not work.

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