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Hardware & Software Compatibility
What is the latest version of Helix?

6.0 was released on December 19, 2005
5.3.2 was released on April 22, 2005
5.3.1 was released on January 31, 2005
5.3 was released on December 4, 2004
5.2 was released on June 9, 2003
5.1 was released on December 22, 2002
5.0.2 was released on May 24, 2001
5.0.1 was released on December 4, 2000.

What about Classic Helix and dual-processor G4s?

We have seen numerous reports of problems where users experience dramatic performance decreases when running Classic Helix application on dual processor Macs running natively in OS 9. If you are using this configuration and experiencing performance issues, here is a technique you can use to disable the additional processor. This method tells the startup sequence not to use the second processor, and we have seen that this method helps Helix performance in Classic [You can also revert to using 2 processors again by restoring the setting.]

1. Shut down your machine.

2. Hold down the Command, Option, O (the letter, not the number) and F keys, while starting up your machine. The screen should go white, and some text will appear in the upper-left corner to inform you that you can release the keys.

3. Next, you'll see a ">" prompt. Type backspace (delete) a few times to clear any extra 'O's that might have been entered by holding down cmd-option-O-F too long, and then type:

setenv boot-args cpus=1

and press the Return key.

4. Type "boot" and the Return key. The Macintosh should start up with just a single processor enabled.

To reverse this, repeat these steps, except the command should be as follows, i.e. without the " cpus=1" part:

setenv boot-args

and the Return key.

Which versions of Helix are compatible with Mac OS9?

Helix 4.5.5 and later are fully compatible with Mac OS 9.0. Earlier versions of Helix have varying degrees of incompatibility with the later versions of the Mac OS.

Which versions of Helix are compatible with Mac OS 9.1?

Helix 5.0.1 and later have been tested and are certified to be compatible with Mac OS 9.1.

Which versions of Helix are compatible with macOS?

Helix 5.1 and later are compatible with Classic mode under macOS. Some users have reported limited success running earlier versions of Helix in Mac OS Classic Mode, but we do not recommend it.

Beginning with version 6.0, Helix Server, Helix Utility, and Update Collection are macOS native.

Is Helix compatible Macs with a G3 chip?

Yes. In fact, Helix gets a tremendous boost in performance when running on a G3 as compared to the older PowerPC 60x chips.

Is Helix compatible with Macs with a G4 chip?

Yes. Helix 4.5.5 and later are fully compatible with the G4 chip.

Does Helix take advantage of the G4's Velocity Engine? (aka AltiVec)


Is Helix compatible with Macs with a G5 chip?

Yes. However, all G5 based Macs boot only into macOS and can not be booted natively into OS 9. This means any non-macOS native Helix application running on a G5 will be running in Classic mode. Although the other applications work fine, we do not recommend running Helix Server in Classic mode. Helix Server 6.0 is macOS native, so using a G5 based Mac to run Helix Server requires Helix Server 6.0 or 6.1.

Is Helix compatible with Macs with an Intel chip?

See this page for the latest information on Helix and Intel based Macs.

I have an older version of Helix, or Double Helix. Where can I find out about compatibility?

QSA ToolWorks does not test older versions of Helix for compatibility with newer versions of the OS or with newer hardware. If you are upgrading your OS or your hardware we strongly suggest upgrading to the latest version of Helix to ensure full compatibility.