Apple suffers Leopard leak - really

A cub version of Leopard is on the loose.

A preview version of Apple's much anticipated Mac OS X 10.5 made its way onto file-sharing networks such as BitTorrent this past weekend, according to various publications.

Attendees at last week's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) received copies of the beta ware and had to sign legally binding agreements not to let Leopard stray onto file-sharing networks. Perhaps someone didn't read the not-so-fine print?

MacUser reports that this version of Leopard is indeed legit, unlike a fake one that was reportedly making its rounds last week. The version of Leopard available on BitTorrent is 4.3GB, containing 93 files.

History shows that Apple does not take kindly to leaks. Last December, the company went after three folks who made Mac OS X Tiger available on BitTorrent. The company settled with one of the leakers last March.

According to MacWorld, "early reports from people claiming to use the software claim that certain parts of it 'feel' incomplete."

Notably, the company has said publicly that it's not yet revealing all the Leopard has to offer in anticipation of battling Microsoft's release of Vista next year.

Despite what some critics are saying, InfoWorld Mac maven Tom Yager has registered some excitement about the forthcoming OS.