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Linux - Laptop and Netbook Having a problem installing or configuring Linux on your laptop? Need help running Linux on your netbook? This forum is for you. This forum is for any topics relating to Linux and either traditional laptops or netbooks (such as the Asus EEE PC, Everex CloudBook or MSI Wind).

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Old 09-12-2007, 10:05 PM   #1
enigma_0Z
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Linux on a macbook/macbook pro... any experiences/problems, or is it even necessary?


I'm considering getting a macbook as my next computer, but I, of course, will probably put Linux on it, but I have a few (read: several) questions...

1. Is it possible/any more difficult to put Linux on an Intel Macbook?
2. Macbook vs. Macbook Pro, any hardware work better or worse with Linux?
3. Since Mac OS is based on Unix now, in theory, any POSIX open-source apps (including gcc?) should be able to be compile and installed into the Mac OS directly, right?
4. Noting number three, is there anything that would prevent me from simply installing the Linux apps that I like instead of installing Linux all together?
5. Compiz (once it's re-stabalized from fusion) would also be VERY nice on-top of OS X if possible...

In particular, Linux apps that I would want would include:

Amarok (if I can't get used to iTunes...)
OpenOffice
Firefox
Command line apps including the standard GNU commands (like sort, find, uniq, diff, et cetera)

So in closing... should I get a Mac and compile Linux apps for the Mac (I certainly have the ability to compile apps), or is there and advantage to having Linux on the Mac, or WHAT should I DO? Thank you.

Last edited by enigma_0Z; 09-12-2007 at 10:06 PM.
 
Old 09-12-2007, 10:40 PM   #2
AceofSpades19
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1.no
2.doesn't really matter
5. I doubt you can put compiz-fusion on a mac, openoffice, firefox already have mac versions, like they have windows versions
you can install kde on a mac but you have to install x11 first
 
Old 09-13-2007, 04:50 PM   #3
enigma_0Z
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AceofSpades19 View Post
1.no
2.doesn't really matter
5. I doubt you can put compiz-fusion on a mac, openoffice, firefox already have mac versions, like they have windows versions
you can install kde on a mac but you have to install x11 first
So then, I present an example of something else that I may want to do:

6:
What if I want to run application foobar on a Mac. This is an X/QT app, originally designed for Linux. I would then have to install X11 and QT at a minimum? Would I need to restart the Mac and/or the graphical environment to get into an X session to run the app, or would I run it in XNest, or would I run it using OSX to manage the window?
 
Old 09-13-2007, 06:35 PM   #4
AceofSpades19
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you would have to install x11 and kde, then you would start kde as a normal program, might want to move the dock from the bottom before you start kde
 
Old 09-13-2007, 06:52 PM   #5
enigma_0Z
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So then, the X11 libraries, not the entire X server?

What would manage the windows--how would they be decorated? Mac or kwin?
After that, I could then run any KDE/QT app on my theoretical Mac, once I compiled it?
Would the KDE/QT apps show up only in kicker, or would they show up in the dock too?
Would the Mac apps show up only in the doc, or would they show up in kicker as well?
What about GTK apps?

(finally and most importantly...)

Is there a good online resource that I could answer my own questions from?

Last edited by enigma_0Z; 09-13-2007 at 06:54 PM.
 
Old 09-13-2007, 06:57 PM   #6
AceofSpades19
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if you launched something from with in kde it would have kwin decorations i belive, kde apps would show up in kicker and osx apps would show up in the dock,
you have to install all of x11 i belive to install kde
you install it through a package manger that is made for osx in order to install x11\KDE
use google
 
Old 09-13-2007, 09:28 PM   #7
Astol
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just out of curiosity, why are you buying a macbook if you want to use linux? why not buy a nice ordinary laptop and install linux directly onto it?
 
Old 09-14-2007, 10:07 AM   #8
enigma_0Z
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Because I haven't found a manufacturer (other than apple now) that produces a laptop w/ the spec I want: nVidia graphics, Fast processer (dual core) Lots of RAM, and if I can get my Linux apps onto a Mac OS, that will remove more complexity (rebooting is not fun).

In all honesty,

The idea that I could run GPL X11 apps alongside of commercial Mac apps is a very compelling one, and real problem isn't that Linux is bad, but rather that developing closed-source (binary-only) software for Linux is a nightmare when you have to take into account several different architectures, layouts, distros, and package managers... But I digress.

The real reasons that I am considering a Mac w/ X11 apps instead of "real" linux are:

1. Running commercial apps alongside the Linux apps that I have grown to love (I've been using Linux for about 12 years now...)
2. No-fuss eyecandy (compiz has been a mess ever since beryl merged with it--I miss beryl)
3. My church uses all Mac computers. I know that I can make a Linux box work w/ Windows, but I don't know about Mac.
4. The hardware spec on the MacBook Pro is exactly what I want (nvidia, lots of ram, 15 in. screen, fast dual-core processor)
5. Running any non-native games is a horrible proposition, and I don't really wanna pay for cedega on philosophical grounds...

I think that the only things that are (right now) holding me to Linux are:

1. Customizability--but at the X11 level rather than the kernel or init levels...
2. Fast (and free) update cycles--I haven't paid for software in years...
3. Familiar interface (10+ years of Linux experience)

So, I guess what I really want to say in a nutshell is: Persuade me to stay with Linux.

The real question is how much can I customize a Mac w/ X11?

Last edited by enigma_0Z; 09-14-2007 at 10:12 AM.
 
Old 09-14-2007, 06:51 PM   #9
AceofSpades19
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Why don't you use google to answer your questions?
if I were you I would just dual-boot OSX and Linux
 
Old 09-14-2007, 07:37 PM   #10
jschiwal
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You might want to look at using parallels or vmware to run your linux apps in a virtual linux installation.
 
Old 09-14-2007, 08:50 PM   #11
enigma_0Z
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AceofSpades19 View Post
Why don't you use google to answer your questions?
if I were you I would just dual-boot OSX and Linux
I've been trying to glean info from google...

What I've read so far is that (in theory) any X11 app will run on a Mac, and there's a debian repository (called fink) for just that.

Furthermore, KDE will run on a Mac, as noted in this thread, as well as some screenshots in the news announcement for KDE4 Beta 2.

I'll see if I can't find a mac forum for more questioning, if no one here can answer my questions.

As far as dual-booting goes, I have discovered that it really isn't a solution for me, as I (almost) never use the "alternate" OS (in this case vista, but before that XP and 2k), as one has all of my stuff... (using FAT in Linux is ugly as heck, and using Reiser in XP is nigh impossible...) and the other is simply and appendage. Between Windows and Linux, I both philisophically and functionally like the way Linux does things (especially process and service management), so that become my primary OS, and Windows my secondary appendage, hanging on in the slight chance that I may need it (paranoid compatability reasons mostly).

So, for dual booting Mac OS and Linux, I then loose any benefit of buying a Mac, because at that point running Mac becomes secondary, as more of my stuff will migrate to Linux. The only real advantage is filesystem interoperability, but even at that, I would need to reboot to get into any linux apps.

Finally, virtualization is even uglier than dual-booting. With virtualization, the only connection between the host and the guest is network-based, and things become really ugly again, because (between Mac and Linux) you'd have to use a NFS share or something similar, right?

As I've been saying, Kernel customizability is not really an advantage for me. graphical front-end customizability is, but that makes me think what advantage (other than the large collection of high-quality free apps) does linux afford me, if I can run these apps on a commercially-supported OS that is capable of both running FOS software, as well as commercial software?
 
Old 09-14-2007, 08:57 PM   #12
AceofSpades19
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How is getting linux to read fat hard?, Linux natively supports FAT. OSX uses a different filesystem then linux anyways. the point of buying a mac is the hardware, if I'm not mistaken from the #1 post of this thread. If I were you, I would just stick with windows and use cygwin to run x11 applications.
 
Old 09-14-2007, 09:12 PM   #13
enigma_0Z
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AceofSpades19 View Post
How is getting linux to read fat hard?, Linux natively supports FAT. OSX uses a different filesystem then linux anyways. the point of buying a mac is the hardware, if I'm not mistaken from the #1 post of this thread. If I were you, I would just stick with windows and use cygwin to run x11 applications.
I believe you are mistaken.

First of all, I never said it was hard, I said it was ugly. Unless you hack up the FAT permissions, all files are executable, first of all, second, there are no other real configurable permissions on a FAT file system, from Linux/Unix. This means that all files on a FAT system are owned by whoever mounted the filesystem and world-readable. Very ugly.

And, yes OSX and Linux use different filesystems, HFS(+) and Ext, Reiser, or XFS, but, doesn't OSX support EXT and Reiser at least?

And my first post may have been a bit confusing, and I have been thinking along the way.

(as I said in my last post) the only real advantage that Linux affords me right now is that I can get alot of good software for free. And alot of OK software that looks good (aka compiz, kde4) and works OK for free. But most of all, the biggest advantage is the configurability of userland things.

I have not had to tweak my kernel for years now, and the only reason I did the last time was that some hardware wasn't supported.

Windows + Cygwin (X11) is an even worse idea! I am quite comfortable running Linux, and would rather do that that such a kludge. What I'm trying to figure out is if (and I stress IF) I get a Mac, can I:

1. Get along w/o Linux, but using FOSS apps
2. Run these apps in Mac OS X's Unix/BSD environment w/o dual-booting or virtualizing

I have been digging around the Apple website, and I may be close to discovering the answer, but...

My question still is, Can I run X11 apps in the Mac OSX environment w/o modifying them before compiling?

Last edited by enigma_0Z; 09-14-2007 at 09:15 PM.
 
Old 09-14-2007, 10:29 PM   #14
AceofSpades19
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This site may help you answer your questions. If you have x11 install, I don't see why you would need to modify them before compiling them
 
  


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