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Old 12-06-2013, 02:34 PM   #1
Yaractys
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Good Macbook Distro


Hi. I am currently trying to find a reasonably easy-to-install (benchmark set by Fedora) distro that I can boot off of an external drive as a main OS for my Macbook Pro. I don't feel safe dual booting, because I don't want to damage my Logic Pro 9 installation in OSX with some bonehead mistake. I also can't virtualize OSX in virtualbox because A: virtualizing OSX in any situation is a nightmare and B: Logic is resource intensive enough that it already overloads the audio engine and force pauses while playing about once a week. It really needs native performance.

Last edited by Yaractys; 12-10-2013 at 04:05 PM. Reason: "Target Disk Mode" doesn't work with USB!
 
Old 12-06-2013, 06:07 PM   #2
rokytnji
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Small enough to download and try out I guess. The User interface may be easier for you to use since you are used to Mac.

http://macpup.org/

Another

http://www.bodhilinux.com/

Bohdi will have to be installed to external flash drive like a regular hard drive install. MacPup should be OK with Unetbootin and just a save file at the end.

I don't own a Mac so these are only try out suggestions. What little info on what kind of Mac I had to go on anyways.

Edit: My bad. Fedora is not included in my post

https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Chang.../Enlightenment

E17 is not slated for Fedora till version 20 I guess.

Quote:
Current status Targeted release: Fedora 20 Last updated: 2013-09-05 Tracker bug: #954132 #998517"]Current status Targeted release: Fedora 20 Last updated: 2013-09-05 Tracker bug: #954132 #998517

Last edited by rokytnji; 12-06-2013 at 06:14 PM.
 
Old 12-10-2013, 03:25 PM   #3
Yaractys
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Thanks for being so prompt. Yeah, I forgot to talk about interface. I was kinda hoping for something that ships vanilla KDE4 because after using a bunch of Fedora variants in VirtualBox, the KDE seems the most tweakable. One of the reasons that I want to use a free OS in the first place is that I have very definite ideas about maximal configurability and I don't want to fight a solo war against Johnny Ive. I thought about E17 (I really like the build-your-own-UI philosophy) but I hear about gtk issues. I'll probably go DE hopping whatever distro I get.

The biggest problem is that Macs use a rather esoteric form of EFI for the bootloader that makes UEFI look normal, so the partition scheme and even partition types are different. An artifact of this is that UNetBootin can't make mac-bootable install media.

Last edited by Yaractys; 12-10-2013 at 03:59 PM. Reason: I was wrong about expose
 
Old 12-10-2013, 04:02 PM   #4
Yaractys
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E17 actually sounds pretty good

The more I look at E17, the more it looks like, in concept, it was designed for people like me, who want to be able to say, "I AM the UI design team."
 
Old 12-10-2013, 11:29 PM   #5
TroN-0074
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I like E17 but every time I use it there is some bug that wont let me enjoy the experience. Currently I have it installed in Arch in a laptop and each time I start the laptop E17 kicks in and right after the splash the screen just go black, the only way to get a working desktop is if I press Ctrl+Alt-F2 follow by Alt+F7.

The other installation of E17 I have is in OpenSUSE and the problem there is that the power off doesnt actually turn the computer off, just kicks me out and there is no way I can go back so I always ends up turning the computer off from the command line.

Dont get me wrong I really like light weight graphical interfaces but if they partially work I would rather go with LXDE.
In your case you are looking for a distro for a MacBook that computer probably has enough power to handle a full desktop manager like Gnome or KDE.

Anyway good luck to you
 
Old 12-11-2013, 01:56 AM   #6
Yaractys
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Then, as I am relatively new to the scene, KDE is probably my best bet to be closer to co-dominant with the design team, if I can find themes to make it less gaudy. Preferably, I would be able to make my own from templates.

Last edited by Yaractys; 12-11-2013 at 02:59 AM. Reason: Clarification
 
Old 12-11-2013, 02:07 AM   #7
Yaractys
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Fedora 20?

I swear I heard somewhere that Fedora since 17 is supposed to have relatively automatic Mac dual boot support, which means that an external drive install would be easier. However, I also heard about a bug in Fedora 19 where it doesn't work as it should. Fedora 20 is almost out. Can anybody confirm that this bug is fixed? I like how, in Fedora, all DE packages are relatively vanilla, which means less backpedaling to find a clean slate for complete customization. It also seems nice to have a distro that with a robust community that isn't likely to become a dead project in the forseeable future. So I am currently leaning slightly toward it.
 
Old 12-11-2013, 07:23 AM   #8
TroN-0074
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Try OpenSUSE with Gnome in your Macbook, you can try Ubuntu or you can try Debian.
these distros are know to work on Mac. They also already come with everything you need for everyday computing. here are the links.

http://www.opensuse.org/en/

http://www.ubuntu.com/index_asus.html

http://www.debian.org/

Good luck to you
 
Old 12-11-2013, 02:28 PM   #9
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What Macbook Pro model do you have? Each model tends to have its own set of problems with Linux, but most of the problems can be solved quite easily.

I triple boot OS X Mavericks, Slackware64-14.1 and Windows 8.1 on my Macbook Pro (8.3, early 2011), but any Linux distro with a fairly recent kernel should generally work fine.
 
Old 12-11-2013, 02:54 PM   #10
Yaractys
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TroN-0074 View Post
Try OpenSUSE with Gnome in your Macbook, you can try Ubuntu or you can try Debian.
these distros are know to work on Mac. They also already come with everything you need for everyday computing.
Thank you for the suggestions. I tried Ubuntu for this very purpose, but it refused to partition the external disk in Mac style. I don't know whether that matters on an external disk. Also, why the Gnome version? Just curious because I thought KDE was the main dev channel or whatever it's supposed to be called.

The entire partitioning thing is scary. I really need either a smart installer like Ubiquity or Anaconda that recognizes the need for Mac partitioning automatically, or some article that explains in high detail what the differences are between BIOS, UEFI, and Apple EFI and the partitions for each so I actually have some idea what my problem actually is.

Recently, the drive I was planning to use fell off my desk and when I tried to erase it in preparation for formatting, Disk Utility said "unable to write to last block of device". Does this mean the disk is broken, or just that the connection to its USB port is damaged? And, if the latter, is it possible or advisable to repair?
 
Old 12-11-2013, 03:25 PM   #11
TroN-0074
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Here are the instructions on how to install OpenSUSE in a Mac (See link)

http://en.opensuse.org/SDB:Installation_on_a_Mac

I suggested Gnome because I heard Mac users find the Gnome desktop very appealing. I really dont know I have never owned a Mac and I said that based on what I have heard.

Maybe installing it on the hard drive of your laptop will be better than installing it in an external drive. I mean it will perform better.

Look at these instructions and see if that is something you would like to do.

Take care and good luck to you
 
Old 12-11-2013, 04:35 PM   #12
Yaractys
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TroN-0074 View Post
Here are the instructions on how to install OpenSUSE in a Mac (See link)

http://en.opensuse.org/SDB:Installation_on_a_Mac

I suggested Gnome because I heard Mac users find the Gnome desktop very appealing. I really dont know I have never owned a Mac and I said that based on what I have heard.

Maybe installing it on the hard drive of your laptop will be better than installing it in an external drive. I mean it will perform better.

Look at these instructions and see if that is something you would like to do.

Take care and good luck to you
Yeah. I have actually dabbled in Linux for a few months longer than I have owned a Mac, which I got specifically because of Logic Pro and the search for a competent DAW for writing orchestral scores with MIDI. (If you want a general idea, check out the Lord of the Rings soundtrack, written by my hero, Howard Shore.) All the Linux audio software with the necessary power has very limited availability and quality of sound plugins that take a masochist to set up, and all the Windows apps fall into the "It won't work as advertised unless you pay for plugins that cost more than the base application." This is OSX's niche, just like gaming is that of Windows.

My first impression of OSX Mountain Lion was that it was what Gnome Shell was trying to be, but suffered from the same customization problems as well: that their interface is the way it was designed and end users can more or less take it or leave it. It is just not a good option for someone like me who needs a veritable zoo of system settings to make the interface Mine. KDE supposedly suffers from "configurable option overload", according to one article, but for me, that is the entire point of a DE at all. I wish that was possible with Gnome, but without external tools, it sounds like it isn't.

I am considering dual booting now that the external disk won't work, but I am really scared that I might do damage to the OSX installation with some mistake, and do not want to do damage to an app that takes longer to install than Ubuntu.

Last edited by Yaractys; 12-14-2013 at 06:49 PM. Reason: Trying to extinguish unintended flames
 
Old 12-11-2013, 05:43 PM   #13
TroN-0074
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A good experiment will be to get a blank hard drive and swap the original hard drive with the Mac OS X with the blank one. Install the Mac OS there then set it up for dual booting with Linux.

So in that case if something happens you can always go back to your original OS by swamping Hard Drive.

Don't let misconceptions or stereotype get you. I mean Gnome and KDE and all Open Source projects for that matter are done by hard working passionate developers. So what I mean is dont label them as actitude project or whatever. If anything is the fan base the one starting all kind of flame wars.

I use different graphical interfaces in my installation and I really like all of them, they all are perfect and execute well under the circumstances they were made for. If I could I would contribute to them but I just cant.


Have fun man, enjoy your computer and good luck to you.
 
Old 12-11-2013, 08:57 PM   #14
Yaractys
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TroN-0074 View Post
Don't let misconceptions or stereotype get you. I mean Gnome and KDE and all Open Source projects for that matter are done by hard working passionate developers. So what I mean is dont label them as actitude project or whatever. If anything is the fan base the one starting all kind of flame wars.

I use different graphical interfaces in my installation and I really like all of them, they all are perfect and execute well under the circumstances they were made for. If I could I would contribute to them but I just cant.


Have fun man, enjoy your computer and good luck to you.
I was definitely not trying to say that Gnome is inherently bad, just that it is not for me as its use would partially negate my particular reasons for using Linux, which revolve almost completely around rather obsessive fine-grained control of my UI.

It is unfair to call it an attitude problem; I spoke too fast because I don't know what to call what I don't really like. It does have definite attractions, especially in the way of aesthetics, but is too rigid for me, with too few configuration options, even with tweak tool. It may be too much to ask it of every project, but I am going to stick with those that, collectively, treat users as closer to the equals of the design team. Sorry for any problems I may have caused.

Note: I edited the previous post to more adequately convey what I was trying to say and extinguish any sparks.

Last edited by Yaractys; 12-14-2013 at 06:51 PM. Reason: pointing out other edit.
 
Old 12-15-2013, 05:06 PM   #15
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You might want to look into Lubuntu since it is a lightweight Ubuntu derivative. It uses LXDE.

http://lubuntu.net/

There is a version specifically for 64-bit Macs. From what I've read a lot of people boot on an external HD with a Mac using Lubuntu. Unsure if the desktop environment is what you are looking for though.
 
  


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