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Old 11-03-2008, 01:49 PM   #1
claudius753
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Problems Triple-Booting iMac + Ubuntu


Ok, just for quick background information, after buying an iPhone last year, I realize how much I would really use a portable machine (notebook or netbook). The Apple portable products are ridiculously overpriced imho, $1500 for integrated graphics or $2000 for the cheapest 15".

That means I will be buying a "PC" (not that a Mac isn't a PC) notebook or netbook (MSI Wind/Eee PC/Mini 9/Mini 100 etc). I don't want to use Windows as my only OS, so I will be installing Linux on anything I would buy.


Before I buy anything, I want to see how far Linux has come in the 4 years since I started using Mac OS X. So, I want to install it on my 1+ year old iMac currently with 2 partitions, one OS X and one Vista.

I have the Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy 64 bit CD. The CD runs Live decently, thought no wifi. I can't get the install to work though. It goes through the install fine, but when I'm done I can't get it to boot. I originally tried this using a tool called rEFIt. When the system turns on, and I get a logo of an hd with the finder logo (to boot OS X) and I get a logo with an hd and the penguin (for linux), so it does recognize that linux is there and installed. When I choose linux, the screen goes black and then nothing happens.

I am pretty sure that I didn't put the boot loader in the right place. I don't know where I should install grub. Macs apparently don't have MBRs like normal hard drives?

Also, I have read that there are problems with the 64 bit editions of Linux and there are no real performance gains, so the 32 bit is preferable? Especially to get the Broadcom wifi card in the Mac to work with 64 bit. I'm about to go to work, so I may just download Intrepid 32 bit while I'm gone to try tonight.

It's been a while since I've used linux, so I guess I'm a newbie again, so thanks for any help.
 
Old 11-03-2008, 05:07 PM   #2
aus9
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firstly each hard drive, floppy or usb stick has a mbr.

But in the old days linux could have been installed to forget about offering a partition table and maybe thats what you mean?

That you can see some kind of bootloader option means you did not install the Ubuntu bootloader to mbr. So try that please.
but I assume you know how to re-install your old operating system if things go wrong.

2) I still think 32 bit has more options even today.

3) you may want to look at this
http://www.linuxquestions.org/hcl/showcat.php/cat/202

and specify your actual chipset or model number etc and then look for a distro that handles it or use the other service that some may have to use
 
Old 11-03-2008, 05:54 PM   #3
claudius753
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New Intel based iMacs do not use MBR they use GPT. So I don't know where to install the boot loader.
 
Old 11-03-2008, 10:26 PM   #4
Blackhand
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Quote:
Originally Posted by claudius753 View Post
New Intel based iMacs do not use MBR they use GPT. So I don't know where to install the boot loader.
I have been trying a lot of systems with a mac and I find that installing GRUB on the root partition works best with rEFIt.
 
Old 11-03-2008, 10:28 PM   #5
claudius753
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So by on the root partition, you mean when I get to the point that it is time to install GRUB, choose to install it to "/" instead of to the MBR?

Intrepid should be done downloading when I get home, so I'll try to install and see what happens with GRUB on /
 
Old 11-04-2008, 01:10 AM   #6
claudius753
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OK, I got home from work, installed rEFIt, burned Intrepid 32 bit, and resized my Mac OS X partition to leave ~45ish GB of unused space.

rEFIt allowed me to boot from the Intrepid disc, I installed it to the free space using 45 GB for /, 1.5 GB for swap, and put GRUB into the MBR (firmware emulated MBR).

Reboot, select Linux from rEFIt, couple of seconds and up comes GRUB, choose Linux, and up comes Ubuntu! Install proprietary drivers for Broadcom wifi, reboot, and I am now surfing LQ from Ubuntu on wifi on my 20" iMac!!!!!

I don't know if it was the 64 bit Hardy that was hampering me before or not, but the 32 bit Intrepid seems pretty speedy so far and looks great.
 
  


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