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Linux on a mac...

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July 25, 2007 10:48:34 AM

My friend has a mac and I'm trying to convert him to Linux, what I wanna do is put in a different hard drive and install Fedora PPC on it, then if he doesn't like it just pop the old hard drive back in, my 2 questions are:

1. If I don't do anything to the old hard drive and just install Fedora on the new one, will it screw anything up or can I just put the old drive back in and everything will be as it was...I know that's probably a stupid question but I'm a complete noob to Macs

2. Is there anything special I'll need to know to install Fedora? As in, can I just pop in the disc and it will boot it, or will I have to change the boot order(do macs even have a normal BIOS?)

As I said I'm a complete noob to Macs, and I've been using Linux for a while now but I'm still no expert.

More about : linux mac

July 25, 2007 11:42:32 PM

Bump


nobody has an answer to this??
July 26, 2007 3:57:36 AM

I really don't have any experience on macs, but I will attempt to help you here. I think that macs should have some sort of BIOS that you can manipulate since the BIOS is kinda what tells the computer how to boot up.

Also, why do you feel it necessary to remove the hard drive? What I would do if I were doing something similar on a friend's computer is that I would just install the new hard drive, make sure that it is working properly under their primary OS first, and then I would install linux onto the new hard drive. What you can do then is partition that hard drive so that you have a /boot partition and during the fedora installation, tell it to install GRUB to the /boot partition and then mess around w/ the configuration and add their first OS to GRUB in addition to linux. Then of course you would have to adjust the bios to boot from the second hard drive so that the GRUB bootloader can do its thing.

All this voodoo dancing is assuming, of course, that Fedora still has no LiveCDs that you can try out. If they have created a LiveCD version, then you don't have to go through all this song and dance to try Fedora out. Simply find the PPC LiveCD version of Fedora and burn and boot and PRESTO, you will have Fedora running to try w/o installation.

Also, encourage your friend to try several distros besides just Fedora. It may not be the right distro for him, and you wouldn't want a potential linux user to leave with a bad taste just because he didn't find the right distro for him .

Good luck, and maybe your mac friend will learn that there is more to computing than Steve Jobs would have him think ;D

-Zorak
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July 26, 2007 9:21:11 AM

Thanks for the reply. I'm removing the hard drive because they are both identical drives and I don't wanna risk accidentally formatting the wrong one. Because of the style of the case it takes like 5 seconds to switch the hard drives so it's easy enough to just do that.

Well I gave it a go tonight, everything appeared to install properly but when I rebooted it wouldn't boot off of the hard drive =/ We're building him an x86 machine now anyway, this is more just for fun if anything, because I've never really worked with a PPC based machine...we're gonna install both XP and some form of Linux on the new machine, he's dead set against using Windows and I don't blame him but he wants to game too. I run Fedora and it seems like it'd be fairly similar to his mac os but if you have any other recommendations I'd be more than willing to try out a different distro.

So I suppose now I'm gonna try to see how to get into the BIOS of a mac, if there even is such a thing
July 26, 2007 9:00:10 PM

Well, I don't want to sound like an ubuntu fanboy here, because I think I actually prefer Fedora, but go ahead and give Ubuntu a try and see how your friend likes it. Personally, I don't like not being able to choose which packages go into my OS at install time, but since your friend is a Mac user, he probably won't give a damn about that, in which case the defaults in ubuntu should be just fine.

You said that it wouldn't boot from the hard drive? At the risk of sounding silly here I will ask the following: did you remove the installation disk to it could boot from the hdd instead of the install disk? If so, Did you change the boot options in the BIOS to make sure that the machine would boot from this other hard drive? It is possible that the machine would detect it as hd1 instead of hd0 if you connected the hard drive in a different place than where the original drive was connected. Or you could also just hook up that drive back where the old drive was.

I don't know what else to say besides that. Hope this helps

-Zorak
a b 5 Linux
July 27, 2007 7:26:01 AM

Try both Fedora PPC and Ubuntu PPC :) 
July 30, 2007 2:24:54 AM

No offense taken, geeky. Like I said I am not an ubuntu fanboy, and saying that fedora lacks the eye candy is inaccurate. Any distribution can have a copy of Beryl or CompizFusion installed on it and work, it is just a matter of doing so. Note that I also said that I prefer fedora ;D

Also, I wouldn't really say that ubuntu feels mac-like. I've worked with macs before (and i ******* hated it), and although I didn't like the default ubuntu setup, it was not nearly so loathsome as working on a mac.

The whole idea behind Linux and open source is choice, so by extension, you can configure your desktop environment to look like whatever you want - be it a Mac, windows or something completely original.

Just let your friend have at it in linux jt001, and encourage him to think outside the mac box.

-Zorak
a b 5 Linux
July 30, 2007 3:28:18 AM

Sorry to triple post

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