[kwlug-disc] Mac OS and Linux

Chris Irwin chris at chrisirwin.ca
Wed Jul 1 01:32:39 EDT 2009

On Tue, 2009-06-30 at 14:29 -0400, Oksana Goertzen wrote:

> I'm assuming you're running Linux as well as Mac OS.

Yes, primarily Linux though.

> Does everything just work? -- what about that multi-touch mouse pad?
> Any caveats?

I've got a macbook3,1. The biggest issue that you will find is that
Apple changes the hardware on an annual basis. So the trackpad works
good for me (multi-finger to scroll, click, etc) but is a completely
different trackpad than that in the current units. Wireless is now
Broadcom-based, whereas previously units were Atheros. Most of the
non-pro macbooks have had Intel graphics, which has worked great with
Linux. However now even the normal white plastic macbook has nvidia

For Ubuntu anyway, there is a launchpad group that has helped wrangle
some documentation together. The Ubuntu forums also has an 'apple users'
section, and there are several rather knowledgeable users. (As a
disclaimer, I'm a non-active member of these groups)


Also, as John noted you can run Linux natively -- and with a graphical
EFI-based bootloader with a picture of tux! But even if you don't use
it, you will want to keep Mac OS around to update the machine. There
have been EFI/Firmware updates that have resolved issues that also
affected Linux in the past (roughly like a BIOS update as these machines
don't have a BIOS). These updates are distributed via Apple's update

Chris Irwin <chris at chrisirwin.ca>
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