Tag Archives: MacBook

Installing Fedora 11 on a MacBook

This guide will help you through all the steps necessary for installing Fedora 11 on a MacBook Santa Rosa. This guide is aimed at Fedora 11 x86_64 but will also work on i386 version (adjust as necessary). Most of the steps equally apply to pre-Santa Rosa models too.

These instructions are specific to the MacBook 3,1 (Late 2007) and newer but not the new aluminium MacBooks since they have different hardware (especially the graphics card). These instructions are not suitable for the MacBook Pro either!! That said, many of the steps here are common to all MacBook models and I have included a few tips for people with the Aluminum MacBooks.

This guide is based largely around my previous guides for Fedora 8 and Fedora 10. This guide is much shorter than the previous two guides and that can only be a good thing!

What works and what doesn’t?

There are a few things that need fixing (covered in detail below) but the following all work “out of the box” with Fedora 10: video/graphics, firewire, USB, CD/DVD reading and writing, suspend/hibernate, cpu speed control, fan control (including applesmc), volume function keys, sound, and ethernet. Even the new “plymouth” graphical boot screen works out of the box.

I have yet to try the infrared or connecting an external monitor but I suspect they work just fine. Everything else works with the tweaks described below.

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Installing Fedora 10 on a MacBook

This guide will help you through all the steps necessary for installing Fedora 10 on a MacBook Santa Rosa. This guide is currently aimed at Fedora 10 x86_64 but will also work on i386 version (adjust as necessary). Most of the steps equally apply to pre-Santa Rosa models too.

These instructions will work with the MacBook 3,1 (Late 2007) and newer but will NOT work with the new aluminium MacBooks since they have different hardware (especially the graphics card). These instructions are not suitable for the MacBook Pro either!!

This guide is based largely around my previous guide for Fedora 8, and again much credit goes to the people who created the original Ubuntu wiki guide.

What works and what doesn’t?

There are a few things that need fixing (covered in detail below) but the following all work “out of the box” with Fedora 10: video/graphics, compiz effects, firewire, CD/DVD reading and writing, function keys (brightness, volume etc), sound, and ethernet. Even the new “plymouth” graphical boot screen works fine once activated.

I have yet to try the infrared or connecting an external monitor. Everything else works with the tweaks described below, except for suspend and hibernate which seem generally pretty broken in F10 (as it was in F9 too). Update 7 November 2008: Suspend and hibernate are fixed with 2.6.27.7-134 kernel and newer. See bug report.

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Custom build of synaptics for Fedora 8 x86_64 on MacBook

Based on the patches found in this post over at Ubuntu forums I have created an updated synaptics touchpad driver RPM package for Fedora 8 x86_64.

As the original author notes, this makes it more enjoyable to use the touchpad while using the MacBook. It does two things:

  1. Adds the option “MultiFingerButton” to synaptics. This allows us to configure the touchpad to right-click and middle-click by placing two or three fingers on the pad and then clicking the button. In my experience this is far more reliable than the “two finger tap” method of right-clicking.
  2. It makes the mouse arrow more stable – I have found this to be a HUGE improvement in usability over the stock synaptics driver. With the original driver, if you put two fingers on the mousepad and release only one, the mouse arrow moves. This is the default behaviour in Linux and Windows, but in MacOSX, the mouse arrow stays put, and in my personal opinion, this is a much better behaviour. This patch makes it behave just like MacOSX. This may not sound much, but you’ll find it makes a huge difference to the stability and usability of the touchpad.

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Fedora kernel fixes and files for MacBook 3,1 (Santa Rosa)

Following on from my previous post, I have been making some RPM packages available for Fedora 8 and the MacBook 3,1 Santa Rosa.

The kernel packages are not needed now since Fedora 8 kernel 2.6.24.3-50 (and newer) already contains the MacBook specific fixes. However, at the time of writing the gstreamer packages are still required if you want to use gstreamer based applications with the MacBook iSight camera.

Before downloading, please take care of my bandwidth. If you don’t need the package, please don’t download it.

You can download the packages here.

There is also this thread at fedoraforum.org which may be helpful.

If you find any problems or have any suggestions please let me know.

Installing Fedora 8 on a MacBook

The MacBook is great, but OS X is not really my cup of tea and I choose not to use Windows. Luckily Fedora 8 works like a charm on the MacBook and with a bit of configuring you can get all the hardware working properly.

I couldn’t find any information on the lazyweb about installing Fedora 8 on a MacBook so I recorded what I did and made a detailed how-to which is posted in the wiki over at mactel-linux.org. The guide shows you step-by-step how to install and configure Fedora 8 x86_64 on the MacBook and works with both MacBook version 3,1 (from late 2007) or version 4,1 (from early 2008).

Big up to the guys at Fedora who gave in to my relentless nagging and integrated some of the mactel-linux patches into the latest Fedora kernels. Without them I’d still be spending my weekends rolling kernels!

If you find the guide useful or have any comments or suggestions then let me know.