Ubuntu/Kubuntu on Mac G5.

Larry Grover lgrover at zoominternet.net
Sat Jan 21 14:41:37 UTC 2006

Brian Durant wrote:

> OK, the first problem I ran into is that the Gparted program on the  
> Dapper flight 3 PPC live-CD does not seem to be able to create a boot  
> or a root partition. I couldn't find any other programs on the disk  
> that could be used as an alternative either :-( I also have the  Kubuntu 
> live-CD, but when I can't even get the drives to show up  properly (as 
> per an earlier e-mail) that doesn't seem to be a viable  way to go 
> either. Normally, I would then try a Breezy CD, to get more  stability, 
> but as I stated earlier, nothing before Dapper will even  boot on my 
> PowerMac G5.

I haven't used gparted before, but I think it is for creating or 
modifying partitions.  Assigning a particular partition to /boot or / or 
whatever is something the installer does.

You could use gparted from the live CD to create the partitions for 
later use when you run the install.  Or you could simply create and 
assign the partitions from within the installer.

> One thing that has struck me so far on this list, is that there  doesn't 
> seem to be any of the developers of the PPC version of Ubuntu  lurking 
> on the list, nor do there seem to be very many Mac users. On  the YDL 
> list (which is of course Mac centric), they have asked me to  clarify 
> that I have a PowerMac G5 and not an iMac G5, they have also  asked me 
> to check my firmware version, which I believe is listed as:  " Boot ROM 
> Version:    5.2.2f2", etc. Not even a response on this list  when I 
> quoted the Debian lists response to my problem, stating that  there was 
> no longer any contact between the two kernel groups (?!?).

You'll see occasional posts from Ubuntu developers, but this is 
primarily a user list.  YDL is a great distro -- it's the first distro I 
ran on my iBook (I switched to Ubuntu so I could run the same distro on 
both my iBook and x86 systems).  Since YDL is strictly powerpc, the 
people on their lists in general are going to be more knowledgable about 
apple hardware.  Is your Power Mac a recent model?  If so, that may be 
why the fan control is not working.  I'm pretty sure that thermal 
management (fan) control works on older Power Macs.

About the difference between Debian and Ubuntu kernels:  few distros use 
a completely stock linux kernel, most of them add some patches.  This 
may be done to backport features from a new (possible unstable) kernel 
to the stable kernel which is going to be used in a release, or for 
security fixes.  But as long as you're talking about the same kernel 
version (e.g., 2.6.12 or 2.6.10, etc) they are basically the same 
between different distros.   The quote you posted from the Debian list 
sounded to me like someone with an axe to grind who was trolling.  So 
why didn't an Ubuntu developer respond on this list?  Perhaps they 
weren't interested in trading insults?  Perhaps they didn't see your 
post (this is a busy, sometimes noisy, list)?  Perhaps they were too 
busy with work?

> Personally, I really like Ubuntu/Kubuntu and I would prefer to have  
> that installed on my PowerMac G5, but at this point, it isn't looking  
> too good. I hope this doesn't sound like I am ungrateful for the help  I 
> have received so far, because I am very grateful. I am just  frustrated 
> about hitting what looks like a brick wall at this point.

Well, it's possible that Ubuntu won't work for you, at least for the 
upcoming Dapper/6.04 release, though it will probably work on your 
system some time down the road.  If YDL or some other distro works 
better, then use it (no need to feel ungrateful, either).  If you prefer 
Ubuntu, you can always try later releases with the live CDs, and if 
support for your hardware improves in the future, switch.

> I have had a look at https://launchpad.net/malone but can't figure  out 
> how to file a bug. I have searched and found that the bug doesn't  seem 
> to be listed. BTW, the link doesn't seem to work properly in  Safari. I 
> get the following prompt: Safari wants permission to sign  using key "-" 
> in your keychain. Do you want to allow this? (Deny,  Allow Once, Always 
> Allow)"

I'm not sure why Safari is doing this.  It doesn't do this for me (OSX 
10.4 on an iMac G5).  Perhaps you some how managed to store a 
login/password combination in your key chain under the key "-"?  You 
could try running the "Keychain Access.app" (in 
/Applications/Utilities).  Perhaps you have a bougs entry in there that 
you can remove?


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