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What Linux for Mac?

post #1 of 50
Thread Starter 
Anyone running Linux on a Mac? Which one would you suggest? Why?

My use? Editing , programming, LaTeX, simple stuff.
post #2 of 50
I haven't tried it but the consensus seems to be Yellow Dog Linux is good for modern Macs. I haven't tried SUSE Linux for PowerPC, but my experience with it on the x86 platform was only semi-satisfactory. The SUSE installation on my PC had lots of problems autodetecting hardware (with no such problems on a subsequent installation of Red Hat, not available for PowerPC of course). I never could get the DHCP networking thing working on SUSE and had problems with sound too.

So without putting too much weight on this recommendation since I've never installed either one on a Mac, I'd look first at YDL and then consider the new version of SUSE. Also there's a pretty substantial Linux for Mac section on the MacNN forums.
post #3 of 50
Thread Starter 
Yea. YDL seems to be the leader. I'm looking at new harddrives now for the old iMac.
post #4 of 50
I hate to mention this but have your thought of OSX?
Wll I have my G5 so I am off to get a life; apart from this post...
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Wll I have my G5 so I am off to get a life; apart from this post...
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post #5 of 50
I'm using LinuxPPC on an old 7200 and it works OK.
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post #6 of 50
why use linux at all? drop the hundred geenbacks on the world's most advanced operating system (OS X). after all, linux is just a rip off of unix. and os x is gui on top of unix. therefore, you should get os x. the power of crist compells you. OS X is great, and will only get better.
post #7 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by thuh Freak:
<strong>why use linux at all? drop the hundred geenbacks on the world's most advanced operating system (OS X). after all, linux is just a rip off of unix. and os x is gui on top of unix. therefore, you should get os x. the power of crist compells you. OS X is great, and will only get better.</strong><hr></blockquote>

But what if you don't have a machine capable of running OS X? I use G4's at work where I run OS X, but at home I still have a 7200 and a 6500 and I can't afford a new machine yet. So running Linux on my old mac makes sense...
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post #8 of 50
Maybe Scott H has a machine that won't run OSX too well, but would run the leaner & meaner Linux just fine for his uses.
post #9 of 50
Oh, god!! Please don't mention using OS X to Scott. You guys must be new around here I personally don't have any recs about Linux for Mac, but let us know what you find out. I've got a G3 that's in need of a more modern OS than the OS 8.1 that's on it currently. Thanks.
post #10 of 50
Thread Starter 
What who huh what's that OS X Ahhhhh!!!!!


OS X runs like shit on my iMac. Plus if I get the Linux distro I get all my fav' unix apps precompiled.

I'm very very sick of OS 9 though. But X is too slow.
post #11 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by Scott H.:
<strong>What who huh what's that OS X Ahhhhh!!!!!


OS X runs like shit on my iMac. Plus if I get the Linux distro I get all my fav' unix apps precompiled.

I'm very very sick of OS 9 though. But X is too slow.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yello Dog Linux.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #12 of 50
[ 02-15-2002: Message edited by: macsrock ]</p>
If only Apple read these posts...
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If only Apple read these posts...
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post #13 of 50
Hi Scott H,

I recommend YDL. I just tried Mandrake 8 and it blew, and debian isn't very user friendly, LinuxPPC is DOA, and I've yet to try SuSE.

YDL has great little touches... like support for power management ('pmud') and sleep, turning off trackpad tapping on powerbooks, etc.

Also, being RPM based, there's shitloads of either .src.rpm's or .ppc.rpm's. Or you can compile from source.

Linux flies, FLIES on my PBG3 250 w/ the lacking Ati Rage pro 4MB vram accelerator. Also, X, the screen drawing/keyboard/mouse layer for GUIs, is at version 4.2 and is ROCK SOLID stable on my YDL 2.0 powerbook.

You can also dual-boot w/ OS9, and/or run Macos inside linux. <a href="http://www.maconlinux.org/sshots.html" target="_blank">http://www.maconlinux.org/sshots.html</a>

And of course, some awesome free software. Galeon/Mozilla for hella fast web browsing, junkbuster for blocking ads/banners, squid for caching Domain Names locally, AbiWord/Open Office for M$ word compatibility.

Some prefer the KDE desktop, but I recommend Gnome because a)KDE looks like windows (albeit better/customizable) which is repugnant for a Mac user like myself, b)Gnome is financially backed by big players like Sun, c)if you use gnome, you can update both gnome and Yellowdog software using ximian's 'red-carpet', keeping packages current/stable/secure. <a href="http://www.stimuli.ca/linux/red-carpet.png" target="_blank">http://www.stimuli.ca/linux/red-carpet.png</a> Life is so much easier, as it handles all dependant packages as well. If you go with Gnome, go to ximian's site and follow their simple instructions. I'd also use the Duke University mirror (built in) option instead of ximian (for both the ximian gnome installer and red-carpet) as I get 150-200 KB/ sec on cable. (Well, except today) <a href="http://www.stimuli.ca/linux/rcdl.png" target="_blank">http://www.stimuli.ca/linux/rcdl.png</a>

Feel free to email me at stimulusresponse at hotmail.com for any troubleshooting/tips.

oh, and,
[quote]why use linux at all? drop the hundred geenbacks on the world's most advanced operating system (OS X). after all, linux is just a rip off of unix. and os x is gui on top of unix. therefore, you should get os x. the power of crist compells you. OS X is great, and will only get better.<hr></blockquote>
is laughably innacurate.
1) (nitpick) Linux is a kernel (like Mach, etc)
2)*BSD is != AT&T Unix
3) The 'original' Unix was invented in 1967. Do you really want a 40 year old piece of software running your box? A lot can happen in 40 years!

[ 02-13-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]</p>
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
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No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #14 of 50
I've tried using Gnome, and it ran a lot of deeply ugly windows which sat badly with my windowmaker installation - in my mind, a much cleaner and nicer looking GUI. Ok, ok, I know one's a window manager and another's a......something, but there must be a way to get them not to interfere with each other - and to get Gnome to take up less of my screen space.

Little help?
What, me worry?
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What, me worry?
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post #15 of 50
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by macsrock:
<strong>if u just need linux and a OS9 mac, and have about 150-250 to spare hop on ebay and find and cheap 604-cpu-using comp and install linux on that. or just buy OSX if u can</strong><hr></blockquote>

I already own a computer. Plus OS X sucks ... on my iMac.
post #16 of 50
uhm, I am not going to argue over whether Linux is good or whether OS X sucks, cause Linux is good and OS X doesn't suck, but ...

Linux is not just a kernel and Linux is far from UNIX [that is as far as one *nix can be from another ... ie, not far].

BSD was created at Bell Labs but was then sent out to Berkley and a bunch of other places. The guys at Berkley redid so much of it that none of the original code stands.

Since then a lot has happened to it, but rather than pitch the whole history I will just toss out a few things.

BSD is one side of the UNIX tree, Solaris is the other, this is not to say that all UNIXes are related to these two, although most are somehow or another, but that you can divide them all up and say that they are "fairly similar" to one or the other.

Linux comes from the Solaris side of the tree, Free BSD obviously comes from the BSD side.

Do I want something that has been made stable, fast, reliable, and happy for 40 years ...

Yeah, I do.

40 years of revision and improvement sounds good to me. All the people who say "this works in 9 and not X, so X sucks" should think about that, 9 is 17 or so odd years old. OS X is a 2 year old distribution of UNIX merged with an entirely new 2-3 year old system with parts of NeXT Step and Open Step intermingle ... not exactly lots of revision time ... so yeah, the fact that UNIX rules is very nice, no matter if your UNIX is BSD or Linux ... as both are closer to each other than Win9x to NT ... OS 9 to OS X ... or any Macintosh to any Windows PC ...
AI Member since 1998.

Founder GACmug, former Chairman.

Macintosh Specialist and Administrator, Lees-McRae College
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AI Member since 1998.

Founder GACmug, former Chairman.

Macintosh Specialist and Administrator, Lees-McRae College
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post #17 of 50
I like both Linux and OS X. And for the PPC the best Linux OS I have seen is YDL. For the Mac the best overall OS I have seen is OS X. YDL will be MUCH faster than OS X for the obvious reasons already stated many ohter places. Less resource Intensive, Less overhead, less monolithinc windows manager. Made to run on less hardware. OS X is better because no matter how good Linux is, it still cannot be easily used by my mother, my father, my grandma, or most of my extended family. OS X on the other hand is so easy to install and so easy to setup that a 9 year old, can, and has done it. WITH NO PRIOR EXPERIENCE. They are both good, for different reasons. All you linux junkies, use it, it is good. For everyone else. OS X is good, it is getting better, and if you don't like it, use 9 until you can't anymore and are forced to go to X. By then you will find it to likely be quite polished, even by your standards.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
Reply
post #18 of 50
Thread Starter 
I just bought YDL. No support of any kind. I'm sure if I have trouble I'll figure it out.

Now I have to get a bigger drive.
post #19 of 50
With the MacOnLinux thing, can I run SPSS 10? Right now, SPSS will not run in classic mode and I really dislike OS 9. Also, how much HD space does YDL take? I've got a 2 gig partition for 9.2. Could annihilate 9.2 and install YDL and MacOnLinux instead? Does it run 9.2 better than classic runs on X? Thanks.
post #20 of 50
What is SPSS?

Edit: doh!
<a href="http://www.spss.com/" target="_blank">http://www.spss.com/</a>

Yeah, it SHOULD run, though it may not. Pretty likely that it would. In my experience, everything runs except sound stuff. IE Macast crashes on start up, but I can edit images in PS.

Give it a shot, it's free.

[ 02-15-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]</p>
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
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No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #21 of 50
Thread Starter 
I just installed Yellow Dog Linux on my iBook 500 last night, and I am very pleased with it. Sound works way better than in OS X - the volume goes higher and it sounds better. Airport works, ethernet works, everything else works :cool:

I would suggest YDL to anyone looking to put Linux on their Mac. I especially like the boot loader - yaboot. No more startup disk control panel/preferences pane!!! All you have to do to switch OS is restart, then when the OS menu appears, press the letter of the OS you want. It's so easy now!
post #22 of 50
Great news, khack! Glad everything was straightforward!.

If X (the display layer/keyboard/trackpad input layer) crashes after waking from sleep, or you get tired of typing /sbin/trackpad notap after waking up, you might go to <a href="http://speakeasy.rpmfind.net/linux/RPM/yellowdog/1.0/users/dburcaw/xf42/ByName.html" target="_blank">speakeasy.rpmfind.net</a> and grab XFree86 4.2 packages for yellowdog.

ciao

edit: (for fonts you just need 100dpi fonts, base fonts, and 75dpi fonts)


Also, edit /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 and make sure you are getting true hardware accel.

Identifier\t"Card0"
\tOption\t\t"UseFBDev"
\tOption\t\t"Backingstore" #speeds things up by remembering occluded data
\tDriver\t\t"r128" #Not fbdev!!! use "ati" for rage pro 64 bit hardware
\tVendorName\t"ATI"

also, IF you u/g to X 4.2, make sure you disable two unneccesary modules or X will crash. I forget what they are called, but I think they are called "xie" and p-something Here's my module section. This only applies to 4.2

Section "Module"
\tLoad "GLcore"
\tLoad "dbe"
\tLoad "dri"
\tLoad "extmod"
\tLoad "glx"
\tLoad "record"
\tLoad "ddc"
\tLoad "bitmap"
\tLoad "freetype"
\tLoad "speedo"
\tLoad "type1"
\tLoad "vbe"
\tLoad "int10"
EndSection

I think you have to restart for 4.2 to work properly.

[ 02-15-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]

[ 02-15-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]</p>
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #23 of 50
Oh yeah, one really handy tip is to switch from the ext2 filesystem to ext3.

When you don't shut down properly under ext2 (ie hard restart), it manually checks every square inch of your harddisk for errors, which is painfully slow, and scary if it can't repair an error. Ext3 is a 'journalling' filesystem, so none of this is necessary.It will skip fsck(file system check)-ing your drive.

When you've gotten more familiar with linux, and compile your own kernel, you might try this:

This might require a kernel recompile, I'm not sure if YDL 2.1 has ext3 support built in. (Edit: actually, YDL 2.1 probably does, and it probably has the required e2fsprogs as well.) Enable ext3 in the kernel under 'Filesystems' (but not any debugging options for ext3), grab a more recent e2fsprogs from <a href="http://speakeasy.rpmfind.net//linux/RPM/linuxPPC/contrib/software/System_Environment/Base/e2fsprogs-1.25-0.ppc.html" target="_blank">here</a> ( rpm -Uvh e2fsprogs* ), run" tune2fs -j /dev/hdx " (where 'x' is your linux partition) and change your root device in /etc/fstab to ext3.

[ 02-15-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]</p>
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #24 of 50
Oh, this one's for you, kHack, I just stumbled across this on <a href="http://imaclinux.net" target="_blank">http://imaclinux.net</a> :

<a href="http://www.cymes.de/members/joker/projects/pbbuttons/pbbuttons.html" target="_blank">http://www.cymes.de/members/joker/projects/pbbuttons/pbbuttons.html</a>

it let's you use your volume/eject keys and the like.
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #25 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by NoahJ:
<strong> YDL will be MUCH faster than OS X for the obvious reasons already stated many ohter places. Less resource Intensive, Less overhead, less monolithinc windows manager. </strong><hr></blockquote>

YDL is not a mach based kernel like OSX. With a mach kernel you incurr more overhead since the OS does not communicate with the hardware directly. It sends hardware requests, such as disk read/writes, to the mach server which in turn performs the hw operation. My first linux on mac was mklinux, which was also mach based with the linux portion running as an user process. Next I tried ppclinux, which was definitly faster.
post #26 of 50
Anyone wanna go over the advantages of mach again? Why did AAPL go with mach?

Because Avie Tevanian works at Apple?
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #27 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by stimuli:
<strong>Anyone wanna go over the advantages of mach again? Why did AAPL go with mach?

Because Avie Tevanian works at Apple? </strong><hr></blockquote>

Or maybe because Steve Jobs sold Next to Apple.
post #28 of 50
Sorry...message was a waste o' space...time to go to bed....

[ 02-18-2002: Message edited by: MacGregor ]</p>
The Mother of all flip-flops!!
Support our troops by educating yourself and being a responsible voter. Democracy and Capitalism REQUIRE Intelligence and Wisdom if they are to be worth a damn beyond...
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The Mother of all flip-flops!!
Support our troops by educating yourself and being a responsible voter. Democracy and Capitalism REQUIRE Intelligence and Wisdom if they are to be worth a damn beyond...
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post #29 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by kHack:
<strong> Sound works way better than in OS X - the volume goes higher and it sounds better.</strong><hr></blockquote>Bear in mind that Yellow Dog may not be designed with the iBook in mind, and you may not be doing your speakers a favour by pushing them beyond Apple's specifications (kinda like those old "blow up your monitor via .xinitrc" rumours )
What, me worry?
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What, me worry?
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post #30 of 50
I use BeOS 5.0.3 Professional on all my older beige macs. It works extremely well. It squeezed so much more life out of em and makes them fly. seriously. BeOS is so fine tuned for the PPC that there is no lag anywhere. the OS is always responsive.

The software may be lacking now but it all depends on what you want to do. The web browser available is probably equivalent to IE 4.1 which some may not be able to handle.

The media player plays everything pretty much except for Sorenson and Qdesign. There are 3ivx codecs for the PPC BeOS available. But don't work that well on single processor machines. My dual processor 9500 handles em just fine.

There is also a Mac emulator for BeOS called SheepShaver. it works very well. The guys who make it are planning to open source it as well. What I do is make Sheepshaver one of my "workspaces" and then I just have to press F2 and I am in the Mac OS. F1 and I am in BeOS.

There are hundreds of other shareware and commercial apps available.
post #31 of 50
(I'm a bit of an OS junkie)

I always wanted to try BeOS... it doesn't support my Powerbook which annoys me, but that's Apple's fault not Be's.

Super lean, hella threaded and hella fast. Mmmmm...
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #32 of 50
GuitarBloke: but if the volume is super-low in OSX, he won't be able to tell that his speakers are blown, eh?

Do NOT run this xinitrc:
#!/bin/sh
/sbin/explode /dev/new_monitor &
/sbin/flames /dev/new_monitor --burst --flames &
exec self-destruct

This is totally off-topic, but then so are half my posts: I just noticed that the default Ximian Gnome settings are <a href="http://www.stimuli.ca/linux/flagrantbiting.png" target="_blank">flagrantly biting</a> the layout of Mac OS 9... even down to the App switcher at top right! There's a 'ximian-menu' on the top left, with 'System' and help menus next to it.

If you're going to flagrantly bite, flagrantly and shamelessly bite from the best...

[ 02-18-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]</p>
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #33 of 50
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by stimuli:
<strong>(I'm a bit of an OS junkie)

I always wanted to try BeOS... it doesn't support my Powerbook which annoys me, but that's Apple's fault not Be's.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Oh not this again. Why is it YDL supports that notebook and not Be OS? Hummmm?
post #34 of 50
Well, I could probably do something sneaky with open firmware, but screwing w/ OpenFirmware 2.1 sounds like as much fun as having my nuts chewed off by a rabid dog.

Same w/ OpenBSD: I could get it working, but I'd rather have a life instead

So BeOS probably copped out for similar reasons.

Besides, BeOS is now toast, and reformatting my poor Toshiba 12GB drive into six partitions instead of four sounds like about as much fun as... well, not very fun.
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
post #35 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by Scott H.:
<strong>

Oh not this again. Why is it YDL supports that notebook and not Be OS? Hummmm?</strong><hr></blockquote>

yawn... see when be says that they support a system they , amazingly, SUPPORT IT.

BeOS will run on that powerbook likely. But they don't support it. Nor did they put any work into supporting.

YDL has. but they have much lower standards for support.

All the features of my 9500 and performa 6360 are supported in beOS. I can't say the same for YDL.

thank you.
post #36 of 50
Thread Starter 
I just think Be was being a big ****ing cry baby. "Apple wont let us give you our wonderful OS."
post #37 of 50
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Scott H.:
<strong>

Oh not this again. Why is it YDL supports that notebook and not Be OS? Hummmm?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Way back when I emailed Be about support for newer pieces of hardware. They said the reason it was never supported was because Apple never provided them with enough information about the system architectures for them to be able to adequately support it. I'm unsure as to whether or not the thing would actually install onto the unsupported boxes, but that's the response they sent me.

I hear that Apple and YDL actually communicate about the hardware that YDL will support... but that's just what I heard, so come forth and correct me...

-j4
post #38 of 50
[quote]Originally posted by Scott H.:
<strong>I just think Be was being a big ****ing cry baby. "Apple wont let us give you our wonderful OS."</strong><hr></blockquote>

Before Jobs returned Apple had worked with Be on supporting the machines, gave them test boxes, and also information on all the hardware at the lowest level so that it would work well.

When Jobs came back he cut off all that communication.

Be never supported powerbooks because that was the next thing they were working on right when Jobs returned and the powerbooks are the products they needed the information the most on due to power saving and special circumstances in portables. Be didn't want to release an OS that "supported" portables but had no power saving features or sleep capabilities.

No Linux to this day has any of those on a powerbook AFAIK
post #39 of 50
Thread Starter 
YDL shows sleep as working for the *books.
post #40 of 50
Actually, AppleNut, that's entirely false. With the exception of clockspeed switching, which, to be honest, I never use, Linux supports all power features, like sleep, configurable HD spindown,screen dimming/blanking etc. It also supports media bay hot swapping, etc etc.

I don't think I'd use linux (on a PB) if it didn't support sleep. I'm the type who never shuts down, as I see no reason to.

Also, BootX, Quik and YaBoot bootloaders obviously all make really low system calls. Quik is basically an OF script, and I imagine so is Yaboot.

[ 02-20-2002: Message edited by: stimuli ]</p>
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
Reply
No, the bazaar cannot satisfy users. Neither can the cathedral. Nothing can satisfy users, because software is written to enable rather than satisfy, and because most users are mewling malcontents...
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