first linux install...need help


I'm a newbie to Unix and Linux. I know that OS X has a Unix backbone and terminal can give me a taste of the Unix environment, but I still want to try a Linux Distribution. I have decided on LinuxPPC, but am having a problem. I have my drive in three partitions. One devoted to OS X, one to OS 9.1, and the third is for Linux. I was trying to partition this third one for use with LinuxPPC. I tried using pdisk under terminal, then logged on >console. Both times I logged on as root, but each time trying to make swap space and the root partition I received messages saying that the map was not writeable. What am I doing wrong...can I not use pdisk under OS X? Thanks for your help!!


You should use YDL 2.0. I tried Suse 6.4, LinuxPPC 2000, and YDL 2.0. I could only get YDL 2.0 to work. It has a nice partitioning tool that you can use when you install it. I don't know about pdisk, X, and the terminal, but you should consider using YDL 2.0.


okay, if you're going to do this (screw easy stuff, this is how you learn), insert your os x CD and boot single user. (how do i do that?!) okay, to boot single user hold down on apple + S while booting off the CD. a console should appear after a minute of stuff scrolling by the screen, and from there you can use pdisk. the only reason you could use it before was because you were booted off the hd (it was in use)


Licensed Computer Geek
As I recall, Yellow Dog's partition program (Disk Druid?) wouldn't work on drives with Mac partitions. And as we all know, the yaboot boot loader needs to be loaded from an HFS partition. What then ensued was a lengthy and cumbersome arm wrestling match with fdisk to try and shoehorn the correct partitions onto the disk. Ugh... It works beautifully now, but setting up the partition map was rather atrocious.


House pianist
In pdisk, you can set up the bootstrap as type "Apple_Bootstrap", which will protect against its getting unblessed -- since Mac OS doesn't recognize the partition type, it won't touch it.

Here's my partition map, which works fine for LinuxPPC as well as YDL:

hda1-8: Mac crap
hda9: bootstrap / Apple_Bootstrap
hda10: /
hda11: swap
hda12: /var
hda13: /tmp
hda14: /usr
hda15: /home
hda16: OS X drive
hda17: OS 9 drive

Anyone have anything drastically different?


mach-o mach-o man
I just have to jump in here and say that I have never seen my beige g3 run as fast as it did under ydl. Never. That baby was screaming. I had blender, gimp, glide..... It rocked. Couldn't get the ethernet setup, though, so I ended up with OS X. But if you go the ydl route, join the mailing list!

Yellow Dog ROCKS!!!! Way faster than Mac OS X is on my G3. You will love it.


Yellow Dog Linux ran slower than Mac OS X on my boyfriend's powerbook. He uninstalled it in fact. He's used probably about a dozen different linux distrubutions or versions (on macs and pcs) since 1996, so this was not due to any inexperience.



The reason you couldn't run Linux is really simple...

Partition types
Partitions come in several types: Apple Hierarchical File System (Apple_HFS, used by MacOS), HFS+ (also type Apple_HFS, used by Mac OS 8.1 and above), and A/UX(Apple_UNIX_SVR2), among others. LinuxPPC requires A/UX partitions.Partition sizes and setup: general notes
At a minimum, you will need two partitions – root and swap – but major directories within
root can be separate partitions or part of the main root partition. (See “Where do I find stuff?”
under Getting started with LinuxPPC for a basic view of the major directories in LinuxPPC.) If you
are planning to use LinuxPPC as a multi-user server, you may also consider creating a separate
partition for /home (where all user accounts are stored).
Swap must be a separate partition from root. The size of swap should be around 50 MB, or
more if you expect your system to have a heavy load as may be the case if your system is going
to be used for a server. 128 MB is the upper limit for individual swap partitions. If you require
additional swap space, you can add separate swap partitions (note that all swap partitions
should be named "swap").
LinuxPPC 2000 recommends at least 500 MB for a default installation, and 1 GB if you choose to install everything.

You can go on Linux PPC site and download the pdf user guide.

Good luck and have some fun!


House pianist
We're getting way off OS X topic here...but a quick note on swap.

Your swap partition is your Linux system's virtual memory. As with virtual memory anywhere else, the size can vary. Most *nix admins that I know recommend that you set your swap size to twice your physical memory.

Note that the 128MB restriction on Linux swap no longer applies -- if it ever really did. Go ahead and make a single swap partition to twice your RAM, whatever your RAM is, and you'll find that it works just fine.

This machine runs LinuxPPC. I have 256MB physical RAM, and my swap partition is 512MB. And it runs great. Fast as a mother.