Installing Ubuntu 12.04 on a Macbook Pro 8,2

This has been waiting around for a while so I’ll give it a quick clean up and hit publish. Unfortunately because its been waiting a while I might have missed some details but I wouldn’t remember now.

Thankfully the notes on have vastly improved since I first tried this, so check those out first.

Weirdest part of the whole thing

  • Use both USB and CD installer. It took me a while to find this out, but they only way to get the installer to boot properly is to use the same install image on both a USB key and CD at the same time.

What I did:

  1. Resize the OSX partition with disk utility
  2. Create an MSDos partition
  3. Install rEFIT
  4. Boot the installer using both USB and CD
  5. Install ubuntu as usual<ul>
  • Delete msdos partition and replace with ext4
  • Install the MBR onto sda5 (ie. the linux ext4 partition)
  • You can probably skip creating the swap, I had to delete it later, but with 8GB of ram it wasn't an issue.
  • </ul>

    1. Sync MBR/partition table (using refit)
    2. fails to boot
    3. Boot LiveCD (+USB) again
    4. Delete swap partition (Probably could have skipped this to start with and it would have gone better)
    5. Restart
    6. Sync partition table (using refit)
    7. Restart
    8. Boot linux
    9. works Successful boot, yay!
    10. Add ppa for wireless driver (installing using ethernet)
    11. reboot
    12. wireless works (no extra hacking)

    Extra packages to install/configure:

    • macfanctld Absolutely essential unless you want to cook your CPU.
    • natural scrolling
    • other synaptics wrangling - definitely worth it
    • enable extra drivers (?)

    I’ll have to go find more info to document these last bits properly.. however I’m back on OSX so it’ll need to wait for a reboot.