Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Chat about Linux in general

Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Postby LinuxN00b1985 on Sat Jul 11, 2009 2:57 am

If you ever want a challange try installing Ubuntu 9.04 on a 500mhz PowerMac with 256 MB of ram.

I came into contact with an old PowerMac G4 at my company that we currently wern't using because of its extreme slowness... and decided to try my luck at installing Linux on a Mac. What did I have to lose?

In my research I found that Ubuntu was compatable with the ever so dreaded PPC... so i decided to tempt fate and install it on this Mac sice I really couldn't use OSX anymore.
The big problem I ran into is that Ubuntu officially stopped supporting the PPC edition around version 6 or so, so it was a community supported project. The edition can be downloaded here. http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/ports/releases/9.04/release/

So anyway I manage to get the .iso files downloaded and burned to a disk. It wasn't very hard to get the distro to install on the mac and I was supprised I didn't really have to do much. (It ran slower than dirt with the live CD in the drive, and took about 30 min to install the files to the hard disk)

After installing it to the disk and removing the live CD it booted into the ever familiar 9.04 Gnome login screen. It ran pretty decent for a 500 Mhz PPC, but I decided to dig around some of my old stuff and tracked down a few old sticks of PC-100 memory and managed to upgrade it to 640MB and the speed increased drastically. The only serious problem I encounted is that the G4 PowerMac comes with a AGP ATI Rage 128 Pro Graphics card. (I'm sure it was top of the line 10 years ago but.... ) and apparently there are some nasty graphical problems with it. I couldn't get the desktop to register anything more than 600 x 800 and it didn't recognize the graphics card driver. It doesn't run Compiz at all, but overall would make a decent e-mail / web browsing system so long as you don't install KDE4 (An epic mistake I thought the Rage would handle.... :roll: )


I went so far as to try and integrate it into our Windows Domain with a few handy utility's I learned about on the MintCast. It worked to a point, but i'm still trying to work out some "Couldn't Contact A Domain Controller" error when I first log in... but that's another story.

All in all if you come into contact with a PowerMac G4 and want to have some fun, putting Ubuntu 9.04 on it will blow a good 6 hours of your day, but you can walk away saying "I did that and have no clue why" :wink:
"I'm a n00b, but I can get Stan the sword"
User avatar
LinuxN00b1985
Level 1
Level 1
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Jun 05, 2009 10:31 am

Linux Mint is funded by ads and donations.
 

Re: Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Postby emorrp1 on Sat Jul 11, 2009 7:44 am

lol, sounds like you had fun, though I myself steer clear of macs of all kinds, can't do without my mint now!
If you have a question that has been answered and solved, then please edit your original post and put a [SOLVED] at the end of your subject header
Hint - use a google search including the search term site:forums.linuxmint.com
emorrp1
Level 8
Level 8
 
Posts: 2322
Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2009 8:58 pm

Re: Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Postby DrHu on Sat Jul 11, 2009 1:56 pm

LinuxN00b1985 wrote:The only serious problem I encounted is that the G4 PowerMac comes with a AGP ATI Rage 128 Pro Graphics card. (I'm sure it was top of the line 10 years ago but.... ) and apparently there are some nasty graphical problems with it. I couldn't get the desktop to register anything more than 600 x 800 and it didn't recognize the graphics card driver. It doesn't run Compiz at all


I couldn't get the desktop to register anything more than 600 x 800
Vram size of card limiting display resolutions available..
It doesn't run Compiz at al
No surprises there..

You can improve it..
http://www.justlinux.com/nhf/Hardware/G ... rking.html
You could try a lightweight desktop, like XFCE
http://www.xfce.org/
--that should be quicker..
User avatar
DrHu
Level 17
Level 17
 
Posts: 7098
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:20 pm

Re: Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Postby exploder on Sun Jul 12, 2009 12:15 am

You could try a lightweight desktop, like XFCE


That is a good suggestion. Fluxbox would also be a great choice.
exploder
Level 15
Level 15
 
Posts: 5917
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2007 10:50 am
Location: HartfordCity, Indiana USA

Re: Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Postby AK Dave on Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:28 pm

Debian & KDE3 runs nicely on a G4.

Our LUG has rejuvenated several G4 Macs and iMacs this way. Upgrade the ram during install, downgrade back to 256mb afterwards, makes a nice basic web-station. Plenty of educational games. Software runs quite well.
User avatar
AK Dave
Level 6
Level 6
 
Posts: 1042
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 3:39 pm
Location: Anchorage, AK USA

Re: Ubuntu 904 on PowerMac G4

Postby urosg3 on Sun Jul 12, 2009 5:42 pm

I nave Powerbook G3 with 256 RAM and Debian Lenny installed on. My resolution is 1024x768 without compiz. Only real problem is decent Flash player, because Gnash is unstable.
Image
User avatar
urosg3
Level 1
Level 1
 
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Jun 01, 2009 4:53 am


Return to Chat about Linux

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests