[SOLVED] What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

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schavmint
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[SOLVED] What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by schavmint »

Hi all, long-timer lurker, first-time poster!

I'm looking to successfully boot up and run Mint 19.1 (MATE - 64-bit) on my old-school Macbook Pro 2,2 Core 2 Duo (late 2006) 2.16 GHz 15" (https://everymac.com/systems/apple/macb ... specs.html). I understand that this is one of those 32-bit EFI bootloaders, yet 64-bit CPU capable.

TL;DR Can manually boot up on my HD installation of Mint via Live USB and Grub, but unable to normally boot it up from HD ("Operating system not found")

My setup/key things I've done (following mainly this viewtopic.php?t=204961):
1) Made a Live USB installation of Mint 19.1 MATE 64-bit - used unetbootin to install 64bit ISO to USB
2) Added bootia32.efi file to the USB in respective folder
3) Booted from USB successfully, then ran Mint Installer on my internal HD - I used the Default install (assuming it wipes the HD for single partition install of Mint). I *think* this is where I went wrong but more on this below.. I noted that it threw a failure at end of install due to Grub 32bit files missing (as I've seen on other posts)
4) Confirmed HD install of Mint generally works, manually - I USB-booted again and via Grub Command line, pointed to and booted up the HD installation of Mint (e.g., linux, initrd, boot commands, pointing root to HD install)
5) Manually installed 32-bit Grub on HD Installation - After step 4), I installed grub-efi-ia32 via shell/terminal commands successfully on the HD install (it uninstalled the 64-bit Grub files).

This is where I'm stuck: I reboot and upon Option button-press, I see two boot options: Windows option and my USB EFI bootloader option. When I select Windows option (assuming this is my HD), I end up with the Operating System Not Found error message.

Not an expert here, but my sleuthing leads me to believe my Mac is not looking in the right place for my HD's EFI bootloader (or I've put it in the wrong place -step 3 above?). I've seen some posts talking about Mac firmware looking in different places for EFI bootloader but this is where I'm very unclear. The fact that is calls my boot option Windows, seems to support this hunch.

These forums have been extremely helpful in getting me this far, so thanks to any help, in advance!
Last edited by schavmint on Mon Jul 15, 2019 3:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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absque fenestris
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by absque fenestris »

Instead of experimenting with 32 and 64 bits, burn a 32-bit Mint MATE ISO-DVD, start the MacBook with C, and then the rest shouldn't be a problem.

Fits also better to the seasoned vintage...
Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia (Mate) 32-bit - Acer D250 Netbook (Intel Atom N270, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD)
Linux Mint 17.3 Rosa (Mate) 64-bit - MacBook Pro 15" (Intel Core2 Duo, 8 GB RAM, 240 GB SSD) - with some separation difficulties...
schavmint
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by schavmint »

Thanks for the reply. Certainly sage advice.

I think I have a bit of a stubborn streak and wanted to see this through (I was definitely nearing my wit's end).

The good news: I got it working finally! While I don't think I fully understand how it all works (even after poring over http://www.rodsbooks.com/refind/), I noticed my EFI (sda1) seemed kinda empty (output from Boot Info Script):

Code: Select all

         Boot Info Script 0.61      [1 April 2012]


============================= Boot Info Summary: ===============================

 => Windows is installed in the MBR of /dev/sda.
 => Syslinux MBR (3.61-4.03) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sdb.

sda1: __________________________________________________________________________

    File system:       vfat
    Boot sector type:  FAT32
    Boot sector info:  No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
    Operating System:
    Boot files:

sda2: __________________________________________________________________________

    File system:       ext4
    Boot sector type:  -
    Boot sector info:
    Operating System:  Linux Mint 19.1 Tessa
    Boot files:        /boot/grub/grub.cfg /etc/fstab

sdb1: __________________________________________________________________________

    File system:       vfat
    Boot sector type:  SYSLINUX 4.03 0x4d8ae235
    Boot sector info:  Syslinux looks at sector 2007710 of /dev/sdb1 for its
                       second stage. SYSLINUX is installed in the /
                       directory. No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
    Operating System:
    Boot files:        /boot/grub/grub.cfg /syslinux.cfg
                       /efi/BOOT/bootia32.efi /efi/BOOT/grubx64.efi
                       /ldlinux.sys

============================ Drive/Partition Info: =============================

Drive: sda _____________________________________________________________________
Disk /dev/sda: 465.8 GiB, 500107862016 bytes, 976773168 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
so I installed Refind to EFI. Unfortunately, while Refind loaded on power ON, it didn't see any EFI bootloader option.

Finally, after re-reading this resource on Mac Intel Boot Loading (https://wiki.debian.org/IntelMac/BootLoader), I decided to directly try installing Grub 2 to EFI:

Code: Select all

grub-install /dev/sda
update-grub
On reboot, it worked, going straight into Mint 19.1 Mate 64-bit Edition (no Refind or Grub menu)!!

Because I'm not sure what really happened and the various links, posts and websites share a variety of advice which never fully applied to my specific situation, I still have some open questions that I'll leave here in case anyone can help shed light on for future troubleshooting:

1) Does rEFInd 32-bit support booting into 64-bit Mint? (I read somewhere it only supports same-bit)
2) How do I know if rEFInd is still in my boot-chain (I don't see it on boot anymore)? Because I have both installed, am not sure if I'm booting directly into Grub 2 from my EFI or not
3) Does my vintage Mac really require HFS+ format of my EFI (mine is VFAT)? I read somewhere that it expects that, yet I didn't do that

Thanks in advance!
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by absque fenestris »

Hello schavmint

Please note that my remark was by no means directed against You in any way.

It has to do with Apple: they have been using cheap, ordinary PC hardware for years and celebrate that as the reinvention of the wheel.

Small example: a $3500 professional Mac gets out because the graphics card is over. Apple wants $500 for the replacement.
For $59.95 I buy a common PC Nvidia graphics card - and then the card is
a) simply better - and
b) simply never runs under OSX anymore. But excellent under Linux...

It has to be said that the case, the cabling, the ventilation etc. and the design of this device were excellent - but with quite common, cheap PC parts and the Apple logo on top.

After these experiences, I got used to not investing too much life time in pretty but ordinary technology anymore.

Best regards a.f.
Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia (Mate) 32-bit - Acer D250 Netbook (Intel Atom N270, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD)
Linux Mint 17.3 Rosa (Mate) 64-bit - MacBook Pro 15" (Intel Core2 Duo, 8 GB RAM, 240 GB SSD) - with some separation difficulties...
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by schavmint »

No offense taken! I totally get your point. In my case, my DVD Superdrive crapped out so DVD boot was out of the question.

I understand my effort is largely Quixotic and more of an effort to prove I can do it rather than being practical. I treat it as a learning experience and hoping it can help others on this board. Appreciate your points, which are very valid.

Thanks
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by absque fenestris »

schavmint wrote:
Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:42 pm
No offense taken! I totally get your point. In my case, my DVD Superdrive crapped out so DVD boot was out of the question.

I understand my effort is largely Quixotic and more of an effort to prove I can do it rather than being practical. I treat it as a learning experience and hoping it can help others on this board. Appreciate your points, which are very valid.

Thanks
Aha - an incorrigible tinkerer...
Well, I can understand - I use Linux the other way round to get old, stubborn Macs to run under OSX again...
Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia (Mate) 32-bit - Acer D250 Netbook (Intel Atom N270, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD)
Linux Mint 17.3 Rosa (Mate) 64-bit - MacBook Pro 15" (Intel Core2 Duo, 8 GB RAM, 240 GB SSD) - with some separation difficulties...
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by athi »

MacBook Pro of that era should not have UEFI and you should be able to wipe the HDD and install Mint without EFI (Boot loader would goes on sda MBR).

I was given a MacBook 13" aluminum, late 2008 and was able to install Mate 18 on it without problem (except for the the usual Apple keyboard layout).
Mint Mate 19.1. Main rig is HP 800G2 I5 6500 16GB ram, 120GB boot drive, 2x3TB, 1x4TB data drives. Oldest rig is Mate 18.3 on Dell D620 with 32bits core duo.
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by absque fenestris »

Since the switch to Intel processors in 2006, all Macs were EFI based without exception - initially with these strange 32bit EFI to 64bit operating system/programs.

Or has anyone seen a BIOS on a Mac?
Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia (Mate) 32-bit - Acer D250 Netbook (Intel Atom N270, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD)
Linux Mint 17.3 Rosa (Mate) 64-bit - MacBook Pro 15" (Intel Core2 Duo, 8 GB RAM, 240 GB SSD) - with some separation difficulties...
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by athi »

absque fenestris wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 12:01 pm
Since the switch to Intel processors in 2006, all Macs were EFI based without exception - initially with these strange 32bit EFI to 64bit operating system/programs.

Or has anyone seen a BIOS on a Mac?
I stand corrected, I do remembered reading something about Mac being the first OEM to implement Intel EFI technology. I was able to load Mate 17.3 on an AIO and Mate 18.3 on the MacBook (both Intel based) from standard liveDVD/liveUSB, once I figured out the keyboard.

You have inspired me to look on the MacBook and sda1 is an EFI partition.
Mint Mate 19.1. Main rig is HP 800G2 I5 6500 16GB ram, 120GB boot drive, 2x3TB, 1x4TB data drives. Oldest rig is Mate 18.3 on Dell D620 with 32bits core duo.
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by absque fenestris »

I'm not in any way concerned about being right.
EFI is a fact among all Intel based Macs since 2006.
Loading Linux of any kind from an ISO DVD on a Mac is stupidly easy if you completely overwrite the built-in hard disk or SSD.
If you want to keep OSX or macOS, it gets a bit more complicated.

The keyboard layout:
Linux - and even Mint - has its problems with that. Neither my Acer Netbook nor my MacBook Pro displays the correct keyboard layout under Linux. It doesn't matter if it was an original Windows or Mac machine...
Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia (Mate) 32-bit - Acer D250 Netbook (Intel Atom N270, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD)
Linux Mint 17.3 Rosa (Mate) 64-bit - MacBook Pro 15" (Intel Core2 Duo, 8 GB RAM, 240 GB SSD) - with some separation difficulties...
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Re: What am I missing in my Macbook Pro (2,2) install EFI bootloader setup?

Post by schavmint »

Yep, apparently the Macs that year (late 2006), Macbook Pro 2,1 and 2,2 were part of the initial wave of EFI based loaders (see https://everymac.com/systems/apple/macb ... specs.html for the EFI reference).

To absque, yes, it sounds like if my Superdrive were working properly, I'd be able to follow something straightforward like Matt Gadient's tutorial for BIOS-based booting off of DVD ISOs (https://mattgadient.com/linux-dvd-image ... 06-models/) and I wouldn't have torn as much hair out as I did with my USB-based approach.

Anyways, this is solved for now (with my questions still open) and thanks all for your input - this board is truly invaluable!
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