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Thread: Powerbook G4 (PPC): Cannot boot from disc to install

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Beans
    29
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Powerbook G4 (PPC): Cannot boot from disc to install

    Hi!

    My system, Powerbook G4 circa 2005, does not seem to recognize the Ubuntu 9.10 PPC LiveCD as bootable.

    I downloaded and burned the ISO from the Ubuntu PPC site, but the Powerbook will not boot from the CD. Methods for booting I have tried include holding C during boot, holding Cmd+Optn+Ctrl+Del, and holding Option.

    When I hold option, it loads the boot menu thing, and my hard disk shows up along with an icon with the Ubuntu disc, but when I select the Ubuntu disc to boot from, the screen flickers and returns to the boot menu.

    I have also tried loading Mac OS X and going to the Startup Disk control panel, but the disc does not appear as an option to startup from. (I should mention the disc DOES mount and is accessible via Finder, so it's not like it's unreadable.)

    As a "control" for this test, my Leopard disc boots fine and shows up in the all the boot menus.

    As for the Linux discs, I have tried the 9.10 live disc, the 9.10 minidisc, and the 9.04 disc all from the PPC website---none of them will work.

    What else can I try?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Netherlands
    Beans
    2,930
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: Powerbook G4 (PPC): Cannot boot from disc to install

    check the md5sum of the iso you downloaded. You should also try to burn the iso at a lower speed from disk utility.

    http://mac.linux.be/content/cd-burni...low-machines-0
    Linux on your Apple Mac │ iLinux
    http://mac.linux.be
    http://www.mintppc.org

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Beans
    29
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Powerbook G4 (PPC): Cannot boot from disc to install

    Thanks for the reply!

    I tried making a USB stick (eliminating any burn speed problems) and that didn't boot either. So I dug out my even older iBook G4 and it boots absolutely fine from the CD. (I was going to install it to the Powerbook via Target Disk Mode, but then I read that it confuses the bootloader.)

    So I guess I can confirm that everything's fine on the Linux disc side of things, it must be my Powerbook.

    I'll pursue this further in a Mac forum, buuut I'm really close to just giving up.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Beans
    29
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Solution!

    Wooo, I figured it out by myself! It was indeed my computer's configuration, nothing to do with the Linux disc. Here's my situation for anyone who stumbled upon something similar.

    The problem is that my firmware's cd devalias was set to a target other than where my optical drive actually resides. I figured this out because, booting in to Open Firmware, "eject cd" didn't work. So I used the devalias command to list all the aliases, and I went down the list typing eject [alias] until my disk physically ejected. This turned out to be alias ide1.

    So then I used devalias ide1 to list the path to the drive, and finally devalias cd [path to drive] to redefine the 'cd' alias to point to the optical drive.

    From there I reinserted the Linux install disk and typed boot cd:,\\:tbxi to finally boot into Linux and install.

    Hopefully this will help somebody some day!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Beans
    268
    Distro
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: Powerbook G4 (PPC): Cannot boot from disc to install

    That is very interesting. I wonder how that got mixed up? It seems like something must have happened if even control via open firmware wasn't working (eject cd).

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