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Thread: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

  1. #31
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Gelsenkirchen, Germany
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    113

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    Unfortunately,
    this method no longer works with LucidLynx...

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    12

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    Did not work for me with the following HW and SW.

    MacBookPro2,2
    8 GB USB Flash Drive SanDisk Cruzer Contour (0x0781 0x540e)

    /ubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso
    /efi/boot/ bootx32.icns bootx32.efi (renamed from "64")

    I came until the grub boot loader selection screen.

    Tried all methods:
    Code:
    A ubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso
    B ubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso fbdev
    C ubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso fbdev persistent
    Tried "grub.conf" with and without the modifier "fix_video". Changed initrd.gz to initrd.lz as I read that this changed somewhen after Ubuntu 9.

    With "fix_video" the screen remained as-is for about 40 seconds, then changed into weird output, but I guess the system was not stuck, as key input altered the weird mosaic, which likely was a CLI prompt.

    Without "fix_video" and with "fbdev" it booted in console output mode and got stuck with the error message:

    Code:
    fb: conflicting fb hw usage radeondrmfb vs EFI VGA - removing generic driver

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Beans
    6

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    I cannot get this to work on my MBP 3,1 with Ubuntu Oneric.

    I'm getting told, that the kernel has to be loaded. What do I do?

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    342

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    mulbric3, porg, produnis, pxwpxw ..

    I had some trouble with >9.04 but after some trial-and-error was able to boot 11.10 with the following setup.

    In my case (Macbook1,1) the missing ingredient was to pass the 'noefi' switch, without this I could boot (grub2-efi), select the grub entry etc, but the machine would re-boot once the initrd was loaded.

    My current setup:

    2GB USB Key partitoned with 1 x 20MB HFS+ (non-journaled) and 1 x 1.9xGB MSDOS. The partition scheme is MBR.

    On the HFS+ is grub2-efi (from this post):
    /efi/boot/bootia32.efi
    /efi/boot/grub.cfg

    The grub2-efi was blessed (from an OS X install):
    Code:
    sudo bless --folder /Volumes/hfsp/efi --file /Volumes/hfsp/efi/boot/bootia32.efi
    Note: 'hfsp' is the volume name of the HFS+ partition on the USB stick. The name shouldn't matter, but adjust the above command to reflect your particular setup.
    Note: the machine this was tesed on is a Macbook1,1 hence the bootia32.efi, for 64bit machines the file would be named bootx64.efi.
    Note: I'm not using rEFIt, but it shouldn't matter if you are.

    The MSDOS partition holds the iso's. Currently I've been able to boot:

    ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386
    ubuntu-rescue-remix-11-10
    systemrescuecd-x86-2.4.1

    I imagine the ubuntu-11.10-desktop-amd64+mac will work similarly, there may be some hardware specific switches and/or grub2-efi options you need to pass but these you should be able to work out from other posts. Again, in my own case (Macbook1,1) it was only a matter of adding the 'noefi' switch to the examples given previously in this thread that got 11.10 to boot, so I don't think there is anything inherently broken (or as pxwpxw stated 'breaks efi') with >9.04 releases.

    My grub.cfg:
    Code:
    timeout=20
    default=0
    set F1=ctrl-x
    
    menuentry "Search (and boot) MacOS X" {
     search --set -f /usr/standalone/i386/boot.efi
     chainloader /usr/standalone/i386/boot.efi
    }
    menuentry "Ubuntu 11.10 Desktop-i386 (Macbook1,1)" {
     fix_video
     fakebios
     search --no-floppy --set -f /ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386.iso
     loopback loop /ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386.iso
     linux (loop)/casper/vmlinuz boot=casper iso-scan/filename=/ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386.iso video=efifb acpi=force noefi quiet splash --
     initrd (loop)/casper/initrd.lz
    }
    menuentry "Ubuntu Rescue Remix 11.10 (Macbook1,1)" {
     fix_video
     fakebios
     search --no-floppy --set -f /ubuntu-rescue-remix-11-10.iso
     loopback loop /ubuntu-rescue-remix-11-10.iso
     linux (loop)/casper/vmlinuz boot=casper iso-scan/filename=/ubuntu-rescue-remix-11-10.iso video=efifb acpi=force noefi quiet splash --
     initrd (loop)/casper/initrd.gz
    }
    menuentry "SystemRescueCD-x86 2.4.1 (Macbook1,1)" {
     fix_video
     fakebios
     search --no-floppy --set -f /systemrescuecd-x86-2.4.1.iso
     loopback loop /systemrescuecd-x86-2.4.1.iso
     linux (loop)/isolinux/rescuecd docache setkmap=us isoloop=systemrescuecd-x86-2.4.1.iso --
     initrd (loop)/isolinux/initram.igz
    }
    menuentry "CD" {
       appleloader CD
    }
    menuentry "MBR1" {
       appleloader HD
    }
    menuentry "REBOOT" {
        reboot
    }
    Note: The 'fix_video' grub2-efi option is for the Macbook1,1 GMA950 (Intel Graphics Chip). I don't think this is necessary for other chipsets (though pxwpxw will be able to clarify).
    Note: Passing the 'toram' option on the Ubuntu entry will load the OS into RAM, which makes operation, access times, etc, considerably faster, also, loading to RAM means the USB stick can be removed once booting is completed [EDIT .. I've removed the 'toram' option in the above grub.conf as /isodevice remains mounted, and have read that this can cause a problem with the installer if its not --force umounted]. The 'docache' option on the SystemRescueCD entry does the same, and I imagine 'toram' could be used with Ubuntu Rescue Remix (untested). These options require that there is enough RAM to load the filesystem in memory, which shouldn't be a problem for most Mactel machines, however, if your limited in that regard you can remove this option and have the OS run from the USB stick.
    Note: the 'quiet splash' switches will cause the boot messages to be replaced with a Ubuntu 'splash' logo, you might want to remove these should you want to see boot messages and/or for troubleshooting.

    Please report success/failure and any specific changes you made for your particular hardware.

    mulbrick3: This error sounds like the bootloader can't find vmlinuz (linux kernel), this is most probably to do with how you specify its location in the grub.cfg, but without more details I can't tell.

    porg: I'm not familiar with the various Radeon issues, however, try passing 'video=efifb' along with, or in place of, 'fbdev'. This "should" resolve the conflict as the card would be assigned to efifb and so the radeon driver would skip it.

    Links:
    System Rescue CD
    Ubuntu Rescue Remix
    Last edited by Khayyam; January 30th, 2012 at 10:30 AM. Reason: Removed the 'toram' option for Ubuntu in grub.conf, added a link to bootusb.tar.gz

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Alnilam
    Beans
    310
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    The easiest way I found to create a bootable USB install disk that works for Mac UEFI is to use dd. I tried several different methods for creating a bootable USB disk for the daily build of Ubuntu 12.04 to use on my MacBook Air 4,2 and none of them worked except for this.

    Code:
    sudo dd if=/PathToDownloadedISO/precise-desktop-amd64+mac.iso of=/dev/sd?
    Of course you need to replace the path and device info in the above snippet. This would also work for Ubuntu 11.10 (if you want to use the current stable version). As an example, if you downloaded Ubuntu 11.10 to your Downloads folder and your USB drive is mounted to /dev/sdc, the command would look like this:

    Code:
    sudo dd if=~/Downloads/ubuntu-11.10-desktop-amd64+mac.iso of=/dev/sdc
    You can find out where your USB drive is mounted by opening Disk Utility, selecting the drive in the left column, and then checking what is listed after "Device:"

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Alnilam
    Beans
    310
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    Another thing I discovered is that the amd64+mac does not include true EFI booting. If you install with that image, you'll get a hybrid MBR.

    It is best to just download the regular ISO. I was able to successfully boot with EFI (insert USB, hold down option key after power on and then select EFI boot). This installs in a way that Ubuntu is booting with pure EFI using UNetbootin to create the Live USB. You'll know it worked if you get a grub menu after installation. If you want to boot into OS X, just hold down the option key during boot and select the OS X disk. Booting into Ubuntu is much faster with pur EFI and there is no need to use rEFIt either

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Beans
    2

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    Quote Originally Posted by Khayyam View Post
    mulbric3, porg, produnis, pxwpxw ..

    Please report success/failure and any specific changes you made for your particular hardware.

    Im having some trouble getting my macbook air, 2010 booting with your setup.
    Error msg:

    Unknown graphic card: 8a210de (guessing this is because of either fix_video or video=efifb, and not really relevant)
    ROM image present.
    error: You need to load the kernel first.

    Press any key to continue...

    My grub.conf:

    timeout=20
    default=0
    set F1=ctrl-x

    menuentry "Ubuntu" {
    fix_video
    fakebios
    search --no-floppy --set -f /ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386.iso
    loopback loop /ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386.iso
    linux (loop)/casper/vmlinuz boot=casper iso-scan/filename=/ubuntu-11.10-desktop-i386.iso video=efifb acpi=force noefi splash --
    initrd (loop)/casper/initrd.lz
    }

    However, if I "mimic" the loopback.cfg file from boot/grub/
    swap out the content of grub.conf with:

    fix_video
    fakebios
    linux /casper/vmlinuz file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper iso-scan/filename=${iso_path} video=efifb acpi=force noefi splash --
    initrd /casper/initrd.lz

    and run it off of a regular usb, I get to the point where the following error occurs:

    no filesystem could mount root, tried: ext3 ext2 ext4 fuseblk
    kernel panic not syncing VFS:unable to mount root filesystem on unknownblock (1,0)

    Hopefully you'll get a notification that someone posted in this (semi) old thread

    Any pointers/help would be really appreciated!

    cato

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Beans
    125
    Distro
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    dd seems to be working

    Just created a live USB with the 12.04 daily build for macs (it's in beta 2 right now, a few weeks before release) that boots perfectly on a 2011 Macbook Air 11'' using rEFIt.

    Created the USB on the MBA rather than on a linux laptop following mostly this https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Ho...%20USB%20Stick

    but without the need to convert the iso image that the guide describes. Basically I put in a disposable USB, then ran, in the MBA terminal

    Code:
    diskutil list
    to see where the usb was mounted (/dev/disk1 in my case), then unmounted the USB

    Code:
    diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk1
    dd if=path/to/downloaded/iso of=/dev/disk1 bs=1m
    Generally on linux dd requires sudo but for some reason I don't think I actually had to use it on the MBA, the mac terminal seems a bit cavalier in this respect

    After dd ran, in about 10 minutes, there was some sort of an error pop-up window along the lines that finder couldn't read the USB. I clicked ignore, rebooted, picked the USB in the rEFIt menu and here I am in a live 12.04 environment. Have to do some housekeeping (free some space on the hard drive, it's only 128 GB and quite cramped at the moment) and will install ubuntu on the hard drive.

    In preparation, I'd installed rEFIt a couple of days ago and, as with some users, it took a couple of reboots for the boot menu to show but it seems to be working without a hitch. Earlier I tried to boot off an 11.10 USB but that didn't work (boot screen said no bootable device). I am trying to remember whether I made that USB using dd and I think not. Later I'll try to boot off an opensuse USB that I definitely made using dd to see what happens.

    UPDATE: For what it's worth, the opensuse USB would not boot on the mba; also I checked and the ubuntu usb that didn't boot previously was the 12.04 beta1 not the 11.10 (the beta1 does not have the +mac bit so I guess that's why).
    Last edited by ts3; April 22nd, 2012 at 04:49 PM. Reason: update

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    2

    Thumbs down Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    I am not able to download the attachment

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Beans
    2

    Re: How to create a Live-USB-Stick, that is able to boot a Mac

    Quote Originally Posted by pxwpxw View Post
    The grub-efi attacehed bootusb.tar.gz will do it.

    You need a USB stick 2GB or more, partitioned as MSDOS with one full sized FAT32 partiton (most come like that). I use 8GB.
    Code:
    Download and extract the 
          /efi folder which has -
    
          /efi/boot folder with 3 files -
    
          /efi/boot/ bootx64.efi	bootx64.icns	grub.cfg
    Copy the /efi folder to the USB fat32 partition.

    Copy a ubuntu-9.04-desktop-amd64.iso to the USB (do not extract it just copy the .iso file (see the grub.cfg to match the name).

    If your Mac is recent model with 64bit EFI, you should see an EFIBoot icon when starting up with Option key, or with refit.

    You will probably have to experiment with the grub.cfg menu choices and config, but they should boot the ubuntu iso kernel. The grub.cfg has other menuentries for Slax also, easy to boot for a start.

    For 32bit EFI Mac models (MB21 or earlier),
    "bootx64.efi" needs to be renamed to "bootia32.efi" in order to see the Apple startup icon without needing refit.

    Still needs some tidying up, that should do for a test.

    Refer to these posts in grub2 EFI bootloader thread for some more info
    #919 Booting ubuntu live iso with grub.efi
    #930 grub2404b.efi (used for bootx64.efi or bootia32.efi )
    #992 UEFI spec reference.
    could you please send me this attachment as I am not able to download it.
    bootusb.tar.gz. pls send me at
    spawanek at mail.usf.edu

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