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Thread: ubuntu on new retina macbook : any experience ?

  1. #461
    Join Date
    Dec 2012

    Re: ubuntu on new retina macbook : any experience ?

    So I am “able” to choose GPU at boot after something very weird happened.

    First, I would like to clarify I am the biggest noob in Linux - I was very confused by what GRUB & EFI were | and are, although I do get the notion/idea | etc. So please read this keeping in mind that I have no idea, absolutely no idea why the steps I took in the following story led to the outcome of me being able to choose GPU at boot. Maybe one of the gurus here knows the technicalities that led to this outcome

    Let me first start from the beginning:

    I was hoping to run Ubuntu as my only OS, I didn't want to have OSX installed on a separate partition. What I needed up doing was dividing my OSX partition. I gave OSX the minimum amount possible of space possible (33 GB), the rest was left as unallocated.

    I then installed rEFInd, booted up into Ubuntu 13.10 using rEFInd, selected try Ubuntu, and installed with ubiquity -b to avoid installing GRUB. I booted into Mac OS, installed an old version of gfxCardStatus, selected Intel Only. Finally rebooted into Ubuntu and deleted my 33 GB OSX partition and just left it as unallocated – I have the feeling the gfxCardStatus step is unnecessary, but I performed it anyway.

    This meant that I had a 460something GB – Ubuntu Only install which would always boot into the Intel GPU. rEFInd still showed up at boot, so everything was fine

    I have a 27” Apple Home Cinema Display from 2010, I was able to use it with my 2011 MacBook Air running Ubuntu 12.04 and 12.10. I wanted to use it with my retina too. However, it isn't possible with the Intel GPU, so I decided to use the unallocated 33GB and make a GRUB installation of Ubuntu to be able to use the Nvidia GPU. This way I would be able to have 2 installs of Ubuntu, and just choose one or the other depending on the GPU I wanted to use.

    Once I had it installed, I discovered that the GRUB installation also showed up on rEFInd at boot, and when chosen, Ubuntu would boot up and use the Intel GPU. However, if I rebooted my retina and pressed ALT/option as soon as I heard the tone, that 33GB install of Ubuntu would boot up with the Nvidia GPU.

    After realizing this, I decided to delete my 460something install of Ubuntu, left it as unallocated, plugged in the Ubuntu USB, and reinstalled it – Install Ubuntu 13.10 alongside blah blah (from the menu that comes up when pressing the ALT/option at boot). This install of Ubuntu behaved as the 33GB install. I was able to boot into Ubuntu with the Intel GPU if used the rEFInd menu, and if I pressed ALT/option and used Mac's menu, Nvidia's GPU would be used – this mean I could used the same Ubuntu installation on my Apple Home Cinema display, and not have to switch from one installation to another.

    Following this discovery, I deleted the 33GB partition and left the space unallocated. Now I have just one install that boots up into either Intel or Nvidia depending on what I choose, and that can be used with Apple's Home Cinema display

    Note 1: When I installed Ubuntu using ubiquity -b, nothing showed up when booting with ALT/option - obviously
    Note 2: Maybe this process has already been explained somewhere in the thread before... but like I said, I'm a really big noob when it comes to Linux, and sometimes it's hard to understand what the gurus write down / explain
    Note 3: rMBP 10,1
    Note 4: It's actually 426GB.

    Like I said, maybe one of the gurus here knows the technical aspect of the story.

    Here is my partition mess:

    Last edited by Umbra Diaboli; January 19th, 2014 at 08:53 PM. Reason: Picture

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