Mac mini?

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Mac mini?

Postby Birdman » Thu May 26, 2005 12:12 pm

Just received my lasted LXF DVD and notice it has Gentoo Linux for PPC. I am thinking about buying some new hardware and like the look of the Mac mini. A few thoughts that are going though my mind:

If the bluetooth option is purchased so that a wireless keyboard and mouse could be used, will it work under linux? If so, any bluetooth wireless equipment?

If USB keyboard and mouse are used then I guess both USB slots will be used?

If dual booting, would an external HD connected to the firewire port work / be a good idea? If not, are there any major issues mixing Gentoo and OS X on the same HD?

Thanks.
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RE: Mac mini?

Postby nelz » Thu May 26, 2005 12:18 pm

The Gentoo handbook and the forums have plenty of information on dual booting Gentoo and MacOS X. It would appear that you need to install Gentoo first, then reinstall MacOS in the remaining space. I needed all the drive space on my iBook for Linux so I just wiped the disk and installed Gentoo on all of it.
"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." (Albert Einstein)
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Postby samb » Thu May 26, 2005 9:40 pm

Bluetooth on the Mac Mini apparently works with the bluez drivers, so if you install using a USB keyboard and emerge those you *should* be able to get it to work.

I haven't got a mini with bluetooth though, so haven't actually tried it..
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Postby Birdman » Fri May 27, 2005 8:22 pm

Thanks Nelz and Samb.

Samb, you infer that you have a Mac Mini without bluetooth? Are you dual booting?

I am used to having a tower and all of the flexibility to expand. I guess that I am a little concerned that 2 usb ports are not going to be enough (especially if mouse and keyboard take those) and whether I'll be able to get wireless networking to work (I know that the Apple version does not work with linux). I can see this cute little space saving box having external usb hubs and firewire drives littered around the place.

I guess I need to keep reading and asking questions to satisfy myself that I will be able to use the kit to do what I want it to.
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Postby Nigel » Fri May 27, 2005 9:10 pm

I haven't (yet) got a Mac of any sort, but my daughter's school has a couple of eMacs, and the USB keyboard has two extra USB ports on it, so the mouse plugs into that, leaving the other ports on the machine itself free.
Don't know if the same applies to the MacMini...
Hope this helps,

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Postby Birdman » Fri May 27, 2005 10:52 pm

Thanks Nigel. That's the sort of info I have been looking for. It's basic stuff, I know, but like you I have no Mac experience.
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Postby samb » Sat May 28, 2005 7:44 am

Birdman: No, I'm not dual booting, but from what I read it's not too difficult to do. I bought the mini specifically to play with Linux on a non-x86 arch, so I never even bothered to do the MacOS registration stuff at first startup :P

As for the keyboard having USB ports, the Mac Mini doesn't actually come with a keyboard! There are keyboards out there that include USB hubs, and some monitors do too. I'd be surprised if it wasn't possible to use a bluetooth keyboard/mouse once everything was installed though.
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Postby Birdman » Sat May 28, 2005 10:30 am

I like the idea of a USB hub on the keyboard. I could always go for both :)

Although I am a linux nut, never having tried OS X I am curious to have a play with it before wiping the HD. Also, I am looking at the Mini Mac as a possibility for my youngest daughter who, with her artist nature, I think would appreciate OS X.

The idea of having linux on an external firewire drive sounds quite appealing. Anyone tried that yet?
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Postby MOR » Mon May 30, 2005 5:08 pm

You can't boot linux from an external drive easily. But you can boot OS X from an external firewire drive. It is much much easier to put linux (I am using ubuntu) on the internal drive and boot OS X from the external, use something like carbon copy cloner to mirror the OS X partition to the external drive and then install linux on the internal drive.

There is a work around for linux booting on an external drive here for yellow dog and I know there is a similar one for ubuntu, not sure on gentoo but it should be the same. The disk access is faster from the external drive (I replied to Andy's post "mac mini addendum" with more info on external enclosures and USB Hubs).

The USB sockets on the keyboard are unpowered and will really only take the mouse even when I plug in a usb key OS X gives you a low power warning.

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