Linux on PowerPC FAQ-O-Matic :
What is with all these versions of Linux?
There are currently several groups working on Linux for the PowerPC. MkLinux is a Linux server (user-mode process) running on top of an Open Software Foundation Mach microkernel. Apple's paying the bill, and Apple and The Open Group engineers together are doing the port. The mklinux web site is at: http://www.mklinux.apple.com/ LinuxPPC is a monolithic Linux kernel (like traditional Linux is on Intel, SPARC, and Alpha hardware) ported by Paul Mackerras to PCI Macs, Cort Dougan for other PPC platforms. LinuxPPC and MkLinux do share a common bond. The binary applications are compatable between systems. A good place to look for applications is: http://www.linuxppc.org/ This is the linux-ppc website. You can often find precompiled binaries there that will work on one of the Mac Linuxes. http://www.LinuxPPC.com is the "commercial" side of the www.linuxppc.org website. http://www.yellowdoglinux.com/ydl_home.html Is the address for yet another Linux distribution that will run on PowerPC computers. There's also a port by Debian (http://www.debian.org/ports/powerpc/ ) And there is still another distribution by Turbo Linux http://web1.turbolinux.com/ppc/ In summary: If you own a PCI Mac, you can choose between MkLinux, LinuxPPC Yellow Dog Linux, Debian, or TurboLinux. If you have a NuBus Mac, MkLinux is the only Linux that even has a chance of working. If you have a non-Mac PowerPC box, you should look at LinuxPPC. This FAQ-O-Matic is dedicated mainly to both MkLinux and LinuxPPC, since they are the oldest and most distributed versions, and once you've gotten a kernel running, many things (including almost every binary) work interchangeably between versions. Though this is subject to change... 1-30-97 written by firstname.lastname@example.org. 7-10-97 email@example.com added mklinux link 9-24-99 Edited to reflect more recent distributions and links firstname.lastname@example.org@cs.dartmouth.edu., email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
|Note that "LinuxPPC" goes by many other names including (but not limited to):
"Linux/PPC", "Linux-PMAC", "Powermac/Linux", "Linux for Power Macintosh", and
|2001-02-21: SUSE also offers a version of Linux for the PPC and IBM RS-6000 platforms. See http://www.suse.com/us/products/susesoft/ppc/index.html
It is being offered as a commercial release, USD~$50. I have not used it, I mention it only for reference.
|Actually the SuSE distribution can be installed via FTP for free; you'll need to first get the yaboot goodies that will enable you to do that.|
So far SuSE seems to be pretty much on-the-ball and offers near-simultaneous version parity with their i386 release, although of course the software packages installed will be somewhat different.
|Apple apparently no longer supports mklinux, hence they have their own URL ;-) (http://www.mklinux.org/).|
Linux PPC is now Penguin PCC (http://www.penguinppc.org/)
The SuSE link is dead, and I can't find another one for SuSE.
Yellowdog Linux is great if you have a MacOS on your computer from which to boot...
The only Linux distribution that I've been able to get successfully installed on my Oldworld PowerMac 8500/150 is Debian. They had the
brilliant idea of boot floppies. (http://www.debian.org/releases/stable/powerpc/ch-install-methods.en.html).
TurboLinux for PPC is also apparently dead. (I say this because I couldn't easily find it from www.turbolinux.com)
Apparently Mandrake and RedHat have ppc distributions. There's an unofficial attempt to port Slackware to the mac (Slackintosh), but it's incomplete.
In short: If you have a Mac, but no OS, you can choose between Debian and Debian. If you have MacOS, you can choose between Debian, YellowDog, and Mandrake.
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