[Guide] Install Ubuntu 10.10 on Macmini4,1

For reference, take a look on the Ubuntu Wiki, about Ubuntu 10.10 on Macmini4,1first, before reading/following this guide.

Download and burn the alternate CD version of Ubuntu 64 Bits:


http://releases.ubuntu.com/maverick/…64.iso.torrent (Torrent didn’t work for me)


I’ll be doing a Tri Boot Install, but you can easily, with that knowledge, do a Dual or Single Boot Install.

1. Partitioning – Preparing for installation

– Boot into OS X;

– Open Bootcamp utility;

– Create a partition for Windows (will be sda3) and make it 1/3 of the disk size. Create this partition as FAT;

– Now create a partition for Ubuntu (will be sda4), also 1/3 of the disk size of course. Don’t forget to create it a little bit larger because of the extra for SWAP (will be sda5).

2. Installing Windows

In a Tri Boot Install scheme, you need to install Windows first, otherwise it will mess up MBR and give you lots of headaches.

– Boot into OS X;

– Insert your Windows DVD Install disk;

– Restart your Mini and quickly press and hold the C key until Windows starts the installation process.

3. Installing Ubuntu

– Boot into OS X;

– Insert your Ubuntu CD Install disk;

– Restart your Mini and quickly press and hold the C key until Ubuntu starts the installation process;

– Press F6. Choose noacpi and nomodeset. Press ESC and Return;

– On the installation wizard, choose manual partitioning;

– Probably, your partitions looks like the following:

sda2 – Mac OS X – hfs

sda3 – Windows – fat

sda4 – Ubuntu – fat

– Choose to edit sda4, resize it as to leave a extra for SWAP. Choose ext4 as the file system. / as the main directory for installation and mark the partition as bootable. Save and go back to the partition table;

– Now choose the empty extra space destined for SWAP. Edit it and choose SWAP as file system.

– Finish the table partitioning and begin installation.

– While in the installation process, you’ll be asked for where to install GRUB. Choose sda4, or, the same partition you’re using to install Ubuntu.


You can install some multi-os bootloader to ease your life. Make a quick search on your favorite Internet search engine about “tri boot mac linux” and you’ll see some nice options.

To boot properly into Ubuntu, in the grub menu, press the E key and

edit and add the following:


linux /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-24-generic root=UUID=53658b6a-2991-4a15-8e48-8ab7d4e0985c ro quiet nosplash noacpi nomodeset reboot=acpi

Press Ctrl+X to exit and boot.

Install NVIDIA Drivers from the repository to get resolution straight. Do the same for the Wireless Card. (System > Administration > Hardware Drivers)

For proper boot, restart and shutdown, log in into Ubuntu. Press Alt+F2 and Copy and Paste+Return the following (You’ll need to do this every time you update your kernel):


gksu gedit /boot/grub/grub.cfg

Find the part that says something like the following (just around line 64. You can set it to 0 for automatic boot):


set timeout=10

Now find the following (around line 78 ) :


linux /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-24-generic root=UUID=53658b6a-2991-4a15-8e48-8ab7d4e0985c ro quiet splash

Edit and Add the following:


linux /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-24-generic root=UUID=53658b6a-2991-4a15-8e48-8ab7d4e0985c ro quiet nosplash noacpi nomodeset reboot=acpi

Save and exit.

Fixing Audio and Bluetooth: here


This guide was not possible without the love and caring support of the awesome Ubuntu community. Special thanks goes to:

Stevethepirate and HashBox on Ubuntu IRC Channel for helping me out with GRUB.

Yako no Kai – http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1323102&page=2 – for finding out how to restart Ubuntu properly.

Be well. See ya.


Ubuntu Forums

Ubuntu IRC Channel

Ubuntu Wiki


3 thoughts on “[Guide] Install Ubuntu 10.10 on Macmini4,1

  1. Thanks for this post, quite helpful. I am however getting stuck at one place. When i try and boot from the liveCD or go through the install, my display goes into power save mode. Its a Dell ST2310 running over HDMI. Any suggestions?

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