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List Archive: gentoo-ppc-user
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To: gentoo-ppc-user@g.o
From: Joseph Jezak <josejx@g.o>
Subject: Re: Installing Gentoo on a Powermac G5
Date: Tue, 03 Oct 2006 18:05:30 -0400
darren kirby wrote:
> Hello all,
> Hardware:
> PowerPC G5, dual 2GHz CPUs, 1.5GB RAM
> I am no stranger to installing Gentoo, but I have questions that don't appear 
> to be answered in the PPC64 handbook. I am waiting for a new SATA drive here, 
> and when it arrives I intend to install Gentoo on it. A few Qs:
> 1. OS X is on the first sata drive, Gentoo will be on the second. Is it still 
> necessary to create the 'apple_bootstrap' partition if Gentoo will be on its 
> own complete disk?

Yes.  Open Firmware looks for a HFS blessed partition to boot from,
which is all the apple_bootstrap partition actually is.  It contains
a copy of yaboot as well.  When ybin runs, it will tell OpenFirmware
to boot from this device (well, that what the nvram write is for.
If your kernel doesn't have nvram support, you'll have to set this
manually).  Note that it doesn't really matter which disk this
partition is on, but it's preferred to have it before the OSX
partition so that if OSX resets the nvram, it will be the first
blessed HFS partition found and still boot as normal.

> 2. If I follow the PPC64 guide does this give me the 64bit userland? If so, is 
> there enough (hard) unmasked software to use this as a general desktop 
> machine? Is all software in the package database marked stable under PPC64 
> 64bit userland software? Can I mix and match PPC32 and PPC64 software? Any 
> and all information on this issue would be most helpful, as I don't think I 
> completely understand it (I don't have an x86-64 machine so I am mostly 
> ignorant of 64bit issues).

I can't speak too much for ppc64 (I only have ppc32 machines), but
you have a few options.  A pure ppc64 machine won't work with
everything.  For instance, there are issues with Mozilla based
applications and ppc64, but KDE (and konqueror) should work great.
You can also run a 32bit UL very easily and for desktop usage this
is the recommended configuration afaik.  I'm not sure about a mixed

> 3. I have the 23 inch Cinema display and a ATI Radeon 9600 Pro vidcard. Are 
> there drivers that can make this setup work? I ask because I booted the 
> machine with a Kubuntu PPC livecd to play around and while the cli worked, 
> when it came time for X to start the screen went black and I was forced to do 
> a hard reset. I am not sure if this was just a problem with  Kubuntu, or some 
> other reason. I am not too concerned with hardware acceleration or anything, 
> at most I just want to be able to watch DVDs.

This should work just fine with DRI as well.  I have a Radeon 9600
in my PB and it works very nicely with OpenGL acceleration, etc. :)

> Apropos, if any one has the same, or a similar setup I would love if you could 
> send me your xorg.conf.

Not really required, just use Xorgautoconfig and it should work
fine.  With that display you will probably also need to set the
reduced blanking setting.

> Again, I am very familiar with Gentoo, but have little knowledge of PPC 
> hardware and 64 bit issues...pointers to docs that explain differences and 
> ramification on this topic would be great.
> Thanks for consideration.
> -d

Hope that helped,
gentoo-ppc-user@g.o mailing list

Installing Gentoo on a Powermac G5
-- darren kirby
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Updated Jun 17, 2009

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