Re: Linux on Apple PowerPC???

John Gotts (
Tue, 15 Apr 1997 00:15:08 -0400

In message <>, Rob Pe
lkey writes:

>There's also a port of "real", monolithic-kernel Linux to the later
>PCI-based Power Macs that have OpenFirmware (7200, 7500, 7600, 8500):


>The primary difference between this and MkLinux is that this is a
>traditional, monolithic (i.e. one-piece) Linux kernel, while MkLinux is a
>Linux "personality" running atop a Mach microkernel. Also, MkLinux runs
>on more systems, at least at this point in time.

>Also, work on a port to older 680x0-based Macs in underway.

Paul Mackerras is actively working on a native Linux port to PCI-based Power
Macintoshes. See <URL:>. There is a link
to this web page (and many others) on my Linux web page


The port is still a work-in-progress, and current releases should be
considered beta-standard software.

Supported machines:

* PowerMac 7200, 7500, 7600 and 8500.

* PowerCenter 150.

* PowerMac 9500, PowerBase 180 and other machines with ATI display
cards, but without full support for the screen at present.

Supported devices:

* MESH and 53C94 SCSI controllers.
* MACE ethernet adaptor.
* ADB, keyboard and mouse.
* "Control" display controller (used on 7500s, 7600s, 8500s).
* "Platinum" display controller (used on 7200s, 8200s, etc.)
* Serial port at speeds up to 230.4kbaud (but not using DMA at present).
* Floppy disk, for 1.44MB floppies (formatting not yet supported).
* EIDE hard disk.

Not yet supported:

* Audio (but you can play CDs :-)
* Video input or output
* Other display adaptors such as the Valkyrie (6400) or ATI Mach64
cards (9500, PowerBase 180, etc.) On these machines, if Open
Firmware knows how to initialize the screen, the console should
work, but X won't.

John GOTTS <>
Senior, EE/Motif Programmer/SysAdmin/Linux Hacker/Amateur Radio Callsign N8QDW