Boot Camp and Fedora

To celebrate the release of Boot Camp 1.1 beta, I tried to install Fedora Core in the spare space on my drive. Boot Camp worked great to repartition the drive, shrink the Mac OS X partition, and create a 10 GB free space.

First, I tried Fedora Core 5 DVD. The installer got to a spot where it recognized that the drive was partitioned with GPT and asked if it could reformat it. I have the suspicion that this would have invovled erasing the whole drive including Mac OS X. This bug in anaconda was fixed in rawhide so that anaconda fully handles GPT drives. My guess is that Windows doesn’t know anything about EFI or GPT and goes into a compability mode where it writes the MBR partition.

Next, I tried Fedora Rawhide. It had a bug where every key entered was duplicated. This made it impossible to use the installer. I found a bugzilla entry and did some searching and it seems to be a recent kernel bug. Hopefully, it wll be fixed soon and I can try again. I wasn’t able to use the FC5 boot CD kernel to load the rawhide installer.

Then, I tried Ubuntu. The LiveCD booted great. And the installer’s gparted understood the GPT partitions. But it didn’t have any way to create an LVM partition. After I rebooted, the MacBook won’t boot because it couldn’t find a bootable partition. Luckily, booting with Option held gave to the boot selection menu with the Macintosh HD and that allowed booting to Mac OS X. And the Startup Disk pane in System Preferences allowed changing the default boot disk back to Mac OS X.