Apple computers are quite efficient and good, we can’t deny that, but their hermetic makes it almost impossible to use them in any other way. To create a usable Linux on them, Asahi Linux has been created. Today, we will talk about it.
What is Asahi Linux?
According to the Asahi website:
Asahi Linux is a project and community with the goal of porting Linux to Apple Silicon Macs, starting with the 2020 M1 Mac Mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro.
In other words, Asahi is a distribution intended to bring Linux to Apple devices that carry the M1 chip.
An alpha has recently been released that makes the project functional on these devices. However, as expected, many things do not work.
According to the development team, the main problem is drivers for the hardware since Apple does not provide any documentation, and they have had to pull reverse engineering.
On the other hand, the project is focused on advanced users who want to learn and tinker with these devices. In addition to this, they hope to provide such good support eventually that it will be an alternative.
What is currently running on Asahi Linux?
Asahi Linux is in a testing stage where not everything is working. However, they have accomplished a lot. First all M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max devices are supported except for the Mac Studio. That’s quite a few devices considering the complexity of the project.
In terms of hardware:
- USB2 (Thunderbolt ports)
- USB3 (Mac Mini Type A ports)
- Screen (no GPU)
- Lid switch
- Power button
In addition, the Ethernet port (desktop), battery control, charging and other small things also work.
However, there are many more missing and among them stand out:
- HDMI on the MacBooks
- GPU acceleration
- Video codec acceleration
In addition to USB 3 support, Speakers and display drivers are expected to be supported in future releases.
What are the requirements for Asahi Linux?
According to the official documentation, you are required to have some of these M1, M1 Pro, or M1 Max machine. In addition, the system must be macOS 12.3 or later and to run the installer you must be logged in as administrator.
The installation requires at least 53 GB of free disk space for Desktop install, and must be online because the installer will download packages to complete the process.
Install Asahi Linux on macOS
Once you have these requirements fulfilled on the system, you just need to run this command in the macOS terminal
curl https://alx.sh | sh
The above command will download the entire installer and execute it at once.
You will immediately be prompted for the
sudo password because this installer requires root permissions.
Moreover, the installer has an advanced mode that you can enable. This is usually not necessary.
Next, you will be shown basic information about your device. As well as the proposal to resize the partitions of the device so that the process can be carried out.
When you accept, you will be presented with a resizing proposal. This can be entered with an explicit value, proportional (in percentages) or
min which provides the minimum necessary for Asahi.
When you confirm the changes, it will start the resizing process. Then, you will be prompted to install the new system.
Continuing the process….
You will then be presented with 3 options: Desktop, Minimal or UEFI environment. You will have to decide, but the most common choice is Desktop.
When you choose it, you will be informed how much space it requires, and you will be able to define when the new system will take up. Then, the whole installation process will begin.
At the end, you will be informed that everything was correct, but you will have to do one last step that we are told is important and must be done well because if not everything will have been in vain.
The instructions are simple, but in the installer you will be able to detail them better. Basically, you have to wait 15 seconds for the system to shut down, press the power button and leave it pressed until you see the Startup options mode. Wait for Asahi Linux to appear in the volume list and wait.
Finally, follow the instructions.
It is brilliant the effort of the community to support devices as closed as Apple devices. However, significant progress has been made and this is seen in this project.
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