Apple launched the first Macs with Apple Silicon a few months ago, delivering a big boost in performance while also reducing power consumption. One downside of Apple’s switch from Intel processors to its own ARM-based custom chips though, is that you can no longer easily install Windows alongside macOS using Boot Camp, and for a while there was no easy way to install GNU/Linux distributions either.
But this week developers at ARM virtualization company Corellium announced that they’d ported Linux to run on a Mac Mini with an Apple M1 chip. Corellium CTO Chris Wade says the team’s proof of concept build of Ubuntu (based on a version made to run on Raspberry Pi computers) is “completely usable,” and boots a “full Ubuntu desktop” from a USB flash drive.
It’s still pretty much a proof of concept at this point – Apple’s GPU isn’t supported, for example, which could make graphics-heavy tasks a non-starter. But it’s still pretty impressive given just how different Apple’s chips are than most processors that are typically used to run Linux.
Initial patches have already been submitted for possible inclusion in the upstream Linux kernel.
Here’s a roundup of more recent tech news from around the web.
- How We Ported Linux to the M1 [Corellium]
Corellium ported Linux to run on Macs with Apple M1 chips and released an Ubuntu proof of concept build, along with instructions and an overview of how they did it. Hardware-accelerated graphics and machine learning aren’t supported yet though.
- Future of LG’s rollable smartphone up in the air [The Korea Herald]
As LG mulls selling or shuttering its smartphone business, the company is still developing the LG Rollable phone with an expandable display. But no official launch is planned yet and it’s possible it might never see the light of day, despite CES teaser.
- Microsoft Terminal update coming soon [@cinnamon_msft]
Microsoft is bringing a GUI settings menu to the Windows Terminal app for quickly adjusting fonts, colors, themes, and other settings on a per-profile basis for PowerShell, Command Prompt, Windows Subsystem for Linux, etc.
- First postmarketOS service pqack brings major PinePhone improvements [LinuxSmartphones]
Designed with the goal of giving phones a 10-year lifespan instead of the usual 2 or 3, postmarketOS typically takes a long view and the stable branch of the operating system only gets major updates about twice a year. But development on PinePhone-specific software features has been happening rapidly, so the developers backported some new goodies from the “edge channel” to stable and released a Service Pack with stability and performance enhancements plus a few updates to core apps.