It used to be pretty easy to install a non-Apple operating system on Apple’s laptops and desktops. When the company was still selling Macs with Intel processors it even offered Boot Camp software that made it easy to dual-boot macOS and Windows (or other operating systems) on the same device.

Since moving to Apple Silicon (which is what the company calls the ARM-based chips it designs in house), it’s gotten a lot tougher to run alternate operating systems. But the folks at the Asahi Linux project have been working to port Linux to Apple Silicon for the past few years. And while it’s still very much a work in progress, the developers have now just announced their new flagship Linux distribution for Macs: Fedora Asahi Remix. The first official release could come by the end of August, 2023.

The Asahi team has done a lot of work to bring basic Linux support to Apple’s latest Macs. Among other things, that involved finding a way to boot Linux-based operating systems in the first place, reverse engineering Apple’s GPU architecture to develop compatible graphics drivers, and adding support for hardware including wired and wireless networking, USB ports, touchpad and keyboard input, and audio.

But the team has been less focused on developing a full-blown Linux desktop. So at first the team developed code that could be shared with different GNU/Linux distributions. And then they built an Asahi Linux Arch Linux ARM remix, which was basically an overlay that brought Asahi code to an otherwise stock version of Arch Linux ARM.

The team notes that while that distro “worked well to bring Asahi Linux out into the world,” it was a “fully downstream project” and the Asahi developers had “no significant involvement with upstream Arch Linux ARM.”

And that’s what makes the new Fedora remix different. Asahi has already been working with Fedora developers in an “upstream-first” way, which means that the teams scripts and tools are already available in upstream Fedora repositories.

Among other things, that means that Asahi developers can work to “reverse engineer hardware and develop bespoke drivers and software” without the need to spend as much time focusing on other elements of building and distributing a GNU/Linux-based operating system, which can be left to the Fedora team. It also means it should allow the Asahi team to fix issues found in other packages designed for ARM64 systems.

While the first official build of Fedora Asahi Remix is on track to launch later this month, users willing to put up with (potentially catastrophic) bugs can find instructions for installing a pre-release build at

via Phoronix

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      1. More specifically, it’s the apple varietal we in the west know as the McIntosh—thus the choice.