Installing Antergos (Arch Linux) on a 2011 Mac Mini (5,1)

Antergos

Check the date! This is an old article! Some steps below might not work anymore!

Notes:

This guide assumes that you're fed up with OS X and will be installing Linux as a replacement. Following these steps will wipe your drive, so be sure to back up any data before proceeding. I am not responsible for any data loss as a result of following this guide.

Requirements:

  • 4GB USB Drive
  • About 2 hours of time for troubleshooting (if needed)
  • A working Internet connection (drivers should work out of box, just need to autoinstall and enable them)
  • A working computer with dd or equivalent software.
  • Antergos Live ISO

Procedure:

  1. Burn your Antergos Live iso to a USB flash drive or DVD.
  2. Boot up your Mini while holding down option to load the boot menu.
  3. Boot to the EFI USB or DVD (depending on your choice)
  4. Load a root terminal up and run the following:

dkms autoinstall
modprobe wl

  1. Launch Cnchi
  2. Wipe your drive and set up the following partitions: sda1: /boot (2048mb), sda2: / (rest of space).
  3. Install Antergos with the options of your choice.
  4. At the bootloader installation screen, choose systemd-boot (we're still going to be fixing something later).
  5. Once the installation is complete, open up a terminal and drop to a root shell (sudo su -)
  6. Run the following commands:

mount /dev/sda2 /mnt
mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/boot
arch-chroot /mnt /bin/bash
pacman -S broadcom-wl #Installs the only good wifi driver for the mini.
echo wl >> /etc/modules-load.d/broadcom-wl.conf #Makes sure the module loads at boot.
bootctl --path=/boot install
blkid -s PARTUUID -o value /dev/sda1 #keep track of the PARTUUID it spits out, you'll need it shortly.

  1. Once finished with the above commands, nano /boot/loader/entries/arch.conf.
  2. Add the following lines to the new arch.conf file:

title Arch Linux
linux /vmlinuz-linux
initrd /initramfs-linux.img
options root=PARTUUID=[insert your partuuid from earlier here, minus the brackets] rw

  1. Save the file and reboot. With any luck, your Mac Mini will boot just fine. For additional drivers (bluetooth, etc, see the Arch Linux wiki's Bluetooth page).

AJ Cutshall

Read more posts by this author.

Detroit, Michigan