Kubuntu on a MacBook

I use the latest version of Kubuntu (when writing, that means 10.04)  on a MacBook Pro (5.1) and this is where I document my findings and current issues.

  • Installation works as described on the Ubuntu wiki.
  • Remapping the function key vs special function priority works great for me.
  • Remember to install the corresponding kernel headers (sudo apt-get install linux-headers-$(uname -r)) when the kernel has been updated, otherwise the NVIDIA driver cannot be loaded and X cannot find a screen.

Current issues

  • Cannot get the mic to work in Skype.
  • Need to find the time to remap the Alt and Ctrl keys so that my PC trained hands find their way.
  • When using the Swedish layout, Alt+7 does not give me a { but a |. Annoying as hell when writing C++ code. (Could be me being used to PC keyboards again)


  1. Marc_uk
    Posted 2011-12-20 at 03:47 | Permalink

    Hi .. I was running Kubuntu 10.04 (x64) on my Macbook Pro 5.1, – and i was very disappointed i could not get the 3.5mm mic-in jack on the side of the laptop to give me any audio on skype .. until i noticed i couldn’t get mic-in to work on Snow Leopard or Windows 7 either.. after reading the instructions about the Macbook Pro 5.1, it seems there is no mono mic-in on the 3.5mm jack .. it is only “Line in” (and digital)

    – so even my original trick of getting alsa to un-hide the mic slider in kmix
    by enabling all channels in Kmix’s mixer, (settings, configure channels) then doing a test call, then rebooting. then, auto-magically a new slider appears in Kmix’s mixer window labelled ‘digital’ –
    this new ‘digital’ slider on the second skype test call then becomes the Skype mic audio in. weird, but then, thats computers eh. i have ordered a couple of USB soundcards and a USB headset off Ebay, as these should work, maybe after a bit of tweaking.

    I dist-upgraded to 10.10 Maverick (x64) because there were weird lines and symbols on a screen before KDM started, also attempting to login or restart into console only mode made the screen full of garbage. 10.10 fixed that.

    i upgraded to 11.10, which was using kernel 3.0.x but the Macbook got too hot, too quickly, so went back to 10.10. seems ok on 10.10.

    seasons greetings from England !

  2. Posted 2011-12-21 at 14:07 | Permalink

    I’ve upgraded to a 8.1 MBP these days. That way, I got rid of the external graphics card (I have the 13″ i7-based model). That greatly improves the whole Kubuntu experience.

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