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I have tried to install Elementary OS Luna 64-bit on my iMac 11.1 (late 2009, Intel Core i5 processor, ATI Radeon HD 4850 graphics card). At this moment it's working but not very well. I will give you a summery of my installation process and my problems.

First off I made a bootable USB using VMware and Startup Disk Creator. Other methods did not work. When I boot up the EOS USB get a grub screen, I need to hover over Install EOS then press the e key to edit the code. I type nomodeset xforcevesa and press F10 to boot. Now I am able to install EOS, I select my partition and make it ext4.

At the end of the installation it asks me to reboot, I press on reboot and the first time I get just a black screen, so I reboot again and get the Grub screen with EOS and EOS recovery mode options. I need to hover the mouse cursor over EOS again and press the e key to edit. I again type nomodeset xforcevesa and press F10 to boot. It does not boot up in GUI mode but in console mode (terminal). It asks me for my username and my password, which I gave. Then type startx and get the error no screens found.

I looked around and found on the ubuntuforums.org that it had something to do with having hybrid graphics. I used the info on this site and ran the following commands.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
sudo apt-get install linux-generic-lts-trusty # raring and saucy did not work
sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg-lts-trusty # raring and saucy did not work
sudo apt-get install fglrx-experimental-13
sudo apt-get install fglrx-pxpress
sudo reboot

Now it boots up in GUI mode, but I have an invisible mouse for the first 2 minutes. When the mouse cursor becomes visible it's not a normal cursor but a X pointer. I open some apps and discover that the apps have no window borders. I look around again and find it has probably something to do with fglrx. I open the terminal and run sudo apt-get purge fglrx* and reboot the system.

The first time I reboot I get a black screen, so I reboot again and get the Grub screen again with the choice between EOS and EOS recovery. I need to hover the mouse over EOS again and press the e key to edit. I type nomodeset xforcevesa and press F10 to boot.

Now it boots with a normal mouse cursor and I have window borders. I install Firefox and the Flash plug-in and discover that video is not working good, on YouTube it doesn't have 30 frames/sec, more like 10 frames/sec which make makes watching videos impossible. I look on the web again and find at Ubuntu Forums that I need to install the right graphics driver.

I go the AMD site to download Catalyst legacy 13.1 (the last version that supports my graphics card). I run the download in the terminal, the program pops up, I tried to install it, but it gave me the error more tools required. My second attempt was using ppa:makson96/fglrx. It did not work. It crashed EOS, so I needed to repeat the process all over again.

Summary

  1. EOS boots up only once every two times, and when it does I need to manually force the boot parameters nomodeset xforcevesa.
  2. I'm not able to watch any videos because of the slow response.

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