This is my mac: MacBook (13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008)

Will it be safe?

I'm trying to dual boot so i don't want anything to happen to osx ^^

Thanks in advance!


2 Answers 2


While a MacBook (13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008) has a 64-bits Intel CPU, it still has 32-bits firmware. Support for 64-bits firmware only started to appear mid-life 2009.

As such, you might not be able to boot your Elementary Linux ISO on it, as it works in 64-bits mode. However, there might be ways around it, or you might get lucky and it boots in 32-bit mode (I was thinking about it, and your comment confirmed it is so; I also suspect you installed Bootcamp in the past).

When you do find ISOs that do not boot, it might be easier to select other Linux or FreeBSD distributions that still support 32-bits operation.

If you are afraid to lose things, either do an image of disk or just run a 64-bit Linux on a VM.

End of an era: Linux distributions will soon stop supporting 32-bit PCs

see also: Aluminum MacBook (Late 2008)

  • CPU: 2.0/2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (Penryn), soldered in place, no upgrade options
  • 32-bit booting only; cannot boot 64-bit OS.
  • 64-bit software is supported.
  • 1
    files.catbox.moe/0zps7m.jpg ¯_(ツ)_/¯ Anyways man, thanks for the help
    – Seamusse
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 16:38
  • @Seamusse I stand corrected, and corrected the answer. Your boot firmware is only 32-bit however, and it is only able to run 64-bit software once it has booted. I confirmed it. I am not sure it will boot a 64-bit ISO. I actually owned a mid-2009 and remember fairly well mine was the first models to have a 64-bit compatible firmware. Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 16:55
  • 1
    Hmm alrighty then, but it already booted, problem is im scared shit will happen after i install it, (for example losing stuff on my OSX) (Btw tysm for the help)
    – Seamusse
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 16:59
  • @Seamusse added to the answer. Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 17:07
  • I've never installed bootcamp myself, but this bought this computer in second hand so who knows, is there any way for me to check?
    – Seamusse
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 18:03

To answer your question: Yes, depending on free disk space etc but you will probably need to repartition the drive to do a dual boot. Not sure about the state of the art these days, it use to be a risky thing - the computer would be ok but you could lose all your data, the os ... 1) Before doing anything, make sure you have a good backup. 2) Consider other options. Dual booting can get to be a pain. VM options let you run both OS's at the same time. a) OSX runs or at least use to run on top of FreeBSD so depending on your neeed you may already have what you need to join the Unix world. b) Oracle's Virtural Box is a free VM platform available for Windows, Mac or Linux. I have only used the Linux version but it seems to work fine and the learning curve is relatively smooth. c) I used VMWare's Fusion with my Mac worked great but you have to buy it.

  • Macs do not translate always to peaceful Linux installations, specially the newer generations. Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 15:58
  • Could you please be more specific on the problems with linux on Mac. What type of problems and do they show up in both dual boot and VM contexts?
    – Mark
    Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 17:20
  • VM contexts none, installing directly, multiple issues in new generations, APM, battery, the darn touch bar....and probably more. They do not run "pure FreeBSD", but a Mach micro-kernel with a heavily modified FreeBSD kernel on top. Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 17:26

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