Coming Soon: The Linux Macintel

By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2006-01-19 Print this article Print

Windows users aren't sure when, if ever, they'll be able to run XP on a Mactel, but Linux users know that they'll be doing it soon. Here's why. (

Its kind of funny. Everyone is excited about the new Intel-powered Macs, but perhaps the most excited of them all are the Windows users who want to run Mac OS X and Windows together on one.

Can they? Cant they? They dont know, but boy do they want to find out.
For XP users, the problem is that Apple uses Intels EFI (extensible firmware interface) rather than a BIOS. Windows, generally speaking, cant run on top of EFI.
"EFI?" You ask? This is a layer that sits between your operating systems boot loader and your computers firmware and hardware. Its meant to make computers both easier to manage and configure. Microsoft challenges Linuxs legacy claims. Click here to read more. Its also being turned into an open-standard under the name, UEFI (United EFI). And, we all know how allergic Microsoft is to open-standards, dont we? As for Linux, though, Intel has already provided a native Linux bootloader for EFI: ELILO (EFI Linux Boot Loader). With this you can boot Linux, even Linux that isnt EFI aware, without much trouble. Read the full story on Coming Soon: The Linux Macintel
Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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