Sun, 06 Oct 2013

Debian on Mac Mini (late 2011 model)

I just had a random hard drive corruption on my headless Mac Mini running Debian Wheezy. Restarting it dropped to a prompt. So I had to get out the monitor and keyboard to press 'Y' a few times. This made me do 2 things I had postponed for a while for the risk of bricking the system:
  1. Getting rid of rEFIt and instead use grub in native EFI mode.

    This guide was very helpful. Only I used the existing fat32 partition on the drive. This also allowed me to delete the existing MacOS partition, very helpful on a 120G ssd. The free'd 50G of disk space I subsequently used to...

  2. Make the root partition readonly

    I used the now empty 50G, mkfs.ext4 as ext4 (disk alignment should start at a multiple of 64M) and hooked it up as /var. With /home already on a different disk I could use the ReadonlyRoot article on the Debian wiki to mount my root filesystem readonly. Hopefully this will prevent any future corruption preventing the system from booting.

posted at 18:00 | path: /unix | permanent link to this entry

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