MkLinux R2
R2 Release Notes
Pre-R2 RPM list
R2rc1 RPM list
R2rc2 RPM list
R2rc3 RPM list
R2rc4 RPM list

MkLinux R2 CD Mirrors
Linux Distributions
Yellow Dog Linux
RedHat, Inc.
MkLinux Resources
About MkLinux
Getting a MkLinux CD
RPM Updates
Linux Documentation
Linux Documentation Project
UNIX Help for Users
Filesystem Hierarchy Standard
Development Resources
2.2.5 Kernel patch for Mach
nubus-pmac kernel
Trex PCMCIA Driver

Linux for the PowerMacintosh

"MkLinux is an Open Source operating system which consists of an implementation of the Linux operating system hosted on the Mach microkernel. We estimate that there are somewhere between 50,000 and 100,000 MkLinux users. A significant number of the installed MkLinux systems are being used in mission-critical applications." (1)

During the early years, most MkLinux development occurred either at Apple or at The Open Group Research Institute in Grenoble, France. MkLinux Developer Release 1 (DR1) was released in early 1996.

Later that year, DR2 was released, incorporating numerous bug fixes. The Linux server was updated to the 2.0.x source base shortly thereafter. At about the same time, (December, 1996) PCI machines were supported and DR2.1 was completed and incorporated into Apple's "Reference Release". DR2.1 was released a few months later. With the exception of shared library support and support for 603e machines, very little changed until the appearance of the G3 PowerMacs in late 1997. Support for these machines trickled into the source base over the course of a few months, and pre-DR3, as it was then known, was frozen about March of 1998. While Apple's quality assurance people tested the disk, the world moved on without it. As a result, a substantial number of bug fixes didn't make it into the DR3 release.

By the time DR3 was released, at least three additional PowerBook models were partially supported (1400, 2400, and G3 series), and numerous major causes of crashes had been eliminated. At this point, a number of developers had made various fixes to PowerBook support, but they weren't all in the same kernel.

At that point, at the request of Gilbert Coville, David Gatwood sent out a request for patches and changes. The GENERIC kernels were born. Several developers joined him in setting up a CVS server for sources so that developers from around the world could easily coordinate their development efforts and maintain a single source tree.

By 1999, MkLinux had made significant advances in multiple Ethernet support, IDE support, floppy support, and overall stability as it moved towards its next release, Public Release 1 (R1). Work also began to port the 2.2 source base to MkLinux. Several Pre-R1 builds were released but by 2001, the final R1 release had yet to be completed.

In late 2001, a user-contributed effort began to update the aging Pre-R1 release, keep it current with the rest of the Linux world, and finally let R1 see the light of day. As the effort progressed, more and more of the distribution was rebuilt and the decision was made to call the new release R2. The first R2 build, Pre-R2, was released in the summer of 2002. As the R2 project progressed, new releases came out with the most recent being R2rc2, released in June of 2003.

(1) Gilbert Coville, Apple MkLinux Team
Original document by David Gatwood, Amended by Scott Wiesenmeyer