Debian Jessie dual-boot on Mac

This is an updated version of the guide published last year: how create a solid dual-boot Debian installation on Macbook (4,1) while preserving the MacOS session. KDE is the desktop environment I’ve chosen to install (last year was Mate), be free to select your favorite one in the last steps.

In your MacOS session, install rEFIt or rEFInd, reboot twice. Create your Debian netinst USB key (with Unetbootin), plug it in, reboot your Mac while pressing the alt key. Boot menu will appear, select the USB device and start the install. If the device is not detected, try another distro or another USB creator. Keep in mind during the partitioning that you’ll need a 200 Mo EFI boot partition. And of course, do not modify your HFS Mac disk. 

The goal is to obtain a clean and modern KDE4 environment, here with Vintage desktoptheme, MetroDark window theme, Roboto font:

Debian KDE

First step after the core install : modify your sources! In the following example you’ll get a testing rolling-release. Just change ‘testing’ with ‘jessie’ if you want to stick with a particular Debian version.

nano /etc/apt/sources.list
# testing
deb testing main non-free contrib
deb testing/updates main contrib non-free
deb testing-proposed-updates main contrib non-free

# multimedia
deb testing main non-free

Install the multimedia repo keyring, update the sources and install your DE:

apt-get update && apt-get install deb-multimedia-keyring
apt-get update && apt-get dist-upgrade
apt-get install xorg kdm kde-full kde-config-touchpad kde-config-gtk-style gtk2-engines-oxygen gtk3-engines-oxygen qtcurve

Macbook Wireless drivers activation:

apt-get update
apt-get install linux-headers-$(uname -r|sed ‘s,[^-]*-[^-]*-„’) broadcom-sta-dkms
modprobe -r b44 b43 b43legacy ssb brcmsmac
modprobe wl

Usefull codecs (deb multimedia):

apt-get install gstreamer0.10-fluendo-mp3 gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg ffmpeg sox twolame vorbis-tools lame faad w64codecs libdvdcss2 vlc

If needed, add sudo:

apt-get install sudo
adduser username sudo

Modify the .bashrc prompt to a more pleasant one:

PS1='${debian_chroot:+($debian_chroot)}\[\e[1;34m\][\t]:\[33[01;32m\]\u@\h\[33[00m\]:\[33[01;34m\]\w\[33[00m\]\$ '

Modify as well your root .bashrc and color prompt:

nano /etc/bash.bashrc
# set a fancy prompt (non-color, overwrite the one in /etc/profile)
    PS1='\[\e[1;31m\][\u@\h]:\W\$\[\e[0m\] '

# enable bash completion in interactive shells
if ! shopt -oq posix; then
  if [ -f /usr/share/bash-completion/bash_completion ]; then
    . /usr/share/bash-completion/bash_completion
  elif [ -f /etc/bash_completion ]; then
    . /etc/bash_completion

Activate the font hinting:

nano /etc/fonts/local.conf
<?xml version='1.0'?>
<!DOCTYPE fontconfig SYSTEM 'fonts.dtd'>
<match target="font">
<edit mode="assign" name="rgba">
<match target="font">
<edit mode="assign" name="hinting">
<match target="font">
<edit mode="assign" name="hintstyle">
<match target="font">
<edit mode="assign" name="antialias">
<match target="font">
<edit mode="assign" name="lcdfilter">

Then run fontconfig:

dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig-config
# Autohinter, Automatic, No.
dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig

Install additional softwares:

kgpg iceweasel flashplayer-mozilla gimp libreoffice libreoffice-kde

You may want an application launcher : Kupfer, Gnome-do, Synapse solid alternatives to the slow krunner, but I would rather stick to a simple dmenu. Install with a proper font, than create a key shortcuts.

apt-get install suckless-tools xfonts-terminus
# Associate to a shortcut :
dmenu_run -p 'Run:' -fn '-*-terminus-*-r-normal-*-*-120-*-*-*-*-iso8859-*'

DVD playback: once the codecs are installed (libdvdcss2), just select the right source:

$ vlc /dev/sr0

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