I have an old iMac G5 (without a webcam) that I would like to get running Ubuntu. The iMac has no hard drive in it, and I would like to get a live CD running so I can test out Ubuntu before I buy a hard drive to boot from, but I'm having trouble running the live CD.

I downloaded the Ubuntu 12.04 PowerPC live desktop build from here (http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/releases/precise/release/, 5th link down) and burned on to a DVD-R at the lowest speed.

When I put it in my iMac and held down the 'C' key to boot from a CD/DVD, the SuperDrive spins up, spins down, and ejects the disk. The iMac then displays a folder with a question mark superimposed on it (the icon for a missing startup disk).

I've read that this means the CD is not suitable to boot on that computer. According to the Ubuntu PowerPC FAQ (https://wiki.ubuntu.com/PowerPCFAQ), my iMac is compatible.

  • Am I downloading the wrong download?
  • Do I need a different CD/DVD?
  • Is my download of Ubuntu corrupted?
  • Why won't can't I get my DVD boot?

1 Answer 1


I think you could try this : How do I boot the live CD on a Macbook Pro?

hold alt/opt and select cd,

alternatively, you can install refit on the imac, insert cd and boot from the refit menu


It might work, unless the cd is really corrupted

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