Linux saved my Macbook Air (2013) - The Journey of Linux and get it workin


So my old and trusty MacBook Air (2013ish) is my companion for quite some time now. I use it almost every day and I love it. So long story super short: I clean up my OSX because in 3 years there is a LOT of junk data that has no need what so ever. I backed up all my files in my NAS and get it all save.

Since I upgraded my Windows Machine I use my MacBook really just for the kind of stuff that one uses a Laptop: for light tasks on the go. Since I got almost 40GB free of storage, why not get a second partition going to finally get my hands on Linux. (i always wanted to learn Linux and configure it but never got to it)

While I'm preparing my MacBook to get Linuxed I get a lot of Errors of the OSX Partition. I google for a remedy, I run some code in the terminal and it works. for like 2 minutes. after that its bricked. like really fucked up.

So I try best I can to fix it without any chance. Seems like fixing my bugged OSX Partition just made it go suicide.

Impulsive like I am I just go balls to the walls and install Ubuntu 16.04 LTS all over that bitch. Since I always wanted to use Linux, I think to myself: Okay, so OSX is kinda boring and now it just died for no reason, treat yourself! And yes, I know: Ubuntu is the Pussy-Noob Version of Linux but for beginners and starters I think it is pretty much the best there is.

So for the last week I'm happy with it and get stuff working and get used to Linux and all the 'sudo apt-get' terminal way of doing things. I even got my Audiojack to working again! (Not even a 'Genius' at the Genius Bar could fix it! THE POWER OF LINUX!)

So, now to the 'problems' i wanna fix but don't quite know how to yet.

1) I can't dim the Display all the way, meaning: full black. I only can get it to 1/10 not 0/10. Haven't found a solution for that now. If you know how to fix that, please let me know.

2) This Laptop runs really hot. It is not 'that' bad, psensor says it is only between 50°C-65°C but the ventilation is super slow, around 2000U/min. I worked on that but can't get to the config profile or config file to set it up higher. The fans don't seem to be PWM I checked for that. Here is where I would need some help

3) For some reason I really want to change Unity so something more OSX looking just for confusing people who looking at my screen. (It is a MacBook but this OSX looks fucking weird!?) This is just for fun.

So in conclusion here is where I need some help: 1 & 2.

I helped myself in the last days to get shit going and it is fucking awesome. I love it and that is really strange, I didn't expect Linux to be challenging but then again so rewarding. I'm hooked on a feeling.

If someone knows how to help me please, please do so, much appreciated. If you guys need more info and/or logs, tell me how to make them and I upload them asap.

With much love,


I can help with everything other than number 2. That one is beyond me.

And first off I want to say that ubuntu is not the pussy-noob distro. Its the frustrating as hell distro because nothing works as advertised version : P.

Lets first start off by getting you a more OSX experience.

I would ditch unity for the gnome desktop environment. There are two ways to do this. The best way is to actually download and install ubuntu gnome which would mean a complete format.

Option 2 is to simply install the gnome desktop environment ontop of your current system. To do that, use the following commands in the terminal.

sudo apt-get upgrade

sudo apt-get install gnome-session

From there, you can restart your system and go to the login page. There should be a little unity wheel right next to your user name. Click it and you can select the gnome 3 desktop environment.

Now you can start installing gnome extensions. So go to firefox and search for gnome shell extensions. Go to the web page and there should be a popup from fire fox telling you some bull shit. You should choose "allow" and then refresh the page.

Now you want to search for dash to dock. This is going to take your gnome dashboard and turn it into an OSXish dock. From there you can configure it to work the way you want it to.

After that, you can search around google for a gnome shell and gtk theme that will make gnome look more like OSX or not. Its all up to you at that point.

As for your screen dimming issue, there is a second button for turning off a screen on most laptops.

I would simply recommend using a gnome shell extension to turn the screen off.

Number 2 MIGHT be fixed with a newer kernel. If you feel adventurous, I would actually install fedora 24 instead of ubuntu gnome.

You will still get the gnome environment, but you will get a much better OS, and it will have a newer kernel.

My thought is that the cpu power management software in the older kernel might not be good enough and might be causing some excess heat. But this is really just a shot in the dark.

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Hey there! Thanks!

Ok, so... as this is a learning kinda project i think i will go with a whole new format as you say. Fedora with Gnome it is then. So this evening will be Fedora install and getting used to it and then, getting those Gnome Extensions.

Thank you very much! You will hear from me i suppose. (Because i maybe need even more help)

With lots of love,


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Look at Deepin. Haven't used ubuntu in an eternity it feels like so all I can assume is the package name is just deepin.

'sudo apt-get install deepin'

There is a chance that you can get an smcfancontrol clone for linux. If I remember the name of the project I'll send it up to you.

Not a thing outside of OSX as far as I am aware. You might need to edit those files yourself.

Deepin is nice, but they have yet to implement some very basic functionality.

For instance, you can not increase the size of your dock currently.

You get a better experience with gnome 3 and the dash to dock extension.

at this point i cant even get startup disk creator to get the fedora iso as a bootable onto my usb stick. like the mythbusters said: failure is always an option.

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Ew GUI use gparted and dd. Install gparted and make your USB fat32 or something then go to your terminal and do 'sudo dd if= of=/dev/sd XYZ' the XYZ being the drive letter of your USB, of which you can see in gparted.

Ohhhhhh yeah, I forgot that ubuntu sucks at everything it tries to do.

Do you have access to any other computer? Preferably with windows on it?


@FaunCB thanks! with Unetbootin & GParted i got it. Whew, that was kinda complicated to do. Also in the Startuo Disk Creator wouldnt recognize the Fedora ISO for some weird reason.

@Tjj226_Angel Yeah i have my WIN Machine for watching the mythbusters and be in the forum.

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Yeah, dont use unetbootin or the start up disk creator.

I never figured out why this happens, but some distros will flat out not work with either of those programs. They are missing some sort of functionality I guess.

Use either rufus or ImageUSB on your windows machine.

so far im thinking of going back to ubuntu and manually installint gnome. fedora didnt install the first 3 times, when it did, it crashed. after it actually booted up the touchpad didnt work not good at all and the network settings were insane. (at least for me. and there is no way to turn on the wifi). after that i installed ubuntu gnome. same thing with the trackpad and the wifi. touchpad doesnt work right and i cannot connect to the wifi and i cannot activate the wifi. which is kinda weird, because as far as i know gnome should not have an inpact on the hardware part of linux, right?

so im gonna go back to ubuntu with unity and then try to get gnome on it.

thanks for your support!

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I would highly suggest going with Ubuntu gnome instead of installing a de on top of an existing de. Also fadora requires a lot of packages to be installed and for a new user it can be a bit daunting. If you want to go back to Ubntu with gnome used this.
If you want to give fadora a shot I would suggest Korora
Its supposed to come with alot of stuff pre installed making it easier for new users.

Fedora 24 Workstation or Antergos. I left Ubuntu behind awhile ago.

Thank to all of you for your input! really helped me! @Tjj226_Angel @FaunCB thank you for your help! I couldn't log in because my account was all fucked up but the Main Mommy made it happen. so: thank you!

I still rock ubuntu with gnome on it and have a blast. I love it.

BTW: @wendell says "say hello on the forums" . "hello".