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Install openSUSE on a Mac

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Backup all your data in external drive or cloud storage. All data can be lost in some steps.

Create installation media

  1. Download openSUSE Leap or Tumbleweed ISO.
  2. Create a LiveUSB stick

Prepare for dual-boot system

If you want to install openSUSE as the only OS, this step can be skipped.

  1. Boot/reboot your Mac.
  2. Press and hold Command + R key. (Meta + R key in PC keyboard)
  3. Wait Recover Mode loading.
  4. Disk Utility is what you need. Start it.
  5. Choose the main disk, add new partition for openSUSE and shrink partition of macOS.
  6. Reboot.

Boot from Live USB

  1. Boot/reboot your Mac.
  2. Press and hold Option key. (Alt key in PC keyboard)
  3. You should see a list of OS boot options.
  4. Choose EFI Boot.

Next...

Other installation steps are similar to PC installations.

Note, here is a recovery partition for mac. If you want dual-boot macOS and openSUSE, you better keep this partition.

Recover macOS

If your recovery partition is not removed:

  1. Reboot.
  2. Press and hold Command + R. (Meta + R key in PC keyboard)
  3. Choose Reinstall macOS.

If your recovery partition has been removed:

  1. Reboot.
  2. Press and hold Option + Command + R. (Alt + Meta + R key in PC keyboard)
  3. Connect to WiFi or wired network.
  4. Wait downloading recovery system from the internet. This step may take hours.
  5. Choose Reinstall macOS.

Troubleshooting

Problem: trying to boot the Leap 15.3 Installation media on EFI mode (on Mac Hardware) results in it hanging or crashing.

Solution:

  1. flash ISO to USB Media
  2. mount EFI partition of flashed USB Media
  3. go to EFI/BOOT
  4. execute cp grub.efi bootx64.efi
  5. umount and reboot

It is recommended to install with online repositories activated. This way the updated shim can be installed and the installation can boot.

If you can ONLY use the offline media, install with Secure Boot disabled, it will boot automatically (but it won't appear on the Boot Selection screen). Update Leap a few times (zypper up) until there's "Nothing to do" and then you can enable Secure Boot on YaST boot loader (it will ask to install the updated shim). This way you'll get the "EFI Boot" option on the Boot Selection screen. Reboot.