Seems my early 2008 13' MacBook cannot be upgraded beyond its current Lion 10.7.5 and now I'm running out of browsers that support it.

The MacBook has 2.4GHz Intel Core Duo, 2 GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM and the graphics card is Intel GMA X3100 144 MB. I've seen some issues reported here with 'sleep' and shut down.

I have very little experience with Linux except as an end user and I'm certainly no UNIX guru! Would Elementary OS be a good replacement OS, please? The instructions for installation look very clear and the interface looks not unlike MacOS. Would I be able to install it alongside the current OS so as to see if it suits?

I'd be most grateful for some advice, please.

4 Answers 4


TobiW made a mistake. His computer has a Intel Core 2 Duo. Max 8gb of ram.


Your machine will do just fine with Elementary.

I recommend you upgrade your memory at least to 4gb or more so you can install the 64bit version.

Before you install Elementary, you should install rEFInd first. There are many tutorials on youtube on how to install Ubuntu or Elementary OS in a mac machine.


The Intel Core Duo is below the Recommended System Specifications of elementary OS. They recommend an Intel Core i3 or higher. The full specification is as follows:

  • Intel i3 or comparable dual-core 64-bit processor
  • 1 GB of system memory (RAM)
  • 15 GB of disk space
  • Internet access

I have been running elementary 0.3.2 on an early 2008 MacBook (probably the same model you have) without any problems (you have to do some configuration work for the iSight camera though, but only once after installing) for quite some time. My impression was it was even faster than the original Mac OS 10.6.8 I was running before.

So hell yeah, go ahead!! :)

You'll find instructions for dual boot e.g. here: http://www.howtogeek.com/187410/how-to-install-and-dual-boot-linux-on-a-mac/?PageSpeed=noscript

And instructions for iSight configuration here: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/use-isight-ubuntu-38894.html

  • Also I ran the 64bit version with 2GB of RAM, no problem at all
    – deesnook
    Sep 6, 2016 at 21:12
  • Oh, and please upvote if my answer was helpful ;)
    – deesnook
    Sep 6, 2016 at 21:13

I have a late 2007 Macbook, which sounds similar to yours. I downloaded the ElementaryOS, while running Lion on the Macbook. In terminal, I used teh dd command to write the iso as a bootable disk on a 4gb usb drive. When finished, OSX said the drive was unreadable, but after ejecting the usb, and rebooting, holding down the option (alt) key, the usb showed up as an efi boot disk. After selecting that to boot, I was given the choice to try without installing or install. I tried it as a live usb to confirmed it worked, then replaced the Lion hd with a blank drive, and installed Elementary as the only OS. It works. I wouldn't say it is better than OSX, but as Apple no longer supports Lion or the old Macbook, it is good choice.


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