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Sunday, January 17, 2021

Developer Successfully Boots Ubuntu On An iPhone 7

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Using Android on iPhones has been one of the hot topics among modern-day enthusiasts. Yesterday, a developer on Reddit with the username newhacker1746 got Ubuntu running on an iPhone 7 with the help of chekra1n jailbreak.

This didn’t come as a huge surprise as developers of the Project Sandcastle could run Android on iOS before this. Still, what did surprise us was that the developer managed to run the full-fledged graphical shell of the GNOME desktop environment on the device.

Ubuntu On iPhone 7? But How?

It turns out the developer used a custom Linux kernel from Project Sandcastle to boot the Ubuntu instance. Moreover, the developer also shared a comprehensive guide on how to boot into Ubuntu on iPhone 7. The best part of the tutorial is, you don’t need to jailbreak your iPhone to follow the process.

Another thing to note is that the developer didn’t alter what’s in the storage. Instead, he network-booted it.

Released in 2016, iPhone 7 was one of the most sold iPhone models after iPhone 6/6+ and iPhone 8. It is great to see legacy iPhone models being brought back to life by developers to use them for a little longer before the phones cease to function.

While the experience with Ubuntu is definitely not going to be of iOS level, we might witness devs porting other Linux-based operating systems. Either way, as mentioned by XDA Developers, it’s not about actually running the software but proving that it can be done.

Can GNU/Linux Save Old iPhones From Dying?

Well, it’s complex. As of now, you need to have a little knowledge of the terminal and other complex stuff. This makes it harder for a normal user to install Linux on iPhones.

Also, Project Sandcastle came out in March last year, and the only other update about Linux and Android on iPhones is this one. Looking at the development’s pace, it’s most likely going to take a lot of time and effort by the developers to make it available to the general public.

Apple has been the single worst company when it comes to supporting third-party developers because a lot of its income comes from the App Store and iOS, a business model which it has already perfected.

Would you use Linux on your aging iPhone? Let us know in the comments section below.

Sources: r/linux and XDA-Developers.

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