Installing Mac OSX after hosing your Macbook hard drive
This is a cheat sheet that I have created in case I have this headache again. There were parts that I screwed up and there were parts that I simply was not able to find anywhere on the internet. So if you have this issue, I hope it helps you.
I completely botched my single boot install of Ubuntu on my old Macbook. This resulted in a HD with ext3 file system only. No EFI boot partition. I could boot into Ubuntu by holding down the option key during booting. The Mac firmware thought I had Windows installed and offered to boot from it. After choosing the Windows icon it would then boot into Ubuntu. But the wireless internet didn’t hold up for the first updates from Ubuntu and that left me with a botched install of Linux. Not good. The LAN connection was unusable and so was WiFi.
So the problem I had was how to boot the Mac OS disc. After trial and error, here’s what I had to do. Boot the same way, but put your Mac OS disc in the internal CDROM drive, or use an external one. This time it will see the Mac disc and the “Windows” disk. Choose the Mac one and boot up the Mac install disc.
The next issue is that it won’t see a hard drive, because Macs can’t see Linux partitions. So you have to go into the Mac utilities and from there erase the HD and then install the Mac OS, using the whole disc. After you have a clean and shiny install of Mac OS, then you can install rEFit and proceed to follow these directions from Ubuntu for duel booting.
Even though you are a die-hard Linux user, you have to keep OSX on the drive in order to do firmware updates. So deal with it.