Quickly Make an OSX Bootdisk...without software

January 25, 2015


Now, I need OSX install disks for my work.  Having to download a 5+ gb file every time I need to install it just doesn't make any sense at all, although I understand the rationale...Get the latest version every time.  Except it's a total timesuck.  And I don't have a lot of time.


Also, even after downloading it, just the idea of copying it over to a customer's desktop every single time I need to install it on a new machine was not what I wanted. 


When I discovered there was software that could assist me with making the disks for the various flavors (Snow Leopard, Lion, Mavericks etc.) I downloaded it and installed it without hesitation.  DiskMaker X works with all versions (even Yosemite) to create a bootable USB stick, and I even have it still installed.

But when I learned how to make a disk with nothing else but the command line in Terminal....well, there is just no easier way.  I recommend using a USB 3.0 thumbdrive, as the 2.0 really lags with this command.  


The link I found at coolestguidesontheplanet.com lists it will work for Mavericks, but I suspect it will work under Yosemite as well.  I will edit this post if I discover otherwise.  Entering in one line of code will create your disk in 30 minutes or so, depending on the speed of your drive, your USB, and amount of ram installed.  Here is my very easy step by step guide:


1.  Insert USB stick of at least 8gb.  Most OSX installs since Snow Leopard take 5 to 6 gigabytes.

2.  Open Disk Utility (use the very swift Cmd-Space and type "disk"...it will be the first selection).  Press return.

3.  In the tree on the left, highlight the name of your disk on the far left side, not the one beneath.

4.  Simply click erase, and *don't rename* your disk.  Let it be.

5.  Run the command:


sudo /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ Mavericks.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/Untitled --applicationpath /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ Mavericks.app --nointeraction




Of course, this presupposes you already have a full installation of Mavericks in your Applications folder.  If you hadn't gotten one from Apple before Yosemite came out - even though it was free - you're out of luck trying to get it from Apple.  They ONLY have Yosemite for download from the App Store.  I could download it for myself from App Store, but that is because I had already downloaded it using my AppleID, and it is saved under Purchases (even though it was free).  This being the case, if you don't have it, what is there to do?


Well, you could get it from a torrent site, but I would never recommend that.  You don't know what you're getting.  Better to ask around and attempt to find it from a friend.  It will usually be sitting unused in their Applications folder.  Try a bit of social engineering, and go to your Facebook/Twitter feeds and ask!  You may end up making a nice reconnection with an old geeky bud.


Let me know how this worked for you.









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January 25, 2015

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