How to make a bootable Lion install DVD or flash drive

Discussion in 'Apple' started by jasetaro, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. jasetaro

    jasetaro Administrator
    Staff Member

    May 20, 2011
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    Computerworld has a great tutorial on how to build your own bootable installation/recovery DVD or flash drive for Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion)

    You should read the whole thing, but here's the meat:

    Step 1 (for all types of media)

    1. Once you've purchased Lion, find the Lion installer on your Mac. It's called Install Mac OS X and it should have been downloaded to /Applications.

    2. Right-click (or Control+click) the installer, and choose Show Package Contents from the resulting contextual menu.

    3. In the folder that appears, open Contents, then open Shared Support; you'll see a disk-image file called InstallESD.dmg.

    4. Launch Disk Utility (in /Applications/Utilities).

    5. Drag the InstallESD.dmg disk image into Disk Utility's left-hand sidebar.

    The next steps depend on whether you want to create a bootable hard drive or flash drive, or a bootable DVD.

    Step 2a (to create a bootable flash drive):

    1. In Disk Utility, select InstallESD.dmg in the sidebar, then click the Restore button in the main part of the window.

    2. Drag the InstallESD.dmg icon into the Source field on the right.

    3. Connect to your Mac the hard drive or flash drive you want to use for your bootable Lion installer.

    4. In Disk Utility, find this destination drive in the sidebar and then drag it into the Destination field on the right. Warning: The next step will erase the destination drive, so make sure it doesn't contain any valuable data.

    5. Click Restore and, if prompted, enter an admin-level username and password.

    Step 2b (to create a bootable DVD):

    1. In Disk Utility, select InstallESD.dmg in the sidebar

    2. Click the Burn button in the toolbar.

    3. When prompted, insert a blank DVD (a single-layer disc should work, although you can use a dual-layer disc instead), choose your burn options, and click Burn.
  2. richardc

    richardc Administrator
    Staff Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    As mentioned in the Computerworld article, you need to do this after downloading Lion but before installing it--or at least save the disk image somewhere before the Lion installer gets deleted.

    In my case I burned a DVD so I could do a clean install. I wanted to free up some space on my laptop drive, so after making sure my Time Machine backup was current, I erased my drive, then migrated my data but not my applications when I installed Lion. Then I only installed the applications I really needed. If you do this you need to make sure you have all the installation media and license keys for the software you install. Oh yeah, you should also deauthorize iTunes and deactivate Adobe software before you get started.

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