It’s very handy to have a bootable version of OS X on a thumb drive.
I have written how to do this using a program called DiskMaker X, Â and I have written about how to do it from theÂ command line here, Â but after doing this a few times I find the most reliableÂ method is the one outlined below. Â It uses Apple’s built-in disk utility.This works with any version of OS X. Mountain Lion, Yosemite, El Capitan etc.Â Youâ€™ll need an 8G USB thumbdrive.
Since OS-X Mavericks (10.9) Â Apple have been releasing their OS X upgrades for free. This means if you have any version of OS X newer than 10.9 then you can upgrade it to the latest version for free. Â There are three ways you can upgrade.
Â Download the Installer from Apple directly to the computer that you want to install the new OS X onto.
Â Take your computer into the nearest Apple Store and they will do the upgrade for you.
Â Make a Â USB thumb drive installer that you can plug into your computer to upgrade it.
Method 1 is Apple’s suggestion method, but if you have more than one computer it requires you to download the OS X update more than once. Â Method 3 gives you a thumb drive that you can use multiple times to install OSX, Â and you can even boot off it Â in an emergency if your hard drive crashes. Â It is very handy to have a bootable version of Â the latest OSX on a thumb drive lying around Â So I suggest option three
This article tells you how to make a USB thumb drive installer so you can upgrade any computer to the latest OS X.
It also tells you how to workÂ out what is the newest version of OSX that you can run on your computer.Â
Here’s how to make a bootable installer of El Capitan on a USB Thumbdrive. Â It is the quickest way but it uses the terminal so it is for advanced users. If you want aÂ way that is slightly longer but easier for beginners download and runÂ DiskmakerÂ which does the steps below for you automatically!
If you have a Lion installer on a USB thumbdrive, you can use it to upgrade your Mac from Snow Leopard to Lion, but if you have an older version of OS X you can’t upgrade.Â You need to first upgrade to Snow Leopard OR you can erase everything and do a completely fresh install of Lion. Â After installing Lion on my iMac, I wanted to delete everything on my laptop and do a fresh install of Lion.Â But the installer will not install over an older version of OSX. I had to delete the old version of OSX, then install Lion from the USB thumbdrive.Â Here’s how to do a fresh install of Lion.
The new OSX Lion comes as an upgrade from the Apple App Store – not on a DVD. The good news is that once you’ve paid for it once, Â Apple allow you to install it on all the computers you own for free! After you purchase it from the App Store you Â just have to go into the App Store on your other computers and Lion will be there – all paid for and ready to download again!
In Snow Leopard if you try to install a program while another is installing you get an error message saying “Waiting for other installations to complete.” But what do you do if the message stays there after the program has finished installing?