3 Replies Latest reply: Jan 29, 2013 2:23 PM by MlchaelLAX
Gerald F Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

I have a mid 2012 iMac with OS 10.8.2 installed. I need to run some software using 'Rosetta' (to maintain compatibility with other Macs on the network). I have Snow Leopard installation discs, but the iMac won't open them, nor will it start from the DVD when I hold down the C key on start-up. If I re-format the HD, is it likely to work then?

  • 1. Re: installing OS 10.6. on a mid 2012 iMac; can it be done?
    dwb Level 7 Level 7 (20,210 points)

    Due to the differences in hardware between older and newer computers, you cannot install an older OS on a Mac than the one it originally shipped with. That doesn't necessarily mean that the older OS wouldn't work, but you won't be able to perform the installation on that computer. I don't know if 10.6 will boot the new iMac and if it does I'd expect there to be performance issues and/or some functions (like WiFi) that doesn't work at all because of missing/outdated drivers.


    If this were to work at all you'd have to find an older Mac, install Snow Leopard on an external drive and then see if the computer will boot with that external drive. (I doubt it but maybe) The only other solution is to find a copy of Snow Leopard Server which you can run using virtualization.

  • 2. Re: installing OS 10.6. on a mid 2012 iMac; can it be done?
    rkaufmann87 Level 8 Level 8 (42,145 points)

    One possiblity is running 10.6 in virtualization application such as Parallels or VMWare Fusion. However why would you want to run SL on a new machine?

  • 3. Re: installing OS 10.6. on a mid 2012 iMac; can it be done?
    MlchaelLAX Level 4 Level 4 (1,745 points)

    If the OP's desire to "maintain compatibility with other Macs on the networks" simply means to run PowerPC applications (that are otherwise unable to be upgraded to Intel compatibility), he should consider installing Snow Leopard (with Rosetta) into Parallels:



                                  [click on image to enlarge]


    Full Snow Leopard installation instructions here


    NOTE:  Computer games with complex, 3D or fast motion graphics make not work well or at all in virtualization.