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No install disk-how to boot disk utilities

31640 Views 22 Replies Latest reply: Mar 16, 2013 5:38 PM by blackdogaudio RSS
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GeorgeInTheMountains Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Mar 2, 2013 12:51 PM

I bought this new (2013) iMac which obviously has Mt. Lion on it. I want to know about how to deal with emergencies, etc.

How do I boot from an install disk to run disk utilities, fix or repair, when there is no install disk? Likewise, in the past Apple has had several items that could be installed optionally, like developer tools, quicktime 7, etc. But with no actual disc how do I do that?

 

Also, I bought Lion for my Mac Pro (2006) and MacBook Pro (2011). I installed that on both. Now I realize the MBP can take Mt Lion. Do I have to make a separate purchase for Mt. Lion for the MBP? (The Mac Pro, sadly, even though it was top of the line at the time, the 2006-2007 models cannot be upgraded to Mt. Lion, but I falsy assumed the MBOP had the same limitation. Now that I know it does not...

 

Apple tech support has been great for me of late. Some of my difficulties lie in that I am a very long time Mac user but halted at Snow Leopard. I just recently bought new iMac; new iPad Mini; and Lion for MBP; all of which hustle me fully into iCloud. It's hard to separate out which of these new things might be cause for clarification. So even when Apple customer support is very gratious and helpful, I continue to have multiple problems and it's just too much time on the phone given that I get shuttled from one department to another for each different issue.

iMac, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2)
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (221,010 points)

    Repair the Hard Drive and Permissions - Lion/Mountain Lion

     

    Boot to the Recovery HD:

     

    Restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the COMMAND and R keys until the menu screen appears. Alternatively, restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the OPTION key until the boot manager screen appears. Select the Recovery HD and click on the downward pointing arrow button.

     

    Repair

     

    When the recovery menu appears select Disk Utility. After DU loads select your hard drive entry (mfgr.'s ID and drive size) from the the left side list.  In the DU status area you will see an entry for the S.M.A.R.T. status of the hard drive.  If it does not say "Verified" then the hard drive is failing or failed. (SMART status is not reported on external Firewire or USB drives.) If the drive is "Verified" then select your OS X volume from the list on the left (sub-entry below the drive entry,) click on the First Aid tab, then click on the Repair Disk button. If DU reports any errors that have been fixed, then re-run Repair Disk until no errors are reported. If no errors are reported then click on the Repair Permissions button. When the process is completed, then quit DU and return to the main menu. Select Restart from the Apple menu.

     

     

    Reinstalling Lion/Mountain Lion Without Erasing the Drive

     

    Boot to the Recovery HD: Restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the COMMAND and R keys until the menu screen appears. Alternatively, restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the OPTION key until the boot manager screen appears. Select the Recovery HD and click on the downward pointing arrow button.

     

    Repair the Hard Drive and Permissions: Upon startup select Disk Utility from the main menu. Repair the Hard Drive and Permissions as follows.

     

    When the recovery menu appears select Disk Utility. After DU loads select your hard drive entry (mfgr.'s ID and drive size) from the the left side list.  In the DU status area you will see an entry for the S.M.A.R.T. status of the hard drive.  If it does not say "Verified" then the hard drive is failing or failed. (SMART status is not reported on external Firewire or USB drives.) If the drive is "Verified" then select your OS X volume from the list on the left (sub-entry below the drive entry,) click on the First Aid tab, then click on the Repair Disk button. If DU reports any errors that have been fixed, then re-run Repair Disk until no errors are reported. If no errors are reported click on the Repair Permissions button. Wait until the operation completes, then quit DU and return to the main menu.

     

    Reinstall Lion/Mountain Lion: Select Reinstall Lion/Mountain Lion and click on the Continue button.

     

    Note: You will need an active Internet connection. I suggest using Ethernet if possible because it is three times faster than wireless.

     

     

    Install or Reinstall Lion/Mountain Lion from Scratch

     

    Be sure you backup your files to an external drive or second internal drive because the following procedure will remove everything from the hard drive.

     

    Boot to the Recovery HD:

     

    Restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the COMMAND and R keys until the menu screen appears. Alternatively, restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the OPTION key until the boot manager screen appears. Select the Recovery HD and click on the downward pointing arrow button.

     

    Erase the hard drive:

     

      1. Select Disk Utility from the main menu and click on the Continue button.

     

      2. After DU loads select your startup volume (usually Macintosh HD) from the

          left side list. Click on the Erase tab in the DU main window.

     

      3. Set the format type to Mac OS Extended (Journaled.) Optionally, click on

            the Security button and set the Zero Data option to one-pass. Click on

          the Erase button and wait until the process has completed.

     

      4. Quit DU and return to the main menu.

     

    Reinstall Lion: Select Reinstall Lion/Mountain Lion and click on the Install button.

     

    Note: You will need an active Internet connection. I suggest using Ethernet if possible

                because it is three times faster than wireless.

  • Ralph Landry1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,815 points)

    To run disk utilities under ML, restart holding the Command and R kesy, that will put you on the Recovery Hard Drive, a hidden partition on the hard drive.  From there you can run DU.

     

    If you could load Lion on the MBP it would be covered by the one purchase, however, machines that ship with an operating sysem cannot be downgraded as the firmware will not permit doing so.  There are users on here who try and insist they have a way, but the ways are generally very convoluted and not supported by Apple.

  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (221,010 points)

    Well, I don't understand any problem with Disk Utility since it's general usage hasn't changed much since it was released with OS X 10.0. And, it's only a small step forward from the Disk Tool that came with OS 9. After 30 years with Macs (that's about 10 years more than me) it should by now be old hat.

     

    You state that you last used Snow Leopard. Everything in this topic is the same as it is in Snow Leopard except instead ob booting from an installer disc you boot from an invisible partition on your hard drive or startup disk. The whole difference is with a disc you boot then hold down the C key. While with Lion and Mountain Lion you hold down the OPTION and R keys:

     

    Boot to the Recovery HD:


    Restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the COMMAND and R keys until the menu screen appears. Alternatively, restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the OPTION key until the boot manager screen appears. Select the Recovery HD and click on the downward pointing arrow button.

     

    I've just tried to layout a simple step by step process. Using these tools over the Internet is not very difficult, and certainly is not "mired in steps and stages."

     

    The reason you don't have this information is you haven't tried to find it, don't read manuals, etc., etc. No offense, but finding this information isn't that difficult. There's Google and there is Apple's extensive knowledge base of articles.

     

    Perhaps instead of complaining about it, why don't you just follow the steps provided and do it, whatever it is.

  • Imp68 Level 4 Level 4 (2,135 points)

    Just to boil it down to the basics...

     

    The OS DVD that used to come with systems is now built into the system, on a separate partition.  You just boot holding Command and R at the same time to get at it.

     

    Kappy, of course, is exactly right.  I just wanted to simplify.

     

    Mountain Lion that came with a system cannot be transfered.  It'll be a purchase from the app store on the other system.  THAT purchase can be used across compatible systems that you own.

  • Barney-15E Level 7 Level 7 (33,270 points)

    I'm not sure what seems so difficult. Instead of sticking in a DVD and holding down the C key while it reboots, you do nothing and hold down cmd-r while it reboots.

     

    I'm not sure where the "steps and stages" are located, except the one I posted above.

     

    If you want to move to a new OS, then yes, you have to buy it. That one purchase you can use on all of your Macs that have the capability to run it. You don't have to move your Snow Leopard to Lion before Mountain Lion, unless you just like to waste time.

  • Ralph Landry1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,815 points)

    George,

     

    Let's stop and start over as this is getting rather confused from where I am sitting.

     

    First, addressing the new, Mountain Lion equiped iMac - there are no install disks supplied with any preinstalled Lion or Mountain Lion Macs.  The "install disk" is the hidden Recovery Hard Drive partition on the internal drive.  That partition will not show up on Disk Utilities, but it will show if you restart the computer and hold the Option key becasue that shows all bootable startup disks.

     

    To run Disk Utility or reinstall ML, you restart the computer holding the Command and R keys to boot directly to the Recovery HD, or hold the Option key and then select the Recovery HD and let the iMac boot.  You can then select from a dialogue window what you want to do: use utilities, reinstall, erase and install, etc.

     

    When you purchased the iMac you purchased the license for ML on that machine, not as a free download for other machines.  For another machine you need to purchase ML from the Mac App Store, but you can then install it on any other compatible (http://www.apple.com/osx/specs) computer YOU own.

     

    Second, addressing the MacBook Pro - since that came with Snow Leopard, from what you say that is my assumption, you can install Lion or ML.  You can keep running the Lion installation you already put on the MBP, or you can installl ML.  As noted above, you must buy ML for that and subsequent machines since the iMac license is only for the iMac and not your other computers.  You did not need to put Lion on to go to ML, but since you had already purchased Lion for the Mac Pro, so be it.

     

    If you decide you want to upgrade the MBP to ML open App Store which will put you into the Mac App Store, and navigate to ML and pay the $20 charge, download and you are good to go.  When you do the download, before installing, go to Applications and find the InstallOSX file and make a copy in a safe place, such as your documents folder...the last step in the install is deletion of the install package.  Make a copy you can have in reserve incase you want to install on another machine and save yourself the download time.

     

    Now, I hope I am understanding the situation correctly, if not feel free to say so.

     

    Ralph

  • Noodle-head Level 3 Level 3 (680 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2013 3:32 PM (in response to Ralph Landry1)

    Kappy, Ralph, Imp6, Barney:

    Thanks to all of you. I appreciate your patience and provision of information.

    That said, I think I bit off more than I can chew, at one time. Upgrade to Lion on my MBP and Mac Pro; new iMac with Mt. Lion; new iPad mini (given where I live and lack of connectivity, I have no mobile devices, so even an iPhone is a new item for me). So the iPad mini comes with a barrage of new uphill learning curves of its own. AND, I'm not a spring chicken so there is the set-in-my-ways factor. None of this is an excuse for not spending the time, as I think Kappy wrote, to read all the manuals, etc. My only excuse is that I am a long time Mac user and just wanted to get down to work using all this new-to-me hardware and software.

    Maybe it's comparable to what they say about learning a new language - that is, to not try to compare and convert each thing but rather to immerse oneself in it.

     

    Anyway, I am reading, copying and pasting all this good information into a new notebook for continued learning.

     

    I think I got the whole part about the Recovery HD and booting into it to access disk utility.

    All that said, I have one last thing to say in my feeble defense; none of these new devices or software come with easy to access manuals or instructions. They just don't. E.g., I thought I'd use the morning on a job away from home to explore my new iPad, only to find out the manual was only accessible via Internet (and, again, where I live, this is not routine. I had to drive home, connect, google how to get a downloadable manual, then discovered I needed iBook to read it, which led to another lengthy process. As I said, it's just not there. And there is a presumption that gaining access is easy, when it is not.

     

    But, thanks, really. I just neede to say that. And, yes, I have said it to Aple.

  • Ralph Landry1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,815 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2013 3:49 PM (in response to Noodle-head)

    You are very welcome, Noodle-head; the iPad user guide is available free from the iBookstore, just download once and it is always there for you to read or reference.

     

    One of the most thorough Mountain Lion books (yes a real tree-ware book) is Mountain Lion, the missing manual, by David Pogue, there is one for Lion also.  Great reference with a lot of details on all aspects of the operating systems.

     

    Even with all this technology I still end up buying paper manuals because it is so easy and second-nature to move around in them looking for exactly what I want instead of what the smart search thinks I want.

     

    Anyway, glad all of this is helping someone.

  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (59,150 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2013 4:38 PM (in response to Imp68)

    Imp68 wrote:

    The OS DVD that used to come with systems is now built into the system, on a separate partition.  You just boot holding Command and R at the same time to get at it.

    No. All you get with the Recovery HD is a bootable volume containing a minimal OS that allows running some OS utilities, such as Disk Utility and Terminal. I also provides the components that allow you to access the Internet, but only to Apple's servers, where the minimal program allows downloading the 4.5 GB installer that used to reside on the DVD, but really just wastes resources, such as bandwidth, time, and electricity.

    27" i7 iMac SL, Lion, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), G4 450 MP w/Leopard, 9.2.2
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (59,150 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 11, 2013 4:43 PM (in response to Ralph Landry1)

    Ralph Landry1 wrote:

    The "install disk" is the hidden Recovery Hard Drive partition on the internal drive.  That partition will not show up on Disk Utilitie

    I addressed the install disc thing in my previous. Secondly, you can get Disk Utility to show the hidden Recovery HD, if you quit Disk Utility, run this command in the Terminal.app, relaunch Disk Utility, and select Debug->Show every partition.

     

    defaults write com.apple.diskutility DUDebugMenuEnabled 1

    27" i7 iMac SL, Lion, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), G4 450 MP w/Leopard, 9.2.2
  • Imp68 Level 4 Level 4 (2,135 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 12, 2013 3:59 AM (in response to baltwo)

    You conveniently left off part of my quote.  "Just to boil it down to the basics..."  I wasn't being literal.

     

    I wasn't posting for an expert's benefit.  I was trying to help someone new to the idea understand.

     

    Lets not be so unnecessarily nitpicky to make ourselves look smart.

  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (13,805 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 12, 2013 4:30 AM (in response to baltwo)

    Just to add a tiny bit to baltwo's comment about how to make the Recovery HD visible in Disk Utility:

     

    Just because you can do this does not mean you should do anything with it once it is visible!  The main value for this is just to check to make sure you have a Recovery HD partition on your startup drive.

     

    Conceivably, you could also use the Repair Disk or Verify Disk functions of Disk Utility to check its health, but I would not recommend it. (To do this you need to mount the partition. Disk Utility will let you do this, but if you do, be sure to unmount it afterwards.)

     

    Also, just for the sake of completeness, Apple offers an assistant you can download to make a copy of your

    Recovery HD partition on a USB drive (including an inexpensive thumb drive) so if you can't start up from the Recovery HD partition on your internal drive, you can use that instead. Note that you must have the partition on your internal HD for this to work & that if your Mac came with Lion or Mountain Lion installed, this copy will only work with that Mac.

  • blackdogaudio Level 2 Level 2 (310 points)

    One more thing that might help....my mid-2011 which came with Lion pre-installed also had a copy of the owner's manual embedded in Documents which contains instructions on how to access and use Disk Utility.

     

    Perform a search for "imac". For example, the specific file name for my owner's manual is: imac_mid2011_ug.pdf

     

    Very handy for folks new to the Apple ecosystem such as myself!

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