Previous 1 2 3 Next 44 Replies Latest reply: Mar 31, 2015 11:19 AM by MlchaelLAX
MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

For reasons that have been expressed very often on this forum (primarily Rosetta and the ablitity to run PPC-apps) many people have been asking me to put together in one place the results of my research on this topic.  I have taken all of the research that I have found, and refined and improved much of it.


This thread, as Part One, will look at the long process for completing this result; the so-called "not easily accomplished in three steps" process.  It will be followed later by my and hopefully others, suggestions for the "easy" way. 


Why the long process first?


•  Some people appreciate being able to roll up there sleeves, do it yourself and achieve the satisfaction that comes from successful completion of the project;


•  Just like I have made improvements to what I found in my research, I expect others will offer improvements to what I have to offer; and


•  If the "easy" way is offered first, there will be little encouragement to improve the long process.


What is needed:


•  Installation of Parallels 7 in your Lion computer - I will expect this step has already been completed.


•  A fresh copy of the Snow Leopard Installation DVD (and not a machine specific, nor restore disk that may have come with your computer).


•  Use of the programs Disk Utility and Terminal, both of which are in the /Applications/Utitities/ folder.


What are the steps that will be taken:


1.  Preparation of the Snow Leopard Installation DVD for use in Parallels 7


2.  Installation of Snow Leopard into Parallels 7 (and optionally installing Parallel Tools)


3.  Upgrading Snow Leopard to 10.6.8 and other available upgrades


4.  Creating a backup of the completed process.


I will be offering each step, one at a time...

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    It will also require the use of Text Edit located in the Applications folder within the Snow Leopard partition...

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    Step One - Preparing the Snow Leopard Installation DVD


    1.  Insert a fresh Snow Leopard Installation DVD into your drive and launch Disk Utility (/Applications/Utilities/).  You can obtain this DVD cheaply from the Apple Store with free shipping (as of April, 2012).


    2.  Select the device for your optical drive (note that this is NOT the Mac OS X Installation disk, but rather the device that has mounted it; in this example the device is named "SuperDrive”).  BE VERY CAREFUL HERE!


    Disk Utility.jpg


    3.  From Disk Utility’s File menu, choose “New > Disk Image from [device]” from the File menu, set the image format to “DVD/CD master” and create the disk image on your Desktop.


    4.  Mount the new disk image by double-clicking the file.  You will now have two separate items on your Desktop:  the image file and the container named Mac OS X Install DVD.


    5.  Launch Terminal (/Applications/Utilities/); carefully type the following command (all in one line) into Terminal and then hit Return/Enter:


    touch “/Volumes/Mac OS X Install DVD/System/Library/CoreServices/ServerVersion.plist”

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    Step Two - Installing Snow Leopard into Parallels 7 in Lion


    1.  Launch Parallels 7 from your Applications Folder


    2.  From the File menu go to New… and enter your account password when requested.


    3.  From the New Virtual Machine window select Install Windows or another OS from DVD or image file and click Continue:


    Install Windows.jpg


    4.  In New Installation, in the install from box, select Choose an Image File…  then find, select and open the Snow Leopard image file (for example SuperDrive.cdr) created in Step One above, and then click Continue.


    5.  If Automatic Detection fails, in the next window select Mac OS X and click OK.


    6.  The default name will be Mac OS X.  I like to make it more descriptive by naming it Mac OS X Snow Leopard.  Also check the box at the bottom - Customize Setting Before Installation (you can leave the box Share WIth Others Users of This Mac unchecked and click Continue.


    7.  At the Virtual Machine Configuration window, click Continue.


    8.  OS X Snow Leopard will  now start to be installed into the Parallels Mac OS X Snow Leopard.pvm file located at ~/Documents/Parallels/.  As with all Snow Leopard installations, the following selections need to be made, as they come up:


              a)  Use English for the main language (click on the right arrow).


              b)  Install Mac OS X (click on Continue).


              c)  Agree to the terms of the software licensing agreement by clicking Agree.


              d)  Select the disk where you want to install Snow Leopard by clicking on the Macintosh HD, but DO NOT YET CLICK ON INSTALL


    9.  In the Utilities Menu to the right of the Mac OS X Installer Menu (at the top of the Snow Leopard installation screen), Launch Terminal.


    10  type the following command (including the quotation marks) in Terminal and then click RETURN/ENTER:


    mkdir -p '/Volumes/Macintosh HD/System/Library/CoreServices/'


    11.  Now type this command (including quotation marks) in Terminal and hit RETURN/ENTER:


    touch ‘/Volumes/Macintosh HD/System/Library/CoreServices/ServerVersion.plist’


    12.  Quit Terminal and go back to the installation of Snow Leopard; BUT FIRST:  Click Customize and select Rosetta and optionally Quicktime 7 and all printer drivers.  Click on OK.


    13.  Click on Install and the process will take upwards to 30 minutes or more as Snow Leopard is installed into Mac OS X Snow Leopard.pvm.


    14.  As it initiates Snow Leopard be sure to remember the Account Name and Password you establish.


    15.  Upon completion the installation process will reboot and you will now have a Snow Leopard Parallels window -- Cancel ANY attempt by Software Update at this time. I recommend the following optional settings in the Snow Leopard environment:


              a)  Go to Preferences in the Finder menu and make sure that Hard Disks and Connected Servers are selected.


              b)  Launch System Preferences and go to Date/Time and then Clock and select show seconds


              c)  In System Preferences, go to Sharing and turn on File Sharing.  NOTE: you may have to turn on printer sharing in your Lion environment to access your printers in Snow Leopard.


    16.  Shut down Snow Leopard.  In Lion go to ~/Documents/Parallels/ and make an Alias of the file Mac OS X Snow Leopard.pvm and place the Alias on your desktop to easily double click to launch Snow Leopard.  Optionally make a duplicate copy of the Mac OS X Snow Leopard.pvm file (Command-D) for protection.

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    Step Three - Updating the Snow Leopard Parallels environment


    1.  Installing Parallels Tools


              a.  Double click the Snow Leopard Alias to start Parallels, but do not click to start Snow Leopard.


              b.  In the Parallels menu - Virtual Machine, go down to Configure…  Select Hardware and select CD/DVD1.  In the Connect to - box go down to Choose an Image File.  Migrate the Open window to /Macintosh HD/Library/Parallels/Tools/ and select the file: prl-tools-mac.iso.  Click the red button to close this window and Click Snow Leopard to start.


              c.  Open the Parallel Tools icon on the Desktop and double click Install and follow the installation instructions.  When complete, quit the Installer, eject Parallel Tools and Restart Snow Leopard.


    2.  Preparation for updating Snow Leopard


              a.  Open Text Edit in Snow Leopard.


              b.  Copy the following xml code into a blank open document in Text Edit:


    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>

    <!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN"


    <plist version="1.0">








                <string>/bin/rm -f /System/Library/CoreServices/ServerVersion.plist; trap "/usr/bin/touch /System/Library/CoreServices/ServerVersion.plist; exit" SIGINT SIGTERM SIGHUP; sleep 999999 &amp; wait $!</string>










              c.  Save as com.rectalogic.vmware.plist in /Macintosh HD/Library/LaunchDaemons/.  BE SURE to save as TEXT and not Rich Text Format.


              d.  Open Terminal in Snow Leopard from /Macintosh HD/Applications/Utilities/.  Enter the following text in Terminal (all in one line) and then hit RETURN/ENTER:


      sudo chown root:wheel /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.rectalogic.vmware.plist


              e.  It will ask you for your Snow Leopard account password; enter it (nothing will appear on screen as you type the password) and hit RETURN/ENTER.


              f.  Enter the following text in Terminal (all in one line) and then hit RETURN/ENTER:


              sudo launchctl load /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.rectalogic.vmware.plist


    3. Updating Snow Leopard and other software updates


              a.  In the Apple Menu in Snow Leopard go to Software Updates...


              b.  After it Checks for New Software, it will tell you updates are available.  Click the Show Details button.  My advice is that at this time (May, 2012) all updates should be accepted except for the Apple Software Installation Update 1.0 (which has had some problems and probably only fixes installation problems of software that you would preferably be installing into Lion anyway).  You will most likely have to restart after the Software Installation and they may be additional software updates that will appear after a restart.  Repeat this process until all updates are complete.


    4.  Congratulations: you now have a completely functional Snow Leopard environment in Parallels 7 operating in Lion!


    Step Four - Backup your Snow Leopard Parallels file


    1.  Shut Down Snow Leopard.


    2.  Make a backup of the Mac OS X Snow Leopard.pvm file. 



  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    Thank you to all of the internet sources that contributed to help me compile this solution!

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    In the Terminal commands in Step Two: there is a space between Macintosh and HD.    In the Terminal commands in Step Three there is a space after root:wheel and after load.  They are each all one continuous line.


    You should be able to copy and paste them correctly, as follows:


    mkdir -p '/Volumes/Macintosh HD/System/Library/CoreServices/'


    touch ‘/Volumes/Macintosh HD/System/Library/CoreServices/ServerVersion.plist’


    sudo chown root:wheel /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.rectalogic.vmware.plist


    sudo launchctl load /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.rectalogic.vmware.plist

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    In Step One, the Terminal command has single quote marks, not double quote marks (all in one line with a space between Install and DVD).  You can copy and paste it from below:


    touch '/Volumes/Mac OS X Install DVD/System/Library/CoreServices/ServerVersion.plist'

  • woodmeister50 Level 5 (5,170 points)

    deleted comment

  • Topher Kessler Level 6 (9,865 points)

    Agreed, and it also is unsupported by both Apple and virtualization tools (parallels, vmware, etc.), so while it might be a fun hobby to get going, I would not rely on it as a solution for day to day productivity. The best solution here is to either avoid upgrading if you still need Rosetta or similar tools that Snow Leopard offers, or update your applications to work with the new OS (for most there should be an updated option).

  • BDAqua Level 10 (122,286 points)

    Good work, thanks!

  • asmystiq Level 1 (0 points)

    Great job, Michael! Thank you for this!


    In addition, if appropriate, could you please provide some of your research links? While I understand most of the steps, I would like to be able to understand all of them and read more about the techniques utilized.


    Initially, I installed Snow Leopard in Parallels using the guide (and your comments) from:



    which you mentioned in your post:



    in reply to my question on:



    While I stumbled upon that guide before finding your posts, they were immensely helpful in steering me in the right direction. Thank you for that. However, while Snow Leopard in Parallels is finally running, I have experienced a few issues and posted them on the guide's website:

  e-part-two/ ox-guest-os/


    Now, I have not yet tried the method you posted here, so I don't know if it resolves those issues, but I am eager to try it to find out. I haven't seen any replies to my questions and I anticipate it will be awhile before anyone responds (last posts there were in November 2011), so if you could share your ideas about the issues I encountered, I would very much appreciate it. I imagine it would be best to do so on that website, but if starting a new discussion on ASC is more appropriate, I am all for it.


    Again, thanks for all the hard work that you put into this guide! I look forward to the next installment.

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    Thank you both for your kind words!


    Ivan Expert seems to have stopped moderating comments on those two posts in mid-November, 2011 (including mine), so please let me know your concerns directly, here.


    My research started with these posts:


  (NOTE SEE ALSO: The comment by David Martorana)



    AND I did some brushing up on Mac OS X Unix and showing/hiding Files/Folders in Mac OS X

  • MlchaelLAX Level 4 (2,027 points)

    Due to the fact that this forum does not allow for continuous editing of earlier posts, I have moved the most up to date list of instructions here:


  • Mutassi Level 1 (0 points)

    This doubt may sound a little dumb but I'm such a noob in these subjects, are all these steps able to do in a computer that came with lion from factory? 'cause i had been looking for downgrading my OS in order to use apps like Logic 8 (and so on...) but the answers i found differ in this: so if you had a computer that came with snow leopard in the beginning and you upgraded to lion you can downgrade to snow leopard again, but if you have a computer that came with the lion OS from factory there's no possible way to downgrade to snow leopard. That's the reason of my question 'cause i don't want to waste any money purchasing the snow leopard dvd in order to make the partition you're talking about if it's not going to work.


    Thank you very much in advance, please answer as soon as you can!

Previous 1 2 3 Next