4 Replies Latest reply: Jul 2, 2014 1:44 PM by Kiwisda
Kiwisda Level 1 Level 1

Hi all. I recently used Time Machine to restore a previous system on my 2008 MacBook. I have Mavericks, but needed to get into Leopard to access information from a defunct program. Problem is, whereas I could use Command R on restart to start the erase and restore process, I can't do that from Leopard. (I didn't know that before!!) After an internet search, I realized that you need an install disk to do this from Leopard. Well, I do have a Snow Leopard Install DVD (I think it's from my iMac). But when I try it on the MacBook, I get the message that I can't use this disk on this computer. I did an update software, but the result is the same. I have all my files on an external from Time Machine, but how can I get back to anything later than Leopard??

Help would be appreciated (again).

  • a brody Level 9 Level 9
    Classic Mac OS

    command-R internet restore is only available to 10.7 and later prebundled Macs, and

    Macs with the following firmware installed:

    Computers that can be upgraded to use OS X Internet Recovery


    or to restore the 10.7 or later operating system that was already installed on the hard drive.


    A 2008 MacBook does not support 10.5.0.  Use this tip to determine your Mac's age:

    How to find your Mac's model and age?


    Dates to remember include:


    November 15, 2007 Mac OS X 10.5.1 retail

    February 26, 2008 MacBook 4,1

    June 30, 2008 Mac OS X 10.5.4 retail

    October 14, 2008 MacBook 5,1

    December 15, 2008 Mac OS X 10.5.6 retail

    10.5 Retail discs look like: https://discussions.apple.com/servlet/JiveServlet/showImage/102-2275-55-43237/le opard.jpg

    and do not say Upgrade, Dropin, or OEM, and in white print show which version of 10.5 they have.

    10.6 Retail can be used to restore the backup from Time Machine as well.   It is available from:


  • Kiwisda Level 1 Level 1

    Hi. Thanks for your reply. It looks like this is a bit of a learning curve for me. I thought: Have Time Machine, can go back to a system, then forward again! I thought that's what TM was all about. Obviously going back is much much easier than going forward sometimes!


    I'm in Korea. I tried speaking to someone here, but the problems of language made it very difficult. So I'd be very grateful for a little more advice from you.


    I'm now clear on some things, a little confused on others. I'm now in Leopard. I achieved my purpose (accessed some info through apps that are now defunct), but can't get out of Leopard without an install disk (which I don't have, since an App service center kindly upgraded me to Snow Leopard a few years ago in the process of doing some work on my MacBook). I'm clear that once I'm back in Snow Leopard, I'm away laughing. Because then, as long as I update to the latest Snow Leopard software, I can access the Apple Store and upgrade to whatever I want.


    Here's where I'm not clear. You are telling me I need to know my Mac's age and model. (Using the links you supplied, I find I have a 5,2, early 2009, 120GB.) But why do I need to know that? Because at the App Store, I can buy a Snow Leopard install disk and the store does not tell me I need to know what model my Mac is. There seems to be just the one kind of install disk for sale. HOW WILL I KNOW I'M BUYING THE CORRECT ONE?

  • a brody Level 9 Level 9
    Classic Mac OS

    An early 2009 MacBook only supports the system specific 10.5 installer disc.  It will not support the retail version. You must contact AppleCare to get 10.5 system specific disc if missing or lost, if it needs to be reinstalled, if you hadn't formerly cloned the software from a working copy of 10.5.


    10.6 retail ( http://store.apple.com/us/product/MC573/mac-os-x-106-snow-leopard in the U.S. and http://store.apple.com/kr/product/MC573/mac-os-x-106-snow-leopard (in Korea))  will import the 10.5 Time Machine backup into 10.6, though some 10.5 installed applications that haven't been tested with 10.6 may not work.   Also 10.6 by default does not come installed with Rosetta, though you can install it later.   Rosetta supports older applications from before 2006.   10.7 and later do not support Rosetta at all without special virtualization instructions:




    To install Rosetta on 10.6, follow these directions:



  • Kiwisda Level 1 Level 1

    The "system specific 10.5 installer disc" sounds a bit scary! But actually, I'm already in 10.5. All I need is to be in 10.6 so that I can access the App Store. Then I can get back to Mavericks. So, if I've rightly understood you, I can order the 10.6 from the link you gave me, and that should do the trick.

    Thanks very much for your help.