How to make a bootable macOS installer

In this newsletter we will run throughout the steps important to create a bootable installer of the Mac running device, whether or not it is so you’ll be able to set up the newest model of the macOS on more than one Macs; set up the newest macOS beta, carry out a blank set up of the macOS; or simply to be ready with an emergency disk in case your Mac reviews issues and you do not want to attach to the web or in Recovery mode, or can not get admission to Recovery mode.

If you need to learn the way to make a bootable set up of macOS Catalina, macOS Mojave, or an older model of Mac OS X or macOS, you’ve got come to the correct position.

You too can use your bootable installer to set up the MacOS on a separate quantity of your onerous power (or on a partition in case you are working an older model of the Mac OS), it is usually a hassle-free method to return to an older model of MacOS X or MacOS. It’s additionally a nice possibility if you happen to discovered downloading the installer took a very long time and you do not fancy spending the following couple of days downloading it more than one instances on more than one Macs. Once if relatively sufficient!

Luckily, making a bootable set up of the Mac running device changed into a good deal more straightforward when Apple introduced OS X Mavericks again in 2013. With that model of Mac OS X, and all variations since, it is been conceivable to use the Terminal command createinstallmedia to create a bootable installer of the macOS, on this article we will display you ways. Before we do, we run thru getting the set up information. If you have already got them you’ll be able to leap immediately to how to make a bootable installer and which createinstall code to use.

If you need to run macOS from an exterior power, which is somewhat other, learn this.

Install macOS bootable

What you want to make a bootable set up power

There are two major issues you’ll be able to want to make your bootable set up. The entire procedure should not take very lengthy. 

A 12GB Flash Drive (a minimum of!)

We counsel a 12GB (or extra) power, this can be greater than you want, as an example, the installer for the beta of Mojave used to be 5.68GB whilst High Sierra’s installer used to be 4.3GB. 

We counsel a Flash reminiscence stick as it’ll be sooner. You’ll additionally take pleasure in USB 3, or USB Type C – this can be your most effective selection when you’ve got a more recent Mac.

If you might have knowledge at the power that you just plan to use you are going to want to switch it to some other power, or get a new power, as it’ll be totally formatted and erased.

The set up information

Find install files

Depending on which model of macOS you’re working, and the model you need to to set up, you are going to both be in a position to get the set up information from Software Update in System Preferences, the Mac App Store, or you are going to have to download them from in other places.

The Mac App Store is most certainly the simpler possibility, however there can nonetheless be difficulties relying on which model of macOS your system is working, and if you happen to have been hoping to snatch older set up information that may be difficult – we display you ways right here growing old variations of macOS.

It is going with out pronouncing that you’re going to want an web connection to obtain the tool and you will want it whilst putting in the model of macOS if it wishes to test for firmware or ascertain your iCloud credentials.

How to get MacOS set up information

As we mentioned already, the way you get the set up information depends on the model of macOS you’re working lately and the model you need the installer for. Below we will take a look at how to get Catalina installers in addition to how to grow older variations of the macOS and even Mac OS X. We do have a devoted article about How to obtain outdated Mac OS X and macOS variations.

How to get Catalina set up information

If you need to get the installer for the brand new macOS that arrived in October 2019, macOS Catalina, practice those steps.

  1. If you’re working Mojave for your Mac move to System Preferences > Software Update.
  2. Wait whilst your Mac searches for the newest replace to macOS.
  3. When it tells you that the running device replace is to be had to obtain, move forward and obtain the set up information.

But prevent earlier than clicking to set up – you want to replica this set up document earlier than putting in for your Mac if you need to have get admission to to it to make the boostable installer. Instructions for that underneath.

How to get Catalina – in case you are working Catalina

If you’re already working Catalina, Software Update may not display you the tool as to be had to obtain, however you’ll be able to nonetheless get the set up information from the Mac App Store.

  1. Open the Mac App Store.
  2. Go to the Catalina web page, you’ll be able to click on this hyperlink to Catalina at the Mac App Store. 
  3. Now, if you happen to click on on Get, your Mac will be offering to obtain the installers.

Again, do not click on on set up as you want the set up document for the following degree of this instructional…

How to get MacOS Catalina beta set up information

If it’s an installer for the Catalina beta you’re after, you’ll want to join the beta if you need to take a look at and check out out the brand new Catalina options earlier than they’re launched to most of the people.

We move into extra information about getting and putting in the Catalina beta right here. We have the code you’ll be able to want for putting in the Catalina beta by way of an exterior power underneath.

How to grow older MacOS set up information

With macOS Catalina, Mojave or High Sierra put in it is a little difficult to get the set up information for older variations of macOS. This is as a result of when High Sierra introduced Apple stopped making older variations of the OS to be had to obtain by way of the Mac App Store.

Luckily it might nonetheless be performed, and we provide an explanation for how to get outdated variations of macOS right here.

However, if you happen to are not working a kind of more recent variations of macOS – or you might have get admission to to a Mac this is – practice those steps to obtain the set up information of an older macOS.

Here’s how to get the macOS set up information for in case you are after an older model of the macOS, and also you are not lately working Catalina, Mojave or High Sierra.

  1. Launch the Mac App Store for your Mac.
  2. Look for the model of macOS you need within the retailer (when you’ve got up to now downloaded the model seek underneath your Purchased tab).
  3. Click at the Download button. If you might have already put in this model of macOS, you are going to see a message caution that the model of macOS is already put in in this pc. Click on Continue to ascertain that you just nonetheless need to obtain the entire installer. MacOS download from Mac App Store
  4. Your Mac will obtain the installer to your Applications folder. This procedure would possibly take a while relying at the pace of your connection and whether or not you’re the usage of a wi-fi community. It took us about 10 mins over Ethernet.
  5. If it routinely launches after obtain, give upyou don’t need to get started the method of putting in it for your Mac as a result of doing so will delete the installers – and it’s the installers you want. If it opens, shut the installer.
  6. You will in finding the set up information on your Applications folder, which you’ll be able to get admission to by way of the Finder.

How to make a bootable macOS installer

Now you might have the set up information, we will be able to transfer onto the method of creating the bootable installer.

Note, the createinstallmedia way described right here doesn’t paintings underneath OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or previous – it calls for OS X 10.7 Lion or later. Also, the processes have modified somewhat since Mavericks so in case your having a look to create an set up of one of the crucial ‘Cat’ variations of Mac OS X you must learn this older article as a substitute.

Since Mavericks, developing a bootable set up of MacOS calls for a unmarried command in Terminal. The createinstallmedia command makes it conceivable to create a bootable replica of an installer on any power that’s attached to your Mac.

Note that the createinstallmedia command erases the rest for your exterior disk despite the fact that, so make positive there’s not anything on it that you want.

These are the directions to practice if it’s the macOS High Sierra installer you require, even if if you happen to sought after a other model of a post-Mavericks OS, or the Mojave beta, the directions will probably be identical.

  1. Plug in an exterior power with a minimum of 8GB house (ideally 12GB) as that’s how a lot the installer would require.
  2. Launch Disk Utility (press Cmd + spacebar and get started to kind Disk Utility).
  3. Before this subsequent step, notice: in case you are working High Sierra or more recent you are going to want to click on at the View drop down underneath the shut minimise buttons. Choose Show All Devices from the choices. Now you are going to see the exterior root power as well as to the quantity underneath it.
  4. Select the foundation power within the sidebar (the next move may not with if you happen to most effective make a selection the quantity).
  5. Click on Erase.
  6. Choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled) because the Format.
  7. Choose GUID Partition Map because the Scheme.
  8. Your power will probably be referred to as Untitled by way of default, it’s essential to give your power a title corresponding to “macOS” or “USB”. (Note you simply want to substitute the time period USB within the Terminal command with the title of your power).
  9. Click on Erase.
  10. Wait whilst Disk Uitlity creates the partition and units up the power (it will take a couple of minutes).
  11. Then click on Done.
  12. Open Terminal (the best way is to press cmd+house bar after which get started typing Terminal).
  13. Copy the next textual content that corresponds to the model of macOS you’re putting in into Terminal, you’ll be able to in finding the textual content within the phase underneath.
  14. Click Enter/Return.
  15. Terminal will ask for a password. This is your consumer password. Note you received’t see characters seem as you kind it in, that’s nice. After typing on your password, press Enter.
  16. Terminal will warn that it’s about to erase the power (so make positive there wasn’t the rest necessary on it!). If you need to proceed press Y after which Return. The procedure can take a whilst, you’ll be able to see “Erasing Disk: 0%… 10%… 20%… 30%…100%…

  17. Now Terminal will spend a couple of minutes copying the installer document to your power. “Copying installer information to disk… Copy entire” and so forth will seem within the Terminal window.
  18. When Terminal has completed copying the installer you are going to see the phrases Copy entire and Done seem.
  19. Now you might have the installer at the exterior power you’ll be able to use that to set up more than one copies of macOS. Plug the exterior power into the Mac that you need to set up the macOS on.
  20. Start up the Mac, preserving down the Option/Alt key whilst it’s booting up.
  21. Your Mac will show the Startup Manager, click on for your exterior power to make a selection that because the startup disk. Your Mac will get started up in Recovery Mode.
  22. Click on Install macOS after which click on on Continue. The model of macOS must get started to set up for your Mac now.

You too can run the Mac running device without delay from an exterior power slightly than your integrated startup disk, that is at hand in case you are checking out new variations of the Mac OS. The procedure is other to the only described above despite the fact that, and we quilt it right here: Read about How to run macOS on an exterior onerous power right here.

Note that older variations of macOS used “applicationpath” whilst more recent ones do not – if you happen to use the command you are going to get an error (we’ve the code for the all variations of macOS and Mac OS X underneath).

createinstallmedia instructions 

The createinstallmedia command will probably be somewhat other relying on which model of macOS you’re in need of to use.

Note MyVolume could have a other title for you, as an example it may well be USB or identical. Check in Disk Utilities, it is the title of the exterior disk you’re the usage of.


sudo /Applications/Install macOS –volume /Volumes/MyVolume

Catalina beta

sudo /Applications/Install macOS Catalina –volume /Volumes/MyVolume –nointeraction –downloadassets


sudo /Applications/Install macOS –volume /Volumes/MyVolume

High Sierra

sudo /Applications/Install macOS High –volume /Volumes/MyVolume


sudo /Applications/Install macOS –volume /Volumes/MyVolume –applicationpath /Applications/Install macOS

El Capitan

sudo /Applications/Install OS X El –volume /Volumes/MyVolume –applicationpath /Applications/Install OS X El


sudo /Applications/Install OS X –volume /Volumes/MyVolume –applicationpath /Applications/Install OS X


sudo /Applications/Install OS X –volume /Volumes/MyVolume –applicationpath /Applications/Install OS X

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