July 20, 2010

Installing OS X Snow Leopard - Part Two

In Part One of this article, we gathered all required components for a smooth installation, it's time to install OS X...

In the tonymacx86 blog, you'll find detailed instructions for using iBoot (See "Step 2" in iBoot + MultiBeast: Install Mac OS X on any Intel-based PC).

Here are some things to note, though:

Booting with iBoot

If you followed my Optimal BIOS Configuration guide, you'll notice it defaults to not booting from CD (to speed up the regular boot process).
So, to temporarily boot off the CD, we'll invoke the Boot Priority Menu by hitting the F12 key.

One thing that many readers seem to miss in the iBoot Guide is usage of the F5 key to rescan drives...
When swapping the iBoot CD with the Retail OS X Snow Leopard DVD in the drive, you have to wait a couple of seconds and press F5 (some error messages might be displayed while the disk is being read).
Once the OS X DVD is recognized, we'll be back at the Chameleon BootLoader, but this time with the Mac OS X Install DVD icon.
You'll have to keep doing this until after installing Chameleon to your Hard Disk Drive, as we'll do in Part Three.

Disk Partitioning

"Regular" OS X installations normally use a single partition.
Coming from Linux, my personal preference is to separate Users' home folders and data from the OS and applications.
I also keep a relatively small partition for testing OS X and some application updates before putting them in "production".

A lot can be written about this (and I'll dedicate separate posts to this), but for the time being, I'll briefly describe how my partitioning scheme looks.
  1. System Partition (System) for OS X and Applications (Depending on the number of applications you use, you will want to allocate between 50GB and 300GB for this),
  2. Big partition (Users) for Users' home folders and data,
  3. Small Partition (LegoLand) for testing OS X updates, and hackintosh experimentation (50GB).
Another thing to consider is the Volume Format to be used.
Most people will select the default Mac OS Extended (Journaled) format.
Here again, accustomed to Unix and Linux file systems, which normally differentiate between Upper- and Lower-case letters, I prefer the Mac OS Extended (Case-sensitive, Journaled) format.

OK, enough talking... Back to work.
  • From the menu bar, select Utilities, then Disk Utility, to partition your disk
  • Once done partitioning, click on the Apply button, and close Disk Utility

OS X Components selection and installation

  • The installer will proceed, prompting where to install. Select your System volume (or only partition)
  • You can then customize the selection of components (Printer Drivers, Additional Languages, etc.) to be installed
  • When done customizing, the installer will proceed to copy the selected components to your disk

    Tip: In order to avoid your screen to enter power-save mode, move the mouse every couple of minutes

  • I used the iBoot-Supported (which uses the Vanilla kernel), so I didn't get the harmless "Installation Failed" error message, mentioned in tonymacx86's guide.

Final OS X configuration and registration

  • We need to boot off the iBoot CD again.
  • Select your System volume, and press Enter
  • I missed the Mac OS X Snow Leopard Welcome Video as, at the time of this writing, the iBoot-Supported apparently has a bug which prevents the Video from playing.
  • Follow the instructions on screen to configure your keyboard, network, and register your OS X Snow Leopard copy.

Congratulations !
You have installed OS X Snow Leopard on your PC !...

...but you'll need to keep booting with the iBoot disk.

In Part Three, we'll configure the system to boot off the hard disk drive...


  1. this is great. thanks!

  2. can u elaborate on how you use the three disk partitions to run snow leopard.
    I am a noob and want to emulate you.
    I would like to know how to use them in daily use.

  3. @Anonymous: This is funny! I'm now working on that article...
    Subscribe, or follow me on Twitter, as I'll be announcing it there when done.

  4. I've just finished the build, but I was wondering, it's installing the sistem for almost 1 hour, and it doesn't seems to finish...

    P.S. Sorry for my English...

  5. @World_emp: Are you using a Purchased Original Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard DVD ?
    Otherwise, it's not only wrong, but you might encounter issues as well.
    The whole install shouldn't take more than about 30 minutes.

  6. I figured out it was my HD fault: there is something wrong with it. To create a 200GB ext2 partition it took 21min.

  7. @World_emp: Something seems definitely wrong with it :(

  8. how can i see osx welcome video in iboot legacy...iboot legacy only works with my system..

  9. @Anonymous: On which hardware are you installing ? iBoot legacy is really outdated...