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Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21
New Computer; Old Problems

I am using 9.2.2 on most of my computers and 10.8.5 (Mountain Lion) on a couple. Today I received a VERY nice iMac (27") from my father who said it was "messed up" and he didn't want it any more.

It has serious keychain issues. So I decided to simply erase it and start over.

I have a memory stick with 10.8 on it so I stuck it in and tried to boot it. FAILED! Turns out that I need 10.8.4 minimum to boot from.

I can't find that version anywhere.

Suggestions for restoring my new computer to operational state please.

Gary

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WhosIt.There's picture
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Joined: 2014 Aug 23

Obviously any original install discs are missing. You can still buy the old versions of Mac OS X - some from Apple directly, some from (over-priced) webstores like Hardcore Mac. You can also download pirated versions from the internet, but many of them will be untrustworthy.

Another option might be to clone your 10.8.5 drive to an external drive and use that to boot the iMac. You could then clone that to the iMac's internal drive ... the problem is that your 10.8.5 system may not actually contain all the drivers, etc. needed by the iMac.

The best bet might be to simply take it to an Apple repair shop (official or licensed third-party) and get them to re-install the appropriate version.

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

>Obviously any original install discs are missing.

My father is very meticulous and gave me everything he had - cellophane wrappings, original cardboard wrappers, etc. No CD/DVD was included. So I assume that the computer came with the OS pre-installed.

The repair shop idea has merit. Do you have any idea what they might charge for such a service?

I'm scared to try cloning since the computer currently actually boots. And may NOT if I erase the HD with a mistake.

Gary

WhosIt.There's picture
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Joined: 2014 Aug 23

It's a newer iMac than I thought since it has a Recovery partition (as you say below).

A repair shop should only reinstall the same version of the OS that the computer originally shipped with, but you might find some third-party repair store that isn't as strict ... although once they check the computer, they may well only install what it current has. The cost will also vary - no doubt some would do it for free.

The only way to get a newer OS would be to buy it or pirate it.

bertyboy's picture
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Joined: 2009 Jun 14

If the iMac is from an era that requires 10.8.4, it should have a recovery partition on the hard disk. Can you check for that ? That should allow you to boot and download a suitable OS from Apple.
Google first for any gotchas.

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

I found and booted from the recovery partition. The process took a couple of hours but all I could recover was the same OS that is currently running (Mavericks). That cleared up the keychain issues but left me with all of my father's old stuff (including his login).

I was hoping for a totally clean install of Mountain Lion.

Gary

devils_advisor's picture
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Joined: 2012 Jul 9

you should be able to boot from the recovery partition and wipe the original partition to get a clean install.

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

If I wipe the original partition, what will Apple download to my system: the 10.8.4 I want or something else or nothing at all?

Gary

sfp1954's picture
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Joined: 2013 Dec 29

Go to System Preferences/Accounts and login with your dad's password.
Create you own new account with admin privileges "+".
Logout of your dads account.
Login to your account.
Go to System Preferences/Accounts and login with your password.
Click on your dad's account and hit the "-".
Your dad's old stuff is now gone.

WhosIt.There's picture
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Joined: 2014 Aug 23

There are some Mountain Lion install media auctions on eBay, and probably other similar places as well.

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

So far the ebay stuff is exactly like the one I have (10.8). NO one seems to be offering the 10.8.4 that the computer was shipped with.

Gary

24bit's picture
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Joined: 2010 Nov 19

Are you willing to partition your HDD?
It should be possible to install Sierra onto a small (20GB) partition.
Once up and running, install 10.8 to the large partition, upgrade to 10.8.5 and delete Sierra, if you wish.

I might also be possible to edit the 10.8 boot.plist, so that the installer thinks it has a matching Mac.
I don´t know why your iMac is limited to 10.8.4 exactly, though.

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

>I don´t know why your iMac is limited to 10.8.4 exactly, though.

That was the OS it was shipped with according to EveryMac.com.

Gary

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

I just found (and ordered) 10.8.5 from an ebay seller. It should be here in a week or so.

Gary

MacTouch's picture
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Joined: 2016 Mar 19

Hi Gary,

May be I can help u with your problem ? Mountain Lion is still for sale by Apple. But u can find it for free on the web. Tell me if that's not too late.

Best regards,
MacTouch

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

Too late. My ebay order has shipped. But just in case the USB stick doesn't work, please suggest a download site.

Thanks.

Gary

MacTouch's picture
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Joined: 2016 Mar 19

Sorry... Can I give u the link via email ?

MacTouch

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

Certainly. My address is in my profile.

Gary

blackholemac's picture
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Joined: 2010 Nov 17

10.8.4 was a download-only operating system. Apparently, Apple will still sell 10.8.5 to you by going to the following website: (http://www.apple.com/shop/product/D6377Z/A/os-x-mountain-lion)

You can make a bootable USB key by following this article: http://www.macworld.com/article/1167857/software-system/how-to-make-a-bo...

sfp1954's picture
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Joined: 2013 Dec 29

10.8.5 from Apple is an update not a full install.

Overview
Your Mac needs:
OS X v10.6.8 or OS X Lion already installed
2 GB or more of memory
8 GB or more of available space

If you have previously purchased Mt. Lion you can download it again by going to the App Store and clicking the Purchased button.

sfp1954's picture
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Joined: 2013 Dec 29

Grab an external drive. Or stick an old laptop drive in a USB case ($5).
Erase the external and clone the OS you like to the external drive using either Apple Disk Utility or CCC (Carbon Copy Cloner).
(You should do this anyway so you have a backup of your system drive in case of failure).
Boot the new iMac from the external USB drive, erase the iMac drive and clone the external to the internal. Done.

sfp1954's picture
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Joined: 2013 Dec 29

Grab an external drive. Or stick an old laptop drive in a USB case ($5).
Erase the external and clone the OS you like to the external drive using either Apple Disk Utility or CCC (Carbon Copy Cloner).
(You should do this anyway so you have a backup of your system drive in case of failure).
Boot the new iMac from the external USB drive, erase the iMac drive and clone the external to the internal.
Done.

sfp1954's picture
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Joined: 2013 Dec 29

Or, if both machines have Firewire or Thunderbolt you can:
Boot your new machine in Target mode.
Connect the two machines together with a Firewire cable (always AFTER one machine is in Target mode).
Boot your 10.8.5 machine.
Erase the disk on the new machine and clone the 10.8.5 machine to it.
Shutdown your 10.8.5 machine.
Remove the cable.
Boot the new machine.

Gary's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jul 21

Your solution seems the best even though the new machine has my first Thunderbolt connector.

If I clone the whole drive from my current 10.8.5 machine will my Adobe apps function or will I need to re-install them?

Gary

24bit's picture
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Joined: 2010 Nov 19

Carbon Copy Cloner does create bootable clones of Mac OSX volumes on USB/FW drives.
No need to set up anything again with such clone.
You know my email, in case you got stuck. Wink

Gaeokerena's picture
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Joined: 2017 Jan 15

why not try Internet Recovery? This will download and install the original OS.

Option-Command-R

https://support.apple.com/en-gb/HT201314

butterburger's picture
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Joined: 2014 Aug 16

This! If I visited MG a few days sooner, then I would have tried to prevent Gary from paying for commercial copyright infringement. I agree with WhosIt.There: those persons selling copies of Mac OS X might have tainted it. I collected a list of checksums of Apple's Mac OS (and macOS) for ICBM.

WhosIt.There's picture
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Joined: 2014 Aug 23

I wasn't thinking of those selling OS install media on eBay, etc. (although it is certainly possible that those two may be altered). I was thinking of the many place you can download the OS for "free" from the internet, some of those have definitely be mucked about with.