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24bit's picture
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New member In need of help with an iMac 7,1

New by Sal - 2020, November 1 - 4:42pm
Hi. Newly registered account here.

This site / specific download was recommended to me after I posted a "help me" post on Reddit ( https://www.reddit.com/r/mac/comments/iesq2w/need_to_update_mac_os_x_105... ) asking how I can update my mid-2009 iMac with Mac OS X 10.5.8 Leopard installed. To be honest, I found it in the trash, but it works perfectly. Long story short (more details in background story on the Reddit post if interested), I need someone to provide me with baby steps / for dummies version on how to upgrade my iMac to 10.6 using the software available on this page. I've tried doing it myself but I can't get passed the download page.

PROBLEM:
I can't seem to unzip the file for download #1. I likely don't know enough / doing something wrong. I've spent maybe 20 cumulative hours trying to successfully update to 10.6.

MATERIALS:
Have a 32gb usb3.
Willing to buy a dual layer burnable DVD if I must.

WHY:
I'm a poor teacher. My two young songs are doing school online all year. I was able to offer my 13 year old son an old 27in. iMac bought for $60 on Craiglist (El Capitain). But that computer already had El Capitan installed. I want my 9 year old son to have the current iMac I'm trying to update (the one found in the trash). Need to update because OS X 10.5.8 does not allow for seemless access to Google Classroom, which my son uses on his Fire tablet everyday ( Initially, I was able to give him an old Dell Inspiron, but it just proved too slow).

Please help... I started this project during the summer, but had to undergo open heart surgery in September, so I've been unable to work on this till now, while my son is struggling to do all his work on the fire tablet.

Thanks in advance for help offered. ........ Sal

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24bit's picture
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Joined: 2010 Nov 19

Do you actually need or want Snow Leopard 10.6 on your iMac 9,1?

If no, look on your other Mac with El Capitian, whether the ElCap installer is still there in Applications.
It should be named "InstallMacOSX.dmg".
Should it have been deleted, download from Apple again:
http://updates-http.cdn-apple.com/2019/cert/061-41424-20191024-218af9ec-...

Next double click the .dmg to mount it on your desktop.
Find DiskUtilty in Applications/Utilities and open it.
Use the Restore option to restore the .dmg to a 8GB (or better) USB stick.
When done, unmount the USB, take it over to your Leopard Mac and boot from that USB.
That way you should get into the OSX installer to set up ElCap from scratch.

You should best wipe clean the HDD before installation, unless you want to keep some files from the Leopard instance.
If you just want to "test drive" ElCap, you may also install the OS on a USB or Firewire external drive.

The iMac 9,1 can also run Mojave or Catalina with the help of the patcher made by dosdude1.
The procedure is even easier with the patcher, but I doubt creating a boot stick will from Leopard.

Edit:
Is this the iMac in question?
https://everymac.com/systems/apple/imac/specs/imac-core-2-duo-2.0-20-inc...
How much RAM do you have installed?

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Hi, thanks for thorough response.

To answer some questions / inform:

-- At minimum, I want to get the computer to El Capitan because I see it working well on my older son's salvaged iMac. One of the solutions I've been trying is to work my way up through updates (10.6 --> El Capitan), but updating to 10.6 without an official disk has been nearly impossible as it seems Apple has cut off nearly all avenues of access.

-- I have "restored" an El Capitan file off of Apple through disk utility to my 32gb USB drive. However, the iMac I'm trying to update won't go into recovery mode after start up (after full power off / on). I tried each of the following about 5 times each:
command- R,
option - command - R,
option - R,
option,
but nothing works...

I found a site that says that Macs using Snow Leopard or older don't have a recovery mode.

Website Link: https://www.macworld.co.uk/how-to/recovery-mode-internet-3636668/

Quote from Website:
"""" If your Mac is really old - as in so old it's running Mac OS X Snow Leopard or older - it will not have a Recovery partition, the only way to reinstall the OS is to use the discs that shipped with the Mac.""""

-- Info under iMac metal base says (NOTE: the iMac has been upgraded to 4gb by a previous owner):
iMac 20"/2.0GHZ/1GB/250GB/SD/AP/BT
Model: A1224
EMC NO. 2133

"ABOUT THIS MAC" on computer says:
>> Processor 2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
>> Memory 4GB 667 MHz DD2 SDRAM

*** I believe it to be a mid-2009 iMac.

-- I have nothing on the iMac's hard drive I want. It has been a paper weight since I found it.

-- About wanting to "test drive." My only goal is to get this computer to bare minimum (or better) condition such that my 9 year old can have an easier time completing school tasks via Google Classroom. If that means setting up the computer with a set up that limits the OS to a some temporary (test drive) set up, then that's fine if that's the only choice.

I'm sorry for rambling on. Aside from the old OS, (given it was found in the trash) the computer is speed is smooth, the screen colors are vibrant, you would never know this was an 11 year old computer. I just want to be able to give it to my son in a usable condition.

... Thanks again for the help you offered and any you may continue to offer.

Duality's picture
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You can ignore any reference to "Recovery Mode". That's only Apple's recommended way of updating an OS, made with Macs from 2013 on or thereabouts in mind.

If the drive you have is bootable, you should be able to boot the Mac while holding down the "Option" or "Alt" key depending on if your keyboard has Mac markings on it. As you wait, you'll see a list of bootable disks appear. One should be the USB disk you're trying to install from. Just select it with the keyboard arrow keys and choose it with "return".

snes1423's picture
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just search and download the iso from the garden and restore it to a usb using disk utility hold down alt-option when the boot chime turns on the Mac and wait for the boot menu and select the usb device after that simply install it and boot into it like you normally would on a restore cd trust me I do it all the time on my iMac mid 2007 and late 2009 Wink

Sal's picture
Sal
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I'll give it a try right now, but I suspect I'll run into the same issue I had with the Snow Leopard download whereby I couldn't unzip the file.

Sal's picture
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OK. First bit of progress.
I created a bootable disk using a new set of instructions from a youtube video (link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HBA9Nov17Q&feature=emb_logo ), turned off he iMac, held down the option key upon start up, and was finally allowed to enter the boot menu.

(NOTE: I have not erased anything on the prior disk.... I figured I would have the option to erase that in the Utilities screen. -- I am here now, but not 100% sure where to go from here.... Guess I'll try disk utility to erase the old disk?, then proceed to install El Capitan .... Hopefully.)

Sal's picture
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Ok.. I managed to erase my "Macintosh HD" which I think housed the old Leopard OS 10.5.8. This opened up the option to install El Capitan on that drive (wasn't available before I erased the drive).

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IT FINALLY WORKS !!!.

Thanks a lot everybody. I've been working on this iMac forever... I'll try to upgrade via dosdude at a later time. I'm just going to step away for a bit then come back to it.... Full El Capitan up and running...Google Classroom up and running. My son is so happy ... and my wife couldn't give two shits ..... but I did it for my son ..... Thanks guys...... Sal

24bit's picture
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Great you made it Sal!
From your specs, the iMac in question should be this one:
https://everymac.com/systems/apple/imac/specs/imac-core-2-duo-2.0-20-inc...

In theory, you could upgrade the cpu to a e.g. T9300, but that would need a total disassembly.
I would only go that way, if the HDD reports issues and would have to be exchanged (for a SSD).
https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/iMac+Intel+20-Inch+EMC+2133+and+2210+Hard+D...

Even as macOS High Sierra would be possible with a T9300 upgrade via the dosdude1 patcher, I would rather stick with ElCap thinking of your T7300 cpu and 4MB 800MHz RAM. If you should find the time, install Snow Leopard on an external USB SSD drive to see how you fare.

As for your son´s desire playing Rocket Legue - the game is not available for Mac afaik.
As a long shot, it should be possible to set up Windows 7 (32bit) or XP for gaming via BootCamp.
No idea how well your ATI HD 2400 GPU will do with gaming on Windows.

Duality's picture
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This is more in the future, for downloading Yosemite or the most recent macOS available from Apple.

As far as downloading older version of Mac OS X (nee OS X, macOS), one IT blog has a pretty useful list of all the ways that you can do it; https://mrmacintosh.com/how-to-download-macos-catalina-mojave-or-high-si...

Far down at the bottom is a direct link to the dmgs for 10.10 Yosemite, 10.11 El Capitan and 10.12 Sierra. To my knowledge these are not time-bombed like the installers for later versions (High Sierra+), so as long as you have compatible hardware, they should be good to go.

snes1423's picture
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still use snow leopard still very useful want a browser use articfox
https://github.com/wicknix/Arctic-Fox/wiki/Downloads it works with classroom too trust me i know Wink

Sal's picture
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Thank you, but I can't even get to Snow Leopard. I have Leopard, 10.5.8. ...Sal

snes1423's picture
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here https://macintoshgarden.org/apps/apple-osx-snow-leopard need a zip opener look for the Unarchiver on the garden in can open basically every Mac compatible file type even windows EXEs

snes1423's picture
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https://macintoshgarden.org/apps/the-unarchiver there it is enjoy

SkyCapt's picture
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I've told all you people, twice already, and now two more people have said the same thing. Download 1 on the Snow Leopard page is corrupted. The Unarchiver doesn't open it as well. Having 10.5.8 already installed, is also moot.

OpenSourceMac's picture
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If that has AMD graphics/audio, it NEEDS to be setup with Deepin OS (version 15 is AMAZING for those machines). https://www.deepin.org/en/2019/07/19/deepin15-11/

Sal's picture
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I'll look into it over the coming weekend. And yes, it has AMD graphics. Are you saying this is a mandatory update I "NEED" to perform?

SkyCapt's picture
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Sal, I have a Mac like this and I recently put Snow Leopard on it, using the "Internal Edition" duallayer DVD image (from macgarden) burnt and read back via an external FireWire optical drive.

Nobody told me Snow Leopard could/would double the speed of the computer, though that's what happened. The only legitimate explanation as to how, is that the video rendering I was seeing with 10.5 and 10.4 had been restricted to 32-bits per cycle activity and now Snow Leopard 10.6 had finally put 64-bits to use in rendering or possibly 128-bits per cycle by cooperative dual 64-bit CPUs.

You could find SL enjoyable and higher not. Your CPU is weirdly underpowered, I had no idea Apple made your model. It was so relatively wimpy, they priced it half what they normally would, sold new for $899 in 2009. Mine is a $1800 2.4GHz C2D with a 800 MHz fsb and upgraded RAM I believe runs at 933 MHz. Anybody else seen Snow Leopard speed up a machine created years before Snow Leopard?

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It's fine SkyCapt. Thanks. The iMac will serve the purpose I wanted to serve, help my child complete his school work with greater ease. ... Of course, the first thing he asked me to do is download Rocket League. ... I told him I doubt the system can handle it. I may actually try it this weekend (I'm very busy during the week.).... Thanks again all.

And while I do not know enough to say for sure if Snow Leopard's download #1 is corrupted, I can say that I tried everything I could to unzip the file, and I just couldn't do it. ..... Sal

SkyCapt's picture
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Ya that file is hosed. I think all SL are more than 6.0GB compressed and that file is less than 5.5GB - I was told "unexpected eof" one time trying to unzip, both sure signs of the file was cut short.

Now I'm reading the 20" 2009 iMac has DDR3 RAM running at 1066MHz so if as stated above your iMac has DDR2 RAM doing 666MHz then it is not the 2009 but the 2008 or late-2007.

The 2009 20"/2GHz iMac had nVidia GPU whereas the 2008 and late-2007 were equipped with AMD.

sfp1954's picture
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Decompression is built into OSX and always has been. No need to use any program other than the built in OSX one to unzip files. Just double click. Older 3rd party software will not work with files over 2GB. If you have changed the default program for .zip files then do a Get Info on the .zip file and change the default program back to Archive Utility in the Utilities folder.
On some earlier systems Archive Utility is found in /System/Library/CoreServices/Applications.

sfp1954's picture
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Both of my Snow Leopard files appear to have been truncated at some point. They don't match the originals still on my hard drive. I will attempt to make repairs.

http://macintoshgarden.org/apps/apple-osx-snow-leopard

The drop-in should be 5.53GB compressed and 6.65GB unzipped.
10.6.3 should be 6.08GB compressed, 6.11GB unzipped and 7.27GB when mounted or burned.