Can I boot from my external on friend's Mac?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by ski2moro, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. ski2moro macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2007
    I took my MBP (one year old) to the Apple Store for a keyboard replacement but after they replaced the keyboard, they discovered another problem. They don't have the parts, it may be several days, I am in the middle of a big project and I am on a deadline.

    I asked the Genius to remove my hard drive, I brought it home and put it in an USB enclosure.

    I will be using my neighbor's iMac (also one year old) to work on my project tomorrow using the contents of my hard drive. The project includes photos, video, and music from my hard drive compiled into an imovie that I need to edit a bit before I put it into idvd and burn a DVD.

    I hope this is not stupid to ask, but I don't have time for mistakes.

    If I boot on to my hard drive in the enclosure by using Option at startup, will I be working within my hard drive alone, just using the other computer for its processor? I won't leave a trace of my work on their computer, right?
  2. Eidorian macrumors Penryn


    Mar 23, 2005
    They'll have to have the same processor architecture otherwise you run into partition scheme nonsense. Otherwise booting off the external will be a little sluggish but passable. All work done on it will stay on it.
  3. smartalic34 macrumors 6502a


    May 16, 2006
    yup, you'll be fine. both of you will be running on intel machines, so as mentioned earlier, there wont be any problems. it may be just a tad slower saving and whatnot, but it should be perfectly acceptable performance-wise. smart move snagging the hard drive for working on projects
  4. SamNeeds macrumors regular

    Dec 28, 2007
    If I'm remembering correctly with the Disk Utility, you have to reformat it as a Mac compatible format (Mac OS Journalled or something) and include the OS9 drivers.

    I may be wrong though, I haven't done that before.
  5. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    Actually, for Intel the OS 9 drivers can't be installed anyway... and even if they could they'd do no good. You are right about requiring Mac OS X Extended format for this to work, though.
  6. SamNeeds macrumors regular

    Dec 28, 2007
    Thanks wrldwzrd89. I'll keep an eye on the thread as I'm curious to know the way this works.
  7. ski2moro thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2007
    Don't confuse me, I can do that well enough by myself.

    Why would I have to mess with the OS9 drivers or be concerned with the format as long as both computers are similar vintage, processor, etc.?

    I have my hard drive from my MacBook Pro and the neighbor's computer is an iMac (also Intel chip). We are both running Leopard, but theirs has iLife 08 and I have iLife 09, and parts of this iMovie project use some of the features in the newer version.

    I just don't want to put my photos on their computer, mess around with iTunes authorization, take the time to remove all my stuff from the other computer after I'm finished, etc. That's why I thought I should get my hard drive out of the MBP and not use my backup files.
  8. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    You are correct there - that is the right way to proceed.
  9. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    When you boot from your own hard drive, your friends internal hard drive will be mounted as well. Since you don't want to read his or her stuff and don't want to leave any traces, the easiest thing is to immediately drag their hard drive to the trash (turns into the "eject" thing; don't be afraid it won't actually eject their internal drive :D just makes it disappear from the desktop until you reboot or mount it with Disk Utilities)
  10. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Yes for Leopard if you are both on Intel mac
    (both usb and fireboot are supported).

    Yes for Leopard if you are both on PPC mac
    (however PPC mac cannot boot from USB, but can boot via firewire)

    No for Tiger for intel mac.

    Might work on Tiger PPC mac.
    (again, no usb boot, you need firewire)

    If it doesn't boot you should be able to import your account using migration assistant.
  11. ski2moro thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2007
    Thanks for all the help. I wanted to let you know that the project is working as planned and I will meet my deadline.

    As for the HD mounting...When I heard the startup chime, I held down the Option Key until two drives showed - the owner's HD (showing as the typical internal hard drive icon) and my external HD (showing as a USB icon).

    Yes, it takes a bit longer to do everything, but it works!

    When the desktop appeared, it was mine. The only difference on my desktop on the iMac was that instead of the icon for the internal Macintosh HD, it showed as a USB icon for Macintosh HD. The host hard drive was in a different place on my desktop.

    Now, if I just knew why the Left I/O Board on my MBP needed to be replaced. I took it in for a new Keyboard and top case, and after he worked on it, the Genius said that it needed the board because it wouldn't charge.

    Thanks again for all the info.

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