Impossible to create an USB install disk

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by Max(IT), Oct 4, 2015.

  1. Max(IT) Suspended

    Max(IT)

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #1
    el cap installed on all of my three macs, flawlessly, and now I'm trying to create a bootable USB disk to use it in the future , if needed, as I've done with Mavericks.
    I downloaded again the installer, used the Diskmaker X freeware app .... and it didn't work! Stuck at the copying files prompt.
    I tried with the command prompt method.... Same result !
    Ok, I assumed it was the 16 Gb USB stick (strange enough , since it was the same used for Mavericks) so I buy another one. Tried again and same results.
    What's wrong ???
     
  2. KALLT macrumors 601

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    #2
  3. chabig macrumors 68040

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    Sep 6, 2002
    #3
    This is just my opinion, but whenever people post that something is "stuck" I believe that in fact they just didn't wait long enough. Be patient. It takes quite a while to make the installer, and DiskMaker doesn't provide a lot of feedback. I'd give it at least an hour just to be safe, not that it will take that long. Be patient.
     
  4. MacGizmo macrumors 6502a

    MacGizmo

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    Apr 27, 2003
    Location:
    Arizona
    #4
    I also used Diskmaker X 5 to make a bootable disk. It took quite a while, but it worked perfectly.

    Remember that USB sticks are about as slow of a transfer process as they come, and you're essentially installing a mini-system on it. It's not going to be instant, or even a 5 minute thing.
     
  5. smithrh macrumors 68020

    smithrh

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    Feb 28, 2009
    #5
    Mmmmm..... I have a 64Gb USB 3.0 stick - it's not slow.
     
  6. Max(IT) thread starter Suspended

    Max(IT)

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    #6
    not a newbie here. If I say "stuck" I mean stuck.... waited more than 30 minutes.
     
  7. flowrider macrumors 601

    flowrider

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    Nov 23, 2012
    #7
  8. mikecwest macrumors 6502a

    mikecwest

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    Jul 7, 2013
    #8
    Even if you have a fast USB device, it is still slow. I think its doing a lot of calculations, and caching onto and off of you hard drive setting it up before it actually formats your thumb drive and lays out the data onto your thumb drive. Keeping that in mind, the bigger the thumb drive, the longer the format will take. Also, like the others have said DIskMaker X provided little to no interaction to advise you of its current status, and at times does appear to be "stuck." I would give it at least an hour, regardless of how fast your thumb drive is. If possible, just start it, and go to sleep, or go have some tacos at McDonalds or something else to keep you busy.


    Also, if I am not mistaken, Disk Maker X basically just performs the terminal commands in the background for you, and eases the process by creating the correct terminal commands for you based on the name and location of your installer.
     
  9. simon lefisch macrumors 6502a

    simon lefisch

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2014
    #9
    This is what I used and worked flawlessly. Did it for both 10.11 GM and Public, as well as 10.10.3/.4. Worked every time
     
  10. cool11 macrumors 65816

    cool11

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    #10
    Is it enough a 8gb sd card, for el capitan?
    Dmg and installer is about 6.5gb, but I want to be sure.

    I try with diskmaker and it stuck with a message about 'sudo'.
     
  11. leman macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #11
    The official tool for creating USB installers worked flawlessly for us in all iterations of 10.11 (from early beta to 10.11.2). I'd try a different stick.
     
  12. cool11 macrumors 65816

    cool11

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    #12
    Can you give me the link of this official tool?
     
  13. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #13
  14. cool11 macrumors 65816

    cool11

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    Sep 3, 2006
    #14
    Thanks.

    If I use this command
    /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ El\ Capitan.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
    with el capitan installer already in 'applications' folder,
    will it ask me for the media that it will create it?
    Or should I give the path myself?
    This is where I remember myself stuck in the past.
    Apple has a graphical tool for almost anything, but this still remains in the good ancient days of command lines.
     
  15. chrfr macrumors 603

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    Jul 11, 2009
    #15
    You need to specify the destination. Just follow the directions on the Apple page.
     
  16. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #16
    I am not sure I agree with this. They only have graphical wrappers for workflows that cater to the 'normal' user. The administrative stuff is pretty much command line. Which is quite reasonable in my book. This is even the case with the Server app — it offers nice shortcuts for common operations, but there is a quite flexible command-line based machinery in the background that allows you to do much more.
     
  17. cool11 macrumors 65816

    cool11

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    #17
    How many?
     
  18. KALLT macrumors 601

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    Sep 23, 2008
    #18
    You know, you can just try it. Yes, 8 GB is enough.
     
  19. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #19
    Have used the latest version of Diskmaker X multiple times recently without any issue with Yosemite & El Capitan, which is far more than I can say for 10.11 itself. Running Diskmaker X on both 10.10 & 10.11 performed was expected.

    Q-6
     
  20. jhencken macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2011
    Location:
    Watertown, MA
    #20
    I don't know if I'm an exception to your rule or whether your generalization isn't true, but I always give something several hours, sometimes overnight, before writing that something is stuck. In my limited experience, if it doesn't work in 20 minutes it probably is hanging/freezing/stuck/justbeingperverse!
     
  21. mikecwest macrumors 6502a

    mikecwest

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    Jul 7, 2013
    #21
    I can tell you that sometimes Diskmaker X papers to be "stuck", it takes along time. Just set it to go, and walk away for an hour or so.
     
  22. Max(IT) thread starter Suspended

    Max(IT)

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    Italy
    #22
    Thank you. It worked for me.
     
  23. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #23
    Here's "a better way" to create a "universal" El Capitan USB flash drive.

    First, you need an external hard drive.
    Can be any capacity, new or old, USB, Firewire, doesn't make a difference. I used an ancient firewire drive with a 40-pin IDE drive inside.

    Connect the drive to a good Mac and re-initialize it with Disk Utility.

    Now, launch the El Capitan installer and "aim it" at the drive.

    Let the installer put a fresh copy of the OS onto the drive.

    When done, reboot to the external.

    Let the OS "introduce itself", but carefully create a "dummy account" -- just a username and password and NOTHING ELSE. Politely decline any kind of registration, etc.

    All you want is to be able to get to the finder.

    Now, put Monolingual onto the drive, and "strip out" all unnecessary languages. This will eliminate almost a gigabyte of wasted space.

    Next, put CarbonCopyCloner onto the drive. Now you have a tool so that the new install can "replicate itself" to OTHER drives.

    This hard drive becomes your "master".
    Protect it from alterations.

    Next, take a 16gb flash drive.
    Initialize it.
    Now, use CCC to clone the contents of the hard drive to the flash drive.
    Set up CCC so that it clones the recovery partition, as well.

    When done, you have a USB flash drive that can "boot itself to the finder", and clone itself to any computer that can boot El Capitan, recovery partition and all.

    No, it's not "100% virgin", in that it's not a copy of El Capitan that has "never been booted".
    But except for the "temp account" that gets you to the finder, nothing else has been "touched" or "set up" on it.

    Just put it on the target computer, then use Migration Assistant to "bring over" pre-existing accounts, apps, and data from and old drive or computer.

    And no -- ABSOLUTELY NONE -- glitches or hangs when trying to run the "official" Apple installer any more!
     
  24. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    #24
    There is a problem with this plan though. That user account you make will have a userID of 501. And if the machine to be migrated also has an account with userID 501 (it will if this is the first account on the Mac), using Migration Assistant will cause all sorts of issues. You can read about it here.

    There is a work around where you could make a second account on the new Mac which would then be userID 502, then from inside that account delete the 501 account. Then you could successfully migrate in the 501 account from the other Mac.

    IMO it seems like a long way around just to avoid making a USB installer and using that.
     
  25. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #25
    weaselboy wrote:
    "There is a work around where you could make a second account on the new Mac which would then be userID 502, then from inside that account delete the 501 account. Then you could successfully migrate in the 501 account from the other Mac.
    IMO it seems like a long way around just to avoid making a USB installer and using that."


    Yes, correct about the account ID#, and the workaround you posted is the best way to avoid this.
    Actually, one could set up the "master volume" with TWO dummy accounts.

    Once "cloned over", just log into the second dummy account and then delete the first one. This leaves "ID space #1" ready and waiting for the creation or migration of the actual user account.

    Yes, it's more work to "set up the master drive". But once it's done, the user will NEVER experience the hangs, unsuccessful installs, and so forth that so many write about here.

    Just clone with CCC, and even the recovery partition is replicated, ready-to-use.

    With my method, one does the heavy lifting up front.
    But the results will be worth it:
    Essentially "effortless" installs ...
     

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