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M1 Mini - An error occurred preparing the update

craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
So received M1 Mini today, all installed okay, including Big Sur latest update.

Then realised I had put wrong login short name, so decided to do a reinstall rather than mess around renaming accounts. Restarted in 'new' recovery mode, removed existing partition and created APFS new one. Installer now doesn't complete (several times tried, including reboot) - see attached pic - get error "An error occurred preparing the update, Failed to personalize the software update, Please try again".

I'm based in the UK and apparently best option is to call Apple Support at 0800 tomorrow, but just incase anyone here has any advice, and also to prevent others from getting into same situation.

IMG_0046.jpeg
 
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mrj412

macrumors regular
May 27, 2009
132
41
In the same boat here ... Tried to reinstall to go through the setup again and now I'm stuck in the same place.
 
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pshifrin

macrumors 6502
Mar 14, 2010
473
347
it’s possible that Apple has not uploaded the image of Big Sur for Apple silicon to their servers yet? The same thing to me when either 2018 or 2019 MacBook pros were released. it was fixed shortly after.

 
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craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
In the same boat here ... Tried to reinstall to go through the setup again and now I'm stuck in the same place.
Thanks for the reply, don't feel so bad now at trying the reinstall ! In fairness this is a brand new platform and OS, so I should have expected some teething issues. I see another reply indicating might not be on servers yet, interesting as I had some issues with my Intel MacBook Pro trying to install from a USB drive.
 
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bxs

macrumors 65816
Oct 20, 2007
1,138
512
Seattle, WA
If you feel comfortable doing this then...

1) Boot into Recovery mode
2) Using Disk Utility erase the internal SSD device as APFS
3) Now Reinstall macOS

Post back if this works for you ?
 
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craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
it’s possible that Apple has not uploaded the image of Big Sur for Apple silicon to their servers yet? The same thing to me when either 2018 or 2019 MacBook pros were released. it was fixed shortly after.
Thanks for the suggestion ! Interesting as when I tried to do an install from USB on Intel Mac had an issue, looking at the wording it talks about update, so perhaps that's the case.

Will try again tomorrow AM before I call Apple Support and post.
 
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craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
If you feel comfortable doing this then...

1) Boot into Recovery mode
2) Using Disk Utility erase the internal SSD device as APFS
3) Now Reinstall macOS

Post back if this works for you ?
Sorry, should have been more clear in post, that's what I did (including once trying to reboot between (2) and (3)).

Also wondered if something to do with security (not sure if it is similar to Intel Mac), but launching the utility from recovery just gets a spinning wheel.
 
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bxs

macrumors 65816
Oct 20, 2007
1,138
512
Seattle, WA
Sorry, should have been more clear in post, that's what I did (including once trying to reboot between (2) and (3)).

Also wondered if something to do with security (not sure if it is similar to Intel Mac), but launching the utility from recovery just gets a spinning wheel.
So when you created a fresh new erased when using DU in Recovery Mode, did you then run First Aid to ensure it was clean and with no reported errors ?

IMO... I doubt you have 'bricked' your new M1 device.
 
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craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
So when you created a fresh new erased when using DU in Recovery Mode, did you then run First Aid to ensure it was clean and with no reported errors ?

IMO... I doubt you have 'bricked' your new M1 device.
Thanks, I just erased again and ran First Aid - no errors.

I did say 'bricked' in quotes as I'm sure there has to be a workaround. Interesting that the language in the error is 'Update'. I've never bothered to understand how Mac's do recovery - when I upgrade this OS does it write a new latest update recovery to the drive, or default to the base and then run updates ? Language implies it is trying to run an update..
 
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bxs

macrumors 65816
Oct 20, 2007
1,138
512
Seattle, WA
Thanks, I just erased again and ran First Aid - no errors.

I did say 'bricked' in quotes as I'm sure there has to be a workaround. Interesting that the language in the error is 'Update'. I've never bothered to understand how Mac's do recovery - when I upgrade this OS does it write a new latest update recovery to the drive, or default to the base and then run updates ? Language implies it is trying to run an update..
If you have an external device, have you tried installing Big Sur on it ?

If you have an external with Big Sur installed on it, can you boot up on it using the Option key pressed and then Startup?
 
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craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
Found this article:


Trying to do a restore with Apple Configurator from a second Mac now. Will report back how it goes.
Found this article:


Trying to do a restore with Apple Configurator from a second Mac now. Will report back how it goes.
Grabbed a glass of wine and trying also ! Feels like going back to the old school..
 
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craigslorach

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 10, 2015
27
18
Update - thanks mrj412 - we're back ! (and saved a long call to Apple Support going through lots of motions, oh and also some satisfaction in going a bit more hands on than normal!).

I'm not sure if I moved the cable, but after downloading it did indicated the Mini was disconnected. However, I just unplugged and reconnected the cable and selected restore again and it seemed to validate the already downloaded image.

IMG_0047.jpeg
 
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Saturn007

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2010
534
216
Not to nitpick but doesn’t bricking a device mean it will not power on / is completely unresponsive?

It does, but the OP put “bricked” in quotes in his thread title — and even responded a couple of posts before yours on that very point!

OP, glad to hear this got resolved! Your descriptions and story telling were great, even as you went through the saga!
 
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ClassicII

macrumors 6502
Sep 21, 2009
384
138
Chicago, IL
OP, just to get an understanding of this.

You erased the drive and reinstalled macOS then got that error?

You never updated to 11.0.1 correct? That seems to be the problem, what you are seeing was a huge bug that I reported in beta 8-9 timeframe. It looks like M1 Macs are shipping with a build around Beta 10. The issue was fixed in RC1 or RC2.

For anyone else let me know if you have any questions.

 
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