Macbook ebay - Installation Problem Lion/SnowLeopard

Discussion in 'macOS' started by sambo.01, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. sambo.01 macrumors newbie

    Jan 30, 2013
    Hi Guys,

    I hope you can help.

    I bought a Macbook Air from ebay.

    The guy I bought it from includes a copy of Leopard on a USB stick which he said is formatted correctly. I checked this buy putting it into another mac and you can see the install snow leopard icon and was GUID partitioned.

    Now when I put It in the mac and boot it up and I don’t get the option to boot from the USB and install. (the guy erased the HDD before sending). Instead it says install Lion but then asks for itunes user name and password to install. I obviously don’t have this and wanted to install leopard from the USB.

    I have tried holding the options key to get it to boot from the USB but end up in the same screen where I can install lion, go to disk utility etc.

    Any ideas guys?
  2. JediMeister macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    The Late 2010 MacBook Airs shipped with 10.6.4 and later 10.6.5. If the seller just restored an image of a retail 10.6 install disc, which is 10.6.3, onto a flash drive, it cannot boot your MacBook Air. Your best option may be to purchase a reinstall drive, the one you would have gotten with the computer had the seller not lost/misplaced it or had purchased the computer directly, through retail. The drive can be purchased from AppleCare phone support.
  3. sambo.01 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 30, 2013

    I think this is the 1st gen macbook so 2010? I contacted him and he said he erased the HDD and had a random copy of the install leopard IMG and burned it to the USB.

    Could I just download 10.6.4 from a torrent site or something? I just ordered a new macbook pro so guessing i can use that CD (mountain lion) to upgrade my Air once i get it to work!

    Also what key do you press to boot from a USB? options? or options+R?
  4. JediMeister macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    The first MacBook Air is from January 2008 and shipped with 10.5.1, 10.5.2, or later 10.5.4. If the flash drive really is a copy of a 10.6.3 retail disc in the form of a flash drive, the Air shouldn't have any problem starting up to it. If instead, the disc was a gray install disc specific to the system it shipped with, then it makes sense why the drive wouldn't start up the MacBook Air even if it is a later version of the Mac OS.

    The 10.6.4 update is available on the Apple website, no need to torrent it, but I don't see how it would benefit you to download it. I am not aware of any way to slipstream a Mac OS update onto a disc/flash drive the way one can for Windows XP and Service Pack 3 for example.

    New Macs do not come with install discs or with a flash drive, and the license for the preinstalled version of OS X is non-transferable to another system.

    To boot from a valid startup disk, just hold the option key at startup. This loads the startup manager where you can select your startup disk using the arrow keys on the keyboard or the trackpad. Option+R is not a startup key combination. Command+R is for systems that either shipped or were upgraded to 10.7 or 10.8.

    As I suggested in my initial post, rather than bothering with what disc was used to create the flash drive, or trying all these workarounds, you will save the most time and effort by just buying a replacement software reinstall drive from AppleCare.

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