Bubble99

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 15, 2015
663
157
If some thing happen how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro?

With no optical drive today on Apple computers how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro or Macbook air so on.

Say some thing happen and you cannot boot into OS or the OS get corrupted.

Or that say you just want do a fresh install of OS after three years of use.

How are you to reinstall the OS if you have no optical drive?
 
  • Like
Reactions: harvest_close

Strelok

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2017
1,420
1,639
United States
Put it on a USB drive. That's how I've installed my OS on PC's and Mac's for the past 6 or 7 years. I'm not sure what to do if you don't have access to the Mac and don't have a copy of the macOS .dmg file on hand though. If you are worried, I would just make a bootable flash drive with macOS and keep it somewhere.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 0002378

NoBoMac

Moderator
Staff member
Jul 1, 2014
3,176
1,428
^^^As said, bootable USB.

HDD with a clone of the drive: boot to that and install fresh to internal.

Internet Recovery.
 

keysofanxiety

macrumors G3
Nov 23, 2011
9,534
25,287
If some thing happen how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro?

With no optical drive today on Apple computers how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro or Macbook air so on.

Say some thing happen and you cannot boot into OS or the OS get corrupted.

Or that say you just want do a fresh install of OS after three years of use.

How are you to reinstall the OS if you have no optical drive?

Recovery partition or Internet Recovery. Or boot from USB.

This has been addressed since 10.7 was released...
 
  • Like
Reactions: daflake

bunnspecial

macrumors 604
May 3, 2014
7,725
5,182
Kentucky
I think the bigger answer to why they don't include an optical drive is that it's seeing less and less use and is a somewhat unreliable mechanical component. Apple did continue selling the 13" unibody MBP until either late last year or early this year(time runs together)-it was a dated model, having been last revised in 2012(said with the caveat that a 2012 MBP is still my main computer) but did retain an optical drive along with ethernet and Firewire.

For those who still require an optical drive, Apple does sell one as an add-on.

As is often the case, Apple has been ahead of the curve on ditching what they see as legacy technology. Everyone went into an uproar over the first iMac not having a floppy drive in 1998, and plenty of folks either bought a USB floppy or LS-120 drive. By 2000, Apple had ditched built-in floppies completely, and no one even thinks about it now. The first "modern era" computer without an optical drive was the MacBook Air in 2008, but they went full scale in 2012 and eliminated them from almost everything. In 2008, the USB Superdrive was an almost automatic purchase with a MacBook Air. I'd be interested in knowing how many they sell these days.

As for reinstalling the OS-10.6.3(Snow Leopard) was the last version of OS X/macOS distributed on physical media. Everything since then has been distributed through the App Store. Lion and Mountain Lion were paid downloads, while everything since has been free. Since I often do support for other folks, I tend to keep the installers handy-a quick check shows that I have everything except Yosemite on hand(and I'm not rushing to the app store to fix that-Yosemite has probably been my least favorite release).

And, like folks said above, I just make USB installers when I need them. They only take a few minutes to make, and installing from one is a LOT faster than installing from a DVD. A quick check shows that the 10.11 is 6gb and 10.12 is 5gb-if you wanted to burn that you're in the realm of a DL-DVD, which is both expensive and can be fussy to burn correctly.

BTW, the original MBA even shipped with a USB installer pre-made.

Internet recover also does work very well-albeit somewhat slowly-if you are "deserted" without any other Macs around and don't have a back-up.
 

loby

macrumors 65816
Jul 1, 2010
1,232
809
I think the bigger answer to why they don't include an optical drive is that it's seeing less and less use and is a somewhat unreliable mechanical component. Apple did continue selling the 13" unibody MBP until either late last year or early this year(time runs together)-it was a dated model, having been last revised in 2012(said with the caveat that a 2012 MBP is still my main computer) but did retain an optical drive along with ethernet and Firewire.

For those who still require an optical drive, Apple does sell one as an add-on.

As is often the case, Apple has been ahead of the curve on ditching what they see as legacy technology. Everyone went into an uproar over the first iMac not having a floppy drive in 1998, and plenty of folks either bought a USB floppy or LS-120 drive. By 2000, Apple had ditched built-in floppies completely, and no one even thinks about it now. The first "modern era" computer without an optical drive was the MacBook Air in 2008, but they went full scale in 2012 and eliminated them from almost everything. In 2008, the USB Superdrive was an almost automatic purchase with a MacBook Air. I'd be interested in knowing how many they sell these days.

As for reinstalling the OS-10.6.3(Snow Leopard) was the last version of OS X/macOS distributed on physical media. Everything since then has been distributed through the App Store. Lion and Mountain Lion were paid downloads, while everything since has been free. Since I often do support for other folks, I tend to keep the installers handy-a quick check shows that I have everything except Yosemite on hand(and I'm not rushing to the app store to fix that-Yosemite has probably been my least favorite release).

And, like folks said above, I just make USB installers when I need them. They only take a few minutes to make, and installing from one is a LOT faster than installing from a DVD. A quick check shows that the 10.11 is 6gb and 10.12 is 5gb-if you wanted to burn that you're in the realm of a DL-DVD, which is both expensive and can be fussy to burn correctly.

BTW, the original MBA even shipped with a USB installer pre-made.

Internet recover also does work very well-albeit somewhat slowly-if you are "deserted" without any other Macs around and don't have a back-up.

I think Apple was premature about ditching the optical drive...

...but I believe the reasons were apple wanted to go “thinner” eventually and especially (at the time) licensing issues with Sony. Sony (if I remember correctly) had the main licenses for Blu-ray technology which was the next jump from DVD and Apple wanted instead to work toward their download or streaming iTunes Store (mess) stuff trying to making everything digital so they can dominate the industries.

Apple captured (saved) the music industry from pirating at the time, but multimedia saw what they did with dominating, so the television and the motion picture studios made it tougher for Apple to gain any share in their turf until the last few years. This was also the time with the rumored “Apple TV” gig was coming to the spotlight.

Apple tried to make the industry move away from optical media, saying it was “obsolete technology” (which at the time was false), but it is still used today and did not phase out as fast as they wanted to so they can maximize their itunes movie rentals and music purchases (now streaming).

Other countries (besides the U.S.) still prefer optical media and “real paper books” over digital downloads and digital books etc.

Also...if my marketing information is correct (from memory)...the millennial generation is going back to records and paper books...kind of retro., so we will see how things will flow since Apple is focused on that generation’s needs that “spends” like there is no tomorrow...

Even though I embraced all digital stuff....I have found it easier and quicker to JUST pull out a DVD or Blu-ray, pop it in and I am up-and running. Trying to find what I need on some drive or have to rely on internet or cloud based storage or even streaming is not there yet and takes to long in “my book”...
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mousse

Mousse

macrumors 68020
Apr 7, 2008
2,369
4,799
Flea Bottom, King's Landing
Apple dances to the beat of a different drummer. No, scratch that, Apple IS the drummer. They decide what the consumer needs, not the consumer themselves.:rolleyes:
It's pretty clear if you follow the money trail. Apple ain't a charity, they're in it for the money, as they should. They decide to ditch Blu-Ray/DVD drives because it would cut into their iTunes download/streaming sales. Follow the money trail.
That's why I've got a PC with a Blu-Ray to rip my discs into standard mp4 videos. I can play them on all my devices and computers and they take up less space.:cool: I ain't paying for download/streaming content.:rolleyes:
 

Zenithal

macrumors G3
Sep 10, 2009
9,669
10,812
Most data is done through net and smaller means. Additionally, the tech in disc doesn't make it competitive enough. There's still research being done to provide a high density solution with minimal error, reliable and cheap. I've got discs I burned in 1997 that work flawlessly. However, I kept them in good condition.

Flash thumb drive prices are going down over time. I own a few 128 GB USB 3.0 drives and they're freaking fast.
 

trusso

macrumors 6502
Oct 4, 2003
461
1,125
I rarely use it, but I would prefer the option of an optical drive, thankyouverymuch.

For what it's worth, I still use my 2010 MacBook Pro as my daily driver. I'll be running this machine until the wheels fall off (and even then, I may just get new wheels). ;)
 
  • Like
Reactions: loby

0000757

macrumors 68040
Dec 16, 2011
3,894
849
I haven’t used an optical drive since before Apple started removing them.

Why use a CD or DVD when for $20 I can get a USB device with 10x the storage?

When I built my desktop I completely ignored getting any kind of drive.
 
  • Like
Reactions: superscape

Bubble99

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 15, 2015
663
157
Put it on a USB drive. That's how I've installed my OS on PC's and Mac's for the past 6 or 7 years. I'm not sure what to do if you don't have access to the Mac and don't have a copy of the macOS .dmg file on hand though. If you are worried, I would just make a bootable flash drive with macOS and keep it somewhere.

How would you make a recovery USB?
 

acorntoy

Contributor
May 25, 2010
1,767
1,894
I think the bigger answer to why they don't include an optical drive is that it's seeing less and less use and is a somewhat unreliable mechanical component. Apple did continue selling the 13" unibody MBP until either late last year or early this year(time runs together)-it was a dated model, having been last revised in 2012(said with the caveat that a 2012 MBP is still my main computer) but did retain an optical drive along with ethernet and Firewire.

They STILL sell the 2012 as a refurbished model, meaning you still get the apple standard 1 year warranty, and can get AppleCare for a 3 year warranty.
 

Tech198

macrumors P6
Mar 21, 2011
15,814
2,120
Australia, Perth
How are you to reinstall the OS if you have no optical drive?

Super drive or third party optical is the way to go, Otherwise use Local Recovery or Internet Recovery.

Reason is like any reason they remove bulky ports like Ethernet, to make it slimmer, and no more room for the extra space, since Apple would favor battery than anything.

the older models will die out, not even the the Mac mini (a desktop) computers comes with built in drive anymore, which being a desktop you could say would be more important than a laptop to have one.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G4
Jul 30, 2003
11,192
3,167
Delaware
Apple stopped releasing the OS install on optical disk, or other hard media when Lion (OS X 10.7) was released in mid 2011. They DID sell a USB thumb drive with the Lion install at that time, but stopped doing that after only a few months.
All macOS installers after that are downloads from Apple.
You can always reinstall from your normal recovery system, or if there is a problem with your local drive, Macs since 2010 can reinstall over your internet connection, no local install media needed at all.

The only way to have an optical disk/DVD for installing your system, is to make it yourself, or buy a disk from someone who has taken the time to create a disk. But, that all begins with a downloaded macOS installer, too.
Apple STILL sells Snow Leopard (OS X 10.6) on DVD, but that's the last installer DVD from Apple. Everything later is through the App Store.
 

loby

macrumors 65816
Jul 1, 2010
1,232
809
I rarely use it, but I would prefer the option of an optical drive, thankyouverymuch.

For what it's worth, I still use my 2010 MacBook Pro as my daily driver. I'll be running this machine until the wheels fall off (and even then, I may just get new wheels). ;)

Likewise... I seem to be using more my 2010 MacBook Pro as well with an SSD and 16GB of RAM. Runs like a champ!
[doublepost=1511918143][/doublepost]
Super drive or third party optical is the way to go, Otherwise use Local Recovery or Internet Recovery.

Reason is like any reason they remove bulky ports like Ethernet, to make it slimmer, and no more room for the extra space, since Apple would favor battery than anything.

the older models will die out, not even the the Mac mini (a desktop) computers comes with built in drive anymore, which being a desktop you could say would be more important than a laptop to have one.

Agree...my wife prefers my old old late Mac Mini 2009 with an optical drive. She asked me to put the optical drive back into the unit after I replaced it with an extra 1 TD hard drive some years ago.

She says it is “cute” on her desk and having the optical drive inside is just “easier”. She does not use the optical drive that often...but when she needs it, it is there.

I put 8 GB of RAM and a 512 MX300 SSD from Crucial in it last week for her with EL Cap and she is happy...

For what it is worth...the Mac mini 2009 now with all of the hardware updates FLYS and I mean flys with OS Snow Leopard.....too bad....cannot use SN anymore...
 

redheeler

macrumors 604
Oct 17, 2014
7,667
7,548
If some thing happen how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro?

With no optical drive today on Apple computers how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro or Macbook air so on.

Say some thing happen and you cannot boot into OS or the OS get corrupted.

Or that say you just want do a fresh install of OS after three years of use.

How are you to reinstall the OS if you have no optical drive?
Restore disks were replaced by the Recovery partition in Macs, or Internet Recovery if your drive is replaced or wiped clean. This happened six years ago, and all Macs 2010 or later can support Internet Recovery.

As mentioned by others, USB or network installers can also be made for slightly quicker reinstallation, offline reinstallation, or installation to a specific version of MacOS.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
22,178
8,227
OP asked:
"How are you to reinstall the OS if you have no optical drive?"

1. Get a copy of the OS installer.
2. Get a USB flashdrive 16gb
3. Download ONE of the following: "Boot Buddy", "DiskMaker X", or "Install Disk Creator".
4. Use one of the above free apps to create a BOOTABLE USB flash drive installer.

Problem solved.
Much faster than booting from an optical drive, as well.
I suggest you do this, even if you don't need it now.
Put the USB flashdrive installer away for safekeeping.
 

theluggage

macrumors 603
Jul 29, 2011
5,253
4,331
but they went full scale in 2012 and eliminated them from almost everything.

Personally I think they called it about right with the removal of the optical drive - as something you still needed occasionally but really didn't need on the road (along with a stack of CDs that could otherwise fit on a single USB stick) , and could quite happily stay back home in the drawer. My trusty 2011 17" MBP got a mid-life optical-driveectomy in favour of a "data doubler" to hold the original HD when a SSD went into the main bay.

Also, I found those slimline optical drives had a half-life of about 6 months (after which they'd either fail completely or start refusing to write discs) so, honestly, better out than in.

However, its worth remembering that when the optical-drive-less retina MacBook Pro came out in 2012, they also updated the classic MacBook Pros with the latest CPUs and USB 3 so there was a good year or so handover period (so the 13" cMBP that hung around for years was at least a 2012 model, not a 2011 one) so if you did need an onboard optical drive you weren't abandoned overnight.

c/f the launch of the late 2016 models, where if you weren't ready for USB-C with everything they kindly kept just the lowest specced, unupdated version of the 18-month old 2015 design around for a few months at an exciting new higher price...
 

960design

macrumors 68040
Apr 17, 2012
3,245
1,123
Destin, FL
If some thing happen how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro?

With no optical drive today on Apple computers how are you to reinstall the OS like on you MacBook Pro or Macbook air so on.

Say some thing happen and you cannot boot into OS or the OS get corrupted.

Or that say you just want do a fresh install of OS after three years of use.

How are you to reinstall the OS if you have no optical drive?
Optical drives store data in a format that degrades over time, is easily damaged or lost. All bad things for 'important' information.

To restore the operating system use macOS Recovery over the Internet:
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201314
 

Princess Cake

macrumors 6502
Jan 15, 2010
318
240
Cheboygan, MI
Two words: Electronic Anorexia.

For some reason Apple has it in their head that people carry around their iMacs everywhere and they need to be as light as a feather, which means removing anything that requires space and try to pass it off as "Quit living in the past"

Sure, when Apple removed the floppy drive they at least did it when floppies really were pretty much dead and optical discs were really becoming the new defacto standard. But here we are nearly 20 years later and guess what-- THEY STILL ARE. So when Apple removes things people still bloody use it just results in them looking out of touch with the end user in the name of being more a Fashion company than a Computer/Electronics company.

Moving on to the second point, I fully understand why you'd wanna make computers lighter from the viewpoint of 1998.... we used CRTs and the iMac nearly weighed 40 pounds! But once the G4 arrived it already slimmed down to 20 pounds which is a perfectly reasonable weight in terms of moving the computer around the house. What they're doing now as I said is just electronic anorexia, they're making the iMac thinner and lighter for no reason other than they "can" and I use "can" in quotations as its only when they remove essential parts like the aforementioned disc drive!! How long before they remove the USB ports just to make the display 1/4th of an inch thinner?

I don't like where Apple is heading and I forsee myself in the future using older machines with decrepit versions of OS X in the name of usability... RIP, Apple. You're a trillionaire company that doesn't give 2 cents about the user.
 
  • Like
Reactions: loby

loby

macrumors 65816
Jul 1, 2010
1,232
809
Two words: Electronic Anorexia.

For some reason Apple has it in their head that people carry around their iMacs everywhere and they need to be as light as a feather, which means removing anything that requires space and try to pass it off as "Quit living in the past"

Sure, when Apple removed the floppy drive they at least did it when floppies really were pretty much dead and optical discs were really becoming the new defacto standard. But here we are nearly 20 years later and guess what-- THEY STILL ARE. So when Apple removes things people still bloody use it just results in them looking out of touch with the end user in the name of being more a Fashion company than a Computer/Electronics company.

Moving on to the second point, I fully understand why you'd wanna make computers lighter from the viewpoint of 1998.... we used CRTs and the iMac nearly weighed 40 pounds! But once the G4 arrived it already slimmed down to 20 pounds which is a perfectly reasonable weight in terms of moving the computer around the house. What they're doing now as I said is just electronic anorexia, they're making the iMac thinner and lighter for no reason other than they "can" and I use "can" in quotations as its only when they remove essential parts like the aforementioned disc drive!! How long before they remove the USB ports just to make the display 1/4th of an inch thinner?

I don't like where Apple is heading and I forsee myself in the future using older machines with decrepit versions of OS X in the name of usability... RIP, Apple. You're a trillionaire company that doesn't give 2 cents about the user.

Marketing drives Apple more so now over technological advance, so the anal-yst tells them to focus on millennials who are more concerned with “enjois smileys and selfies”, toys and fashion. They understand that the older crowd who prefer more tech, ports, power, etc. over cosmetics are getting older...and they do not “spend” or turn over their tech as much as the younger market. No money in the old techie crowd. No offense to the younger crowd, but marketing data shows and speaks more than opinions. They capitalize on their life choices, habits and behaviors...Apple is not excluded.

Older techies keep their iPhones and iPads (and of course macs) much longer than a year or so instead of being “cool” with the lastest and greatest to show off to their friends like the younger crowd. China is one of those markets that Apple (and others) are trying to capture also that has this type of culture. I give credit to Apple, for as a company “in it to make money”....they did it. Congratulations.

How can we be upset with Apple? Many on this forum complain about the direction of Apple, limited ports, limited tech...but....the toys are selling, selling, selling...this is why “toys-R- us” went bankrupt.

Apple would chance their direction if no one bought their products. There direction is the correct one that brings the most money in. They are not a charity organization, nor are they out to better the earth or universe or diveristy stuff or rights for puppies etc. They use those things to capture markets to profit.

To look for practicality (I believe) now a days is dead in computer technology...long live the new “Toys-R-US” Apple.
 

ApolloBoy

macrumors 6502a
Apr 16, 2015
734
246
San Jose, CA
Older techies keep their iPhones and iPads (and of course macs) much longer than a year or so instead of being “cool” with the lastest and greatest to show off to their friends like the younger crowd.
A lot of people in my age group tend to hold onto tech for fairly long periods of time I've noticed, whereas people who go nuts over stupid stuff like emojis span all sorts of age groups.

Anyway, I don't mind the lack of an optical drive in laptops these days and external optical drives tend to be more reliable and faster anyway. I usually only use optical drives for ripping DVDs and CDs.
 

loby

macrumors 65816
Jul 1, 2010
1,232
809
In my work environment we still use older tech because the clients are older and have no interest in the newer technology. Like mentioned before, though I embrace the new technology, I have found it much easier and less of a hassle to just get a DVD or CD and pop it into my old MacBook Pro 2010, instead of having to go through iTunes, or iCloud or finding it somewhere so I can open it up in Quicktime and just watch or listen.

Just because it is "New" technology, does not always mean it is the better...
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.