Any OSx86 installation guide can seem daunting at first glance, especially when trying to remember cryptic terminal commands and sorting through volumes of misinformation on the web. This guide requires no coding, terminal work, or Mac experience of any kind. You will not need access to a Mac. In fact, it’s easier and faster for me to install Snow Leopard with fully working components on my system than it is to install Windows 7. And more fun.
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The iBoot + MultiBeast method is designed and tested for any desktop or laptop running the latest line of Intel processors, the Core i3/i5/i7s. I have had reports of success with older machines as well including CoreDuo, Core2Duo, and even Pentium 4. However, AMD processors are not supported.
YOU WILL NEED
- A computer running an Intel Processor
- A blank CD
- A Mac OS X Snow Leopard Retail DVD
- To leave any fear of your computer at the door.
BEFORE YOU BEGIN
- If you have greater than 4gb of RAM, remove the extra RAM for a maximum of 4gb. You can put back any extra RAM in after the installation process.
- Use only 1 graphics card in the 1st PCIe slot with 1 monitor plugged in.
- Remove any hard drives besides the blank drive being used for OS X.
- Remove any USB peripherals besides keyboard and mouse.
- Remove any PCI cards besides graphics- they may not be Mac compatible.
- If using a Gigabyte 1156 board, use the blue Intel SATA ports– not the white Gigabyte SATA ports.
- It’s best to use an empty hard drive– you will have to partition and format the drive.
- Always back up any of your important data.
STEP 1: BIOS SETTINGS
You will need to set your BIOS to ACHI mode and your Boot Priority to boot from CD-ROM first. This is the most important step, and one many people overlook. Make sure your bios settings match these. It’s not difficult- the only thing I did on my Gigabyte board besides setting Boot Priority to CD/DVD first was set Optimized Defaults, change SATA to AHCI mode, and set HPET to 64-bit mode.
STEP 2: INSTALL MAC OS X
In order to boot the Mac OS X Retail DVD, you’ll need to download and burn iBoot. For desktops and laptops using unsupported Intel CPUs and graphics, a legacy version of iBoot can be downloaded here.
- Download iBoot
- Burn the image to CD
- Place iBoot in CD/DVD drive
- Restart computer
- At boot prompt, eject iBoot
- Insert your Mac OS X Snow Leopard Retail DVD and press F5
- When you see the screen below, press enter to begin the boot process
- When you get to the installation screen, open Utilities/Disk Utility. NOTE: If you cannot get to the installation screen, retry from Step 4, type PCIRootUID=1 before hitting enter. If that doesn’t work then try PCIRootUID=1 -x or just -x which will enter Mac OS X Safe Mode and will allow you to proceed. For some graphics cards, use GraphicsEnabler=No boot flag to proceed.
- Partition your hard drive to GUID Partition Table
- Format your hard drive to Mac OS Extended (Journaled). NOTE: The bootloader can only boot from a disk or partition of 1 TB or less. Partition larger drives.
- For the purposes of this guide, name it Snow Leopard. You can rename it later.
- Close Disk Utility
- When the installer asks you where to install, choose Snow Leopard
- Choose Customize‚ and uncheck additional options. This will hasten the install process. You can always install this stuff later.
- Restart computer.
- Place iBoot back in drive.
- When you get to the boot selection screen, choose your new Snow Leopard installation.
- View the super-cool Mac OS X Snow Leopard Welcome Video, and set up your computer!
STEP 3: UPDATE TO 10.6.8
If you have a Sandy Bridge system, please follow these specialized instructions to update to 10.6.8.
- Open Finder and navigate to your Snow Leopard drive.
- Download the Mac OS X 10.6.8 Combo Update
- Download MultiBeast
- Open MultiBeast– don’t run it yet, just leave it open. Set up windows as shown.
- Mount MacOSXUpdCombo10.6.8.dmg
- Install MacOSXUpdCombo10.6.8.pkg
- Upon completion, the installer will ask you to reboot. DO NOT REBOOT.
- Switch to the already open MultiBeast. If it closes, just re-open it.
STEP 4: MULTIBEAST
MultiBeast is an all-in-one post-installation tool designed to enable boot from hard drive, and install support for Audio, Network, and Graphics. It contains two different complete post-installation solutions: EasyBeast and UserDSDT. In addition it includes System Utilities to rebuild caches and repair permissions and a collection of drivers, boot loaders, boot time config files and handy software.
Choose one of the following options directly following a fresh installation and update:
EasyBeast is a DSDT-free solution for any Core/Core2/Core i system. It installs all of the essentials to allow your system to boot from the hard drive. Audio, Graphics and Network will have to be enabled separately.
UserDSDT is a bare-minimum solution for those who have their own pre-edited DSDT. Place your DSDT.aml on the desktop before install. Audio, Graphics and Network will have to be enabled separately. HINT: Check the DSDT Database for a pre-edited DSDT.
- Run MultiBeast.
- If you have a custom DSDT that’s been edited, place the file on your desktop and chooseUserDSDT.
- All others select EasyBeast
- Select System Utilities.
- Optionally, you may install further drivers via Advanced Options to enable ethernet, sound, graphics, etc… Be sure to read the documentation provided about each installation option. NOTE:EasyBeast, and UserDSDT install the bootloader by default, so you’ll not need to check that option.
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- Install to Snow Leopard– it should take about 4 minutes to run scripts.
- Eject iBoot.
- Reboot- from your new Snow Leopard installation drive.
Congratulations! You’re done!!
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Your PC is now fully operational, while running the latest version of Mac OS X Snow Leopard! And you have a nice Boot CD to get into your system in case things go awry. Boot your system from iBoot if you have issues. You may run MultiBeast as often as you like.
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If you can’t boot, try typing -x at the boot prompt to enter safe mode, or just boot with iBoot. When you get to the desktop, you can make all of the changes you need to. The best way to start fresh is delete whatever you’re trying to get rid of- including the whole /Extra folder, as most kexts are installed there. Then you can re-run MultiBeast. As long as you rebuild caches and repair permissions after you’re done, you can do just about anything you want to /Extra/Extensions and /System/Library/Extensions. Anything can be tweaked and enabled upon subsequent uses of MultiBeast.