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[Guide] - Dell XPS 15z (L511z) - OS X Mountain Lion

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#1
isaac1234

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OS X Mountain Lion 10.8 on Dell XPS 15Z [L511z]

I have spent many hours on getting OS X to run smoothly on this laptop and now I’ve done it, I’m going to share what I did, because I ran into many many problems. What’s not working:
* The eSATA/USB 2.0 port works perfectly (haven’t tested eSATA) but the two USB 3.0 ports only work correctly with mass storage and mouse/keyboard. However they do work at USB 3.0 speed.
* Wifi doesn’t work
* Multitouch doesn’t work
* Haven’t bothered trying to get sleep, Bluetooth or card reader to work.
* HDMI out doesn’t work
* You need to boot with -f

Backup your entire disk with something like Clonezilla http://clonezilla.org/ because it is easy to mess things up—the first time I installed Lion I accidentally deleted my Windows 7 100mb boot partition and needed to restore it.

Feel free to use my DSDT (attached) and kexts. I've given the sources for them where I can. I'm using 10.8 here, best of luck if you have a 10.8.2 install

1. Prepare your drive so that you have room for an HFS+ Mac partition. If you’re going to wipe everything, it won’t matter, but if you’re running Windows or Linux then resize your partition. I used GParted. http://gparted.sourc....net/livecd.php Also please note that you must install OS X onto a primary partition and you can only have a maximum of 4. (your Windows installation most likely has a 100mb system reserved partition as the boot partition)

2a. Using an OS X machine, prepare the installer. We are doing a completely vanilla install. Follow this guide’s Part 2 http://www.insanelym...-for-beginners/with these variations:
* format the disk as MBR, not GUID (2.A part 5) (Dell BIOS will NOT boot GUID)
* Follow step 2D
Use a MacBook Pro 8,2 SMBIOS.

2b. In addition to the suggested kexts, you MUST use a DSDT otherwise you will get a grey striped screen when you’re supposed to get the install GUI. Copy my DSDT (dsdt.aml) into the root directory of the USB drive.

(This is my extracted XPS 15z DSDT with a few modifications—the errors and warnings fixed, the DualLink DTGP patch applied, HPET allocations, an audio patch and possibly some other minor things I can’t think of.)

You also must use the PS2-Synaptics-Keyboard-32+64 kexts from here http://www.osx86.net..._ps2_32-64.html otherwise the keyboard/trackpad will not work.

3. Reboot the machine with the USB drive in the eSATA/USB 2.0 port and a USB mouse in a USB 3 port. Although I have got it to boot with the drive in one of the USB 3.0 ports it’s not worth the hassle. Boot from USB and hopefully you will see Chameleon. Boot the installer with the –v flag.
Hopefully you’ll get into the GUI. If you get a kernel panic, it will be DSDT related—extract your own DSDT and apply the DualLink patch. If you get stuck on “Still waiting for root device”, ensure that you’ve plugged the USB drive into the eSATA/USB2 port.

4. Run the install, and when you finish, open up the terminal from Utilities->Terminal. Now we need to copy the extensions and DSDT so we can boot up. Type these (assuming your Mac volume is called OS X)
cp –R /System/Library/Extensions/NullCPUPowerManagement.kext /Volumes/"OS X"/System/Library/Extensions/
cp –R /System/Library/Extensions/FakeSMC.kext /Volumes/"OS X"/System/Library/Extensions/
cp –R /System/Library/Extensions/AppleACPIPS2Nub.kext/ Volumes/"OS X"/System/Library/Extensions/
cp –R /System/Library/Extensions/ApplePS2Controller.kext/ Volumes/"OS X"/System/Library/Extensions/

5. Now reboot onto the USB stick but this time select your OS X partition rather than the USB stick. Boot with the -v -f -x flags. You must use the –x flag because the installation will not boot without the safe mode flag at this stage, and I always get the root device error without -f. Don’t know why.

6. Fix graphics—whilst in safe mode, go to /System/Library/Extensions and DELETE all nVidia kexts (you can back them up if you want). Also delete AppleIntelHDGraphics.kext. This should fix your graphics issues—I believe the graphics not working are related to the second nVidia graphics card. Reboot back onto the USB stick and select the OS X installation again (don't forget -v -f).

7. Install Chameleon or Chimera from within OS X. Also create an SMBIOS like you did before.
You may run into an issue I had with my hard-drive where Chameleon can’t install the boot sector properly. In this case you’ll have to use the Terminal in the install and use this method: http://www.macbreake...oot0-error.html This method didn’t work for me until I unmounted the volume for I ran dd. (Type diskutil unmount “OS X” first.)

8. If dual booting, go into Windows and modify your BCD with EasyBCD http://neosmart.net/EasyBCD/ so you can dual boot with OS X.

9. If you are having display glitch problems, use an EDID override http://www.insanelym...splay-problems/ and also update to FakeSMC 4.2 – this helped a lot for me.

10. Fix USB 3 –install PXHCD.kext from http://www.osx86.net...pxhcd.kext.html Use
Kext Helper to install kexts from now on or copy and then use Disk Utility to repair permissions.

11. Fix audio http://www.insanelym...-inspiron-1464/ If you’re using my DSDT, the DSDT patching has already been done.

12. Fix Ethernet– AtherosL1cEthernet.kext http://www.osx86.net...ernet.kext.html

13. Fix battery— VoodooBattery http://www.osx86.net...ttery_lion.html

That’s it! Enjoy, and let me know if you know how to fix any of the rest of the issues.

Attached Files


Edited by fantomas1, 29 January 2013 - 05:02 PM.
n°11 edited!!!


#2
bwalky

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Isaac1234 I'm posting this off my l511z on 10.8.2, after using your DSDT and following your instructions. MANY THANKS.

#3
Spotta

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A well written easy to follow guide. Unfortunately I'm stuck at 'Waiting for DSMOS' when first booting from the USB stick but at least that gives me something to research today.

Update. Booting 10.8.2. Thanks!

I obviously got something wrong as I could only run the installer with -v -f -x. the installation failed, but I installed MacDrive to my Windows, copied the DSDT over and it then booted with -v -f -x fine.
I'm going round in circles trying to get ML and my three Win partitions to all boot nicely, but i'll get there in the end =]

#4
effatum

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Oh dear, this is fantastic! haven't had time since summer to play on this, I had a different approach on the install that started from an earlier version, got stuck at some point and wasn't able to have a decent functioning install... Before I try this I need to get some money and buy me another computer as I am still using this as my main work pc, so I am sorry if questions seems stupid but;
how is the battery handling itself under normal conditions?
did u try the custom bios to undervolt the GC?
cheers buddy

#5
stathismes

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well, for me, only the original keyboard & trackpad kexts from the iatkos ML2 installation work. Not the PS2-Synaptics-Keyboard-32+64 kexts.

Also, I get a Kernel Panic when using the attached DSDT from your post....

:( And I'm still wondering, when we get to see kexts for Nvidia GT 525M and Intel Centrino 6230 WiFi....!!

Edited by stathismes, 07 March 2013 - 01:57 PM.


#6
Air

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Hey, anyone have any luck with the recently released 10.8.3? I made sure to redelete all the nvidia kexts that we don't need, but bootup hangs. However, I'm able to boot in with safe mode, so I'm pretty sure there's just another kext we need to delete to boot up properly. Here are the kexts I've taken out of SLE so far:

AppleIVBVA, GeForce, GeForceGA, GeForceGLDriver, GeForceVADriver, NVDAGF100Hal, NVDAGK100Hal, NVDAN50Hal, NVDAResman, NVDAStartup

#7
isaac1234

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Hi, sorry haven't checked back here in a while. Have been using my OS X partition a fair bit but have decided I will buy a MBP in the near future because I enjoy the OS so much.


Oh dear, this is fantastic! haven't had time since summer to play on this, I had a different approach on the install that started from an earlier version, got stuck at some point and wasn't able to have a decent functioning install... Before I try this I need to get some money and buy me another computer as I am still using this as my main work pc, so I am sorry if questions seems stupid but;
how is the battery handling itself under normal conditions?
did u try the custom bios to undervolt the GC?
cheers buddy


Battery seems to be handling itself fine. Not sure if the charge is quite as long as in Windows but (without testing much) I'd say it'd be comparable. Slightly unreliable "time til empty" and "time til charged" readings. Have noticed that the CPU meter seems unusually high most of the time but performance doesn't seem to be affected. I can run a pretty heavy Mainstage (live audio) rig with lower latency than Windows without any glitches whatsoever.

No BIOS fiddling at all from me-- not quite my thing because I couldn't afford this computer to be unusable.


well, for me, only the original keyboard & trackpad kexts from the iatkos ML2 installation work. Not the PS2-Synaptics-Keyboard-32+64 kexts.

Also, I get a Kernel Panic when using the attached DSDT from yourof post....

:( And I'm still wondering, when we get to see kexts for Nvidia GT 525M and Intel Centrino 6230 WiFi....!!


Glad to hear that you found away of getting the keyboard & trackpad working. May be that you have a different revision to me. I'm afraid I can't help out with the gfx card or wifi either.

Hey, anyone have any luck with the recently released 10.8.3? I made sure to redelete all the nvidia kexts that we don't need, but bootup hangs. However, I'm able to boot in with safe mode, so I'm pretty sure there's just another kext we need to delete to boot up properly. Here are the kexts I've taken out of SLE so far:

AppleIVBVA, GeForce, GeForceGA, GeForceGLDriver, GeForceVADriver, NVDAGF100Hal, NVDAGK100Hal, NVDAN50Hal, NVDAResman, NVDAStartup


I read about some people having a hairy time on 10.8.3 and haven't braved it. Have you tried booting with -f ? I'm still in the dark why my system won't boot without -f, prior to getting Mountain Lion working I had a semi-stable Lion working which could boot without it.

Cheers all, take care.

Isaac

#8
sqishy

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Hi everyone, I've gone to 10.8.4 and its running well, full dual boot W7, MLion, no flags etc....



#9
Air

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Hi everyone, I've gone to 10.8.4 and its running well, full dual boot W7, MLion, no flags etc....

I've got it working on 10.8.4 too, even though strangely I could not get 10.8.3 working at all. Just make sure you delete all the unnecessary graphics kexts.



#10
sqishy

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Hi Isacc

 

With your -f option have you tried this:

 

Add to your plist file
<key>UseKernelCache</key>
<string>Yes</string>

In Terminal rebuild kext cache:

sudo chown -R root:wheel /System/Library/Extensions/
sudo chmod -755 /System/Library/Extensions/
sudo touch /System/Library/Extensions/

 

try reboot without -f........



#11
Air

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So all of you are probably using an MBR partition scheme, but for those of you with advanced format hard drives (Isaac I'm assuming you do since you had to do the boot1h fix for making the bootloader work), have you noticed any performance issues while running ML? Mainly I'm thinking about anything where data has to be written to the HD, so in my case recording music. I've noticed it is incredibly slow at times, which I think means that for ML, advanced format HD's do not play well with the MBR partition map. Does anyone else have experience with this?

 

The work around would be a) to get a non-advanced format HD (anyone know any good 1tb models? everything seems to be AFT these days), or to use a GPT partition map, but then you'd constantly have to boot from an MBR-formatted USB/externalHD with a bootloader on it. It's a trade off, but I think going with GPT would eliminate all problems since that would make the hackbook native.



#12
TimeWalker75a

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but then you'd constantly have to boot from an MBR-formatted USB/externalHD with a bootloader on it. It's a trade off, but I think going with GPT would eliminate all problems since that would make the hackbook native.

You don't if you'd flash an unlocked BIOS with UEFI boot mode enabled and set up Clover UEFI as you bootloader, then you would have your bootloader files on the EFI partition and that's pretty much it.



#13
Air

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TimeWalker thanks for the tip, could you point us to a source for this BIOS mod and/or guide?

 

I'm also reinstalling from scratch and can get back up to 10.8.2, but when I go to 10.8.4 (both in software update and combo update from Apple's site), I once again can only boot from -x...really frustrating because I previously was able to boot fine. Anyone have any trouble with this too? I've replicated my steps from last time, deleting NV-, ATI-, and AMD- kexts (it seems from before that keeping the AppleIntelHD- kexts is fine), but I'm still only able to safe boot. I have actually completely stripped my system down to only the essential kexts, which I identified using a safe boot and Kext Wizard, yet still I'm only able to safe boot with those minimal kexts. I did notice that on combo update, the installer fails with this error:

 

 

installd[269]: PackageKit: Install Failed: Error Domain=PKInstallErrorDomain Code=121 "An error occurred while updating system extension information." UserInfo=0x7fcd371f9d60 {NSUnderlyingError=0x7fcd377b0610 "The operation couldn’t be completed. (kextcache error 71.)", NSLocalizedDescription=An error occurred while updating system extension information., arguments=(
   "-update-volume",
   "/",
   "-Installer"
)} {
   NSLocalizedDescription = "An error occurred while updating system extension information.";
   NSUnderlyingError = "Error Domain=kextcache Code=71 \"The operation couldn\U2019t be completed. (kextcache error 71.)\"";
   arguments =     (
       "-update-volume",
       "/",
       "-Installer"
   );
}
 

 

*EDIT AND SOLUTION: the issue is that booting from a USB causes the updated versions to not boot without -x, for whatever reason you have to boot into chameleon from the internal HD. Thanks to sqishy for confirming this too. GPT disks won't work if you use the method of booting from USB, so I guess I'll be looking into modding my BIOS if I want to get GPT support.



#14
TimeWalker75a

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Check bios-mods.com forums, the unlocked phoenix bioses subforum. For all your osx related stuff see XPS L502x thread here at IM, these laptops are virtually the same.

#15
youngwake

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I've followed this guide to the T! I've applied and reapplied the steps MULTIPLE times, and every time, I always get the grey screen. I once succeeded with the Apple Boot screen but it remained on the Apple screen for over 30 mins. I've installed OSX on other laptops with ease, but this one is blowing my mind. I even have the modded bios...can someone anyone help me? or point me to another guide that works better....I just dont get it. I've done everything the OP has outlined and I always get the gray screen!! 



#16
chris1111

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I've followed this guide to the T! I've applied and reapplied the steps MULTIPLE times, and every time, I always get the grey screen. I once succeeded with the Apple Boot screen but it remained on the Apple screen for over 30 mins. I've installed OSX on other laptops with ease, but this one is blowing my mind. I even have the modded bios...can someone anyone help me? or point me to another guide that works better....I just dont get it. I've done everything the OP has outlined and I always get the gray screen!! 

try this method !! can be works for you  :D  B)

because its Clover bootloader  and is  works to place cameleleon does not work

http://www.osx86.net...otcd-cloveriso/



#17
youngwake

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Thanks mate. I will give it a try and post results...



#18
youngwake

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try this method !! can be works for you  :D  B)

because its Clover bootloader  and is  works to place cameleleon does not work

http://www.osx86.net...otcd-cloveriso/

I tried it, but i got stuck on the clover boot screen. 

 

try this method !! can be works for you  :D  B)

because its Clover bootloader  and is  works to place cameleleon does not work

http://www.osx86.net...otcd-cloveriso/

I tried it but clover CD at boot hangs at  cdboot: done7 ANY reason why?



#19
chris1111

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I tried it, but i got stuck on the clover boot screen. 

 

I tried it but clover CD at boot hangs at  cdboot: done7 ANY reason why?

 

not like your machine LOL    :P  sorry  ca be  you have better chance with the dvd  

 

here   :)   B)  some laptop needs retail dvd 

 

http://www.osx86.net...ntain-lion-pkg/



#20
youngwake

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I tried it, but i got stuck on the clover boot screen. 

 

I tried it but clover CD at boot hangs at  cdboot: done7 ANY reason why?

I gotta it to boot and run but after update, I get waiting on root device/. any ideas?







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