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How to Install OS X 10.x (Snow Leopard to El Capitan) in VMware Workstation 10/11, Workstation Pro/Player 12, Player 6/7, ESXi 5/6


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Here's a patched tool to make a VMDK for 10.11+ based on the Fusion shell script.  Just add it as a SCSI device along with another SCSI vmdk that you need to partition with GPT.

 

ISO didn't work because it errors out saying the installer needs to be run from a writable disk.

 

Also, QuartzDebug doesn't work, and it seems that beamoff doesn't work either... so graphics performance is horrible even after forcing a vmware tools install.

CreateOSXInstallVMDK.tool.txt

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  • 2 weeks later...

all i get is a blue boot loader screen after the vmware fails to lboot the iso file for mountain lion.  i did the unlocecker for vmplayer 7 and moved the efi file and edited the other but all i get is boot failure.

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i use dmg2img in linux to make an iso from a mountain lion dmg file so i am reasonable sure that it is not corrupt.

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tried it with workstation... thought that might be the thing... 30 day free trial..  unlocked it did the efi firmware and edits.  never thought id see a blue screen of death in linux. lol :drool: :drool:


tried both of these also

One final note, occasionally you can come across an unsupported CPU error, this should be rare if you have recently downloaded your OS X media from the App Store as the App Store version is updated when a new combo patch is released. Alternatively if your CPU is one of the very latest Intel processors not yet supported by OS X, Apple check CPUID's when installing OS X, and will not install on an unsupported processor platform.

 

(A prime example was when Intel introduced the Core i3, i5 and i7 and Xeon 5600 series processors, Snow Leopard 10.6.4 was the lowest version of OS X to support the new processors, unfortunately the highest available "vanilla" media was and still is 10.6.3, without the CPUID mask it was impossible to install OS X Snow Leopard. As stated earlier in this post, Apple starting with OS X 10.7 Lion deliver the latest slipstreamed media via the App Store.)

 

In either case add the following line to your OS X virtual machine configuration file (.vmx):

 

cpuid.1.eax = "0000:0000:0000:0001:0000:0110:1010:0101" or cpuid.1.eax = "----:----:----:0010:----:----:1010:0111"

 
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tried it with workstation... thought that might be the thing... 30 day free trial..  unlocked it did the efi firmware and edits.  never thought id see a blue screen of death in linux. lol :drool: :drool:

tried both of these also

One final note, occasionally you can come across an unsupported CPU error, this should be rare if you have recently downloaded your OS X media from the App Store as the App Store version is updated when a new combo patch is released. Alternatively if your CPU is one of the very latest Intel processors not yet supported by OS X, Apple check CPUID's when installing OS X, and will not install on an unsupported processor platform.

 

(A prime example was when Intel introduced the Core i3, i5 and i7 and Xeon 5600 series processors, Snow Leopard 10.6.4 was the lowest version of OS X to support the new processors, unfortunately the highest available "vanilla" media was and still is 10.6.3, without the CPUID mask it was impossible to install OS X Snow Leopard. As stated earlier in this post, Apple starting with OS X 10.7 Lion deliver the latest slipstreamed media via the App Store.)

 

In either case add the following line to your OS X virtual machine configuration file (.vmx):

 

cpuid.1.eax = "0000:0000:0000:0001:0000:0110:1010:0101" or cpuid.1.eax = "----:----:----:0010:----:----:1010:0111"

 

 

I was able to virtualize snow leopard on Windows 10 using vmware player and then step up to via updates to 10.10.4.

Luckily I have the physical DVD to start off.

 

 

Intel CPU or AMD?

 

If intel VT features enabled in BIOS?  [ or AMD equivalents ] 

 

did you try adding this to the ".vmx" file?

 

efi64.filename = "efi64-srvr.rom"
smc.version = "0" 
 
good luck.
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  • 2 weeks later...

This is awesome.  Thank you.  I have been using an eval copy of workstation 11 while i try to work out the kinks on some computers.

 

I have noticed that while making changes, ie deleting files on a usb device... the guest crashes.  It's annoying.  Have any thoughts on that anyone?

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  • 5 weeks later...

Is there ANY way to get more than 128MB of VRAM recognized by a OSX 10.10.4 VM running on VMWare Workstation 11 on Windows 8.1 client???

 

I've built brand new OSX 10.10.4 client (hardware 11) and the VM boots and runs fine but no matter what VRAM settings I specify in the VMX file the OS only recognized 128MB VRAM.

 

Are there any plans for video hardware acceleration support within the guest?

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i replied in your other thread and pointed you to a VMware forum thread on the issue. Basically:

1. The limited resolution is actually OSX and not VMware causing a problem
2. You can specify a boot resolution using nvram as discussed in the thread some details below:

> Can you give me please a hint? I would like to have the resolution 1280x1024
1280 in decimal is 0x500, i.e. on 32-bit 0x00000500 (that is 0xmnklijgh in my comment)
1024 in decimal is 0x400, i.e. on 32-bit 0x00000400 (that is 0xuvstqrop in my comment)

So run these commands once for all in the guest (in Terminal.app):
sudo nvram AC20C489-DD86-4E99-992C-B7C742C1DDA9:width=%00%05%00%00
sudo nvram AC20C489-DD86-4E99-992C-B7C742C1DDA9:height=%00%04%00%00
then restart the Mac OS guest. That resolution will now automatically be applied for you at each restart of the guest.

3. You cannot have more than 128GB video RAM but that is enough for the highest resolutions using this method.
4. No there are currently no plans for accelerated graphics drivers from VMware (as far as I know)
5. Fit guest to window works if you resize the window to something you can use.

Make sure you have installed the VMware tools. You have to mount the ISO and do that manually.

Hope this helps.

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3. You cannot have more than 128GB video RAM but that is enough for the highest resolutions using this method.

Donk,

 

You must send me a link to a 128GB Video Card, LoL!!

 

Sorry could not resist, hope you are well.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Excellent walk through.  I can now successfully test software deployments and roll back changes with snaps.  I have been trying to test with 10.6.8 but it has reached its limit for new application support.  Many thanks to everyone who worked on this guide!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Have anybody managed to make a bootable El Capitan dmg like the ones for Mavericks and yosemite?
I tried to just use the yosemite script for El capitan Golden Master but that wouldn't boot or start like the patched Mavericks and Yosemite.

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  • 2 weeks later...

A new version of MAC OS X is out. Hope that we don't have to add a totally new method for installations.

Upgrade from Yosemite to the release version of El Capitan appears to work OK on Workstation 12, updated to OS X version 10.11 and Hardware compatibility to version 12. Also a new version of darwin.iso is available 8.0.1.

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Upgrade from Yosemite to the release version of El Capitan appears to work OK on Workstation 12, updated to OS X version 10.11 and Hardware compatibility to version 12. Also a new version of darwin.iso is available 8.0.1.

 

I see VMware Fusion v8.0.1, I also guess that new Darwin.iso is available :)

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A temp solution for vmware workstation is to make a os x el capitan bootable usb stick

http://osxdaily.com/2015/09/30/create-os-x-el-capitan-boot-install-drive/

Then make a new virtual machine give it the settings you want and remember to add smc.version = "0" to the vmx file of the virtual machine.

Then you boot the VM but when you see the vmware logo you right click on the name of your VM in workstation choose the removable devices and choose your usb stick and press connect.
It should now boot from the usb stick and you can install a clean version of os x el capitan.
Its a bit more work then using a dmg file but at least it works and its a clean install and not a upgrade.

 

I did it in vmware workstation 12 pro and used hardware compatibility

os_x.jpg

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Many thanks for those tips. I was able to create an El Capitan installer & now have a fresh image working under vmware. Yay! Brilliant!

 

Then did the sync fix, vmware tools & it seems to be working pretty decently - including screen resizing, audio, youtube playback which is not perfect but pretty close even at 1080p. 

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I didn't see anyone mention upgrading on Workstation 11 so I gave it a shot. The upgrade from 10.10.3 to 10.11 worked. I made no changes to my setup and El Capitan (EC) is downright 'snappy' - subjectively I'd say about 2x faster than Yosemite and definitely usable once it's done booting. 

 

Prior to the upgrade, I installed the beamoff app and set it to start on login. I thought maybe that was responsible for the big improvement until reading in a prior post that it wasn't working in EC. I tried to verify this so I installed the Graphics Tools for Xcode and ran Quartz Debug (v4.2) but that was a dead end. I didn't see any BeamSync settings talked about in posts on other forums.

 

One thing that's still broken is swapping mouse buttons in the host doesn't translate to the EC guest (I'm a left-hander). Changing mouse settings in EC had no effect. Since this was also broken in Yosemite I didn't lose any functionality but I sure would like to fix it. Any ideas?

 

cb4

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Para lograr correr varios OSX en una misma máquina, por ej. Mountain Lion, Mavericks y Yosemite, a mí me salvó un soporte técnico que son unos genios!! MacHELP, si vivís en Buenos Aires, te lo recomiendo: http://soportecnicomachelp.com.ar/porque a veces setear una máquina virtual como VMware or Parallels Desktop no es tan sencillo corriendo varios sistemas.

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I didn't see anyone mention upgrading on Workstation 11 so I gave it a shot. The upgrade from 10.10.3 to 10.11 worked. I made no changes to my setup and El Capitan (EC) is downright 'snappy' - subjectively I'd say about 2x faster than Yosemite and definitely usable once it's done booting. 

 

 

cb4

 

cb4 - to do the upgrade, did you simply download the upgrade from the App Store in the VM, and run it? I've tried twice and when the VM reboots to install El Capitan, it comes up to OS X Utilities and doesn't appear to recognize the original system...

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Hi, thanks to instructions posted by asifanwar on MacRumors I was able to successfully create an iso to install El Capitan on my ESXi 5 server (previously unlocked with Donk's Unlocker). Here's his post with complete instructions:

 

http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/el-capitan-bootable-dvd.1923931/#post-22039675

 

The install went flawlessly and the VM boots and runs with only two issues I've seen thusfar:

 

1. I'm stuck at 1024x768. Googling reveals this is a common problem with OS X on VMWare, but so far none of the solutions people used in the past are working for me. I installed the very latest VMwaretools (darwin.iso) and they installed perfectly. I raised the amount of vram for the graphics adapter in Vpshere client to 12MB. I don't really want to mess with the old SVGA2 driver, as from my understanding it's no longer being developed. If anyone has any ideas here I'd appreciate hearing them--especially if there's a way to do it that doesn't involve turning off SIP.

 

2. I had read that iMessage and Facetime wouldn't work due to the serial number/MAC address issue. That's no problem to me, I don't really care. But there are some other apple-ID related things that don't seem to be working for me either. For instance if I try turning on iCloud Keychain I just get the "spinning" circle (not the beachball, the one made of small lines) icon for what seems like forever (after 10 minutes I got impatient and force quit system preferences). A bit more troublesome is that I can't seem to buy anything from the Mac App Store. Like I've tried several times to buy the OS X Server app for $19.99. When I click Buy it prompts me for my Apple ID password which I enter, then I just get the same endless busy icon in that dialog box. To get out of it I have to force quit App Store. My workaround was to buy it from my MBP (no problems at all) and then it showed up on the VM in the purchased tab and I could download it and install no problem.

 

Has anyone seen these issues running EC under vmware? Other than those two things it seems to be running well so far. Still need to try passing through USB, but considering the hoops I had to jump through in the past to install Lion this was a total breeze once you get the installer iso created.

 

Edit: From some more research it looks like some/all of these problems may be resolved if I upgrade to ESXi 5.5 (and insert SMBIOS.use12CharSerialNumber=TRUE in the vmx). Don't have time to mess with that now but I will in a couple weeks and will report back.

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