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[GUIDE] OS X ON-THE-GO (OTG)

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Assalamo Alaikom Wa Rahmato Allahi Ta3ala Wa Barakatuh

 

OS X ON-THE-GO

Hey there :D
I've been asked lately (as many old users) about the Recovery Partition on OS X and how is it useful, well we found out that it is useful if you need it and know how to use it.
This Recovery Partition is usually made when Installing OS X with the "createinstallmedia" method + Clover (See HERE for Mavericks and HERE for Yosemite), but it have many problems: 

  • Chameleon users can't have it
  • Some users that even though they use Clover install method, the createinstallmedia OS X installer fails to load at boot, or at installing, so they got to use the Chameleon Way, and we go back to the last point
  • Some users have SSDs, which means smaller disk space, and since that recovery partition takes about 640MB, it's not funny at all to have it on such small storage device
  • To use the Recovery way of OS X Reinstallation, you should have an AirPort compatible WiFi chip, without it, you can't download or reinstall OS X if it's broken :(

So, is this recovery partition needed?
Well, that depends on your needs, for people who are trying stuff on their OS X partition and wont a rescue it when broken, it's really useful, BUT, it lacks so many things that makes it suck or unusable (or unavailable).
So many of the OLD OS X users had this idea of a portable OS X, which they succeed to do, and which is our AIM in this GUIDE :D since a Full OS X on a USB will really help broken OS X Installs and recover disks and save time and energy of reinstalling :)
 
But before we start, I would like to thank many users who contributed to give me ideas and guides and help about this OS X On-The-Go: 

  • iFire: he was the first one to give me that idea of a "Portable OS X", he started making an App that will make what this guide aims to but I didn't hear of him since a long time (hope you're ok :) )
  • Pokenguyen: Thanks to his guide, many ppl got OS X booting on their PCs, we will use his guide again to make our disk bootable :)
  • Download-fritz for some Clover stuff <_< yeah ...
  • IF I FORGOT SOMEONE TELL ME :hammer:

NOTICE 1:

Before we start, I would like to point out some benefits and some weak points of this OS X OTG:

 

Benefits:

  • Reliable when OS X is broken, you can use the dmg (we will make later) to reinstall OS X without getting to the Install screen (premade OS X system DMG)
  • Still have all the functions of OS X like Finder and Safari and pretty much everything needed for a complete OS X desktop :)
  • Use it on multiple computers without getting bricked, may help for testing kernels for AMD users (it's a suggestion)

Weak Points:

  • Well :( if you're trying on a conventional USB 2.0 Flash drive, it may take you a LOOOOOOOONG time to load itself and to load Apps :( which is sad, and may make you feel that that piece of software is worthless
  • Limited storage, since you may be using a simple USB disk, space on that disk is really small (I mean the System DMG we will make is 7.1GB and a 8GB USB may work, but you'll get only 0.9GB of spare space ... it's ridiculous, since later you'll try to put the System DMG (we will make later) on it a 16GB USB will do the work :) and will play the role of a true recovery system :)
  • Need configuring on each new system :( so before plugging it to any new PC make sure you make a new config for it, save it on Clover partition and switch whenever you need to :)
  • You can only make a System DMG with the same version of the running OS X.

 

NOTICE 2:

 

Our friend chris1111 made a giantic work of creating a EZ and Automatic way to Install OS X to an HDD directly from OS X (it's the same method but the output is directly the HDD, not a dmg as my guide show), it's less time taker and noob-proof :) And he even added a Post-Install package that mey be useful for some.

Go check it here: NEW WAY TO INSTALL OS X YOSEMITE :) Enjoy :D

 

Let's Get Started :D

 Requirements:

  • At least 8GB of blank USB storage, and it must be for a minimum a USB2.0 (running OS X from USB only, nothing more, nothing less)
  • The recommended tech for that is 16GB USB3.0 or a USB2.0 HDD cuz it will be faster than a flash drive (this way you'll run more apps and get faster loading, and even put a clean OS X system in case of emergency recovery)
  • A running OS X machine, and its respective Installer version: You must run Mavericks to get a Mavericks DMG and you must have Mavericks installer, and you must run Yosemite to get Yosemite DMG and must have Yosemite installer, you can't make a cross-over :P
  • At least 10GB of free space on your HDD (where OS X is installed) to make the necessary DMG :)
  • Patience :D
  • This piece of software (I'm in love :wub:https://github.com/MagerValp/AutoDMG/releases

Important:

If that didn't work, try again until it works, if it's slow, you gotta have another, more powerful USB :)

 

STEP1:
1) Downlaod OS X from the AppStore (for now, you'll find Yosemite Only)

 Screenshot%202014-10-17%2023.57.36.png?d

 

STEP 2:
Open AutoDMG.app

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.47.50.png?d

 
STEP3:
Drag the OS X Installer to where it should be (obviously)
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.47.59.png?d

 

And then wait until it analyze it and you may get updates needed: do not install them, it's useless and take more time (unless you have an ultra fast internet connection, then you can go for it :) )
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.50.17.png?d

 
STEP4:
Select "Build"
It will prompt you where to save it, so save it wherever you want and name that output DMG whatever you want!
Notice: you must at least have 10GB of free space for the output DMG
Warning: DO NOT SAVE THE DMG ON THE TARGET DEVICE (the USB disk we will use to bootup the system)!
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.50.41.png?d

 

Hit Save, it will ask you to enter your admin password, do so
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.51.06.png?d

 

The Install will start right after, leave your PC on, and you may leave it for now and close all other apps, cuz it uses a lot of CPU/RAM/Resources!
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.51.17.png?d

 

Warning: If you have a laptop, it may get REALLY HOT, so please take all precautions before starting!
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.59.08.png?d

*Look at my CPU's Heat, forget about the HDD (or maybe the sun xD)

 

For verbose output, just hit View Log:
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2014.51.43.png?d

 

When the install finishes, you'll get this message informing that the Install finished ;)
 

Screenshot%202014-10-20%2015.15.09.png?d

 

STEP5:
Plug your USB HDD/Flash and open Disk Utility and select your USB Disk
 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.03.53.png?d

 

STEP6:
Go to Partitions, partition your HDD and make it GPT (you may skip that if you had already partitioned it and GPTed it), hit Options
 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.04.42%20cop

 

STEP 7:
Select GUID Partition Table (GPT) then OK

 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.04.51.png?d

 

STEP 8:
Then hit Apply

 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.04.42.png?d

 

STEP 9:
Open the dmg we just made earlier, unmount the volume, the image will be listen in Disk Utility, select and go to "Restore", slide the dmg to the Source and the Target HDD/SSD/USB to Destination, then hit apply:

 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.05.45.png?d

 

STEP 10:
A confirmation window will pop out, hit Erase and let it proceed:
 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.06.26.png?d

 

A progress bar will apear, go make yourself a sandwich meanwhile (if you have a USB, go out socialize then go back):
 

Screenshot%202014-11-18%2016.06.44.png?d

 

STEP 11:
Install Clover bootloader for both UEFI and Legacy mode :)
 
Select these in the installer:

  • ESP Install (it installs Clover in the EFI partiton, may be pain in the ass after, but it's for both UEFI/Legacy systems)
  • Boot0af (try boot0ss if boot0af doesn't work)
  • CloverEFI 64-bits SATA or BlockIO (BlockIO is faster, but may not work for everyone)
  • A theme (mendatory)
  • Driver64
    • XhciDxe-64
    • <Other Drivers if needed>
  • Drivers64UEFI
    • OsxAptioFixDrv-64 OR OsxAptioFix2Drv-64 (use ONE of them, NOT both)
    • <any other driver if needed>

Screenshot%202015-01-05%2017.33.36.png?dScreenshot%202015-01-05%2017.34.15.png?dScreenshot%202015-01-05%2017.34.27.png?d

 

Install it, then configure it with your own guide, the AIO guide, or if you're smart and advenced enough, by yourself :) Add kexts (FAKESMC FIRST!!!!) and kernels (if needed) then try to boot up the whole thing. :D

 

Good Luck And Enjoy your OS X on-the-go

:yoji:

 

A lil' notice:

You may need to reconfigure the kexts and kernels each time you boot up, so maybe you may need to creat more than one config.plist, thanks to Download frits he showed me a way to use multiple config.plists on one Clover install:

  1. Make your configs
  2. Rename them (remember each one's name)
  3. In Clover GUI, go to options > Config: <type your config name without the .plist suffix>
  4. Then select Return and let it load :)

Good luck :D

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@midi,

 

Very cool guide :thumbsup_anim:.

 

I've also used OSX installed on an external USB HD to multiboot several machines by utilizing Clover's OEM folder to store multiple different configs --->use this HD as an "emergency" OSX!:

 

post-846696-0-25551700-1389577551_thumb.

 

As you can see in the screenshot, I have the necessary files needed to boot the XPSm1530 in the folder XPS M1530 inside Clover's OEM folder.  I also have the Clover configuration files for my newer desktop based on a UEFI capable GAB75M-D3H motherboard in the B75M-D3H folder.....

 

So I am able to boot Mavericks on my legacy XPSm1530 laptop through Clover EFI and my GA-B75M-D3H through its native UEFI firmware using the same USB Hard drive :D .

 

For added kicks, you can also install Windows 8 in "To Go" mode as well - Guide for manual creation

                                                                                                           - WintoUSB automated tool

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@midi,

 

Very cool guide :thumbsup_anim:.

 

I've also used OSX installed on an external USB HD to multiboot several machines by utilizing Clover's OEM folder to store multiple different configs --->use this HD as an "emergency" OSX!:

 

 

post-846696-0-25551700-1389577551_thumb.

As you can see in the screenshot, I have the necessary files needed to boot the XPSm1530 in the folder XPS M1530 inside Clover's OEM folder. I also have the Clover configuration files for my newer desktop based on a UEFI capable GAB75M-D3H motherboard in the B75M-D3H folder.....

 

So I am able to boot Mavericks on my legacy XPSm1530 laptop through Clover EFI and my GA-B75M-D3H through its native UEFI firmware using the same USB Hard drive :D .

 

For added kicks, you can also install Windows 8 in "To Go" mode as well - Guide for manual creation

- WintoUSB automated tool

Amazing, but one thing: the OEM folder support wasn't dropped after? PJ has been using it and when he updated clover it broke his OEM capabilities :(

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@midi,

 

OEM folders still working for me with Clover r3116....

 

One thing to be careful of is spelling/upper or lower case/spaces when naming the OEM subfolder folder.  It should match what you see in Clover's boot log eg for my laptop

 

$ bdmesg

4:912  0:000  Clover revision: 3116  running on XPS M1530
4:912  0:000  ... with board  
4:912  0:000  Clover load options size = 0 bytes
4:979  0:067  Using OEM config.plist at path: EFI\CLOVER\OEM\XPS M1530 \config.plist
4:979  0:000  EFI\CLOVER\OEM\XPS M1530 \config.plist loaded: Success
4:993  0:014  Found theme directory: BGM

 

I remember one version of Clover was particular about not loading the config.plist depending on the presence/absence of the space after "M1530" vs "M1530 " in the folder name :rofl:.

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Cool Guide & well done you(midi) :thumbsup_anim: 

How about add something with (CCC) to this guide ? ;)

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Thank !

Your Tutorial is Geat to ! :D

Thanks :D (I will link your Guide as the Automatic EZ way :P since you don't need to do anything other than selecting the drive and it does everything else for you :) )

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It is an awesome idea! But I have a working recovery partition for El Capitan , that was created without me knowing by the OSX installer,and it works wonderfully! If I can do something for you guys to know why it works i'd love to help!

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Well the difference here is that you can't simply run any application on recovery, while on the real OS X can be ran on ANY computer and run ANY OS X compatible applications (for tests and recovery too, like linux, the only thing is you would need a proper config.plist).

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