Apple releases a major update of OS X every year or so and for the past 10 years I have just done an automatic update, installing the new OS X on top of the old version and keeping all the existing applications and settings. When I upgraded to El Capitan I decided to do a completely fresh installation. I started with a new hard drive (SSD). I installed OS X. Then I copied everything across manually. This took about half a day and some things didn’t work but overall I think it has been a good spring clean. This article is not so much a step-by-step guide but a rough summary of what I did.
Since OS-X Mavericks (10.9) Apple have been releasing their OS X upgrades for free. This means if you have any version of OS X newer than 10.9 then you can upgrade it to the latest version for free. There are three ways you can upgrade.
- Download the Installer from Apple directly to the computer that you want to install the new OS X onto.
- Take your computer into the nearest Apple Store and they will do the upgrade for you.
- Make a USB thumb drive installer that you can plug into your computer to upgrade it.
Method 1 is Apple’s suggestion method, but if you have more than one computer it requires you to download the OS X update more than once. Method 3 gives you a thumb drive that you can use multiple times to install OSX, and you can even boot off it in an emergency if your hard drive crashes. It is very handy to have a bootable version of the latest OSX on a thumb drive lying around So I suggest option three
This article tells you how to make a USB thumb drive installer so you can upgrade any computer to the latest OS X.
It also tells you how to work out what is the newest version of OSX that you can run on your computer. Continue reading 〉
Apple don’t have instructions for how to do a clean installation of OS X Yosemite, but it is exactly the same as the previous version of OS X – Mavericks. So if you want a clean fresh installation of Yosemite, just follow Apple’s instructions here of Mavericks”
A few important tips before you install Mavericks that could say you a lot of time and agony… Continue reading 〉
If you have a Lion installer on a USB thumbdrive, you can use it to upgrade your Mac from Snow Leopard to Lion, but if you have an older version of OS X you can’t upgrade. You need to first upgrade to Snow Leopard OR you can erase everything and do a completely fresh install of Lion. After installing Lion on my iMac, I wanted to delete everything on my laptop and do a fresh install of Lion. But the installer will not install over an older version of OSX. I had to delete the old version of OSX, then install Lion from the USB thumbdrive. Here’s how to do a fresh install of Lion.
Here are three different ways to put Lion on a USB thumb drive. If you buy and install Lion from the App Store it downloads all 3Gigabytes from the App Store, installs Lion, then deletes the installer! So when you go to install it on another machine it needs another 3Gigabyte download! Here’s how to make a re-usable installer.
The new OSX Lion comes as an upgrade from the Apple App Store – not on a DVD. The good news is that once you’ve paid for it once, Apple allow you to install it on all the computers you own for free! After you purchase it from the App Store you just have to go into the App Store on your other computers and Lion will be there – all paid for and ready to download again!
The Apple page on this is here.
Of course, you need to upgrade all your existing computers to Snow-Leopard first.
The main hitch is that it needs to download lots of files first.
You can make a USB installer and copy it across manually. Here is a way to do this using the built-in Disk Utility in OS X.