Carbon Copy cloner is your best option. Just create a bootable backup with it; and boot to the USB stick by holding ALT key when starting up. El Capitan 10.11.6 is now released as the latest version of Download El Capitan. For OS X El Capitan users this update is recommended. The upgrade to OS X El Capitan v10.11.6 enhances your Mac's reliability, performance and protection and is advised for all users. Solves a problem that can prevent parental control accounts from saving settings.
Warning: Please follow these instructions at your own risk. I am not responsible for any damage or information loss that could result from following this guide. Also, note that installing OS X on PC is illegal. Please buy a real Mac if you're satisfied with your Hackintosh. This guide is for evaluation purposes only.
- An Intel-based PC with UEFI bios
- A USB flash drive with at least 16GB capacity
- A dedicated hard drive (SSD highly recommended)
- A computer running OS X (10.9 or later) for preparing the installation USB flash drive
I chose to avoid the UniBeast installer (by Tonymacx86) because of its commercialized nature, as described here. Here is a vanilla guide to installing El Capitan on your PC!
Preparing the USB Installation Drive
First things first. We need to prepare a USB thumb drive that will contain the installation files as well as the bootloader and custom kexts for our specific Hackintosh build.
Download El Capitan from the Mac App Store
Head over to your existing OS X environment running 10.9 or later and open the Mac App Store.
Search for 'El Capitan' and click Download. The download is completely free if you're running OS X 10.9+.
Wait for the download to finish (this could take some time).
Format the USB Drive
Open Disk Utility in Applications/Utilities and locate your USB device. Make sure you've backed up anything important on that drive as it will be erased forever.
Select it, and then on the right, click the partition tab.
- Click Curent Layout and change it to 1 Partition.
- Set the Name to USB.
- Set the Format to Mac OS Extended (Journaled).
- Click Options and select GUID Partition Table.
Click Apply to format the drive.
Copy the Installation Files to the USB Drive
Now that we've downloaded the installation files from the Mac App Store and formatted our USB drive, let's copy the installation files to it.
Run the following command in the Terminal (Applications/Utilities):
The command will run a script inside the Install OS X El Capitan application that will copy the installation files to the USB drive.
This process takes about 15 minutes. Go out for a quick run, or a hamburger, or both. When you come back, it should have finished.
Installing a Bootloader
If you tried to boot from the USB drive as is after the previous step on a PC, it wouldn't work. We need a bootloader that makes it possible to boot OS X on x86 and x86_64 PCs.
There are 3 popular bootloaders to choose from.
I went with Clover as it seems to be the most popular choice among other El Capitan installers, mostly for the following reasons:
Clover is an open-source EFI-based bootloader created on Apr 4, 2011. It has a totally different approach from Chameleon and Chimera. It can emulate the EFI portion present on real Macs and boot the OS from there instead of using the regular legacy BIOS approach used by Chameleon and Chimera. For many, Clover is considered the next-gen bootloader and soon it will become the only choice since BIOS in being replaced by UEFI in every new motherboard. One big feature of Clover is that iMessage, iCloud, the Mac App Store works along with Find My Mac, Back To My Mac and FileVault since Clover can use the EFI partition. (Read more)
Install Clover on Your USB Drive
Installing Clover on your USB drive is relatively easy. It involves running an installation wizard and selecting some options.
Download the latest Clover installer from here.
- Run the installer.
- Click Continue twice.
- Click Change Install Location and set it to your formatted USB drive.
- Click Customize and check the following options:
- [x] Install for UEFI booting only
- [x] Install Clover in the ESP
- [ ] Drivers64UEFI
- [x] OsxAptioFixDrv-64 - fixes memory map created by AMI Aptio EFI. Booting OS X is impossible otherwise.
- Click Install and wait for the installation to finish. It shouldn't take more than a minute.
Copy Essential Kexts to the USB Drive
Next, we'll need to copy some kexts (kernal extensions, similar to drivers on Windows) to the USB drive.
- FakeSMC.kext - open source SMC device driver/emulator developed by netkas. Tricks OS X into thinking it's installed on Apple hardware. Absolutely required for Hackintosh installation.
- NullCPUPowerManagement.kext - disables AppleIntelCPUPowerManagement.kext which may cause kernel panics when you try to boot from the USB drive. It's optional, copy it only if you get an AppleIntelCPUPowerManagement-related kernel panic.
- ApplePS2Controller.kext and AppleACPIPS2Nub.kext - adds support for PS2 devices (such as PS2 keyboard/mouse). They're optional, copy them only if you still use PS2 devices.
Download these files from here and copy them to the EFI mounted volume at /EFI/Clover/kexts/10.11/.
Now that the installation USB drive is ready, let's install OS X El Capitan!
Boot from the USB Drive
Restart your computer and boot from the USB drive (Press Esc/F8/Del to access the boot selection menu).
Use the arrow keys to select Boot OS X Install from Install OS X El Capitan (It should be selected by default). Press the spacebar and select Boot Mac OS X in verbose mode. Verbose mode means that you'll be able to see exactly what's going on under the hood as OS X attempts to boot up its installer. You'll be able to see the exact error message if booting fails.
Press Enter and cross your fingers. Clover will now boot the installer from your USB drive. This could take some time, in my case, it takes around 5 minutes (Don't worry -- the startup time is around 5 seconds after installing on an SSD).
Did it fail?
It's more than likely that the boot will fail. Don't panic (ha-ha), as kernel panics usually mean that you forgot to copy an essential kext to the EFI partition. Look up the exact error you're getting before the boot log comes to an end and search Google for a solution.
Once you find an additional kext that your system needs, you'd attempt to copy it to the EFI volume, only to discover that it's gone! Not to worry, it's just unmounted and hidden. Follow this guide to mount the hidden partition, and then, follow the Copy Essential Kexts section above to copy it to the USB drive's EFI partition.
Format the Target Hard Drive
Once the installation wizard boots, the next step is to prepare the hard drive that you want to install OS X on.
Click Continue, followed by Disk Utility.
Select the target drive to install to (not the USB drive!) and click the Erase button. Make sure to back up anything important on that drive, as it will be deleted forever.
- Set the Name to El Capitan.
- Set the Format to OS X Extended (Journaled).
- Set the Scheme to GUID Partition Map.
Click Erase to format the drive.
Install OS X to the Target Drive
Exit the Disk Utility and click Install OS X.
Click Show All Disks and select the drive you just formatted to install OS X on it. Finally, click Install.
The process takes about 25 minutes. Be patient. For me, it hung at the end ('1 second remaining') for around 5 minutes. Don't be tempted to reset or cancel the installation.
When that's done, the system will reboot. Make sure to boot from the USB device again, and select Boot OS X Install from Install OS X El Capitan once again, in verbose mode. The installation is a two-part process that continues once you re-boot into the USB drive.
Finally, after about 25 more minutes, OS X El Capitan should be successfully installed on the target drive.
Boot into El Capitan via the USB Device
After the second reboot, boot from the USB device once again, but this time, select Boot OS X from El Capitan, and select verbose mode.
Press Enter and cross your fingers again. If all goes well, you'll be presented with the setup wizard:
Take a minute to set up your new Hackintosh. Once you're done, there are a few things you need to do to finish off the installation.
Reinstall Clover on the Hackintosh Drive
In the previous step, we used Clover on our USB drive to boot our Hackintosh. This is fine, but most of us aren't going to keep that USB drive plugged in forever. Let's make it possible to boot El Capitan independently by reinstalling Clover on it.
Go back up to the Install Clover on Your USB Drive section and follow the steps again, but this time, select your El Capitan volume instead of the USB drive.
Once again, copy the essential kexts to the EFI partition that shows up after installing Clover.
Finally, make sure to add Clover EFI boot options which is possible by pressing Clover Boot Options in the Clover boot window (if there are 2 boot options -- find the one for your SATA drive). I literally spent 3 hours figuring out why Clover would not boot when I disconnected the USB drive before I figured out that I need to manually add the EFI boot options.
Now you'll be able to boot directly from the El Capitan hard drive, as it should be!
Audio and Networking
If you're lucky, audio and networking will work right out of the box. If not, you're on your own from here. You'll need to research your exact hardware (by using System Information in Applications/Utilities) and searching Google to find the right kext or installer to make it work on El Capitan.
The default Clover theme is pretty ugly (no offense). Check out this theme database to improve Clover's appearance.
This is YosemiteLogin by xenatt:
That's it! Enjoy your new Hackintosh, and if you absolutely love it, consider buying a Mac!
As explained here, OS X 10.11 'El Capitan' fails to install because it is too old (the technical reason being that the signing certificate is no longer valid). But you can trick the OS X installer into thinking that it is 2017 and it will happily run without any errors. Get a bootable drive with OS X. Creating a bootable USB or a bootable drive is not complicated. You’ll need an external drive with enough space to hold your desired OS X on it and a basic familiarity with Terminal, Apple’s command line interface. For install the El Capitan on your startup volume, you need to create a bootable USB installer on a separate drive (USB pen drive). Keep A Backup For El Capitan Download Before Installing. You need to choose a good backup tool for backing up the existing OS’ files, folders, and applications.
The El Capitan installer is downloaded to the /Applications folder, with the file name Install OS X El Capitan. If you have already installed El Capitan and want to now create a bootable installer, re-download the installer from Apple. Download: OS X El Capitan This will be downloaded as a disk image called InstallMacOSX.dmg. On a Mac that is compatible with El Capitan, open the disk image and run the installer within, which has the name InstallMacOSX.pkg. It installs an app named Install OS X El Capitan into your Applications folder.
There are two recommended installation methods for El Capitan download and install on your Mac PC or Laptop recommended by the Apple. Before use those installation methods you should need to have free space (around 12 GB) on your drive for keeping the installation files when installation is processing. If you do not have free space available on your drive, please use some cleaning software to clean up the drive to remove junk files and unnecessary application data and folders from the drive.
Then you must keep a backup of your previous file, folders, and applications before upgrading the El Capitan download installation. You can use a clone backup tool for backing up your Mac PC or laptop.
Install El Capitan Download On Empty Volume
In this method, you will be installing the Mac OS X El Capitan on an empty drive. The volume doesn’t have any files, folders or applications. There is no any startup volume on your PC when you are going to clean install El Capitan. So you can easily use the El Capitan installer to install the OS X into the clean empty volume.
Install El Capitan On The Startup Volume
In this method, you will be installing the OS X on your existing startup volume. Here you need to keep a backup of your data stored on the existing startup volume. For install the El Capitan on your startup volume, you need to create a bootable USB installer on a separate drive (USB pen drive).
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Keep A Backup For El Capitan Download Before Installing.
You need to choose a good backup tool for backing up the existing OS’ files, folders, and applications. There are many tools and applications available on the internet for backing up the Mac OS X El Capitan download.
You can check whether the created bootable drive is working properly by checking system preferences and selecting the startup disk pane and booting the backed up drive.
How To Create A Bootable Installer To Install El Capitan Download
Apple Mac Apps store allows you to El Capitan installer directly. All you need to do is navigate through the Mac Apps store and find the appropriate link to El Capitan download. Next, you need to do is to create a bootable USB installer. Before you do this step please keep more than 12 GB of free volume space to create the bootable USB installer.
Then Follow The Steps That Mentioned Below.
First of all, you need to plug in the USB drive to your Mac PC or laptop. Here you should use a second internal volume for installing the files. Then open the terminal by searching the search bar and type the command createinstallmedia and enter. As soon as you enter the above command, the system will identify the USB drive which is plug in on it. After the recognizing, the system will begin to store the El Capitan installer files on the USB. After a few minutes, the system creates a bootable USB drive that has the El Capitan installer.
Enter the following path to the terminal Install dmg file on mac terminal.
/Applications/Install OS X El Capitan.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
Here the El Capitan installer must be in the application folder to do this step.
In this example, the El Capitan installer in the application folder and Myusb is the name of USB drive which is used to boot.
sudo /Applications/Install OS X El Capitan.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/MyVolume --applicationpath /Applications/Install OS X El Capitan.app
El Capitan Compatible Devices
iMac, Mac Book, 13 inch Mac Book Pro, Mac Book Retina Models, 17 inch Mac Book Pro, Mac Book Black and White, Xserve – 2009, 15 inch Mac Book Pro, Mac Mini, Mac Book Air, Mac Pro
System Requirements For El Capitan Download
OS X v10.6.8 or later, 2GB memory, 8.8GB storage
These advanced steps are primarily for system administrators and people who are familiar with the command line. You don't need a bootable installer to upgrade macOS or reinstall macOS, but it can be useful when you want to install it on multiple computers without having to download the installer each time.
What you need to create a bootable installer
- A USB flash drive or other secondary volume, formatted as Mac OS Extended, with at least 12 GB of available storage
- A downloaded installer for macOS Big Sur, Catalina, Mojave, High Sierra or El Capitan
- Download: macOS Big Sur, macOS Catalina, macOS Mojave or macOS High Sierra
These will be downloaded to your Applications folder as an app called Install macOS [version name]. If the installer opens after download, quit it without continuing the installation. To get the correct installer, download from a Mac that is using macOS Sierra 10.12.5 or later, or El Capitan 10.11.6. For enterprise administrators, please download from Apple, not a locally hosted software update server.
- Download: OS X El Capitan
This will be downloaded as a disk image called InstallMacOSX.dmg. On a Mac that is compatible with El Capitan, open the disk image and run the installer within, which has the name InstallMacOSX.pkg. It installs an app named Install OS X El Capitan into your Applications folder. You will create the bootable installer from this app, not from the disk image or .pkg installer.
Use the 'createinstallmedia' command in Terminal
- Connect the USB flash drive or other volume that you're using for the bootable installer.
- Open Terminal, which is in the Utilities folder of your Applications folder.
- Type or paste one of the following commands in Terminal. These assume that the installer is in your Applications folder and MyVolume is the name of the USB flash drive or other volume you're using. If it has a different name, replace
MyVolumein these commands with the name of your volume.
* If your Mac is using macOS Sierra or earlier, include the
--applicationpath argument and installer path, similar to the way this was done in the command for El Capitan.
After typing the command:
- Press Return to enter the command.
- When prompted, type your administrator password and press Return again. Terminal doesn't show any characters as you type your password.
- When prompted, type
Yto confirm that you want to erase the volume, then press Return. Terminal displays the progress as the volume is being erased.
- After the volume has been erased, you may see an alert stating that Terminal would like to access files on a removable volume. Click OK to allow the copy to proceed.
- When Terminal says it's finished, the volume will have the same name as the installer you downloaded, such as Install macOS Big Sur. You can now quit Terminal and eject the volume.
Create Bootable Usb Mac Os Install El Capitan
Use the bootable installer
Determine whether you're using a Mac with Apple silicon, then follow the appropriate steps:
- Plug the bootable installer into a Mac that is connected to the Internet and compatible with the version of macOS you're installing.
- Turn on your Mac and continue to hold the power button until you see the startup options window, which shows your bootable volumes and a gear icon labelled Options.
- Select the volume containing the bootable installer, then click Continue.
- When the macOS installer opens, follow the onscreen instructions.
Create Mac Os El Capitan Bootable Usb Bootable
- Plug the bootable installer into a Mac that is connected to the Internet and compatible with the version of macOS you're installing.
- Press and hold the Option (Alt) ⌥ key immediately after turning on or restarting your Mac.
- Release the Option key when you see a dark screen displaying your bootable volumes.
- Select the volume containing the bootable installer. Then click the up arrow or press Return.
If you can't start up from the bootable installer, make sure the External Boot setting in Startup Security Utility has been set to allow booting from external media.
- Choose your language, if prompted.
- Select Install macOS (or Install OS X) from the Utilities window, then click Continue and follow the onscreen instructions.
For more information about the
createinstallmedia command and the arguments that you can use with it, make sure the macOS installer is in your Applications folder, then enter the appropriate path in Terminal:
Create A Bootable Usb Mac Os El Capitan
- Big Sur: /Applications/Install macOS Big Sur.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
- Catalina: /Applications/Install macOS Catalina.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
- Mojave: /Applications/Install macOS Mojave.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
- High Sierra: /Applications/Install macOS High Sierra.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
- El Capitan: /Applications/Install OS X El Capitan.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia
Create Mac Os El Capitan Bootable Usb Drive
Os X El Capitan Bootable Usb
Create Bootable Usb Mac Os El Capitan
Create Bootable Usb Drive Os X El Capitan
A bootable installer doesn't download macOS from the Internet, but it does require an Internet connection to get firmware and other information specific to the Mac model.