Some of you may have read my previous experience installing OS X Tiger on “whitebox” computers. I tinkered with it on and off from 10.4.6 to 10.4.8 on various machines but haven’t really played with the new versions until recently.
A couple months ago, I got a hold of a couple installers – iATKOS v1.0i, and the Kalyway 10.5.1 OS X installers. I was doing re-installs of Windows at the time on a few different machines, so I tried the OS X installers to see if things had progressed to the point where it was a simple install-go-and-everything-works sort of thing. It wasn’t (which answered that question), and I didn’t touch it again. Until now that is…
The first machine that’s seen the install today consists of an ASUS p5PE-VM motherboard, Intel Pentium E2140 Dual-Core processor, 2x1gb generic DDR400 ram, XFX GeForce 6600GT 128MB AGP Video Card, Seagate 7200.9 300mb IDE hard drive, and an el-cheapo LG dvd-burner. The motherboard was bought a while back, and chosen because it’s based on intel’s 865 chipset, and supported the dual-core processor I was looking to use (the 915/925 chipset does not support dual core) while still using regular DDR ram and an AGP video card. Had I been looking to use DDR2 and PCI-E, I would have jumped up to the 945. Dual-core processor was chosen because I wanted to try a “vanilla kernel”. The video card was chosen because I’ve used a 6600GT (different brand though) with 10.4.6 in the past which had worked, and I happen to actually like that card and had an extra around. Hard drive and CD ROM drive weren’t specially chosen – they’re what happened to be in the machine.
So enough background – on to the install…
My first attempt was a Kalyway install with a GUID partition table, both the vanilla options selected, as well as NVinject. It eventually had an error message and that was it for the install.
Second attempt was an iATKOS install with an MBR partition table, Stock Kernel, Stock AppleACPI, NVinject 128mb, AGPGart 2.4.9, and the Marvel Yukon network driver options selected. A little background here – there were Natit vs NVinject options. I read in a thread that NVinject was newer which is why I used it. To be honest I have no idea whether or not AGPGart is needed or helpful (or problematic even?). It’s really tough to find additional info on a lot of these options above and beyond the short writeups included in the installer. In any case, another failed install. Eventually the computer restarted, and just kept restarting over and over.
Third, I went back to trying the Kalyway installer. I decided to set up 2 partitions under MBR this time. First was a 200GB HFS+ Extended for OS X, and the 2nd was an 80GB FAT for a Windows install). Chose just the Vanilla kernel option and NVinject. It worked! Installer completed successfully, and the computer restarted.
However, 2 new problems arose. First, the partition would only start up when the DVD was in the drive. Take the DVD out, and you’d get a black screen with the blinking cursor. Second, when going through the initial setup, when it asks if you want to transfer your account from another mac, it would freeze and then restart the welcome sequence. This would happen over and over again. I installed Vista on the other partition while I looked for answers.
Problem 1: OS X only starts when install DVD is in the drive. My first guess was that the partition wasn’t set to “active”. Used a utility in the “Ultimate Boot CD” to check, but unfortunately, it *was* already set to active. Went to go through the usual steps for setting a partition active throughÂ the Terminal on the install DVD, but now the Kalyway DVD was crashing with a kernel panic every timeÂ it started. iATKOS DVD was still booting, so I popped it in, started the installer, opened Terminal, went through the steps, restarted, and… still no go. It still needed the Kalyway DVD to be in the drive for the hard drive to boot. I was puzzled.
Solution: Saw a message in a forum which pointed to this page. First, I needed the “post install patch file” which there’s a link to in the “What you’ll need” section. I extracted the files to a USB memory stick, and then followed these instructions from the site:
The Bootfix patch
After reboot, if the system boots into Leopard fine, ignore this part and head to next section to setup multi boot. Otherwise, you might encounter blinking cursor or HFS+ Error, follow the steps below then
If you install Leopard without Tiger first, the system might still boot into Windows instead or leave a system unbootable at all. Even the tboot loader trick(see below) wouldn’t work. In this case, you need to repair the installation and setup boot property for it.
- Reboot using the Leopard DVD, make sure the USB pen drive is connected.
- Open a terminal after everything finally loads.
- Find out what disk your leopard was installed on by issuing this command (my machine was rdisk0s2, will use rdiskXsY below, substitute accordingly)diskutil list
- Active the partitionfdisk -e /dev/rdiskX fdisk: 0>update fdisk:*0> f Y Partition 2 marked active fdisk:*0> w Device could not be accessed exclusively. A reboot will be needed for changes to take effect. OK? [n] y Writing MBR at offset 0. fdisk: 0> q
Now goto bootfix directory by typing:cd /Volumes/123/files/bootfix
and do the following./dd if=/usr/standalone/i386/boot1h of=/dev/rdiskXsY bs=512 count=1 umount /Volumes/Leopard ./startupfiletool -v /dev/rdiskXsY /usr/standalone/i386/boot ./bless -device /dev/diskXsY -setBoot -verbose
The first part of the instructions are essentially what I’d done to try and set the partition active. However the stuff from the USB memory stick was obviously what was needed to fix whatever the issue was. For anyone who ends up doing the same thing and is more of a “copy/paste” sort of person when following instructions, note that anywhere you see “diskXsY”, you have to put in your own disk number for X and partition number for Y. You *should* be able to figure it out when you do the “diskutil list” from step 3. Also, “123” is the name that the USB memory stick was given (change that if you didn’t name yours), and /Volumes/Leopard should be /Volumes/WhateverYouNamedYourVolume”.
Had it not worked, my last resorts would have been completely zero-ing out the drive (something that someone else had mentioned in a thread assuming that there was data corruption in the boot sector), or reactivating the Vista partition as the boot partition, and trying to use chain0 / tboot.
Problem 2: Set-up sequence freezes and restarts after it asks if you want to transfer your account. I recalled this happening a couple months ago also.
Solution: Found some great answers here. First option (transfer an account from Tiger) wasn’t an option I wanted to use just yet. 2nd option (setting resolution to 640×480) didn’t work either – resolution changed, but the installer still came up and hung. 3rd option (disabling network card in bios) didn’t work either. The 4th and final option *did* work:
Boot using “-s” flag then type ->
/sbin/mount -uw / passwd root (Type any password you want) touch /var/db/.AppleSetupDone reboot
Note that the login name becomes “root” and the password is whatever you entered in when it asked you for one after you typed “passwd root” and hit enter.
Last issue was just a matter of installing a kext for the Marvel 88E8001 network adapter built in to the motherboard. Grabbed it from the thread here.
At the point, everything’s working perfectly. I can log in, sound, network, QE/CI etc are all up and running. Awesome. Just a couple things remained.
Transferring settings from another machine. The old Tiger install I had running… I wanted to try and transfer everything. Popped out the hard-drive (no firewire here), put it in the new machine, ran Migration Assistant, and it found everything and transferred the account over rather perfectly. I won’t be surprised if I find an issue/hiccup here or there with something that wants to be finicky, but for the most part it was a smooth transition.
Updating to 10.5.2. Grabbed the Kalyway 10.5.2 Combo Update as well as the kernels. I really thought the combo update had frozen the system – about 5-10 minutes went by where the screen was blank during the next startup. I left it though, and eventually the screen came back up. The kernel update went without a hitch, although it had to be unzipped on the Mac (unzipping on the Windows machine and copying the package over resulted in the package not running).