Clean Install of OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard

From Mac Guides

Jump to: navigation, search

Please make sure to read the notes on the bottom before doing anything!!!

You can use this same guide to perform a normal install of Snow Leopard, just skip the Disk Utility and Migration Assistant parts (steps 4, 5 and 12). An upgrade installation (archive&install) should not erase your personal data but it is still recommended to have a backup


1. Make a backup with Time Machine (or Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper!)

2. Boot from the install disc by holding alt key (⌥) and select the install disc with arrow keys and hit enter. It may take up to several minutes to load everything, so please, be patient.

3. Select your language and click the arrow (->). It will now prepare the installation and this may again take up to several minutes so be patient.

4. You should now be at the "Install Mac OS X" screen. Select Utilities from the Menu Bar (the grey bar on the top) and open Disk Utility.

5. Select your hard drive or partition from the left-hand-side menu (note: if you have installed Windows on to your Mac and wish to keep it as it is, choose your Mac OS X partition because if you erase the whole hard drive, your Windows partition will be erased as well) .

  5.1. Click the "Erase" tab
  5.2. Use "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)" as the format 
  5.3. Give name to your drive/partition
  5.4. Click "Erase..." and it will ask you are you sure you want to do that, click "Erase"   
  5.5. Wait for it to do its magics, this may again take couple of minutes
  5.6. Exit Disk Utility

6. Click "Continue" and an agreement will appear, click "Agree"

7. It will now ask you where do you want to install it. Select the erased hard drive/partition you just created and click "Install". The installation process will take about 30-60 minutes depending on your computer

8. When the installation has succeeded, it will ask you to restart the computer. Simply click "Restart"

9. Enjoy the Welcome Video

10. Select your country or region

11. Select your keyboard layout

12. Migration Assistant will now open so if you want to migrate your data from the backup you made earlier, select "From a Time Machine backup" (or "From another volume on this Mac" if you did not use Time Machine)

13. It will then reboot and voilà, you are done!

14. It's recommended to run the Software Update to make sure your software is up-to-date


Note #1: ALWAYS backup your data! A clean install will ERASE ALL YOUR DATA!!!

Note #2: You can use the upgrade version of Snow Leopard to perform a clean install

Note #3: Snow Leopard DOES NOT include iLife. It can be found from the grey "Applications Install DVD" that came with your Mac

Note #4: The grey installation discs that came with your Mac are system specific, they cannot be used with other Macs