Installing OS X Leopard in 10 Minutes from a USB Flash Drive

Posted by on Aug 15, 2009 in Mac Specific, Technology | One Comment

I decided to make a clean installation of OS X Leopard last night. I had already used Carbon Copy Cloner to copy my Leopard installation DVD to an 8GB partition on one of my USB memory sticks. Having the OS X installation DVD on USB is awesome.

At the tick of 5:44pm, I rebooted my MacBook Pro 1) with the USB memory key attached and 2) while holding the alt/option key down to select a boot drive. I selected the OS X installation partition and opted for the “erase and install” option.

The installation was complete and the system rebooted at 5:53pm. I got through the final setup screens and had the new OS X desktop under my control at 5:54pm. Total time: 10 minutes!

Why was this clean installation so fast? The USB flash memory to SSD flash memory data transfer is much faster than DVD to SSD, and dramatically faster than DVD to spinning HDD.

As a side note, when installing OS X from a flash drive, you don’t have to wait for the standard integrity check of the installation DVD – the verification effort is automatically skipped. I’ve always ditched that step anyway, but for those who allow verification to continue, a good deal of valuable time can be lost. Just another benefit of going all-flash.

1 Comment

  1. victor
    August 17, 2010


    Could you please explain detailed how did you use the CCC?

    I have a Snow Leopard dmg file and a 16GB flash drive. I would like to do the same as you did so I can setup SL on my Macbook (I have Leopard now), but I don’t want to make a clean installation.

    Could be nice If you can explain step by step. Many thanks! :)

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