Tips for Newbies and Those Almost There...
With this post, I hope to answer what seem to be very common threads new people are asking. Please do read this carefully before asking questions. I am breaking this into various sections addressing people who are COMPLETELY new to this, all the way to those who have their systems ALMOST there.
I am writing this because I find myself answering the same questions over and over. This should be your first stop before you start asking…. Chances are I cover it here.
I am a complete newbie!
Let me preface this by saying, I was there, I felt your pain, I was just as confused and overwhelmed as you are. What I say to everyone…. Do not despair; you will get your system up and running. Bite the bullet because you WILL need to learn this. It is not as bad as it seems, and we are all here to help. Very important… read everything very very carefully. Do not skip steps. Do not assume anything. Edit: Also if you run into issues after you have OSX almost-running, address solving each issue one at a time and attempt and test one solution at at time. This will avoid having a possible solutions that breaks more things that it fixes, and you can narrow fixes/solutions in a logical order.
The obvious truth is that there is a lot of confusing information out there. The information is constantly changing, and it is very hard to keep track of it all. My hope with this is to guide on your way. There is not (yet) a commercially available (or free) solution that will address all of your needs. There are guides galore, but lets focus on getting you up and running.
Please do not whine and demand someone make it easy for you. It simply cannot be done. You can pay a consulting fee to someone, but the reality is that you will need to go through this learning curve or you will be dependant on this consultant to hold your hand always. If you are stubborn and insist on ease, please do yourself a favor and buy a real Mac.
After all I said, if you willing to continue, at this point there are two roads you could take. One is the “as-easy-as-it-gets” Lifehacker guide. The second is to learn Chameleon.
Road One: Lifehacker Guide
(Google “Lifehacker Hackintosh Snow”)
This is as easy as it gets. However, you hardware must match their hardware; specifically the Motherboard and video card. If your hardware does match (mine actually does) give it a try. It cannot hurt…. My reality was not as easy, it simply did not work for me. It does not mean you will have the same experience I did. Give it a go.. and you will know if you must go to the next alternative. But don’t stop reading this now… we need to address “Where to Install Chameleon” below.
Road Two: Learn Chameleon
This will make you a power user. The learning curve is slightly steep, but I guarantee that within a weekend, you could be up and running. Before I start telling you how to go about this, it is important that you understand the following:
This guide will only address creating a Hackintosh based on the Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) of the Efix devices, or the one listed by Mike on this forum. No ifs ands or buts…The hardware focuses mainly on Gigabyte brand motherboards, nVidia Graphics cards, with a couple ATI cards thrown in. I do not have ATI experience, thus I cannot advice on these. Sooo if you have a Dell, or a laptop, or an Asus motherboard, etc. my guide here will not be much help. It is not that we do not want to help; it is that we may not have the experience you need. This forum is based on ex Efix users who share basically the same hardware. Because of this, it is easy to pool our resources and find solutions that are helpful to each others. This is a huge advantage.
Where to Install Chameleon
There are 3 choices for this…. I am partial to one of them. I will give you my reasons for it, feel free to disagree. For the most part I think you could go with any choice… but your mileage may vary. OK, where to install…. Three choices that I am aware of. Your Mac Hard Drive, the EFI Partition of your Mac Drive, or on a removable USB flash thumb drive (aka “stick”). EFI partition of you HD is something Mac OS creates but does not use. Chameleon can be installed here…..
My choice and advice is to go with a stick. Do not try to convince me otherwise, I am comfortable and happy with this. Why do I like it? Sticks are cheap; I have about six of them. If I want to experiment and try something new, I try it on a new stick, and I can always go back to an earlier working version if things don’t work out. Plus it keeps the Mac system completely vanilla… If you need to upgrade Chameleon, again, try it on a new stick… if you run into trouble, go back to the old stick.
How to learn Chameleon?
I think to start your education; the very best way is to follow AsereBLN’s blog. He goes into careful detail how to do all of this. This should get you 95% of the way…. The last 5%, I will address here, or you can ask if this post does not provide the answers. If you want to install Snow Leopard, start with his post titled:
1.) [10.6] Let's start with Hardware Requirements
Dated Sept. 22
And work your way up the list.
Before you leave this page, do keep in mind that you will need a dsdt.aml file. His blog describes how to create it. You can ignore this part if you have a motherboard for which he has a ready made dsdt. This is what I used, and it will save you a ton of work. Check the link below for the ready-to-go dsdt’s:
Please note that you must match your motherboard model number, revision and bios version EXACTLY. Do not assume that one close enough will work. If he does not list one, you can ask him to create one for you. He outlines what you need to prepare so he can create one….
I cannot continue without praising Asere. This community would be NOWHERE without him. He and Mike are single handedly responsible for all of us having working Mac OS. Both Asere and Mike (the owner of this forum) accept donations…. DONATE… DO NOT EVEN THINK OF IGNORING THIS…. They deserve it. I have donated money and my time helping others. In order for progress to continue, these guys need to be appreciated and properly helped. Money is the way to help for legal fees (don’t ask), bandwith, equipment and their time.
Get the ready made dsdt’s on this post:
OK, armed with the above knowledge, go to Asere’s site, read the directions carefully, have a positive attitude, be patient, take it one step at a time (ignore the creation of the dsdt), and have fun. Do not be intimidated by the Terminal. If at the end of this whole process you end up with a working system, and I was helpful, just let me know. It will make me feel good.
Here is Asere’s blog: http://aserebln.blogspot.com