Hackintosh – The Next Generation Part 2
Part 1 of this article detailed the hardware used for the install, so I’m now going to detail the steps involved in installing using the Boot132 method. There are some software packages that are useful to have ready to go on a flash drive to ensure they are accessible if your network is not working after a vanilla install.
- The 10.5.5 combo update if you are installing from a 10.5 retail DVD
- OSX86Tools for easy driver and EFI string setup
- Chameleon DFE for Hard Disk from this post, link at Mediafire
The most important is a working Boot132 cd. There are several sources for these, and mine came from a post on Insanelymac. There are several available so you may have to try a few to find the one that works best. The original ISO with project kexts needs dsmos.kext added to it so I used the ISO with modified kexts. This would boot the system and allow installation fine with my Nvidia 7300GT card, but when this was swapped for the 9800GT the system would hang when loading the Leopard DVD. I ended up removing all the extra kexts from the image (including NVkush which I think was causing the problem) to get a bare bones Boot132 disk that had only what was required to install from the retail Leopard DVD without any extra drivers. The images below show the files on each of Boot132 disks I tried.
The original ISO image contains these four kexts and needs dsmos.kext added to work
The ISO with modified kexts contains a lot more drivers but caused a crash with my 9800GT
I stripped everything but these five kexts from the modified image to get a basic
Boot132 image that would work with the 9800GT and a Leopard retail DVD
The 10.5.5 combo update and latest version of OSX86Tools were on a flash drive so I was now ready to start. With the computer powered off I unplugged the three SATA drives and connected the 60Gb drive for the install. The steps I followed are numbered to make it easier to refer back for some points later.
1. Insert the Boot132 CD (mine was burnt from the stripped modified image) and when the Darwin screen appears press Enter once. The options for which volume to continue booting from are shown. On my system the default option already selected was [fe] which would boot from the DVDrom
2. Swap the Boot132 disc for the Leopard retail DVD. Allow the drive to stop accessing the disc before pressing Enter or you will get error messages. The Leopard DVD will now boot and you can install as on a real Mac.
3. Once installation has finished allow the computer to restart, mine stopped with a blank screen as reboot and shutdown wasn’t working. This was fixed later, but for now I hit the reset button. Swap the Leopard DVD for the Boot132 disc used in step 1. As before press Enter when the Darwin screen appears, but this time type the code for your hard drive that you just installed Leopard onto. For a system with one hard drive this was 80, but you may need to enter 81, 82 or higher depending on your hardware. For this reason (as well as to eliminate accidents) I would recommend only having the one hard drive in the system during the install. Press Enter to boot from your fresh install.
4. Next step is to use the Chameleon installer to setup the Chameleon EFI emulation on your hard drive. This has an added bonus of installing the required kexts from your Boot132 CD. Use Finder to look at the Boot132CD and double click the initrd.img to mount it. inside this image is a folder named Extra so open this, then drag and copy the Extensions folder to your desktop. Eject initrd.img and the Boot132 CD.
Contents of the Boot132 CD
5. Mount the Chameleon_DFE_for_Hard_Disk.dmg then drag the Extensions folder from your desktop onto the Extra Contents folder in the /Volumes/Chameleon_DFE_for_Hard_Disk window. This puts the Extensions folder with all the required kexts in the right place. Run Chameleon_DFE_for_Hard_Disk.pkg to install Chameleon and the kexts.
Chameleon Install package showing the Extra Contents Folder
6. Reboot the computer (again manually if necessary) and your new install should start itself. You may have to press Enter at the Darwin screen but this will be fixed later.
7. The 10.5.5 combo update is installed next. I had this on the flash drive but since the ethernet interface was working I used Software Update to see if it really worked as reported. Once this completed the computer was restarted and at the Darwin boot screen I entered -v -f as boot options. -v is verbose mode so you see all the text output during the startup, very useful for finding problems. -f tells Darwin to rebuild the kext cache, which as far as I can make out is forcing redetection of the required drivers.
8. The system should go through the update and restart automatically but mine stopped at the Mach reboot message. I manually restarted but the computer would hang during the text output (still using -v). After a couple of tries it was obvious something was amiss so I restarted and used the -x flag at the Darwin screen. -x is safe mode which ignores the kext cache and seems to detect and load the kexts (drivers) needed to boot. This allowed me to log in.
9. Since I had experienced problems getting the system to install with the 9800GT I tried adding an EFI string for this next. OSX86Tools was installed and I used the EFI string option to add the 9800GTX string, and added a 5 second Darwin screen time out while there. One more reboot and the system started correctly this time, taking me to the login screen without having to specify any boot flags.The 9800GT had been causing the hang since 10.5.5 didn’t recognise it but adding the EFI string identified the card. A quick check showed that Core Image and Quartz Extreme were using the video card.
OSx86Tools main window
GFX String Creator showing the 9800GTX selected
Click ‘Import String to Boot Editor’ for the next step
Boot Editor window showing the imported EFI string, 5 second timeout
for the bootloader and a graphics mode for the white and grey start screen
10. The next problem for me was reboot and shutdown not working. A quick search revealed that Psystar (the company currently in dispute with Apple over Mac clones) have a kext available that claims to fix this. Download the Openhaltrestart.kext and install using OSX86Tools. This worked great for me, so thanks to Psystar for making this available.
11. Finally use OSX86Tools to detect hardware and install drivers. This is a great feature that worked perfectly, and the image below shows the four packages that were downloaded and installed to get the remaining hardware working.
Hardware Drivers have been detected and are ready to download and install
At this point I had a working hackintosh that’s as close to a real Mac as is currently possible. I connected my backup drive and used Migration Assistant to copy the previous user account to the new install. Log out and back into the copied account and everything was as I had left it a few hours before.
Migration Assistant allow User Accounts to be imported
The steps listed resulted in an unstartable system at one point, so if I try this again I will add the Graphics EFI string (step 9 here) just before installing the 10.5.5 update (step 7). I can’t guarantee these steps will work for other hardware, but there shouldn’t be too much extra work to get it working on a system with an Intel Core processor.
The basic Boot132 CD I created should work with any compatible hardware but a bit of experimenting may be required to get the perfect disc. There are plenty of custom images available from InsanelyMac and other sources so I would recommend searching for one that has been reported to work with your hardware before making a custom one.
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