Unix Tools For Mac

admin 12/13/2021

These advanced steps are primarily for system administrators and others who are familiar with the command line. You don't need a bootable installer to upgrade macOS or reinstall macOS, but it can be useful when you want to install on multiple computers without downloading the installer each time.

Download macOS

Find the appropriate download link in the upgrade instructions for each macOS version:

macOS Catalina, macOS Mojave, ormacOS High Sierra
Installers for each of these macOS versions download directly to your Applications folder as an app named Install macOS Catalina, Install macOS Mojave, or Install macOS High Sierra. If the installer opens after downloading, quit it without continuing installation. Important: To get the correct installer, download from a Mac that is using macOS Sierra 10.12.5 or later, or El Capitan 10.11.6. Enterprise administrators, please download from Apple, not a locally hosted software-update server.

OS X El Capitan
El Capitan downloads as a disk image. On a Mac that is compatible with El Capitan, open the disk image and run the installer within, named InstallMacOSX.pkg. It installs an app named Install OS X El Capitan into your Applications folder. You will create the bootable installer from this app, not from the disk image or .pkg installer.

Tools

Use the 'createinstallmedia' command in Terminal

Like Mac macOS it has a heritage with Unix (or at least a Unix clone called GNU). Some Linux desktops, like Ubuntu Unity, are similar in nature to the Aqua user interface (the one used in macOS). Possibly the best and most complete tool to create bootable USB drives from ISO files in.

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  1. Connect the USB flash drive or other volume that you're using for the bootable installer. Make sure that it has at least 12GB of available storage and is formatted as Mac OS Extended.
  2. Open Terminal, which is in the Utilities folder of your Applications folder.
  3. Type or paste one of the following commands in Terminal. These assume that the installer is still in your Applications folder, and MyVolume is the name of the USB flash drive or other volume you're using. If it has a different name, replace MyVolume in these commands with the name of your volume.
    Catalina:*
    Mojave:*

    High Sierra:*
    El Capitan:
  4. Press Return after typing the command.
  5. When prompted, type your administrator password and press Return again. Terminal doesn't show any characters as you type your password.
  6. When prompted, type Y to confirm that you want to erase the volume, then press Return. Terminal shows the progress as the bootable installer is created.
  7. When Terminal says that it's done, the volume will have the same name as the installer you downloaded, such as Install macOS Catalina. You can now quit Terminal and eject the volume.

* If your Mac is using macOS Sierra or earlier, include the --applicationpath argument, similar to the way this argument is used in the command for El Capitan.

Use the bootable installer

After creating the bootable installer, follow these steps to use it:

  1. Plug the bootable installer into a compatible Mac.
  2. Use Startup Manager or Startup Disk preferences to select the bootable installer as the startup disk, then start up from it. Your Mac will start up to macOS Recovery.
    Learn about selecting a startup disk, including what to do if your Mac doesn't start up from it.
  3. Choose your language, if prompted.
  4. A bootable installer doesn't download macOS from the Internet, but it does require the Internet to get information specific to your Mac model, such as firmware updates. If you need to connect to a Wi-Fi network, use the Wi-Fi menu in the menu bar.
  5. Select Install macOS (or Install OS X) from the Utilities window, then click Continue and follow the onscreen instructions.

Learn more

For more information about the createinstallmedia command and the arguments that you can use with it, make sure that the macOS installer is in your Applications folder, then enter this path in Terminal:

Catalina:

Mojave:

High Sierra:

El Capitan:

Microsoft Tools For Mac

Darling is a translation layer that lets you run macOS software on Linux

  • Fast

    Darling runs macOS software directly without using a hardware emulator.

  • Free

    Like Linux, Darling is free and open-source software.
    It is developed openly on GitHub and distributed under the GNU GPL license version 3.

  • Compatible

    Darling implements a complete Darwin environment. Mach, dyld, launchd — everything you'd expect.

  • Easy to use

    Darling does most of the setup for you. Sit back and enjoy using your favorite software.

  • Native

    We aim to fully integrate apps running under Darling into the Linux desktop experience by making them look, feel and behave just like native Linux apps.

Unix

Unix Tools For Mac

  • That sounds a lot like Wine

    And it is! Wine lets you run Windows software on Linux, and Darling does the same for macOS software. Another similar project is Anbox, for Android apps.

  • Does it support GUI apps?

    Almost! This took us a lot of time and effort, but we finally have basic experimental support for running simple graphical applications. It requires some special setup for now though, so do not expect it to work out of the box just yet. We're working on this; stay tuned!

  • Does it violate Apple's EULA?

    No! We only directly use those parts of Darwin that are released as fully free software.

  • Does the name Darling mean anything?

    The name Darling is a combination of “Darwin” and “Linux”. Darwin is the core operating system macOS and iOS are based on.

  • Can I run Darling on Windows using WSL?

    Unfortunately, no. Darling requires a real Linux kernel to run. See this issue for more details.

  • Do you know about opensource.apple.com, GNUstep, The Cocotron and other projects?

    We do, and in fact, Darling is largely based on the original Darwin source code published by Apple. We use The Cocotron as a basis for our Cocoa implementation, along with the Apportable Foundation and various bits of GNUstep.

  • Do you have plans for supporting iOS apps?

    Yes, in the long run, we'd like to be able to run iOS apps on ARM devices (like most Android phones). A significant challenge here would be to write our own implementation of UIKit. Come talk to us if you're interested in working on this!

  • How do I contribute?

    Start by reading the documentation and our blog to get familiar with Darling internals. Then, come and join us on GitHub. It's great if you have experience in developing for macOS or iOS, but it's absolutely not required to start contributing.