How to Make a Bootable MacOS Mojave Installer Drive
Want to make a MacOS Mojave bootable USB installer drive? It’s pretty easy to do, as long as you have the MacOS Mojave installer app and a USB flash drive.
Much like prior versions of Mac OS, you can easily create a bootable install drive for MacOS Mojave 10.14. These boot install drives allow for things like easily formatting a Mac to perform a clean install of macOS Mojave, installing macOS Mojave onto multiple Macs without them each having to download the installer, or even as a troubleshooting tool since it can be booted from by any compatible Mac at any time.
This article will show you how to create your own macOS Mojave bootable install drive out of a USB flash key.
Requirements for making a bootable MacOS Mojave Installer Drive
- 16GB (or larger) USB flash drive that you don’t mind formatting – you can get a USB flash drive from Amazon if you don’t have one, this drive will be completely erased to turn into the macOS Mojave installer boot drive
- Download MacOS Mojave installer to a Mac, the installer app must be located in the /Applications folder which is the default location (direct App Store link here)
Beyond those two simple requirements, you’ll need some familiarity with the command line, patience, an internet connection, and of course a Mac compatible with macOS Mojave.
One thing to note is that if you originally downloaded the macOS Mojave installer and already used it to update the Mac it was downloaded on, the installer file itself will have deleted itself upon completion of updating to Mojave. Thus in such a situation you’d need to re-download the MacOS Mojave installer again from the Mac App Store (available in the Purchases tab), or download it to a different Mac.
How to Make a MacOS Mojave Installer USB Boot Drive
Remember that creating a bootable MacOS Mojave USB installer drive will erase all data on the destination USB flash drive or volume, this is necessary in order for it to become the bootable installer disk.
Building a macOS Mojave bootable install drive is relatively simple, here are the steps:
- Confirm the complete “Install macOS Mojave.app” installer file is located in the /Applications directory
- Connect the USB flash drive to the Mac, if the drive is not yet formatted to be Mac compatible go ahead and do that first with Disk Utility first
- Launch the Terminal application found in the /Applications/Utilities/ folder, then issue the following command (replace ‘UNTITLED’ with the name of the USB flash drive you want to convert to the MacOS Mojave installer – warning: the target volume will be erased completely to become the installer)
- Hit return and enter the admin password (as required by sudo) and then hit return again to begin creating the Mojave installer drive
sudo /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Mojave.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/UNTITLED --nointeraction && say Mojave Drive Created
The creation of the macOS Mojave boot drive can take a little while, but the Terminal window will update the status as it goes through erasing the USB flash drive, then copying the files to the flash drive and making the disk bootable. Finally it will report when the install media has completed and where it is located with a volume name.
“Erasing Disk: 0%… 10%… 20%… 30%… 100%…
Copying to disk: 0%… 10%… 20%… 30%… 40%… 50%… 60%… 70%… 80%… 90%… 100%…
Making disk bootable…
Install media now available at “/Volumes/Install MacOS Mojave”
Once you see the ‘Install media now available at “/Volumes/Install MacOS Mojave”‘ message (and hear the verbal confirmation) your macOS Mojave boot install disk is complete and it’s ready to use.
You can use the freshly created MacOS Mojave installer to update any compatible Mac to macOS Mojave, to perform clean installs, to format disks, and much more.
How to Boot from the MacOS Mojave Installer USB Drive
Now that your macOS Mojave installer drive is complete, you can boot from it with any compatible Mac.
- Connect the MacOS Mojave installer USB drive to the Mac you want to boot it from
- Reboot (or start up) the Mac and immediately hold down the OPTION key on the keyboard
- At the boot selector screen, choose “Install macOS Mojave” from the startup options
Once you boot from the macOS Mojave installer drive you will see the familiar macOS Utilities screen from which you can start the macOS Mojave install or update process, use Disk Utility, access the Terminal, or any other task. To install macOS Mojave or update to macOS Mojave, choose that option which will quickly launch the installer.
Installing or updating to macOS Mojave takes about 45 minutes to an hour or so, perhaps longer or shorter depending on the Mac model and disk performance.
That’s it! MacOS Mojave has a variety of new great features worth checking out, and it should be a worthwhile update for many Mac users.
Do you have any questions or comments about making your own macOS Mojave bootable install drive? Share your experiences and thoughts in the comments below!