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July 4, 2006

How to install Mac OS x86 on a PC

Filed under: Apple — Manish Bansal @ 8:34 am

I have finally managed to install and boot into (these are two separate things in this context as will soon become clear) Mac OS x86 on my PC after struggling for more than two weeks. I used HotISO 10.4.6 install DVD. I don’t know much about legal stuff but it is probably illegal to do this without owning apple hardware. I own an iBook G4 so maybe it is ok. I don’t know. Please don’t quote me on this.

Before the install:
These are the things that you have to take care of before you start the install. 90% of people asking for help in the forums are there because they did not pay attention to this part. So before you start-

  1. Make sure that your DVD drive is set up as primary slave. If it is not, you would still be able to install the OS but you won’t be able to boot into it. It would say ‘waitng for root device’ or ‘b0 error’ and just hang there. Or the PC would keep on rebooting itself. Some of these problems can be fixed if you are able to boot from the DVD and go into terminal but you won’t be able to boot from the DVD either (after the install).
  2. Both your keyboard and mouse should either be PS/2 or both should be USB; you cannot mix and match. If you do, you won’t be able to boot into the OS after the install. It would complain about keyboard being not present and just stop there.
  3. Make a primary partition while you are in Windows. You can use Partition Magic or any other such tool to do non-destructive partitioning. Once created, mark this partition as ‘Active’ otherwise you won’t be able to boot into Mac OS X. You don’t have to format it at this point.
    You might want to make the size of the new partition sufficiently different from the size of Windows partition so that they are easy to tell apart in the Mac OS installer. A minimum size of 6GB is needed though.
  4. You don’t need Linux, fdisk, Acronis OS selector or any other such tool. Whatever you need is right there on the DVD itself. Some people suggest sacrificing a goat but I doubt if that’ll be of any help.

Install process:

  1. Boot off the install DVD and keep clicking until it’s time to choose the volume on which to install Mac OS X. The list would be blank as of now. Go to ‘Utilities –> Disk Utility’. The left side of the panel would now show all the partitions. Select the one you want and click on ‘erase’ tab in the right-hand panel. Choose ‘Journaled’ as the file-system, name the volume, and click on the ‘erase’ button. Try to avoid naming this volume with spaces in the name like ‘Mac OS X’ etc. I named this volume as ‘Tiger’. This kind of name would come in handy if you have to launch the terminal and copy files here and there.
  2. The next important panel is ‘Installation Type’. Choose ‘Custom’ and it would show you the list of packages to be installed. Pay attention to the last entry there which contains the patches and other drivers which make this whole exercise possible. Select only those patches here which match your system hardware. So if you have an intel CPU, do NOT select anything related to AMD. This is important. If you are not sure whether your CPU supports SSE2 or SSE3, download this small standalone utility. Again, select SSE3 only if your processor supports it.
  3. Sit back and relax.
  4. Installer would reboot automatically when it’s done and Mac OS X would start. Go through the simple setup process and enjoy.

If only computers were so simple! Post-installtion help forums on OSx86 project are a good place to start if you are having any problems with your setup. Make sure to go through the Technical FAQ first.


  1. Niall Douglas’s page on installing Mac OS x86
  2. OSx86 project


  1. I have a PowerBook G4 and I having used Mac OS on that and then on my PC it gets a 10/10 on Macs and 2/10 on PCs from me. I need an iMac desperately! PCs suck.

    Comment by Abhishek — July 9, 2006 @ 2:57 pm | Reply

  2. Mac OS X sucks so bad on my PC that I have uninstalled it and formatted that partition. I was not interested in using it on the PC anyway. I have an iBook for that. I was just curious to see how it would play out. But you are right about an iMac. My next desktop computer would be an Apple.

    Comment by manishbansal — July 9, 2006 @ 4:06 pm | Reply

  3. Hello,
    I have installed the OS, but when I boot I have this message: “HFS+ error”. I have well readen 1. but I don’t know how to set up my DVD drive as primary slave because my PC is a laptop.
    Thank you for your help.

    Comment by Groover — July 28, 2006 @ 8:25 pm | Reply

  4. Hi Groover,
    Can you give me some more details like which version of the OS or DVD you used? What was the install method? Did you just copy the img file or you did a fresh install? What are the specs of your laptop? And at what point during the install process do you get this error?

    Comment by manishbansal — July 29, 2006 @ 7:22 am | Reply

  5. Hello
    can i install mac os and windows xp sp2 as a dual os??

    i have intel dualcore2, ddr2(1gb ram),160gb hdd is this enough??

    Comment by Vinoth — August 23, 2006 @ 5:33 pm | Reply

  6. Hi Vinoth,
    Yes. You can certainly dual-boot between XP and Mac OS X. Look at Niall’s page (linked above) for instructions on how to do this.

    Comment by manishbansal — August 24, 2006 @ 3:44 am | Reply

  7. thanks for the help, can you any difference between these two OS( i.e. tips)??

    every software that works xp, will work in MAC???

    Comment by Vinoth — August 24, 2006 @ 10:12 am | Reply

  8. were can i see d other comments

    Comment by Vinoth — August 24, 2006 @ 10:16 am | Reply

  9. Mac is not installing for me, it just hangs up with an apple pic and a loding icon, wat should i do??
    i have intel D Processor and MSI P4N model!!!

    Comment by Vinoth — August 27, 2006 @ 9:37 am | Reply

  10. Groover & Vinoth, i have the same problems!
    Did you manage to find a solution? If so, please share 🙂

    Comment by Henrik — September 9, 2006 @ 3:56 pm | Reply

  11. God damn you manishbansal!!!!
    You have a name of a Female
    I’m pretty sure you’re an effeminate
    Don’t be posting shit on the internet of which you know nothing
    You’re such a bitchless bastard
    Go fuck your mother

    Comment by Your God — May 11, 2007 @ 6:08 am | Reply

  12. It keeps saying “Waiting for root device” when I’m booting from the DVD for the first time. It’s not install or anything because i can’t get to the installer. I checked the site and it says my hardware is compatible….

    Comment by ShAdEd_PaSt — May 15, 2007 @ 9:23 pm | Reply

  13. it is not going to work ShAdEd_PaSt
    go to
    this man is a jerk
    good luck btw

    Comment by Your God — May 18, 2007 @ 9:15 am | Reply

  14. “Your God” is an idiot.
    This works great.
    PearPC is crap.

    Thanks for the info!

    Comment by "Your God" is a moron — September 21, 2007 @ 8:09 pm | Reply

  15. i have mac book. can i install window xp as second os?

    Comment by gaurav — September 29, 2007 @ 8:49 am | Reply

  16. @Gaurav:
    Yes. You can. See here:

    Comment by Manish Bansal — September 29, 2007 @ 9:06 am | Reply

  17. i have managed to install mac os x on my pc and after the first boot i did a sofware update and then i did a reset on the system and guess what ? … i doesn’t boot anymore

    Does anyone know why ?

    Comment by alecssys — October 20, 2007 @ 5:58 am | Reply

    • don’t do that. look on TPB or something for the osx86 update

      Comment by ShAdEd_PaSt — August 10, 2009 @ 7:44 pm | Reply

  18. When I try to boot from the DVD, it doesn’t do it. Did I miss something?

    Comment by Speaker1777 — November 10, 2007 @ 5:23 am | Reply

  19. Tanga ka kasi bwahahaha

    Potangina mo

    Comment by panot — November 21, 2007 @ 1:06 pm | Reply

  20. How can I get full doc. about Mac OS, software & Hardware to be good or perfect in anything that concerned about Mac apple? I am system administrator; Through in my company there is 23 Mac-pc most of them are G5 with dual processors; the remaining are G4. I think I do have right to get full doc. About Mac.

    Comment by Iskinder — April 30, 2008 @ 1:23 pm | Reply

  21. Help regarding OSx86 on AMD Machines:

    Comment by OSx86 on AMD PC — May 24, 2008 @ 11:18 am | Reply

  22. OMg thanks alot for this post i had tried to install leopard on my PC for some time now and everytime i do it, it never boots, until i changed the DVD drive to primary slave.

    **also if u cant move your ps2 mouse just disable usb from you bios**

    Comment by karlo — June 6, 2008 @ 2:31 am | Reply

  23. I have a x86 machine that I bought with the Mac OS already’s been working great up until a week or so if it reboots at all, I’m lucky..and if it comes up..It lasts all of 5 minutes than the whole system freezes up…this is every time now..really frustrated with the situation..I’m just wondering if anyone else out there has run into this?



    Comment by Andrew — October 7, 2008 @ 11:14 pm | Reply

  24. Here’s a cool URL (iatkos osx86):

    Comment by iatkos OSx86 Project — February 27, 2009 @ 1:44 pm | Reply

  25. bro i m trying to install tiger my cpu con is e-5200 and board is intel dg31pr i m facing after restarting bo error my hard is sata 80gb and sata LG dvdrw please any one tell me in detail how can i install mac.
    sorry for my english

    Comment by M.ALI — May 4, 2009 @ 6:15 pm | Reply

  26. Well, Nice guide. though I found a better and easier guide here.
    I installed and found it to be a quick guide.

    Comment by John — June 23, 2009 @ 3:26 pm | Reply

  27. Hi Dude,

    Dude the installation on my mac works perfectly but when it restarts and boots mac the apple screen displays with a circle and a line in it. Can you please tell me what the problem is. I would be very greatfull.


    Comment by Waqar Salim — June 29, 2009 @ 1:42 pm | Reply

    • it can’t find your root device if you -v at startup you’ll see it says “Stil waiting for root device” I recommend yo utry a different distro. iDeneb 1.5.1 works great for me.

      Comment by ShAdEd_PaSt — August 10, 2009 @ 7:43 pm | Reply

  28. Well, I can’t believe this page still exists… It’s so dated, osx86 can now be installed to the latest version with ease. This just makes me die laughing…

    Comment by ShAdEd_PaSt — August 10, 2009 @ 7:41 pm | Reply

  29. I am having trouble loading the iatkos 5i disk. I have a bunch of old hard drives and have had successfull install but that was it and it never was able to reboot from the Hd. I would then try to reinstall but this would not work with the same hard drive. If I used a different hd then the load process would work. I have now used all my spare hard drives and dont know what to do next. It now hangs up in the boot loader process. and then restarts and the process contiunes forever. Please help. Thanks

    Comment by flymike — October 15, 2009 @ 10:28 pm | Reply

  30. @flymike:
    I am sorry. I have been so out of touch with this whole OSx86 thing that I can’t really help you.

    Comment by Manish Bansal — October 16, 2009 @ 9:32 am | Reply

  31. hi my intel motherboard DB75en i3 processor RAM DDR3 4GB HDD 250 os mac os install

    Comment by Anonymous — February 8, 2014 @ 7:28 pm | Reply

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