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  1. #1

    jhoomjhoom's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2010
    Posts
    53
    Specs:
    MacBook Air / 1.86GHz / 2 GB / Version 10.6.2
    Create Live USB for MacAir when using Public Wi-fi
    I have a 4GB USB, and I cannot find instructions on how to create a live USB for Mac OS.

    I know how to create live USB for Windows OS, but have failed to find instructions on how to do so for Mac OS.

    Live USB will help me connect to public Wi-FI without exposing my Mac to hackers.

    Is there a special way the USB needs to be formatted. I can even use the ISO from Ubuntu.

    I'm concerned about using public Wi-Fi, even if it is from an establishment such as Starbucks.
    Thanks,
    jhoom jhoom

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Keller, Texas
    Posts
    50,266
    Specs:
    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, Sierra
    I'm concerned about using public Wi-Fi, even if it is from an establishment such as Starbucks.
    Why? Common sense would tell you that while on public WiFi make sure you don't access your bank's website or transmit any personal info such as your SSAN, Credit Card numbers, etc.

    As long as you take precautions not to transmit any sensitive personal data and keep your firewall on, you'll be OK.

  3. #3

    wolfpuppies3's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 07, 2010
    Location
    Virginia, USA
    Posts
    381
    Specs:
    15" MB Pro, 2.66 i7 ; 11 MBA 1.8GZ i7; 13"MBA 2GZ i7 8 GB mem 512GB SSD, 2 iPad3s, 1 iPad Mini
    A Live USB drive is an effective security measure only
    when it is disconnected from your computer and locked in a safe. I echo chscag's comments about never using your machine on a public wifi network to transmit or receive sensitive (especially financial) data.

    Google that a bit and you find:

    "Intel-based Macintosh computers have limitations when booting from USB devices while the Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) firmware can recognize and boot from USB drives, it can only do this in EFI mode. When the firmware switches to "legacy" BIOS mode, it no longer recognizes USB drives. Non OSX systems may not be typically booted in EFI mode, notably Windows and Linux, and thus USB booting may be limited to supported hardware and software combinations, which can easily be booted via EFI[6]. This limitation could be fixed by either changing the Apple firmware to include a USB driver in BIOS mode, or changing the operating systems to remove the dependency on the BIOS."

    To which I would add that 4 gig is awfully small!

  4. #4

    Deckyon's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 06, 2011
    Location
    Louisville, KY - USA
    Posts
    1,291
    Specs:
    MBP 17" 2011, 2.3GHz Intel Quad-Core i7, 8GB RAM, MacMini 2011, 2.7GHz Intel Dual-Core i7, 8GB RAM
    Public Wifi - pay attention to what you are doing and turn off any and all sharing. If someone wants in your box, and they have the know-how to begin with, the only way to keep them out is to disable the wireless connection.

    Common sense and "constant vigilance" will be better at protecting your data than any "Live-OS USB."
    MBP 17" 2011, 2.3GHz Intel Quad-Core i7, 8GB RAM, AMD Radeon HD 6750M 1GB RAM
    MacMini 2011, 2.7GHz Intel Dual-Core i7, 8GB RAM, AMD Radeon HD 6630M 256MB RAM
    iPhone 5S 64GB, iPad Air 2 128 GB LTE, iPod Nano Gen6 8GB, Apple TV 3 & 2

  5. #5

    jhoomjhoom's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2010
    Posts
    53
    Specs:
    MacBook Air / 1.86GHz / 2 GB / Version 10.6.2
    I usually check my email on Wi-fi, and I still do banking via postal mail and telephone.
    Thanks,
    jhoom jhoom

  6. #6


    Member Since
    Feb 12, 2012
    Posts
    4
    I travel a lot and would like to be able to use my mac for bill paying, banking, email on public hotspots but don't as I am worried about the security issue. I have been looking at VPN. It looks like a possible solution, but I don't know. any thoughts? thanks- Clark

  7. #7

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Keller, Texas
    Posts
    50,266
    Specs:
    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, Sierra
    I would use neither method for bill paying, accessing bank accounts, and any other sensitive transaction. While traveling, always use an ethernet connection if available. Hotels and motels generally provide both wireless and ethernet.

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Feb 12, 2012
    Posts
    4
    unfortunately the last 4-5 I hotels I used only had wifi, and poor wifi at that. cost more to maintain and install hardwire unfortunately, and it is all about the bottom line isn't it. and the vacation rentals we use also only have shared wifi. Clark

  9. #9

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Keller, Texas
    Posts
    50,266
    Specs:
    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, Sierra
    In that case, make sure all your personal transactions are taken care of before leaving home. I know that's not a very good solution but with today's hackers always looking to steal on line info, I would never take a chance transmitting any sensitive info in the clear.

  10. #10


    Member Since
    Feb 12, 2012
    Posts
    4
    This sounds like a business opportunity to me- maybe I will do like the FBI does and hire a couple of 9 year old hackers to figure something out and make my next million! hahahaha-Clark

  11. #11

    rabbitjetta's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 08, 2010
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    967
    Specs:
    Main-11" Air, iPhone 6+, iPad Mini 3, Hi-Fi Extras- Too many to count
    Use a VPN and make sure that your firewall is on and you should be fine but do not do banking or sensitive info on public wifi. Some free VPN services that I use are https://www.getcloak.com/ and Hotspot Shield

  12. #12


    Member Since
    Feb 12, 2012
    Posts
    4
    Thanks- I just got done installing Cloak and it seems to work fine. at least it will keep the honest people out! Clark

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