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  1. #1
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff

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    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    Hi, thank you for taking the time to read this post. I have a project going on right now. I've owned Macs for decades, but haven't been really up to date the past few years.
    I've got an early 2009 MacBook Pro, 17" with 8gb RAM. I recently bought an OWC SSD (259gb) with external drive enclosure. I will be installing the SSD and swapping the old HD to the external enclosure. Currently, the SSD is in the enclosure, I have initialized it for my Mac with Disk Utility. The questions are:

    1. The installer won't allow El Capitan to be installed to the SSD. It gives me an error since no OS is currently installed on it. I don't want to update the original drive, how can I do this simply?
    2. The computer originally belonged to my brother, I would like to have my own login/pw, it also has an icloud account, can I still have access to the online back-uo, and set up my own account?
    Thank you for your time and knowledge.
    Last edited by MacBrad; 01-22-2020 at 05:52 PM. Reason: changed Disk Tools to Disk Utility

  2. #2
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    ferrarr's Avatar
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    I don't know what Disk Tools is, so I would recommend using Disk Utility, to erase and format the SSD. In order to install El Capitan to the external, did you create a bootable USB installer for El Capitan?

    How to create a bootable installer for macOS - Apple Support
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  3. #3
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff

    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2020
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    Thank you, and sorry for the confusion, I have corrected above.I used Disk Utility. Is there a way to directly install it to the new drive as bootable (external-in enclosure), then swap it with the existing internal drive so that the new drive will be my bootable drive, the old drive for back-up/storage?

  4. #4
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    ferrarr's Avatar
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    You could also clone your internal HDD drive onto the SSD, provided there is enough storage on the SSD to handle all the used data space on the internal HDD? We recommend Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC), Mac Backup Software | Carbon Copy Cloner | Bombich Software.
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  5. #5
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff

    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2020
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    Rather than cloning the old drive, I would prefer to have the drive clean and add things to it. I'd like the old drive to remain bootable. This would be for older software and basically just a storage bin I can sort through at my leisure to dispose of unneeded files. The new drive is for speed and newer things, as well as for a newer drive for longevity. This was bought as remanufactured in about 2012, I believe, from OWC.
    Being a 17" this has essentially become a desktop for me. I'll use it mostly for writing, internet and photo/video. I've been using a Chromebook (cheap, durable, relarively light) for travel, but that is mostly being replaced by an iPad with a keyboard case.
    Last edited by MacBrad; 01-22-2020 at 06:16 PM.

  6. #6
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    pm-r's Avatar
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    1. The installer won't allow El Capitan to be installed to the SSD. ...
    2. The computer originally belonged to my brother, I would like to have my own login/pw, ...

    To make things easier for you and to keep a bootable backup I would do as Bob suggests and to create a clone using CCC.

    When logged into your brother's account, you can set up your own new clean boot section as an admin user, then log out and log into your new user account or you can delete your brother's account and all other unnecessary software.

    You may not even have any choice considering Mac OS El Capitan won't even let you install it the way you are going about it at this point. Why bother creating extra work when you can do it so easily as suggested above. You'll end up with a same thing.


    - Patrick
    ======

  7. #7
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    krs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacBrad View Post
    Rather than cloning the old drive, I would prefer to have the drive clean and add things to it. I'd like the old drive to remain bootable.
    Maybe I'm missing something, but I see no reason why you can't install ElCapitan directly on the external drive.

    My Mini is currently running ElCapitan on the internal drive and I used it to do a clean install of Mojave (for test purposes) directly on an external USB3 drive.

    In your first post you said:
    The installer won't allow El Capitan to be installed to the SSD. It gives me an error since no OS is currently installed on it.
    What installer do you have?
    It sounds it is just an upissue of ElCapitan if it 'thinks' you need an existing OS for it to run.

  8. #8
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    ferrarr's Avatar
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    What OS version is on the MBP currently?
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  9. #9
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff

    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2020
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    Your Mac's Specs
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    The installer is downloaded from Apple. "Install MacOSX.dmg" I open that and it mounts "InstallMacOSX.pkg". When I open that, I get the installer. When I get to destination, and I select my formatted SSD, I get the error: "OS X can't be installed on this disk. Mac OS X isn't installed."
    I am currently running 10.7.5
    Can I use the terminal as if I were making an emergency boot disk using the SSD? Do you think that this would work. Then I will do the drive swap, and have the old system on the old drive, and the new system on the new drive. If I choose to I could then use the old drive as just an external drive, or boot to the old OS if I choose?
    Thank you.

  10. #10
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    MBAmtloin's Avatar
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    can we use a time machine back up on a OtherWorldComp. fresh ssd?

    what i did on a macbook air 2010 was install the new ssd, plugged in the snow leopard usb, started while pressing option and the computer read the usb were that instructed me to install the OSX.
    MacBook Air 2010 4gb Mountain Lion 10.8.5 and Snow Leopard 10.6.8
    i fixed everything on the macbook my self and repaired many in the past.

  11. #11
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff

    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2020
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    So, I guess that the best choice would be to create a bootable thumb drive, install the new drive, use the thumb drive to boot then install the new OS on the new drive while installed in the MBP? It seems like I should be able to cut that extra step, but if I must, then I will. But it seems if I need to use the Terminal to install on the thumb drive, I should be able to do the same with the SSD as an external drive, then swap. Then I don't need to install twice?
    Or maybe I could use the old drive externally to boot, then install to the new drive in the Mac?

  12. #12
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    pm-r's Avatar
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    But it seems if I need to use the Terminal to install on the thumb drive, I should be able to do the same with the SSD as an external drive, then swap. Then I don't need to install twice?
    Or maybe I could use the old drive externally to boot, then install to the new drive in the Mac?

    Why do you seem to be so adverse or against using Carbon Copy Cloner.app and creating a bootable clone???

    You could have been done and finished by now, with yourself as a new admin user and all cleaned up...

    Just curious...


    - Patrick
    ======

  13. #13
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff

    Member Since
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    Because I don't want to upgrade the original HD to El Capitan, and I don't want Lion on my new drive. The other thing is that the new drive is 250gb, the old one is 320gb.

  14. #14
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    MBAmtloin's Avatar
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    anytime i needed to make a bootable thumb drive, this source was the easiest and very thorough- osx daily saved my bacon many times!
    MacBook Air 2010 4gb Mountain Lion 10.8.5 and Snow Leopard 10.6.8
    i fixed everything on the macbook my self and repaired many in the past.

  15. #15
    El Capitan on Early 2009 MBP and other stuff
    krs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pm-r View Post
    Why do you seem to be so adverse or against using Carbon Copy Cloner.app and creating a bootable clone???
    Patrick - I don't understand how that is going to help.

    MacBrad wants a clean install of macOS 10.11 on the external.
    With CCC all he can do is make a bootable clone of macOS 10.7.5
    He can then upgrade that to macOS 10.11 but it won't be a clean install of the macOS

    As far as the downloaded file from Apple "Install MacOSX.dmg" is concerned - is that actually what one would expect to show up when downloading El Capitan?

    PS: I just did a quick download of El Capitan from the Apple store again to check that - the complete El Capitan installer is 6.22 GB and there should be an application in your application folder called "Install OS X El Capitan" showing that size and when you open that you should see this:

    OS X El Capitan Install Window.jpg

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