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Mid 2010 Model A1278 / 2.4 or 2.66 GHz Core 2 Duo processor

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MacBook failing to boot from known good usb installer

I have a mac with no disk (damaged) I’m trying to install macOS on a new drive. The Mac boots and recognises the usb (pressing cmd+r and choosing the usb), but at a third through the first loading bar, before I see get into the utility, it just stops and doesn’t ever get any further. The usb works fine on other Macs and has Yosemite on it.

I have tried removing ram sticks, using known good ram and disconnecting the cd drive but to no avail.

I currently have no disk plugged in, to exclude any problems related to that, it shouldn’t stop the Mac from booting from the usb.

When I plug in an ssd with macOS installed, from another Mac, it shows the folder with a question mark.

The SMC and PRAM have both been reset several times.

Any potential solutions are greatly appreciated!

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You hit the expired certificate issue! Here’s more on it If you've got an old macOS install image, it will probably stop working today

So we need to send your system back in time! Walk into my way-back machine so we can get your Yosemite installer to work. Now set the way-back machine to the year 2015. Restart your system and give it a try!

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But maybe we really want something newer the last OS your system can support is 10.13.x High Sierra. If you are using a SSD I do strongly recommend you stick with Sierra 10.12 as a better OS. High Sierra introduced APFS file system and will install it if is see’s a SSD. APFS is very chatty and not well suited for SATA based drives, If you had a newer retina model with PCIe blade SSD then I would be less concerned.

So lets go with Sierra! Get the newer OS installer here How to upgrade to macOS Sierra jump down to Step 4 locate the blue URL Download macOS Sierra to get it you’ll need to double click on it to decompress it and then follow this guide to setup a bootable OS installer How to create a bootable macOS Sierra installer drive

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Thanks for the insight, however the Mac doesn’t currently have an operating system (I’m using another Mac to create the usb), so I can’t change the date.

I created an El Capitan usb installer (as the Sierra createinstallmedia is bugged and unusable) however the progress bar still get stuck, all be it now at around two thirds the way. Would El Capitan have the same outdated certificate issue?


YES! Every OS-X & macOS installer has a certificate which can (will) expire!

Here's the fixed How to upgrade to OS-X El Capitan image. Again click on the blue Download OS X El Capitan

Once you have the image file on your working system, click on it to open it then process the image.

Or... On your working system with what ever old installer file you have first look up the data of the OS introduction then add one year to it, use that as your new year following the steps I outlined in my answer to send your system back in time! That will allow the installer to open.

But before we go into installing your OS you have a few other ways to gain access to your system which you are trying to install the OS to.

● The easiest is to use a FireWire cable between your working system and the one you are setting up then use Target Disk Mode Understanding the Applications for Target Disk Mode.

● You could take the drive out of the system and use a SATA to USB adapter cable so you can connect it to your working system.

That way you don't need to fumble with altering the date. If you still want to go the USB installer route you can just use a terminal session to alter the date, here's how Changing system date from Terminal – OS X recovery


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