How to create bootable Mountain Lion 10.8.2 USB installer

There are numerous ways to create bootable USB installer for hackintosh, most of them are Chameleon based and Unibeast is just one of them. The installation process is quite simple if you bought your copy from App store. Download Unibeast and just follow tonymacx86 instructions and you are good to go. But you should consider that tonymacx86 is not an open source and therefore is not in OSx86 spirit. Also apparently he stole the code from qoopz , nawcom , AnV and few others that made the legacy kernel. Here is one great explanation why you should not use tonymacx86, and here is another.

But there is another way to install it and even more, it  supports raw installESD.dmg instalation, it’s called myHack, it’s  Chameleon based USB Instaler + after install utility. MyHack functionality is more less the same as Unibeast + Multibeast,  just simplier and better…

When installing Mac OS X, it would be a good idea to use one extra hard disk drive for the installation, to preserve your old operating system, just in case something goes wrong.

You will need USB stick, minimum 8GB, all the data will be erased, so back it up if needed and format back after finish installation.

Also working OS X SL 10.6.8 or Lion is needed to make a bootable Mountain Lion USB. (if u don’t already have a working OS X and using Windows, you can download, burn and temporary install iatkos L1 ISO image (search torrents) and install it like shown on this tutorial (drivers selection depends on your hardware).

Second option, if you are using Windows is to install Snow Leopard or Lion on a virtual machine (Virtual Box), and run Unibeast on there instead. Virtualbox Extension Pack will be also needed to view USB drives from vm. This method will probably not work if your computer uses an Ivy Bridge processor.

With working OS X SL or Lion you can buy and download Mountain Lion from the App Store.  If you’ve already bought it you can navigate to the Purchased tab and grab it from here. Once it’s downloaded the Installer will pop up but instead of running it just close it.

Use myHack to create your bootable USB installer

37 thoughts on “How to create bootable Mountain Lion 10.8.2 USB installer

  1. I tried with Unibeast 1.5.3 and your instructions but got an error (installation failed). The installer (in the applications folder) is only 472.8MB (which includes the InstallESD.dmg in SharedSupport).

    Where should the other files (3.66 gigs be)? – the original is on a DVD.

  2. That sounds logical.

    Where can I find the InstallESD.dmg image? When I unhid the “hidden files” on the DVD, the only dmg that I saw was BaseSystem.dmg (which was at the top level directory). So I renamed that to InstallESD.dmg (which obviously is not right).


    1. just open the dvd with 7 zip and go to MacOSx ML-10.8-final.dmg\InstallMacOSX.pkg\ there you will find installESD.dmg extract that and use it

  3. Have created the ML DVD image and renamed it InstallESD.dmg. Still doesn’t work. The InstallESD.dmg file is 4.78GB

  4. Yes. It was downloaded from the app store and it works if I boot and “install” from the DVD. I put “install” in quotes because I went as far as “agreeing” to the license.

    I think that the problem is when I copy the InstallESD.dmg from the desktop to the ML installer (in the applications folder) – per your instructions. Because, once I do that, am not able to “install”. An error message comes up (immediately when I click on the installer) and says that the program is corrupted.

    Any ideas?

    1. If you bought it at app store than you don’t need to copy InstallESD.dmg to content folder, just navigate to the Purchased tab in App store and download it again.

  5. Well well well
    ive to tell you that your tuto has a VERY BIG MISTAKE pal…
    When you unpack the Unibeast.pkg, you tell that we’ll find this unpacked
    folder in “/Users/your user name folder”, but theres nothin there, i tried another way by downloading Unibeast 1.5.3, and i have to do a “show content package” of my Install OS X Mountain, and what you think?, taaadaaaa in that place i can found the UnibeastTemp folder, ive to tell you thanks for your tuto, but i have lost like 4 hours of my life tryin to found that folder, but anyway, that was a good way to learn a little bit more of this hackintosh world, and why not learn more about terminal-commands…
    Thanks pal and c’ya
    PD.- Sorry about my english 🙁

    1. Thanks for your reply Marco. I’m glad if this helped you even in harder way :).
      I think that you made a mistake. When u expand Unibeast with pkgutil –expand command, go to Finder, and from top menu click Go, than double click Computer and than your system hard drive. Here you will see /Users folder and inside is a folder with your user name. Inside your user name folder is UnibeastTemp folder which is created with expand command. You don’t need to expand Unibeast 1.5.3, just copy InstallESD.dmg inside your mac install app’s content folder as described in tuto…

  6. Marco mentioned he couldn’t find some files, I made the mistake of not opening a new terminal window so the commands unpacked/created UnibeastTemp etc. to the Contents folder in the ML! You do state to open a new terminal so anyone having issues should first make sure they do ‘pkgutil –expand /Users/xx/Desktop/UniBeast\ -\ Mountain\ Lion\ 1.7.0.pkg UnibeastTemp’ in a new terminal window or ‘cd’ back to their user folder first or risk wasting precious time hunting down the temp folder! (Spotlight wont find files in .app packages!)

    1. Yes, i stated to open new terminal, because when you open it UnibeastTemp will be created inside /Users/your user name folder by default. But you can also type cd Desktop in new terminal before entering pkgutil –expand command so than your UnibeastTemp will be created on your Desktop. tnx for your reply, I also updated a tutorial so now should be more clear to future visitors to save their precious time 🙂

    2. Yeahhhh man, that’s the mistake that happen to me…

      Anyway, installation was ok, until ive to delete my nvidia drivers due to a black screen during my first boot after install chameleon…
      So, my hack boots in 1024×768 mode, system profile says C/I enabled, but my video is very creepy and slow, i try some kexts for my gforce9400gt, but when i install kexts almost all of them says that they cannot install in my machine, when i boot in verbose mode, all of my nvdia kexts say that “couldn’t load”, i tried erasing all nvidia kext in my s/l/e, but theres no way to i can get fully workin video…
      Any ideas?
      My mobo is a Intel DP65BG with 4gb Ram, and 2 TB HD
      Install via unibeast (obviouslly), an then Chameleon wizard…

  7. hi!

    I think I followed every step, and got to repack the package. The problem is when I opened it up, and went through all the steps, it would start the installation, and then it said “Writing Files”… and then stopped suddenly and said: “The installation failed”
    I am using the GOlden MAster version of ML, and I don’t really know what to do.
    Can you help me out?

    1. I really don’t know, maybe it’s a smth wrong with your ML distro, not sure…maybe try to download it again.

  8. I have done all the process for my raw InstallESD.dmg mentioned in the steps
    After creating bootable usb when i plug it to my pc and after that installation is
    started then i have formated my drive for installation of ML when i click install
    the error is “InstallESD.dmg is damaged can’t install” is this happen because of
    raw dmg file or contents of dmg files are hidden? I search on google then the
    answer is you have to first unhide the contents of dmg then there is another file BootSystem.dmg i have mount that also but the question is we have to drag the Install Mountain Lion app from InstallEsd.dmg or from BootSystem.dmg?
    help me out very panic

    1. As stated in tutorial you need to “Copy “Install OS X Mountain” from mounted InstallESD.dmg image to Applications folder.”

  9. First of all thank you for the guide!

    I have a question:

    The video tutorial is much more simple then the text guide, in the video guide there is no need to use terminal? if i make the as in the video, i will get the bootable usb with multibeast?

    Hope for replay, thanks.

    1. Video tutorial is for unibeast 1.5.3. For Unibeast 1.6 and 1.7 you will need to do some additional steps as described in tutorial.

  10. Hi, thank you so much for this

    you really saved my ass, after several attempts your post did the trick!
    thank you

  11. Hi, follow every step but I get something about pkgutil not found. Do i need to install pkgutil? thx

  12. Hi, Thanks for your complete guide.
    I’m running a 10.6 Server Mac OS X over VMWare.
    I did exactly what you told, but I’ve got error, I tried everything but I don’t know what my problem is 🙁
    3/18/13 6:53:28 PM installd[1419] PackageKit: Install Failed: PKG: pre-install scripts for “com.tonymacx86.UniBeast-ML.UniBeast.pkg”
    Error Domain=PKInstallErrorDomain Code=112 UserInfo=0x100147620 “An error occurred while running scripts from the package “UnibeastFixed.pkg”.” {
    NSFilePath = “./preinstall”;
    NSLocalizedDescription = “An error occurred while running scripts from the package \U201cUnibeastFixed.pkg\U201d.”;
    NSURL = “#dsmos.pkg — file://localhost/Users/Bardia/Desktop/UnibeastFixed.pkg”;
    PKInstallPackageIdentifier = “com.tonymacx86.UniBeast-ML.UniBeast.pkg”;

    I’ve edited preinstall like you said but I have this error…
    Could you help me please?

    1. I’m really not sure what is your problem, maybe try again or even better use myHack to create bootable USB installer

      1. Thanks for your reply murdah, I’ve tried many times and the error changed to “could not mount base system,exiting”….
        Could you tell me what the problem is now?
        And I’ve noticed after “writing files” and before start script package, it automatically mount my InstallESD.dmg,is that normal?

  13. Hi i use windows for my installesd but my is iso file not dmg will it work with unibeat to creat a bootable usb….pls help me

  14. Hi,

    i already have mountain lion in my desktop, now i want to make a bootable USB of ML8.0 for my laptop. i have a pirated version of mountain lion app, which i placed it under applications folder. when i trying to run unibeast 1.7.0 for mountain lion it is getting failed to create USB. i dont know what is the problem. can u plz tell me what im doing wrong in this case.

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