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Enable "Create a Windows USB Install Disk" in Bootcamp Assistant for Mountain Lion

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#1 Akamatsu



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Posted 21 October 2012 - 04:00 PM

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Typically, when you run the Bootcamp assistant on Macs that come as standard with an optical drive, you won't be given an option to create a USB Windows install disk. There's a few reason you might want this, for example if you've replaced your optical drive with a second hard drive. This guide will show how to force this option on Mountain Lion. You'll need Xcode (free from App store), although you can also make the modifications using nano via the terminal if you're an advanced user. I'll only be going through how to do this with Xcode.

Step 1: Permissions
Go to Applications > Utilities > Boot Camp. Alt-click and select "Show Package Contents". Alt-click on the folder 'Contents' and select 'Get Info', and then add 'Administrators' to the 'Sharing & Permissions' with read & write privileges. You will have to click the padlock and enter your administrator password to do this. Do the same for the file named 'Info.plist' that the 'Contents' folder contains.

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Step 2: Find your system version
Click  > About This Mac > More Info > System Report and then copy the first section of the 'Boot ROM Version' string.

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Step 3: Edit 'Info.plist'
Open 'Info.plist' with Xcode. Expand "USBBootSupportedModels", add a new item by pressing the '+' symbol. You will be prompted to unlock the file, click unlock. If you get a permissions error, check that you've completed the previous step. Paste the first section of your 'Boot ROM Version', for example 'MBP81', and then save the file.

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Startup Boot Camp Assistant, and you will now have the option to create a Windows 7 Install Disk. To turn a Windows Install DVD into an ISO image, you can follow this tutorial: How To Create Windows-Compatible ISO Disc Images on Mac OS X


I've replaced my optical drive with a second harddrive, so this was necessary to do for me to install Windows, as Microsoft doesn't allow you to install it via an external optical drive regardless of system platform. The Apple external superdrive will work with MBAs and rMBPs, but only because Apple have done something special with the drivers.

Edited by Akamatsu, 21 October 2012 - 04:01 PM.

#2 SquallStrife


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Posted 21 October 2012 - 07:59 PM

Microsoft doesn't allow you to install it via an external optical drive regardless of system platform.

I've done it loads of times.....?

Good guide tho, will probably come in handy at some point! :)

Edited by SquallStrife, 21 October 2012 - 07:59 PM.

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#3 Akamatsu



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Posted 21 October 2012 - 09:53 PM

I've done it loads of times.....?

Huh, a quick search on the topic and yeah you're right. I remember having some problems a few years back updating a netbook with an external drive, and somehow got the wrong impression.

#4 ninjacatfish



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Posted 22 October 2012 - 01:00 AM

Oh, interesting! I did a similar thing with the official Microsoft application that turns an ISO into a bootable USB drive, but I was lucky enough to have a running Windows PC, this'll be good for Mac only households :)
PC: Intel i5 2500K @4.5GHz | 8GB Corsair Vengeance LP RAM | 2x MSI GTX560 Ti Hawk in SLI | MSI P67A-GD65 | 120GB Intel 520 SSD+3TB of HDDs | Silverstone Fortress FT-02 | Dell U2711 + Dell U2311H 15-inch MacBook Pro late-2008: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.66GHz | 4GB DDR3 RAM | 320GB HDD | GeForce 9400M + 9600M GT

#5 hnoor0033



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Posted 29 January 2016 - 05:12 PM

I was lucky enough to have a running Windows PC, this'll be good for Mac only households :) 


#6 Rybags



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Posted 29 January 2016 - 06:29 PM

Errr... nice necrobump.


Actually I went through this myself the other day.  Right pain that they limit what you can do on a particular model and what media you're allowed to use.

It becomes an even bigger PITA because with El Capitan they've tightened security up and even the root user is somewhat crippled.

As such you can't edit such files within the system area even with elevated privelages.


The workaround is that you have to boot into Recovery then issue shell command csrutil disable

This will disable SIP (System Integrity Protection) which allows you to do the required edits.

Once done you need to boot into recovery again and issue shell command csrutil enable to return SIP to normal.



That aside, my Macbook Pro has a non working screen and it would seem I can't do a Win install using secondary monitor, so I had to resort to using VMWare there.

Benches seem to indicate though that it's not too much of a loss, wPrime and SuperPi scoring much what you'd expect of a native install.

3DMark performance though... no idea.  The Intel integrated graphics HD 3000 series is about equivalent to an old ATI HD 5500 graphics card at best.  8 Gig installed Ram means a hosted machine doesn't have to suffer in that regard.


To satisfy my Boot Camp needs for the moment though, looks like I'll have to settle for having it on my older Core2Duo machine.

#7 gerroba



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Posted 27 February 2016 - 09:58 AM

another workaround in El Capitan to avoid SIP is to copy the BootCamp Assistan application to another folder with write permission (i.e Desktop) and modify the info.plist of these "new" app. 

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