If you’d like to install Mavericks without going the upgrade route, there is an option. The “Install OS X Mavericks.app” installer can be turned into a USB thumb drive installer by any computer running 10.6.8 through 10.9.
Early on, there were Terminal commands that could be used to create this disk, but now the disk can be created with a handy installer called DiskMaker X. This is a freeware application that can create a 10.7, 10.8, or 10.9 USB installer. All that’s needed is a thumb drive or other external drive you don’t mind erasing, and the installer app from the app store for the desired version of the OS.
The final product is not only functional, but aesthetically pleasing, with icons and a Finder window background to match. This 10.9 installer works well, and it is what we use in service. The release of Mavericks has seen quite a few glitches for users who are upgrading their operating system.
Glitches most commonly seen in our South Burlington service department often stem from one of two issues: a failed installation or a failing hard disk. The failed installation could be the result of a corrupted operating system installer, or just failure to run an underlying operation during the install. This is easily fixed by booting off a bootable Mavericks installer and reinstalling over the existing system without wiping.
The hard disk issue is more complicated, whereby the hard disk is already close to failing, and it gets pushed over the edge with the stress of rewriting the first ten gigabytes of the drive. The hard disk reads like a record in reverse, from inside to out. The first chunk of it is always the area that the operating system files have been installed to. This area is used the most, so when the Mavericks installer overwrites the entire section that’s already been heavily worn, it can cause serious failures.
Even with a well-made USB drive, there’s a troubling installer glitch with any Mavericks installer. “This copy of the Install OS X Mavericks application can’t be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading.” The way around this is to open Terminal when booted from the installer, and manually change the system date. The command is “date 110915302013”. This breaks down to “date [month][date][hour(24)][minute][year]”.
After this, the error will be resolved and the installer will continue normally. The Mavericks system date/time appears to be corrupted and needs to be rewritten.
Have any issues not mentioned here or want to share your feedback about going to Mavericks? Email me!