I replaced the hard drive on a mac mini and needed to reinstall OS X. Unfortunately, my copy of the Leopard DVD would not boot the mini, or my MacBook Pro -- the computers both just spun it up and down multiple times before ejecting it and displaying the circle-with-a-slash symbol. On closer inspection, the DVD was scratched, but would still appear fine within finder. This is my work-around to install using an iPod.

Step 1: Make an Image of the DVD

Make an image (.dmg file) of the DVD. I did this through Disk Utility.

Step 2: Copy the DVD to an Ipod

Copy the DVD's image to an Ipod. Within Disk Utility, I erased an 8 GB Ipod, then restored it using the Leopard image.

Step 3: Boot From the IPod

Connect the iPod to the mac mini via USB, and boot the mini while holding down the option key. The Leopard install DVD iPod will appear; click on it to boot.

Step 4: Install Leopard

Install Leopard as normal.
Was that a PowerPC or an Intel mini?
I had the same problem on a PPC Powerbook G4.<br>Luckily, I found an old firewire iPod!<br><br>(The model I had could boot from Firewire but not USB)
&nbsp;So I guess after that you restore the iPod in iTunes?
haha! nice workaround! It also makes sense to make a dmg file of your leopard disc... Glad to see your a mac user! 
how didya do that apple?
ita alt-shift-k Only mac users can see it!
Nope. I can see it.
lucky you.
I see a box with F8FF written in it.
&yuml; take that hidden windows symbol<br/><sub><sup>win users:symbol font to reveal it</sup></sub><br/>
ROFL, i see a y with 2 dots above it, for the apples i see thick vertical lines... the PowerMac shows apples though!
I see three cats playing Texas Hold 'Em and smoking cigars.<br />
the windows symbol is viewed in wingdings
What OS?
I _was_ on vista. Now I've switched to a proper OS (ubuntu) :P.
cool!! 
I Know!! 
&nbsp;sorry but:<br /> 
 mac rules 
 cool
whats so cool about f8ff
It's actually an Apple logo. Only Mac users can see it though.
haha 
 on the email it said "derin said"?????????????? lololololololz
One thing I'm unclear on - the disk wont boot, but it will show in finder, so the disk utility app was happy to rip it? must just be a scratch on the boot-sector (not called that on a dvd I know)...I love it!
Hey Eric had a question, I was thinking about purchasing the new 2009 mac mini, is it any good. Do you like yours?
I've been happy with my mini.
Is there anything bad about it that I should know abut if I buy it?
I have one- it obviously harder to upgrade 'technically' than a traditional tower pc or mac - other than that they are lovely.
I wonder if you could use the workaround on a PC.
boot of usb thumb drive
Couldn't you just burn a new DVD from the image file and install that directly into the computer?
No, because it's a double layer disk, and is bigger than my DVD burner can write.
Aaaahhhh! That was info I didn't see. I've had similar problems with DVDs. I recorded it on one drive, but a second drive wouldn't read it. The original drive would always have to be used in order to read the disc. I'm wondering if you would spray the disk with a wax or polish and buff it if that wouldn't work for you.
Not to take away from the 'get around' which is great. Does the system check for an 'original' disk?
Awesome hack! I featured it on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.dailyhack.net/2009/02/how-to-install-mac-os-x-leopard-from.html">The Daily Hack</a>. Keep up the great work! BTW, I love the Instructables site I'm a huge fan! :-)<br/><br/>Charlie Flowers<br/>DailyHack.net<br/>twitter.com/charlie<br/>
Being awesomely clever has been redefined...

About This Instructable




Bio: Eric J. Wilhelm is the founder of Instructables. He has a Ph.D. from MIT in Mechanical Engineering. Eric believes in making technology accessible through ... More »
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