OS X El CapitanIf you have a spare USB flash drive laying around, you should consider putting it to good use by creating a bootable installation drive for the OS X El Capitan Beta.

Creating a bootable drive has many benefits and uses. For starters, it makes it easy to install a fresh copy of whatever operating system you have configured on the drive. Secondly, it makes it easy to install an operating system on a separate partition, or on a virtual machine. Lastly, it’s just smart business to always have a quickly accessible and portable installation media laying around.

In this tutorial and video walkthrough, I’ll show you how to create a bootable USB drive for OS X El Capitan in just a few easy steps

Note: your USB flash drive must be at least 8GB in size. Ensure that there’s nothing on the drive that you wish to keep, as this process will completely erase the drive including any volumes.

The drive creation take about 30 minutes total, but your mileage may vary. Just be patient.

Step 1: Connect the flash drive to your Mac

Step 2: Download and install the latest version of DiskMakerX

Step 3: Run DiskMakerX

Step 4: Click Yosemite (10.10) since there is no option available for El Capitan currently

Step 5: Click Select an Install file…

Step 6: In the Applications folder, select Install OS X 10.11 and click Choose

Step 7: Click An 8 GB USB thumb drive

Step 8: Select your USB flash drive and click Choose this disk

Step 9: Click Erase then create the disk

Step 10: Click Continue

Step 11: Enter your administrator password when requested

Step 12: Once the process is completed, click Quit

You can now eject your USB key and keep it handy for future usage. You may choose to rename the name of the drive to El Capitan instead of Yosemite. Since DiskMakerX doesn’t yet have an El Capitan option, it will name it Yosemite.

In future tutorials I will show you different methods for installing OS X El Capitan on your Mac, including via Virtual Machine and on a separate partition, using this bootable drive.

What do you think about the method of creating a bootable USB flash drive? Sound off with your thoughts and opinions down below.

See also: 

  • Mr.Coolfreak

    What’s a good program where I can put windows on a bootable flash drive from a mac

    • If you only need uefi booting, you can just copy all files from the iso image to a fat32 usb drive (an additional file is needed for win7).

      If you want to install it on an Mac, use bootcamp.

      MBR boot can only be created on windows as far as I know.

      • Mr.Coolfreak

        I only needed it for windows, but just copying all the files wouldn’t make it a bootable flash drive

      • It would if you are using UEFI booting. The firmware would look for the bootx64.efi file in certain directory.

  • Hi

    From where do I download the OS X El Capitan install dmg?

    • Krutik Quiran

      you can download it from any torrent website or IMZDL

      • Hi

        Ok thanks 🙂

  • The official way to create an install drive would be to use the “createinstallmedia” command line utility in the app bundle.

  • ios

  • Jaleon

    What about installing El Capitan on a Windows machine? Is it possible? Thanks!

    • Mr.Coolfreak

      No, unless you have a hackintosh

  • gilangfpratama

    If there’s an update for the Beta can I update it?

  • Mr.Coolfreak

    Would that bootable usb work with windows?

    • Tim

      You can just format your 16gig+ usb to mac compatible format then during boot camp installation you choose the usb as your Installation partition and it will install. Just remember to press the ctrl key when your mac boots up so it can show you all the available bootable partitions ( mac + windows)

  • relic422

    Can you use this to install Yosemite on a Hackintosh?

  • pzp1997

    The title was a little misleading. Made it sound like the tutorial was for creating a live system on a USB thumb drive, not for creating a USB installer (which can be done manually in less than 10 steps).

  • VertexWolf

    DiskMaker is awesome, however it’s completion sound of a lion roaring should be updated to that of a pirate since we’re done with the cats.