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More Ways to Obtain a Bootable Lion Recovery Volume

In Take Control of Upgrading to Lion, I describe the process of creating a bootable Lion installer volume using the disk image hidden inside the Lion installer application (see page 72). Not everyone needs such a thing, but it can be useful for installing Lion onto multiple Macs without having to download the installer repeatedly, and for recovering from disk errors that prevent using Recovery mode.

Although the procedure I discuss in the book is still the only way I know to put a bootable Lion installer volume onto a thumb drive, other USB drive, or SD card, a reader pointed out an easier way to create a bootable DVD from your Lion installer: simply right-click (Control-click) the Install Mac OS X Lion icon, choose Burn “Install Mac OS X Lion” to Disc from the contextual menu, and follow the prompts. That requires fewer steps than going through Disk Utility, and I’m a bit surprised that Apple put this capability there without calling attention to it.

Meanwhile, for those who have already installed Lion and would like to put a Recovery volume on a different disk or SSD from the one holding their main Lion installation, Apple now has a new solution: the Lion Recovery Disk Assistant, which Adam Engst describes in this TidBITS article. Again, the main reason to do such a thing is to provide yourself a way to repair and restore files to your Lion volume in case the disk becomes damaged in such a way that ordinary Recovery mode won’t work. If you already have a bootable duplicate—which you should!—it’s probably unnecessary to go through this extra step, but it could be handy in certain situations, such as when traveling without the drive that holds your duplicate.

Posted by Joe Kissell (Permalink)