Mac OS forum


Can I Delete Lion install Leopard in a new macbookpro

by Sanford Scholton / November 28, 2011 2:02 PM PST

Just upgraded my old macbook to a new one. Lion sucks. Can I delete it and install Leopard? Or will I have to go the partition route?

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All Answers

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First you need to be sure that your new MBP,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / November 28, 2011 10:03 PM PST

can actually be booted with Snow Leopard.
Use the Snow Leopard install disk to prove this one way or the other.

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One more thing,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / November 28, 2011 10:04 PM PST

you might want to look into updating whatever software it is that is preventing you from using Lion

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by Jimmy Greystone / November 28, 2011 10:15 PM PST

No, it can't be done period. Leopard will not have the necessary hardware support for a new MBP, and if you try booting the Leopard install DVD, it will kernel panic. You have a SMALL chance of being able to get Snow Leopard on there, but you'd need to get your hands on one of the MBP OEM OS install DVDs with 10.6.4 or later. The retail versions of Snow Leopard only went up to 10.6.3, and I have yet to find anyone who's figured out a way to slipstream combo updates into a new installer image like you can with Windows service packs. I've never actually tried that on a unit that came with Lion factory installed. I'm told by some of Apple's TEA's (a step or two above store "genius") that it won't work due to firmware updates on newer models, but I'm a bit skeptical myself. They very well could be right, but they're also instructed to say certain things in response to specific questions, which you pick up on if you deal with them as often as I do.

It's a violation of the EULA, but in theory you could install Leopard into a VM. Not sure why you'd want to, but in theory it could be done.

So, like it or not, I'd say get used to the idea that you're stuck with Lion. I'm there with you on some of the minor visual tweaks they made... Most notably getting rid of the arrows on scrollbars, and this ugly gray bar that looks like something from the DOS days, but the session restore feature is kind of nice, and OS X has become a true 64-bit OS now. Doesn't mean much to most of us right now, but it clears the path going forward for the next decade or so. However long it takes for systems to start bumping up against the 48-bit memory addressing space of x86-64 CPUs like used in all Macs since the first Core 2 Duo model. I forget how the math breaks down exactly, but something along the lines of every additional bit more or less doubles the amount of memory you can support. So an additional 16-bits of memory addressing space will take us deep into TB territory, maybe even PB territory. The iOS-ification of the GUI is kind of a small price to pay IMO.

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what about partitioning and installing snow leopard?
by Sanford Scholton / November 29, 2011 2:05 AM PST
In reply to: No

Great answer. But, does that mean that I can not even partition the hard drive and install snow leopard in one of the partitions. I know that can be done when going from snow leopard to Lion, but it sounds like the reverse is not true?

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What if its not the new mac?
by Sanford Scholton / November 29, 2011 3:48 AM PST
In reply to: No

Another thought. The powerbook pro, I just bought was advertised as having snow leopard. It is the 2.66 and 500G hard drive. Thus, its one of the models just before the newest releases. Would that make a difference, since I guess they were originally configured for snow leopard,

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Asuming you mean
by Jimmy Greystone / November 29, 2011 9:48 AM PST

Assuming you mean MacBook Pro, since the PowerBook line was retired with the shift to Intel CPUs, then as long as it didn't ship from the factory with Lion, you have a good chance. You still need to find the OEM restore media for the unit, a retail disc won't cut it. If you didn't get it with the unit, you can buy it off Apple. Something like $20 I think, but don't quote me on that.

If it came factory installed with Lion, you could try installing Snow Leopard onto a second partition, but I'm not sure what would happen to be honest. I've never tried it. I just know I've been told it won't work, but I'm a bit skeptical at least as far as models that straddled the Snow Leopard to Lion transition period, since the hardware hasn't changed. Once again though, never tried it, so I could be completely wrong. Anyway, on every subsequent model, all bets are off. USUALLY you hardware doesn't change so much between one refresh that you can't manage to get the previous version of the OS on there, but it's no guarantee.

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I now have a new iMac, an i7 that came with Lion.
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / November 29, 2011 10:16 AM PST
In reply to: No

I also have Snow Leopard on an external USB drive.
Before I was ready to move everything from the old to the new, I booted it from the external with no problem.

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by Jimmy Greystone / November 30, 2011 10:51 AM PST

Well, if you're ever adventurous enough to try installing SL on that, I'd be interested in hearing the results. My strong suspicion, which is made even stronger from your initial little test, is that Apple's reps are instructed to say it won't work regardless of whether or not it actually will.

If you've got a spare external, I can't think of any reason why that would be any different installing and booting than the internal. Then you wouldn't have to worry about the annoying download process for 10.7 unless you've already made yourself an install DVD.

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Is possible
by Sanford Scholton / November 30, 2011 1:54 PM PST
In reply to: Well
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