Turn a hardware specific MacMini Os X Server 10.6 install media to a non-specific hardware Install media to create a VM

Install Os X Server 10.6 VM with an original Mac Mini Server install DVD on a (10.8.5) MacPro and Parallels 7

My 10.6 Server Install DVD was shipped with my MacMini4,1 Server.
So it fails to install a VM with Parallels (Version 7 on 10.8) as it wants a MacMini4,1
and I’m currently on a MacPro3,1 (even thought a MacPro3,1 is capable of installing OsX Server).

The install window states this System can’t be installed on this Computer.


As I want to install this VM on A MacPro… here is what I had to do.

1) Create an image of the install DVD.

1. Insert you DVD, and launch Disk Utility.
2. Choose the DEVICE and not the partition(s) !
3. Create an image in Master CD/DVD aka MATSHUSHITA.cdr

You’ll rename it later if you whish, I renamed it MacOsXServerInstallDisc-Mini.cdr

2) Alter the image using Shadow Method :

Move to the folder where you saved your .cdr image.

cd /Volumes/Some/path/to/your/ImageFile

Mount the newly created image with a shadow file

hdiutil attach MacOsXServerInstallDisc-Mini.cdr -shadow

Move to the Packages Folder on the mounted cdr

cd /Volumes/Mac\ OS\ X\ Server\ Install\ Disc/System/Installation/Packages/

Expand the OSInstall.mpkg to a folder labeled OSInstallmod

pkgutil --expand OSInstall.mpkg OSInstallmod

Move to the folder OSInstallmod

cd OSInstallmod/

Rename the Distribution file to alter it

mv Distribution Distributionmod

Either choose TextWrangler (or your favorite editor) or do it with the terminal.
if you choose to use a text editor, search for the pattern “hwbeSupportedMachines”
for me I have to change the line 99 from ‘false’ to ‘true’

If you want to make it thru Terminal enter

sed -e '99s/false/true/' < Distributionmod > Distribution

— some explainations —

if you read carefully you’ll see on lines 113 to 117

var hwbeSupportedMachines = [



which means it expect a MacMini as you’ve guessed.
This is called with the function “function hwbeModelCheck()” starting at line 82
if you read carefully you’ll see the line 99, that stated in short :
if not a MacMini4,1 return false. So we’ll just change return to true.

Note : you could also change line 115 stating ‘MacMini4,1′ to ‘MacPro3,1′, but then you’ll make an install disc only for a MacPro3,1 and we want to make it non Specific Hardware Dependant, don’t we?

— end of explanations —

Now repackage the mpkg,
move one folder up

cd ../

first backup the original one (you can avoid it but better safe than sorry)

mv OSInstall.mpkg OSInstall.orig.mpkg


pkgutil --flatten OSInstallmod OSInstall.mpkg

remove the folder OSInstallmod, on which we worked

rm -Rf OSInstallmod

Eject the modified Disc

hdiutil eject -force /Volumes/Mac\ OS\ X\ Server\ Install\ Disc

Convert the .cdr with the shadow file

hdiutil convert -format UDTO -o MacOsXServerInstallDisc-all.cdr MacOsXServerInstallDisc_-Mini.cdr -shadow


You now, have a non hardware specific OS X Server 10.6 Install image disc and you should be good to go and create your VM.

3) VM Creation
Now go to Parallels, create a New VM, choose Os X, from ISO image and choose your newly MacOsXServerInstallDisc-all.cdr

Start the VM, it should boot from your image disc. and show you this screen.

10.6_ServerVM_welcomescreen 10.6_ServerVM_Installscreen

Choose your Partition (Parallels already made a partition labeled Macintosh HD)

Install Os X Server.


you’re done.


Note : I usually now shut down the VM as soon as the Installs complete.
Then I duplicate the VM and label it “never booted”.
Simply add it to Parallels and say you moved or copied it and you have a New Server at hand.
I also create a snapshot before going further on the current VM.



Product and graphic designer turned to be a Mac SysAdmin.

Posted in Admin, Mac, tips tricks scripts Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,

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