I am trying to install a new hard drive in a MacBook from mid-2007. (Original question re: drive replacement here)

I have managed to install the physical drive, and format it ready for the installation of the OS. (Map Scheme: GUID partition table; Format: Mac OS Extended (Journaled))

Now it's telling me "Mac OS X cannot be installed on this computer". I'm satisfied that the hard drive is fine. And from what I can tell, the OS CD I've been given is not the one that came with the macbook originally.

I put the last three digits of the serial number into the EveryMac website, and it came up with this result: Apple MacBook "Core 2 Duo" 2.16 13" (White)

This is how I knew it was a "mid-2007" model.

Then I looked at Apple KB article HT1159 regarding about what version of OS X shipped with each MacBook. For "Mid 2007", it tells me 10.4.9 or 10.4.10 is included when the Mac was shipped.

MacBook (13-inch Mid 2007) Mac OS X 10.4.9 to 10.4.10

When I tried booting from the install CD, I closed the error message and looked at the name of the CD in the drive via Utilities → Startup Disk and it tells me "Mac OS X 10.5.2".

  1. So, are all my assumptions above correct?

  2. Can Mac OS X 10.5.2 be installed on this MacBook?

  3. If yes, then is my issue something else other than incompatible software?

  4. If not, will I need to find the original CDs that came with this specific Mac to continue?

1 Answer 1


Your MacBook should be able to run 10.5.x - to be precise it should run anything up to OSX Lion (10.7.5).

The way to install it is by using a retail version of the OS you want to install. If the DVD is e.g. for an iMac you won't be able to install from that on your MacBook, even though its the same OS.

Try downloading an image of the version you want from Apple and then follow these instructions: http://www.macworld.com/article/1161069/make_a_bootable_lion_installer.html

Hope that helps!

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