I have the Install OS X Mavericks.app in Recovery Mode and I want to execute it somehow to start the installation from the terminal, so I don't need the internet connection.

I executed the InstallAssistantTool within Contents/Resources, but that just leaves a blank line and the terminal doesn't do anything.

I also tried createinstallmedia to create a bootable SD card, but that tells me that the .app file isn't a valid OS Installer.

How can I finally install Mavericks from Recovery Mode, within the terminal?

** EDIT: ** I want to install Mavericks from the Install OS X Mavericks.app and when I go to /Contents/MacOS I want to execute InstallAssistent, but the problem is that the installer hangs on checking eligibility with Apple, while my Internet connection works.

The problem is, that my SSD is empty/erased and thus I have no access to the App Store and so on, as it is my only Apple device.

  • When it hangs on checking eligibility, what does the log say (⌘L)?
    – grg
    Jun 7, 2014 at 13:20
  • I do have the Mavericks Installer on my Recovery Partition, the problem is though, that it hangs on checking eligibility. Now, I want to install the Mavericks without Internet Connection, but that doesn't seem to work? Jun 7, 2014 at 13:21
  • I can't open the Log, because my Mac stops responding. And I backed up the Recovery Partition Jun 7, 2014 at 13:24
  • Could I also use createinstallmedia to my SD Card to boot from the SD Card? The only problem with that is, that the Terminal error says that the OS X installer isn't a valid OS installer Jun 7, 2014 at 13:28
  • OK, where is yours Mavericks file, a 5.5 Gig (the installer) without it you can not do anything.
    – Ruskes
    Jun 7, 2014 at 13:31

3 Answers 3


Possibly I am missing something here, but unless you have a very slow internet connection or none at all, recovery mode should be able to install the O/S version that shipped with the computer. The recovery partition downloads and installs the O/S for you, no terminal needed. Unless you want to do it that way as an exercise in technical exploration, this method was developed to eliminate shipping recovery media with every Mac and make the process as easy as possible.

Once that O/S version is on your Mac you can then upgrade/update to the latest version of Mavericks

  • I wish it were that easy. For some reason, the download speed for that operating system is incredibly slow. (I was using my university internet with Gigabit speeds) Jul 20, 2020 at 19:45

To execute inside the Install OS X Mavericks.app/Contents/MacOS folder use "./Install OS X Mavericks" (with quotes because has spaces in it) but it looks like the installer thinks it's reinstall that will not read the installation files in the drive. It will simply redownload the components required (5GB again)

The SD Card/Flash Drive/'whatever that you plug in it' is already mounted in Recovery mode. To get there try cd -P /Volumes then do ls. You should then see your drive name. Do cd <drive_name> and you will then in your SD Card/Flash Drive root.

Inside the .dmg file I found Install OS X Mavericks.app/System/Installation/CDIS/OS X Installer.app. I haven't test it yet because I'm fixing my friend's Mac when I'm at his house which I'm not now. You can try executing that (Contents/MacOS/OS X Installer).


Try this find the InstallESD.dmg inside the Install OS X Mavericks.app should be in the SharedSupport dir and mount it, then find the BaseSystem.dmg inside the mounted OS X InstallESD and mount that. then run the cmd sudo /Volumes/OS\ X\ Base\ System/System/Installation/CDIS/OS\ X\ Installer.app/Contents/MacOS/OS\ X\ Installer /Volumes/OS\ X\ Install\ ESD/Packages/OSInstall.mpkg you might have to prefix the volume you want to install onto at the end of the command cant quit remember but I have used this cmd before to install OS X from the terminal.

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