I want to upgrade my old MacBook 3.1 late 2007 by replacing the hard drive with a SSD (Crucial MX100) and updating Mac OS X from 10.5 (Leopard) to 10.7 (Lion), which is the latest compatible version with it, as I know.

My question is about Mac OS X 10.7, I plan to buy it on the Apple website, and I was wondering if I will be able to install 10.7 on a new drive, after reading this:

System Requirements
Mac OS X Snow Leopard v10.6.6 or later (v10.6.8 recommended)

It suggests that you can only install it as an update on an existing OS, and not on an empty drive.

2 Answers 2


Follow these steps

  • Create a USB key for setup with DiskMaker X.
  • Replace HD by SSD (keep HD safe)
  • Boot on USB key newly created.
  • Format SSD with Disk utility (already in the top menu on the USB key)
  • Clean Install on the new SSD!
  • You still need Snow Leo before you have the App Store to be able to get Lion. Can you boot/install Snow Leo from an ESD file? I don't think you can.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Mar 16, 2015 at 20:59

From your link…

can you upgrade from osx 10.5.8 to OS X Lion

Not by using this method. You must be running 10.6.6 Snow Leopard to be able to run Lion by using this method. This method is a redeemable code for the Mac App Store to where the OS will begin to download immediately.

To get Snow Leopard, you must purchase it the DVD (search "OS X Snow Leopard") from the Apple online store, install it, and then return to this page to buy the Lion upgrade. Please make sure your Mac is able to run Lion before purchasing any software.

Snow Leopard is here

  • 1
    A quick question, do you use any older software written for PowerPC that isn't a Universal Binary? If you do you may want to buy Snow Leopard and stick with it rather than upgrade to Lion. Snow Leopard is the last version of OS X with support for PPC applications (via Rosetta). Commented Mar 16, 2015 at 12:40

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