Have a mid 2012 Macbook pro that last week wasn't able to find the drive to boot from (just saw the folder with a question mark on booting). When I opened disk utilities from macOS utilities the disk showed errors which couldn't be repaired. At this point I attempted a restore from time machine but this couldn't get past 0.1% after 24 hours for only around 100Gb of data, this led me to believe it was the SSD that has failed.

I then formatted the drive and tried to reinstall the OS. This just got itself into a loop of failing to download Mountain Lion after 17 hours. The error was:

Reading on disk file failed, failing resume

I assumed the issue was the SSD, it's only 2 and a half years old (it was a crucial upgrade and had been functioning absolutely fine).

I have now purchased a new SSD (another Crucial but MX500). I wanted to do a direct time machine restore to the new drive right from disk utilities (which is downloaded) but this gave the error:

An error occurred while adding a recovery system to the destination disk

The time machine backup is from this exact machine but a High Sierra OS and after a little googling there seemed to be the suggestion that a bootable OS had to be in place first.

On my new SSD the download progresses fine however the download of Mountain Lion is stuck in a loop of downloading additional components. I've accessed the logs of these and I'm seeing:

Got chunk 423 of 423
Failed to verify InstallESD.dmg: hdiutil very failed
Damaged resume data

The download then repeats over and over again and runs through get chunk.

I have made no other upgrades to the system other than the OS

Any ideas how I can either install the OS or restore from time machine? I know another option is creating a bootable USB ISO but I can't easily do this tonight from my work laptop and I have a feeling I'll run into the same problem

I have also run the Apple Hardware Test and ran the extended test which took around 20 minutes. This returned with "No Trouble Found"


For anyone coming across this in the future, there's 2 issues with this route:

  • The new file system introduced in Sierra means that the startup SSD must be APFS and can not be extended journaled. This means that with a brand new hard drive without a startup volume one can not restore directly using time machine onto the SSD. You need to install (High) Sierra first and then restore from time machine afterwards

  • Mountain Lion OS was apparently not a free OS and in Apple's own words this is why the internet restore is failing at the end

The 3 ways to resolve this are either:

  • Restore from a pre Sierra Time Machine image, then from this image upgrade to high sierra and then finally restore from the time machine image

  • Restore from the Mountain Lion recovery CD, then upgrade to High Sierra and restore from time machine

  • Obtain bootable High Sierra ISO from USB, install High Sierra and then restore from Time Machine

I hope this helps someone. This is my first time having to do disaster recovery in MacOS and I've been really surprised how un-user friendly this experience is when coming coming from an old machine

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