So I’ve got an oddly specific question.
I’m trying to install macOS Sierra onto a hard drive that I’m planning on installing into an old (potentially broken) 2011 iMac that currently does not have a hard drive. The problem is that the app from Apple’s installer can only be run on a Mac running Sierra (or earlier), which I do not possess.
Is there any way to install it onto the drive directly without an older Mac?
EDIT: I realize that more details of my scenario and what I have tried may be helpful.
My exact drive scenario is that I know the 2011 iMac does not have a drive inside of it. I have a 3.5" hard drive that I'm planning on installing, and an external SATA to USB enclosure. I want to install macOS on the drive first, because it's possible that something else is broken on the Mac, and I want to isolate it to not be something with a boot drive problem.
I have a 2018 MacBook Pro and access to a 2014 MacBook Pro (both running Catalina). I downloaded macOS Sierra from the support page I linked earlier, and ran the
.pkg installer to get the
Install macOS Sierra app (this only worked on the 2014 MBP, presumably because the 2018 shipped with Mojave).
Then, when attempting to open the
Install app on either computer, I got the following error:
This copy of the "Install macOS" application is too old to be opened on this version of macOS.
As such, not having access to a Mac running Sierra or earlier, I attempted to create a bootable drive, but that errored out with the following error:
Terminating app due to uncaught exception 'NSInternalInconsistencyException', reason: 'Couldn't posix_spawn: error 35'
I don't exactly know where to go from here.