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I followed the instructions provided in this answer which explains how to make an El Capitan bootable disk from a system running Catalina

I copied the commands exactly as prescribed, reproduced here:

pkgutil --expand /Volumes/Install\ OS\ X/InstallMacOSX.pkg ~/Desktop/El\ Capitan
diskutil eject Install\ OS\ X
cd ~/Desktop/El\ Capitan
hdiutil attach InstallMacOSX.pkg/InstallESD.dmg  -noverify -nobrowse -mountpoint /Volumes/esd
sudo asr restore -source /Volumes/esd/BaseSystem.dmg -target /Volumes/MyVolume -noprompt -noverify -erase
diskutil rename OS\ X\ Base\ System Install\ El\ Capitan
rm /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/System/Installation/Packages
cp -rp /Volumes/esd/Packages /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/System/Installation
cp -rp /Volumes/esd/BaseSystem.chunklist /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/
cp -rp /Volumes/esd/BaseSystem.dmg /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/
hdiutil detach /Volumes/esd
sudo bless --folder /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/System/Library/CoreServices --label Install\ El\ Capitan
cp /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/Install\ OS\ X\ El\ Capitan.app/Contents/Resources/InstallAssistant.icns /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/.VolumeIcon.icns
diskutil eject Install\ El\ Capitan

However it hangs at the last line. Here is the output:

pkgutil --expand /Volumes/Install\ OS\ X/InstallMacOSX.pkg ~/Desktop/El\ Capitan
diskutil eject Install\ OS\ X
cd ~/Desktop/El\ Capitan
hdiutil attach InstallMacOSX.pkg/InstallESD.dmg  -noverify -nobrowse -mountpoint /Volumes/esd
sudo asr restore -source /Volumes/esd/BaseSystem.dmg -target /Volumes/MyVolume -noprompt -noverify -erase
diskutil rename OS\ X\ Base\ System Install\ El\ Capitan
rm /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/System/Installation/Packages
cp -rp /Volumes/esd/Packages /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/System/Installation
cp -rp /Volumes/esd/BaseSystem.chunklist /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/
cp -rp /Volumes/esd/BaseSystem.dmg /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/
hdiutil detach /Volumes/esd
sudo bless --folder /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/System/Library/CoreServices --label Install\ El\ Capitan
cp /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/Install\ OS\ X\ El\ Capitan.app/Contents/Resources/InstallAssistant.icns /Volumes/Install\ El\ Capitan/.VolumeIcon.icns
diskutil eject Install\ El\ Capitan
Could not open package for expansion: /Volumes/Install OS X/InstallMacOSX.pkg
Unable to find disk for Install OS X
/dev/disk3              GUID_partition_scheme           
/dev/disk3s1            EFI                             
/dev/disk3s2            Apple_HFS                       /Volumes/esd
Password:

    Validating target...done
    Validating source...done
    Retrieving scan information...done
    Validating sizes...done
    Restoring  ....10....20....30....40....50....60....70....80....90....100
    Restored target device is /dev/disk2s1.
    Remounting target volume...done

asr: Couldn't personalize volume /Volumes/OS X Base System - State not recoverable
Volume on disk2s1 renamed to Install El Capitan

Does anyone have any idea why that might happen?

1

The asr command can be replaced by using the Disk Utility to restore to a sparse image. Since the sparse image is using a MBR partitioning scheme, image can then be cloned to the external drive by using the dd command. The updated procedure has been added to the answer given as a link in your question.

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  • but any idea why it hangs? How can I verify that the bootable drive was created properly ? – CodyBugstein Apr 24 '20 at 4:15
  • The answer is to use the Disk Utility instead of the asr command. – David Anderson Apr 24 '20 at 5:44
  • David, it doesn't terminate. it just stays stuck on that last line. It never goes back to the prompt. – CodyBugstein Apr 24 '20 at 7:08
  • So you're saying there's a way to use the Disk Utility GUI to create the bootable drive instead of using these terminal instructions ? – CodyBugstein Apr 24 '20 at 7:10
  • I suppose there is point in posting my answer since I now know I can not reproduce your problem. – David Anderson Apr 24 '20 at 7:10

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