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Does the OS X Recovery Disk Assistant introduced by Apple for Lion works for any later macOS?

More precisely, will this tool create a bootable copy of the existing internal Recovery Partition onto an external drive, regardless of which version the Recovery Partition contains?

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This software did work with versions of OS X beyond Lion. However, with El Capitan and newer versions of macOS, this software was replaced with createinstallmedia.

The original idea was to copy the recovery partition to a USB drive. This allowed older Macs, with firmware that was unable to boot to Internet Recovery, to boot from a USB drive and download and install OS X. Eventually, Apple decided to include the installation software on the USB drive. This is where the idea for createinstallmedia came from.

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El Capitan

OS X Recovery Disk Assistant ran fine and created a bootable partition in a USB drive. Rebooting with Option pressed showed the USB drive. Booting from that drive did not work: it booted from the internal partition. Booting a different machine using this USB drive did not work: I got the prohibitory symbol.

High Sierra

OS X Recovery Disk Assistant did not run: it complained that no Recovery Partition existed (but it does and works). Here is the error message:

The Recovery HD on this computer is damaged or not present. Recovery Disk Assistant requires a functioning Lion Recovery HD to create an external Lion Recovery.

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  • You could try cloning just the recovery partition to the USB drive, then use rEFInd or changing the partition type in an effort to get the recovery partition to boot. Jun 19 '20 at 18:00
  • @DavidAnderson, thanks for the tip.
    – lhf
    Jun 19 '20 at 18:14

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