I got a new Mac mini and Macbook Pro, and hope to burn a Lion installation DVD-R if it needs to be used in the future.

But I searched for any file greater than 1GB on the hard drive and didn't find any. Since we can use command r to boot up a partition for reinstallation, is there a way to mount that partition and burn the image to a DVD-R?

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    You don't need a DVD, you can just create a USB like AlanJC described in his answer! – Michiel Jun 25 '12 at 7:25

You can easily create a bootable USB drive as long as it's at least 1gb by using Apple's Recovery Disk Assistant. This will create a recovery partition on the drive but still needs to download Lion if you need to reinstall it at a later date.

You can create a bootable image from the original Lion installer download if you kept a copy of it, but you need an 8gb drive, so unless you have dual layer blank DVDs, then this isn't really worth the hassle, and using a spare USB drive would probably be easier. A great guide for doing this can be found here.

  • so this USB Flash drive will be as good as a Lion installation DVD-R? I also wanted to partition the new Mac and then install another Lion on it (just so that I can install Xcode 4.5 Preview and sometimes cocos2d beta or release candidate). By the way I thought one time I saw an article saying if we download Lion, and before that image is deleted (.dmg), we can keep that image, which is about 3.7GB? – nopole Jun 25 '12 at 8:25
  • Yes, the USB drive will be just as easy to use as a DVD, you simply hold down the option key (alt) when you boot to select it, and it will boot faster and install quicker than from DVD. And yes the Lion dmg is smaller, but that's compressed. Once it's extracted to create a bootable disc or USB drive, it's over 4gb though, so a normal DVD won't work. I keep an 8gb stick with the Lion installer in the drawer just in case, and have used it to test it works OK. It does. – AlanJC Jun 25 '12 at 8:32
  • can the USB flash drive be made so that it is not writable? If it is a DVD-R, it has the advantage that it can't normally be altered – nopole Jun 25 '12 at 10:48
  • Not to my knowledge, however putting it in an envelope or putting tape on it with Lion installation written on it or something should stop you accidentally using it. – AlanJC Jun 25 '12 at 11:51
  • I burnt Lion to a regular 4.7 GB DVD. Mountain Lion is a bit too big, but Lion was fine. – daviewales Dec 3 '12 at 11:51

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