Recently, my friend gave me a pendrive which consists Mac OS X Lion installer, but she forget where she downloaded this installer last time.

How do I know whether this installer is genuine i.e. officially downloaded from Apple App Store?

If this is not a genuine installer, can I still use it to run and install Xcode 4.3?

Can I still use Xcode to submit app if my Mac OS platform is not officially downloaded from Apple App Store? Does it have any problems or limitations?

  • You're not suppose to share the installer even if it's hers (but it sounds like she downloaded it from somewhere else). It's basically pirating. – theAmateurProgrammer Sep 9 '12 at 5:41
  • I see. I don't know about that. This is my first time install Mac OS X. But how about if a person have 2 Macbooks, so is it can share the installer on these both Macbooks for a same person? – cthesky Sep 9 '12 at 5:45
  • @cthesky, how is that relevant? if one persons wants to install mac os x to two computesr, he still should not pirate it or get it from unauthorized sources. – Gerry Sep 9 '12 at 8:59

The answer to this question is the answer every single time this situation arises. Do not, under any circumstances ever use materials, especially binary ones (software, installers, etc.), conveniently provided to you from someone.

In the best case, everything goes normally.

In the worst case, you've installed materials that have nefarious contents baked into the entirety of the OS, and every single thing you do is at risk of being stolen.

There's also the middle ground where your friend promises it's clean, and for all they know it is, but even they're not aware of the danger lurking in wherever they got the installer from.

If you have any question of validity about something, that is an immediate situation where you should never proceed with installing or running it. Find the source, verify the source, acquire it legitimately and proceed from there.

  • ok. Thanks for your reply. I think this is more safe to purchase directly from Apple. – cthesky Sep 9 '12 at 7:32
  • I tend to agree. The best part is, Xcode is free now. – Jason Salaz Sep 9 '12 at 9:07

Firstly my advice, purchase the update to Mountain Lion (you can go from Snow Leopard 10.6.8 to 10.8), it's cheap, really cheap.

The only way to determine if the installer is genuine is to run a checksum of the contents, or download it as new which will require a purchase.

Off course it's impossible to know what revision of the installer you have, so this answer may be factually wrong but the process is valid.

If you have the installer for OS x 10.7.0 then this command

/sbin/md5 "/Applications/Install Mac OS X Lion.app/Contents/SharedSupport/InstallESD.dmg"

will return a checksum of b5d3753c62bfb69866e94dca9336a44a; note this does assume that the installer is the /Applications directory and not somewhere else.

Can you use it to install and then install Xcode? Literally yes you can, but as the comment's say, if you don't own it, it's illegal for you to use there are however no technical restrictions on installation that will stop you, only your own moral compass.

You may however find that installing Lion updates from the Mac App Store will not work.

This all leaves you in a position where your Mac is less secure, cannot install essential security updates, and that is even assuming the Lion installer provided is not already compromised in some way.

If you have multiple machines in your house, then yes you can purchase once and run the installer on both machines. This is explicitly allowed in the Mac App Store terms and conditions:

(i) to download, install, use, and run for personal, non-commercial use, one (1) copy of the Apple Software directly on each Apple-branded computer running OS X Mountain Lion, OS X Lion or OS X Snow Leopard (“Mac computer”) that you own or control.
  • I didn't update to Mountain Lion is because my Macbook model (MacBook4,1) is quite old already and not support Mountain Lion. And I can't found any Lion listed in App Store. Actually, my Macbook is borrowed from same friend too so I ask for installer from her but She forget where She get that installer already. – cthesky Sep 9 '12 at 7:29

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