What is the easiest way to upgrade a 2011 iMac to Mountain Lion, including a full drive reformat?

I also have a new MacBook which was purchased with Mountain Lion. Do I still need to buy Mountain Lion for the iMac?

Booting with Cmd-R will allow a http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4718

Here are some ideas:

  1. Buy Mountain Lion in app store, then upgrade, then boot with Cmd-R to reset the drive.

  2. Like #1, but first do the Cmd-R to reset the system, and then buy Mountain Lion in app store to upgrade.

  3. Create install DVDs from Macbook Pro with Mountain Lion (how?) although I'd to use another machine to burn the DVDs. Or maybe use an external USB hard drive?

Update: I found this program http://liondiskmaker.com/ And this which suggests how to get the image on a new mac that has mountain lion http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=20110831105634716



  • 1, just in the off chance the recover partition is slightly different in 10.8 from 10.7 Commented Feb 4, 2013 at 6:09

1 Answer 1


I always do option 3. You should be able to pretty much follow these directions, even though they reference Lion: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1189888

Long story short: When you buy an app from the app store it is stored on your drive in a format that can be burnt.

Of course, the USB drive option is also doable and it sounds like that would be easier for you.

  • Any idea if this should work for Mountain Lion from a Macbook Pro? Or just guessing? I checked the discussion thread you posted, but that was only for Lion. I'm trying to avoid experimentation and yak shaving during this exercise. Commented Feb 4, 2013 at 18:49
  • I've done this with Mountain Lion on my MacBook Pro. The only difference is that I was installing the resulting image on the same MBP. But I think it is the same regardless of the system when you download it from the app store. Also I vaguely recall that the image was named slightly different on Mountain Lion, but the procedure was the same.
    – Eric Marsh
    Commented Feb 4, 2013 at 20:48

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