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Daniel, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 4770
Experience:  Apple certified on desktop and portable, help desk qualified. Have owned and used Macs since 1989.
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I have a used MacBook Pro, mid-2010 unibody that I am trying

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I have a used MacBook Pro, mid-2010 unibody that I am trying to reinstall 10.8 on. In the process, I receive an error message states "An error occurred while preparing the installation. Try running this application again." The Mac is equipped with the original 500GB HDD and added 750GB in place for the optical drive. I have already erased the contents on both HDDs. Please help with going ahead with the OS X install.
Hello, my name is Dan.
I will do my best to help you, the only stupid question is the unasked one.

You say both drives are blank? Then hold the Command, Option and R because there is not yet a recovery drive to recover from.
It has to reach out over the net to install.
That is what that error is all about.
Does that help?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I actually have done the cmd+option+R already...changed nothing...
Then try resetting the pram.

To do a PRAM reset, you need to restart your machine and hold down these 4 keys all together at the same time.
‘Option’, ‘Command (Cloverleaf or Apple)’, ‘R’ and 'P' all together at the same time.
Keep them down until you hear 4 startup chimes, this is the sound that your computer makes when it starts up, it is like a boonngg. The screen should also cycle from white to black and then back to white along with the chimes.
The sound should also get louder.


This resets all of the system buses on your computer, USB, FireWire, display, ethernet and your keyboard/mouse/trackpad.
This will correct many faults but not necessarily yours.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Let me try this, Dan!
Keep me posted. What are you using for this Q&A?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It worked!! Now, it try to start the install and gives me this prompt..: "...use the Apple ID used to purchased the OSX Mountain Lion", not my Apple ID information... Is there any way to bypass this?

I am using my trusty ipad!
It is the same as your iTunes ID and it is neccesary.
I assume you have an iTunes account.
Same password XXXXX
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Right, but I am not the original owner of this MBP and the OSX...
I see, well the most it will cost is $20.00.
I suggest using your Apple ID, can't hurt.
By erasing the drives of everything it makes it difficult.
Enter you Apple ID, it should take you where you need to go.

New Mac models introduced after public availability of OS X Lion include the ability to start up directly from an Internet-based version of the OS X Recovery system. OS X automatically uses this feature when the Recovery System on the hard disk isn't available (such as when your hard disk encounters an issue, or when your hard disk has been replaced or erased). OS X Internet Recovery lets you start your Mac directly from Apple's Servers. The system runs a quick test of your memory and hard drive to ensure there are no hardware issues.

OS X Internet Recovery presents a limited interface at first, with only the ability to select your preferred Wi-Fi network and, if needed, entering a passphrase. Next, OS X Internet Recovery downloads and starts from a Recovery System image. From there, you are offered all the same utilities and functions described above.

As with the Recovery System, reinstallation of OS X requires an Internet connection. See "Supported network configurations and protocols" below.

Let me know.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Dinner time...I will connect with you sometime later, if you are still up :)

God Bless!
God bless you, go eat. I sign off about 11 my time.
It has to bot from Apple over the internet, would have been much easier not erasing the drives.
Unfortunately you cannot boot to an older OS X.

I will be here until then, maybe later.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks Dan. Now that kids ate (and I), we are all happy.

I am fine with paying 20 to buy the license, if I have to. Is the 10.8 still available for me and my ID to purchase from Apple? If so, do you out know how?
I am assuming that th eiPad is the only other computer you have.
If you had another Mac it would not be hard, without very hard.
This is because Apple does not supply any media to boot from other than an expensive USB drive.
They make it easy by making it hard.

However, if you restart from a shutdown it should give a 'network boot' option, that should download an installer that will get it installed.
Try that.
I do not think any keys need to be held.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
We do actually have a iMac. It is G5 with PPC, if that matters. I has leopard installed.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
There is no "network boot" I can see from the shutdown-startup...unless, of course, I don't know what I am looking at. Where would I see this option?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
All I can access upon start up is "Mac OS X Utilities"
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
...then I can go into "Reinstall OS X" and it verifies download eligibility, license agreement, select disc to be installed and sign in to download. This is when it asks me to enter the original purchaser's ID and password...which I have no access to.

I just thought clearly this. Dan, I am not to savvy on computers...I hope this make all sense to you.
Ok, I have uploaded the Lion install app on dropbox, this is the link.

Download that to the iMac and put on a USB drive. The MacBook can boot from that by holding the Option key when starting up and selecting that drive.
Best I can do, next is a trip to an Apple store if this fails.
Let me know.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
With the option key at the start up, the thumb drive never comes up as a drive option... Are we at the dead end?
Ok, then try it without. I am assuming that the download went ok.
One thing I forgot to mention is the USB drive has to be formatted as GUID bootable.
This can be done on the iMac but I suggest draging everything you want to keep off of it first because it will erase it.
You can still put what you took off and it will function as it did it just becomes able to boot Mac OS X.

External Format

Make sure to use GUID and not Apple partion or master boot record.

My mistake.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks you for the instruction to format the USB drive. I reformatted and reloaded the lion installation app. However, the Mac was still not able to recognize the drive at the start up...
It was somewhat of a long shot but there may still be a way.

On startup press and hold Option, Command, Shift and Delete keys. This forces it to look past the internal for any other availble.

If that still fails then the Apple store is where you need to go, they have what it needs to install without a bunch of hoops.

That is my last shot.
Daniel and 4 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Believe it or not, out of desperation (and taking a chance,) I was able to contact the last owner and was agreed to share his Apple ID and Password. Experience like this regains my trust in human kinds...God is good.

Thank you for all the help regardless. I have learned a lot along the way, at least.

God Bless you, Dan!!

Glad to have been of service Toshi. God is good all the time.
Might be a good idea to logout of that account once it is installed and buy 10.8 using your Apple ID, there are several fixes that Lion needed.
Then if you need to reinstall there is no hassle.
Repair permissions before any updates or upgrades, saves headaches.