Clean Install of El Capitan

macOS & Mac Apps

Hi all,
I have been trying to do a clean install of El Capitan on a friend's MacBook Pro late 2011. He has already upgraded but he is curious to see how the process goes with speech as this is his first time on Mac. We started by Command+R and Power Key and waited for sometime until the first screen appears. I remember there were five options, one is the Disk Utility. We chose this and moved to the next page to erase data on the internal HD. The usual table of HD's attached to the Mac appear and we selected the one El Capitan is installed on. There has been no erase button, just a page with details about the selected HD. In the Toolbar we found the Erase button and by selecting this we got the message that it can not be erased. I googled for that and found that there are those who faced the same problem and there has been no solution except making sure that there is nothing running while trying to do the clean installation. Could it be VO that prevents us from initialising the installation?? To make sure that we were not doing it the wrong way, I tried with my own Mac Air 2015 and that was different as the erase button in my case was already dimmed. Again, I googled for this and the same recommendation was there to insist on having no processes are to be running while trying to wipe data off on HD. Anyone has suggestion, please?



Submitted by Moopie Curran on Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Your question may have already been answered, but I'll try to help you anyway. I don't believe you can just use the recovery partition (command-r after boot.) The reason why I think this is the case is because the recovery partition is actually a partition on the mac's hard drive, so that would make your mac unable to be erased. So what you'll have to do is make a bootable install of el capitan on a flash drive. There's a really great guide on how to do this in the guides section here on Applevis.
I hope this helps,

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Thursday, December 10, 2015

Lol That's my guide. And thanks for the positive feedback. That is a free chapter from my book I have on el capitan. Thanks again for the positive feedback. Itg's more then welcome

Submitted by Paul Martin on Thursday, December 10, 2015

It might be me just missing the mention, but I'm wondering what was selected. If you selected the whole hard drive, it will of course be dimmed as a result of the recovery partition in that drive being used. However, if you select the partition, which might be labeled something like Mackintosh HD unless otherwise changed, that should be good to go. I've done it many times that way over the past few years, and not had any problems thus far when I did clean installs or even time machine backups.

Submitted by daoldgeek on Friday, December 25, 2015

after fishing around the net and having made progress although it was brain busting because although i have had them for a while i was basically an exclusive windows user. any way after being stupid and updating without making a backup on 2 basically new machines i solved my problems satisfactorily. i am not to happy about the big machine but, if all else fails you have a way either by wifi or rj45 internet connection. you need to be care ful with the wifi but rj45 is a breeze but it should work both ways.

this may be a restatement of the obvious. to some but there is something called Internet Recovery.
duhh. for those that already know.

make backups whatever. turn off your machine although for me it worked restarting (took me 2 tries)
after or just before the chime hold the command+option(alt)+R keys down simultainusly and if you see a picture in black and white of the world turning with a loading line under it you are on your way. it will return your mac computer to its default operating system i have done it 3 times so far one on an air book and twice on the imac 27 inch,

next time you look at command+R it will be Yosemite's and not el capitan's.

just a side note el capitan might be ready some day but it isnt today or tomorrow.

I hope this hels some lost souls and i wish i knew about it about 3 months ago

thats all for now folks


Submitted by daoldgeek on Friday, December 25, 2015

by the way this method costs no money except for your electricity and internet costs and whatever your time is worth to you.