Installing a Boot loader on Your Hackintosh

Monday, August 6, 2012

No Hackintosh is complete without a boot loader and sometimes, the boot loader is the make or break element of the system. While allowing you the ability to boot into your new Mac OS X partition, he boot loader also sends the instructions that fires kexts and drivers and if your boot loader and your hardware aren’t fully in sync, it won’t matter how many fixes you try manually, the system just won’t work.

As time passes, more and more systems and hardware combinations enter the realm of compatibility with OS X. The developers behind boot loaders like Chimera and Empire EFI among others have put a lot of work into making sure that your hardware works flawlessly with OS X.

Installing a boot loader – or updating one for that matter – is very easy. If you don’t use Easybeast in Multibeast or if you don’t select a boot loader in Multibeast to install, then you can more than likely get the boot loader from the developer’s website and install it like any Mac OS X application.

Let’s take Chimera 1.11.0 as an example for this tutorial. Installing NBI and Empire EFI are just as easy and just as painless – do note the advantages of each before installing.

You can download the Chimera installer from tonymacx86 to get started.

Once you have the installer, it is just a matter of double clicking on it to run it and clicking Continue until you see Install Successful.

Afterwards, you can restart your computer, boot into the drive on which you installed the boot loader and the up to date version will be ready to go.

In most cases, previous hardware compatibility shouldn’t be broken but in the circumstance that something goes wrong, it’s always good to have a back up. Go to tonymacx86, download rBoot and burn it to a CD. rBoot is a portable boot loader that is made to rescue broken OS X partitions. Likewise, if you are still in Snow Leopard, you can use the NBI usb stick you made in the beginning to sort things out but if OS X is updated to 10.6.8 or has non-netbook hardware specs, you may want to use boot flags that boot into safe mode or with graphics disabled in order to fix the problems on your Hackintosh. The likelihood that you will have to do this is small but you’re better safe than sorry.

Installing the boot loader may help with issues concerning graphics and some motherboard features. Sound and internet drivers won’t necessarily be fixed by installing a boot loader – these require kext-based fixes.

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