BudgetLaptopsWorld(BLD) is supported by its readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn More
Article Credit: HI Habib
Installing mac on a non-Mac computer system, called Hackintosh, is not illegal for personal use but goes against Apple’s End User License Agreement. On the other hand, Selling a Hackintosh is illegal.
In this tutorial, we will learn how to install macOS on any PC using open core. Before installing Hackintosh, you have to gather good knowledge about your PC parts. You can install Hackintosh without having ethernet, you can continue with USB tethering from your android device.
Quick Tips On The Installation Process:
It would be good for you if you have a basic knowledge of the command line. You also need at least a 16GB USB pen drive (32GB is recommended). Before installing macOS, make sure that you have at least 30GB of free space on your storage.
Also, it would be better if you have two storage on your pc. One for windows & the other one for macOS. If you don’t, you need an extra bootable USB pen drive with a Windows operating system or a CD to install windows again. If you face any kind of problem at the time of installing macOS.
Hardware Limitations: Things You Should Double-Check
Before stepping foot into installing a Mac on a non-Mac computer system, we have to gather a bit of knowledge about its installation system and its limitations. You may face some extra bugs that are not faced by the Mac users. Give yourself time to fix those issues on your Hackintosh.
Nowadays, most of the pc users use a 64-bit CPU. if you are one of them, then you have to choose a mac version 10.4.1 (Tiger) to the current version (Monterey). On the other hand, if you are using a 32-bit CPU you have to choose 10.4.1 (Tiger) to 10.6.8 (Snow Leopard). AMD APUs (integrated graphics of AMD CPUs) are not supported.
If you don’t have an external Graphics card, you have to buy a GPU. The worst matter is in AMD processors, many features of macOS are outright unsupported, and many features are partially broken. Virtual boxes are an exception because they have their own hypervisor. Most of Adobe’s suites rely on intel’s Memfast instruction set. As a result, these crashes in AMD CPUs.
A few days ago AMD’s B550 boards were not supported. But now all motherboards are supported as long as the CPU is. But your pc has to support UEFI instead of BIOS, otherwise, you can’t install macOS. Though all modern PCs are equipped with UEFI.
Except Micron 2200S NVMe and Samsung PM981, PM991 SSD, all the SATA-based drives are supported. Micron 2200S NVMe and Samsung PM981, PM991 SSD are not compatible because of kernel panics. you can use NVMeFix.kext to fix the kernel panics. I will discuss more configuring kext in this post later.
Most of the wired connected network adapters are supported either by the macOS built-in drivers or community mode kext. Intel 10Gb server NICs, Intel I350 1Gb server NIC and Intel I225 2.5Gb NIC have some issues. But you can fix those by making manual configurations. Mellanox and Qlogic server NICs are not supported on macOS.
Unfortunately most of the wifi cards that come with the laptop are not supported. Intel wifi is unofficially supported with 3rd party drivers. If you’re going to install macOS 10.13 (High Sierra) and your laptop has an Atheros card, then you are lucky. Because the Atheros card is supported by macOS 10.13. It would be best for you if you check the wireless buyer guides for the recommendation.
There are a huge number of GPUs are available in the market. In short words, it is too difficult to explain which GPU is supported on MacOs and which is not. First of all AMD APUs are not supported that we have quoted before. The installer is not working with AMD RX5700XT but the problem is fixed in macOS 11 (Big Sur). Nvidia GeForce 16 series, GeForce 20 series, GeForce 30 series are not supported. GeForce 600 series and GeForce 700 series are supported the Latest version of macOS including MacOS 11 (Big Sur). Don’t forget to check the GPU Buyer guide before installing macOS.
Intel Smart Sound Technology, fingerprint sensors, Windows Hello Face Recognition, Headphone Jack Combo are not working on macOS. And for details about the mac hardware limitations, check the open core hardware limitations guide.
You can use any kind of PC parts for building Hackintosh, but if you’re going to build a new PC, we recommend these PC parts that work perfectly with Hackintosh.
Recommended pc parts:
- Processor: Intel Core i7-9700K Coffee lake, 8 core or Intel i9-Core i9 Coffee lake, 8 core
- Motherboard: Asus ROG Strix Z390-E Gaming Motherboard
- Case: NZXT H510
- Graphics card: Sapphire Radeon 11265-05-20G Pulse RX 580 8GB
- Ram: HyperX Fury 32GB 3200MHz DDR4
- [if you do video editing or graphics design then use 32GB ram. Moreover, 16GB is recommended]
- Solid State Drive: Sabrent 2TB Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280
- Power supply: Corsair CX Series 650 Watt
- CPU water cooler: Cooler Master MasterLiquid ML240L RGB V2
- Wifi / Bluetooth Card: MQUPIN Wireless PCI-E Card, Fencvi T919
- Monitor: LG 27UN850-W 27 Inch Ultrafine UHD
- Ethernet cable: Mediabridge Ethernet Cable (15 Feet) – Supports Cat6/5e/5, 550MHz
If you have passed all the limitations, Congratulations. If you have a major issue with installing macOS like unsupported GPU, unsupported CPU, unsupported Storage, then update your pc before installing macOS. If you face a minor issue like you have an unsupported wifi card, then don’t worry.
You can buy a simple USB wifi adapter to use the internet on macOS or you can also use USB tethering. But for USB tethering you need to install HoRNDIS.pkg on your macOS. And you can also use a USB Sound Card to solve the headphone jack combo issue. These are not major issues.
Let’s download the necessary tools:
- Python 3
- Paragon Partition Manager
- HFS+ for Windows by Paragon Software
- CPUID (CPU-Z) (to check PC configuration)
- BootDisk Utility
How To Install The MacOS On Any PC 2021:Step-By-Step Guide
Step-1: Download The Official macOS [The Safe Way]
We have to download the official macOS first. Point to be noted that there are some websites, youtube videos which refer to a link of unofficial or modified macOS. But this is not a recommended way. Because those bear viruses, malware and you may not get the official system support. This is too risky. So we are using a tool called gibMacOs. It downloads macOS system files from the apple official server. Just go to the GitHub link and download the zip. Then download and install python 3 and 7zip from their official site.
Unzip gibMacOS by 7zip. You will get a new folder called “gibMacOS-master”.
Open the folder. Make sure your PC is viewing the extension for the known file type. You can follow the pictures below to view all types of extensions on Explorer.
and for windows 10:
Now double click on “gibMacOS.bat”. Remember gibMacOS.bat won’t run without installing python. It will open a black command prompt and automatically download a small file (sucatalog file) from the apple server to gather download links of macOS. Wait a minute and you will see a list of macOS versions there.
All the available mac versions will appear there. Type the order list number and then hit Enter on your keyboard. If it asks any question then press y and hit Enter again. It will download full macOS from the official server.
In this tutorial, we are showing how to install mac 10.14.6 (Mojave) which is more stable for any pc than any other version. You can download any version which you want. Be sure that all the files are downloaded successfully. If you use the pc parts that we recommended, you can use the latest version of mac easily.
After completing this process you will see these folders “macOS Downloads > publicrelease > 061-26589 – 10.14.6 macOS Mojave (or like this) ”.
The downloaded files list will be like this list.
Step-2: Create A Functioning Bootable USB [Using A Pendrive]
Now you have to create a bootable USB. You need at least a 16GB USB pen drive to do this stuff. First, insert your USB on your pc. Make sure that you have backed up all the necessary files from your USB pen drive. Download BootDisk Utility and unzip it with 7zip. Open “BDUtility.exe”. It may ask administrator permission and you have to click on the Yes button. First, you need to click on the Format button, click on “OK”. It will take 1-2 minutes to complete the process. You will see the “All Done” message on the progress bar
Now click on “Tools” from the menu bar and select Extract HFS (HFS+) partition from DMG-files. Then a selecting window will be opened and you have to select the “BaseSystem.dmg” from the macOS Downloads folder (that you have downloaded by the terminal in step 1). After selecting “BaseSystem.dmg”, a popup will come to select the HFS file extracting location. Just click on Ok and then the HFS file extracting process will be started. A few moments later a popup will come with a message “HFS volume Extracted”, click on the OK button.
Then click on the “+” icon beside the USB from the disk destination section, select the 2nd partition and click on the “Restore” button and select the “ .hfs ” file that you have extracted from BaseSystem.dmg. A restoring information popup will appear, click on “Yes” and it will start to extract. It will take some time depending on your PC and USB data transferring speed.
Now rename the “InstallESDDmg.pkg” to “InstallESD.dmg”. Then edit “InstallInfo.plist” with Notepad. Remove these lines from there.
Then change these two lines.
- <string>InstallESDDmg.pkg</string> to <string>InstallESD.dmg</string>
- <string>com.apple.pkg.InstallESDDmg</string> to <string>com.apple.dmg.InstallESD</string>
You can follow the picture below.
Don’t forget to save it before closing the notepad.
Step-3: Complete The MacOS Installation Process
Now install and open Paragon Partition Manager. It will ask the administrator’s permission and take a minute to open it. You will see 2 partitions on your USB pen drive. Keep the mouse pointer on the right side of the 2nd partition and drag to extend the size.
Then a popup will appear and click on “Resize Now”. After completing the process, close this.
Now download and install HFS+ for Windows by Paragon Software. This software requires a reboot after installing. Restart your pc. Remove your USB from your PC and reinsert it. Then open HFS+ For Windows. Click on Mount if it doesn’t mount automatically. Then a popup will come and click on Mount on that popup. But if you see Unmount there, don’t touch it. After mounting, click on three-dot on the right side and click on “Open in File Explorer”. The macOS files will appear from your USB pen drive in file explorer.
Now open the folder “Install macOS Mojave.app > Contents”. If you are trying to install another version of macOS except for Mojave, you may have another name similar to this. Now create a folder inside the Contents folder with the name “SharedSupport”.
Now copy these six files (which you have downloaded in step-1) inside the SharedSupport folder of your USB.
This will be like the picture below
Now you can install macOS without having ethernet or any kind of internet connection at the time of installing macOS.
Step-4: Follow The Safest Way Of Starting The MacOS
This is the most complex step and maximum people fail in this step. When you start your pc, both BIOS and UEFI, which are low-level software start before booting your operating system. In the windows operating system, there is a default boot loader called Windows Boot Manager. We won’t discuss BIOS or UEFI or the booting process of a PC and this discussion is unnecessary in this tutorial.
We will use an open-core bootloader to start our macOS. Though you can choose the “Clover” boot loader to boot your macOS. The easiest way to configure the boot loader for your pc is by downloading preconfigured files online. Suppose your motherboard model is ASRock B450M-HDV R4.0. Then search on google “EFI for B450M”. If you’re lucky then you will find a preconfigured EFI archive ( zip, rar,7z, etc..). If you don’t know your motherboard model, you can download CPUID (CPU-Z) to check the motherboard model.
If you find preconfigured EFI on the internet: Download and extract it. No matter that is clover or open-core. After extracting the archive you will get a folder named “EFI”. Open your USB pen drive partition named “BOOT” and you will see 2 items there. “Boot” and “EFI folder”. Open the EFI folder from your USB drive and delete the BOOT and OC folder. Then copy the BOOT and CLOVER folder (if your downloaded archive contains clover bootloader) or copy the BOOT and OC folder (if your downloaded archive contains Open Code bootloader) like this video below.
If you don’t find preconfigured EFI on the internet: if you don’t find the pre-configured EFI folder, then you have to configure EFI yourself. This is the complex part of this tutorial. As this is not an open-core configuration tutorial and all PCs or laptops need different configurations so I recommend reading the official open-core documentation to configuring the bootloader for your desktop PC or laptop. If you read the documentation carefully, then it would be very easy for you to configure an open-core bootloader for your PC.
After completing the open-core configuration, your macOS bootable USB is ready to install.
If you made any mistake on your open-core bootloader configuration, then the macOS won’t boot properly.
Now it is time to know a little bit about kext though it is a part of macOS bootloader configuration. Kext stands for Kernel Extension. Kext, the core part of the operating system, extends its kernel. The Kext file contains essential drivers for running the OS on the machine properly. Kext is not a single file. In the general case, Kext files are packed in a zip file. Sometimes you need to install extra kext to get something fixed.
For example in Hackintosh, USB tethering is not working normally. You can fix this after installing the macOS by installing HoRNDIS(pkg file). But if you need an internet connection at the time of installation, you can’t install pkg to get an internet connection at that time.
So you need to install kext to your open-core / clover bootloader. So you have to find the kext from the internet. You can download the HoRNDIS kext file from here. Unzip and copy the HoRNDIS.kext file to your
EFI (inside the USB) > OC > kext folder.
Then download ProperTree from here, open ProperTree.bat. Then press Ctrl + O and select config.plist from BDU (your USB) > EFI > OC or Clover.
Collapse all the options except kernel > Add inside the Root. Right-click on the kernel > Add > the last array and copy it. (Each option inside the add option is considered as an array )
Then keep your mouse pointer on the Kernel > Add and paste it. You will notice that a new array is added.
Turn on this kext by declaring the value “true” of Enable. Then paste the kext folder name (HoRNDIS.kext) as the value of the BundlePath of the last array.
ExecutablePath should be like this: “Contents/MacOS/HoRNDIS”. You can check if this is valid or not. A folder named “Contents” inside the HoRNDIS.kext folder. Then check if there is a file named “HoRNDIS” inside Contents/MacOS. If you find the HoRNDIS file, then your ExecutablePath is valid for “Contents/MacOS/HoRNDIS”.
There is a file called Info.plist inside the HoRNDIS.kext/Contents. If you find this file there, then your PlistPath should be Contents/Info.plist.
Now save this by pressing Ctrl + S and close the PropperTree. This is how you can install a kext file with your bootloader.
If you don’t need to install any additional kext, feel free to skip this, but you have to configure the minimum required kext to on config.plist. Otherwise, the macOS won’t boot.
Now it is time to install macOS on your pc.
Step-5: Perform The Last MacOS Installation Process
Restart your PC and make sure you have turned off the fast boot from UEFI. Then open the boot menu and select UEFI: USB Flash Disk.
Then the open core boot loader will be loaded, select macOS-based system (external), and hit Enter.
Wait a few minutes here. After some time you will see an apple logo and a progress bar if you have configured the bootloader perfectly. After completing the progress, an installation window will come and if you got it in an unknown language, then you can change the language by following the below picture. It will take about 5 minutes to change the language.
If everything looks good, then select Disk Utility and click on the Continue button. Click on “Show All Devices”. Then select your storage where you want to install macOS. Click on Erase and select Schema as “GUID Partition Map” then set the Format as APFS. Without selecting Schema as “GUID Partition Map”, the APFS format won’t show there. Give the name of the partition and Erase it.
After completing the erasing, close Disk Utility and select Reinstall macOS from macOS utilities, and click on continue.
Click on continue again. If you see a warning “The recovery server could not be contacted”. It means you have not done step-2 of this tutorial. If you have done everything perfectly then you should see an END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT. Click on continue, agree on the license, select the partition and click on install. It will take 10-15 minutes.
The PC will reboot automatically during installation and again go to the boot menu and select UEFI: USB Flash Disk.
In the open core bootloader, you have to select the macOS installer. This will take 15-20 minutes again.
If you face any errors at the last phase of installation, don’t worry. Everything is going fine. PC will restart again, if not, then you will see a restart option. Click on Restart. Again go to the boot menu and select UEFI: USB Flash Disk. Now select the partition that you created during macOS installation. We have named the partition “macos” so it is here. Select it and press Enter.
After completing the boot, it will ask to create a new user account and follow the on-screen instructions. After completing all the steps, your mac OS is ready to use.