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[Guide] Dell XPS 13 9360 on MacOS Sierra 10.12.x - LTS (Long-Term Support) Guide

Joined
Oct 23, 2012
Messages
445
Motherboard
Dell XPS 13 9360 (Clover)
CPU
i7-7500U
Graphics
HD 620, 1920x1080
Big thanks to bozma88, been using this setup for the past few weeks and it's been absolutely flawless!

One question - any idea if a Thunderbolt eGPU would work with this laptop? eGPUs work with the XPS 13 on Windows, but I have no clue if that means anything on a Hackintosh setup.

Thunderbolt is not tested but a few posts here and there suggest it might be working with minor effort.
Do your research and report.
I think eGPUS which are natively supported on Macs should work.
A few things to notice:
XPS line shuts down the controllers when USB-c is left unplugged. MacOS does not support controller hot-swapping so, at least while you're trying to make it work, remember to plug the external device before a cold boot.
Additionally, remember that the XPS line has PCI-E wired with only two of four lanes, so any hyper-fast SSD or eGPU will exhibit a considerable bottleneck.
 
Joined
Apr 20, 2017
Messages
2
Motherboard
I didn't read
CPU
the Rules
Graphics
so ignore me
@bozma88 - Thank you for putting this guide together. Paired with @RehabMan detailed guides, I was motivated enough to purchase the exact same configuration XPS 9360 and go all in. I installed Mac OS X on a Dell Mini 9 back in the day, but that was cake compared to this process. Unfortunately, I have hit a rough patch. Let me do my best to catch you up to speed in hopes of getting some help from the community here.

I followed all the guides to the T. I had Mac OS X running. Patched all the kexts, mounted the EFI etc etc. However, I could only boot from the boot menu via USB. I was double checking everything and realized that I had installed Mac OS Sierra 10.12.4! Since I also plan to use this as my daily driver, I did not want to run into any unexpected crashes in the future, therefore, I decided to get the correct OS Sierra version (10.12.3) supported in this guide and restart the entire process.

During the install process, I boot to Clover via USB and I start an install (with verbose selected). I click through the install process and the install process goes almost all the way through, however, when it says "6 seconds remaining" the computer restarts and goes back to the select language screen (which is the beginning of the install process). I restart the computer, but I cannot reenter the Clover menu to enter what @RehabMan refers to as Phase 2. I've tried at least a half dozen times, switched USB installers, tried MBR and GPT partitions, but it does the same thing over and over again.

Any guidance would be appreciated. Disclaimer, I'm a noob and I don't understand the lingo, but I can follow directions :)

EDIT: Success. I installed Clover via legacy instructions and installed Mac with verbose option selected. Everything seems to be functioning well except one problem. If I am using the laptop with the computer plugged into an outlet and I remove the plug, the computer freezes and requires a force reboot. Conversely, if the laptop is on battery power and I plug it in, the same thing happens. Any suggestions?
 
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Joined
Feb 12, 2016
Messages
42
Motherboard
Intel NUC8i7BEH
CPU
i7-8559U
Graphics
Iris Plus 655
If I am using the laptop with the computer plugged into an outlet and I remove the plug, the computer freezes and requires a force reboot. Conversely, if the laptop is on battery power and I plug it in, the same thing happens. Any suggestions?

I believe the latest solution is at #600. @jkbuha might be able to provide more info, though as far as I can tell the root cause has not been discovered.

I've had a lot of problems result from improperly made installation media. A checklist that I would follow before resorting to legacy mode would be:
  • Try redownloading Sierra from the App Store, maybe on a different Mac
  • Try a different usb stick, preferably as new as possible
  • Erase entire drive with Disk Utility before each install attempt
  • Have you tried both OsxAptioFixDrv-64 and OsxAptioFix2Drv-64? (separately ofc)
  • I've heard reports of success by trying a different usb port as well
  • Finally there is the BaseBinaries method that might get you through installation if you keep crashing right at the end.
Personally I've had much better success using usb3 rather than usb2 sticks for installation on this laptop.
 
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Joined
Feb 26, 2017
Messages
23
Motherboard
Dell XPS 13 9360 (QHD)
CPU
i7-7500U
Graphics
HD 620
Wanted to drop by with more observations after a solid 2 months of use.
  • No data corruption with the settings provided in the OP. Wakes up almost instantaneously.
  • 4k sectors makes the setup much easier, no need for NVMe kexts, etc.
  • USBInjectAll from a few pages back fixes USB drives detected as internal, although trying to format them glitches out. macOS will unmount and format just fine, can't mount again. Formatting it again will mount it properly.
  • Bartender 2 crashes on every boot. I wish I could get the logs, but I'm assuming this isn't normal macOS behavior.
  • Flash on Chrome does not like full screen video, playing back very choppy. Safari works fine. I think I narrowed this down to PPAPI Flash plugins, as that's what Chrome uses as of 56 or 57, while Safari still uses NPAPI. Again, don't know if it's macOS behavior or our setup.
  • Sometimes after wake audio won't work, but simply plugging and unplugging something into the headphone jack resolves it.
I haven't updated to 10.12.4 yet, but I'll probably start fresh and see if some of these issues persist, most notably the Bartender and Flash ones. Besides that, the build is solid. Battery life is great, machine works nicely for dev work, and macOS looks amazing with the QHD screen.
 
Joined
Oct 23, 2012
Messages
445
Motherboard
Dell XPS 13 9360 (Clover)
CPU
i7-7500U
Graphics
HD 620, 1920x1080
Wanted to drop by with more observations after a solid 2 months of use.
  • No data corruption with the settings provided in the OP. Wakes up almost instantaneously.
  • 4k sectors makes the setup much easier, no need for NVMe kexts, etc.
  • USBInjectAll from a few pages back fixes USB drives detected as internal, although trying to format them glitches out. macOS will unmount and format just fine, can't mount again. Formatting it again will mount it properly.
  • Bartender 2 crashes on every boot. I wish I could get the logs, but I'm assuming this isn't normal macOS behavior.
  • Flash on Chrome does not like full screen video, playing back very choppy. Safari works fine. I think I narrowed this down to PPAPI Flash plugins, as that's what Chrome uses as of 56 or 57, while Safari still uses NPAPI. Again, don't know if it's macOS behavior or our setup.
  • Sometimes after wake audio won't work, but simply plugging and unplugging something into the headphone jack resolves it.
I haven't updated to 10.12.4 yet, but I'll probably start fresh and see if some of these issues persist, most notably the Bartender and Flash ones. Besides that, the build is solid. Battery life is great, machine works nicely for dev work, and macOS looks amazing with the QHD screen.

Thanks for the feedback.

- I experience the same Disk utility bug, but only when formatting FAT partitions. Same bug experienced on a original Macs running 10.12. Don't know what is causing it. A double format always works.
- Bartender 1 crashed for me, I was forced to upgrade to Bartender 2. Works flawlessly. What's your SIP value in Clover config?
- Never had problems with audio. Is it a problem of autodetect (output is locked to HP and you have to force a new detect cycle to switch to speakers) or are you maybe running some virtual audio device like Boom?
- 10.12.4 requires some changes to backlight control drivers. I have not updated the guide yet, will do that soon.
 
Joined
Sep 12, 2016
Messages
58
Motherboard
N/A20
CPU
i7-7500u
Graphics
HD 6
Flash on Chrome does not like full screen video, playing back very choppy. Safari works fine. I think I narrowed this down to PPAPI Flash plugins, as that's what Chrome uses as of 56 or 57, while Safari still uses NPAPI. Again, don't know if it's macOS behavior or our setup

I actually didnt have that issue up until yesterday. Then I upgraded to 10.12.5 beta 5 and the flash is acting up, freezing the chrome tab. I'll try to downgrade chrome or try the dev build.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
391
Motherboard
XPS 13 9360
CPU
i7-8550U
Graphics
UHD 620
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
That's due to Chrome 57, not macOS. You'll get the same result if you use Canary or Chrome on Windows.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
391
Motherboard
XPS 13 9360
CPU
i7-8550U
Graphics
UHD 620
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
Upgraded to 1.3.4.

- There have been a few BIOS-related changes. A quick file diff shows a few new power options and some EC-related changes
- DSDT has not changed, but some other ACPI files have. FACP for instance, and a few SSDT-files.
- No visible changes in performance though. Power freeze still persists on osx.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
391
Motherboard
XPS 13 9360
CPU
i7-8550U
Graphics
UHD 620
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
Right, for all those of us who have the plug-freeze issues, I (may) have stumbled on something.

I just realised that on the current boot, the laptop does not freeze if I plug/unplug the charger. Repeated it consistently, slept/woke the laptop and no freezing issues occurred. I dumped the IOReg (nofreeze), shutdown and rebooted, dumped the IOReg again (freeze), plugged in the power and it froze.

Now I'm treading outside the bounds of my capabilities, can anyone with more knowledge than me analyse the two dumps and see if anything obvious stands out?
 

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Joined
Oct 23, 2012
Messages
445
Motherboard
Dell XPS 13 9360 (Clover)
CPU
i7-7500U
Graphics
HD 620, 1920x1080
Just a small note, still to confirm as I pass more time with my last configuration.

BIOSES > 1.2.3 have caused me a lot of small troubles.

The most prominent is bluetooth not initialising after resume from sleep when on battery power, after keeping the device sleeping for more than 5 minutes.
I initially thought it was a 10.12.4 issue, but finally it seems that I tracked down the issue to the fact that after sleep the bluetooth device gets DUPLICATED in system profiler (before sleep=1 device, after sleep 2 identical devices under USB 3 root), and BRC firmware uploader cannot handle this singularity. A cold boot fixes this until next >5m sleep cycle on battery power.

Tried everything, re-dumping DSDT, resetting BIOS, unplugging battery, disabling many DSDT patches, correcting USB port patches. Nothing worked.

Then I read on Windows forums that 1.3.2, 1.3.4, and possibly 1.3.5 BIOSes have issues related to Windows "connected standby" mode.
My guess is that the system incorrectly powers on Bluetooth during sleep and then MacOS sees it as a duplicate after a wake cycle.

Then I downgraded BIOS to 1.2.3, reset BIOS settings, re-dumped DSDT and the issue seems to have disappeared.

I take time to verify and test this, then the guide will be updated.

If you are running a dual boot with Windows, unfortunately you should update BIOS to 1.3.5 to patch the critical Intel AMT vulnerability that is endangering half the world right now. It is also possible there will be a forced BIOS update via Windows update, so stay alert! Users running only MacOS should have no worries if using an old BIOS.

More proofs and confirmations in a few days, along with guide updates for 10.12.4.

If you want to help me, we could compare 1.3.5 and 1.2.3 BIOSes and DSDTs to find the culprit. We could also search for differences that cause power-freeze in some systems. Mine si not affected. It is mostly due to different PM hardware/revisions, but maybe we can find some hints in DSDT. Let me know if you want to help me.

Cheers
 
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