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How to Create a macOS Big Sur Installation USB

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tonymacx86

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Here's a quick guide to create a macOS 11.0 Big Sur Public Beta Installation USB. Please note, this guide is not universal, and may not work for all systems.

STEP 1: Download macOS Big Sur Public Beta

1. Enroll in the Free Apple Beta Software Program
2. Download Public Beta Access Utility
3. Run installer. System Preferences / Software Update will then open.
4. Choose Update Now to download the 12 GB installation Application.

The Application Install macOS Big Sur Beta will appear in /Applications.
Screen Shot 2020-08-06 at 2.26.28 PM.png
STEP 2: Prepare Bootable USB Drive
This step extracts the Installer contents, then installs Clover bootloader to the USB stick.

1. Insert the USB drive
2. Open /Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility
3. Highlight the USB drive in left column
4. Click on the Partition tab
5. Click Current and choose 1 Partition
6. Click Options...
7. Choose GUID Partition Table
8. Under Name: type USB (You can rename it later)
9. Under Format: choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled)
10. Click Apply then Partition
11. Open /Applications/Utilities/Terminal
12. Type the following, enter password and hit enter. This command completely erases the USB, then creates native installer media from the Install macOS Beta Application.

macOS Big Sur Release Version:
Code:
sudo /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Big\ Sur.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/USB /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Big\ Sur.app --nointeraction

Public Beta:
Code:
sudo /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Big\ Sur\ Beta.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia --volume /Volumes/USB /Applications/Install\ macOS\ Big\ Sur\ Beta.app --nointeraction
Upon completion, the USB will be renamed Install macOS Big Sur Beta.

Option 1: OpenCore Bootloader (Experimental- Working for Big Sur)
13. Download OpenCore Bootloader from the official downloads section.​
14. Install OpenCore EFI using the USB's EFI partition (Install macOS Big Sur Beta) as the target volume.​
15. Navigate to /EFI and apply necessary kexts, SSDTs.​
Option 2: Clover Bootloader (Experimental- Now Working for Big Sur!)
13. Download the standalone Clover bootloader v5.0 r5123 or higher package installer from the official downloads section.​
14. Install UEFI or Legacy Clover version using the USB (Install macOS Big Sur Beta) as the target.​
15. Navigate to /EFI/CLOVER/kexts/Other/ and add VirtualSMC.kext (or install using MultiBeast for Catalina)​

Your macOS Installation USB is now finished.

This thread is not a Help thread! Post your question(s) as a standalone thread in the Big Sur Desktop Support forum section.

For post installation instructions and screenshots:

For information about the latest Clover r5120+ changes see CaseySJ's Micro Guide for Installing Clover r5120:

Further reading:
 
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Hi, thanks for the guide. I'm confused about one of the step in the clover install. You mention to replace the config.plist but replace with what? Thanks in advance!
 
Replace with your own. This is not a help thread but I can say that you can use Clover configurator. Good luck.
Also, you can just Google for what you need the config.plist. Also, you may want to take a look at OpenCore. It's a project some people are working on. Just like Clover it is a bootloader.
 
Hi, thanks for the guide. I'm confused about one of the step in the clover install. You mention to replace the config.plist but replace with what? Thanks in advance!

It's not necessary but if you'd like you can replace with an example Clover config.plist for your system. At the time of this writing, Clover bootloader kext injection is not working for the USB. You will have to use OpenCore bootloader.
 

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I'm very confused about this thread as officially clover doesn't support kext injection for the Big sur Installer.
BootKernelExtensions.kc is different from prelinkedkernel.

Source: Does Clover Support Big Sur Kext Injection?

Also opencore is not released as a .pkg file, its just a zipped file of bootable EFI, these steps are not helpful.
 
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I'm very confused about this thread as officially clover doesn't support kext injection for the Big sur Installer.
BootKernelExtensions.kc is different from prelinkedkernel.

Source: Does Clover Support Big Sur Kext Injection?

Also opencore is not released as a .pkg file, its just a zipped file of bootable EFI, these steps are not helpful.

Thanks for the comment- I included the Clover instructions in hopes that it will be working soon.

Here's what you can do to install the OpenCore EFI- it's interchangeable with Clover EFI.
1. Install Clover bootloader to the USB using MultiBeast or pkg installer.
2. Close MultiBeast and navigate to EFI
3. Delete EFI contents and drag and drop OpenCore EFI release
 
Tony, if I do what you suggest in your last post can I just add my working Clover config plist and my kexts to the OpenCore EFI ordo Then still need to configure the OC boot loader to work with my processor (Haswell)? Still very confused with what to do to update to Big Sur when it's released
 
Tony, if I do what you suggest in your last post can I just add my working Clover config plist and my kexts to the OpenCore EFI ordo Then still need to configure the OC boot loader to work with my processor (Haswell)? Still very confused with what to do to update to Big Sur when it's released
no, clover config.plist won't work on Opencore
 
OpenCore 0.6.0 updated to Big Sur . Work like a charm.

GA-B85M-HD3 (rev. 1.x) Bios F12, i5-4460 - GeForce GT710 ZOTAC 1GB DDR3

Screenshot 2020-09-06 at 20.45.37.jpg
 

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