Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

Summary: With Apple's release of the $70 OS X Lion USB stick today, you can buy peace of mind that you can get your Mac roaring even when there is no Internet.


Although downloading a copy of the OS X Lion from the Mac App Store is economical ($29.99) and convenient for those who already have Snow Leopard, it can make things much more difficult for some users who are:

  • Upgrading from Tiger to Lion (but on hardware that meets the OS requirements)
  • Upgrading from Snow Leopard for the first time but have no Internet connection
  • Installing a new hard drive (where previous copy of the OS is on the old hard drive) and have no Internet connection

In these more unusual circumstances, having the OS on a USB drive maybe the only way to get the job done. Starting today, Apple is offering the OS X Lion on a thumb drive for $69.99, available from its online store now and will probably be in retail stores soon.

The most important thing to note about installing Lion via the USB stick is that Lion's built-in recovery mechanism -- to automatically prompt you to re-download a copy from the Mac App Store -- will not work. Subsequent installs of Lion must use this same drive:

When you install OS X Lion using the USB thumb drive, you will not be able to reinstall OS X Lion from Lion Recovery. You will need to use the USB thumb drive to reinstall OS X Lion.

This $70 8 GB USB drive buys some peace of mind that you can still get your Mac(s) up and running even under the least ideal conditions, as long as you don't misplace it. Alternatively, if you're feeling frugal and have some time to spare, you can create your own DVD boot image of the Lion installer following these instructions from CNET that will let you troubleshoot your computer even when there is no 'net.

[Source: Apple 9-5, Apple's website, CNET]


Topics: Software, Apple, Hardware, Operating Systems

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  • RE: Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

    I hope this install from USB is much faster than DVD or BluRay.
    • RE: Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

      @Hasam1991 It should be. Installing Lion from the recovery partition, once you get past the whole downloading of files to install part, is relatively quick - especially in relation to installing from optical media.
  • RE: Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

    I think $70 is a ripoff for something that should have been on DVD the whole time. I can get an 8GB USB Flash Drive for under $10. Why should I pay an extra $40 for Apple's version? Bring back Rosetta, I need her.
    • RE: Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

      @ccfman2004 You pay $40 more because of the the apple logo on it :) Anything with that little fruit on it is always more expensive than an equivalent without the fruit.
      • RE: Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

        @MrElectrifyer What equivalent without the fruit? ;)
  • Hefty premium

    Seriously - charging $40 to get a $30 piece of software delivered on a medium that probably costs no more than a few dollars?
    • RE: Apple's OS X Lion now on a USB stick, $69.99

      Well wait until Windows comes out with one. Let's see...that will be in the $200-300 range.