Mac OS X: How to Make an OS X Yosemite Boot Installer USB Drive The Easy Way

There is an app for that :).

The app is called DiskMaker X 4b4 and was created by @liondiskmaker. The official Disk Maker X website is up and running again.

Use any of the following links to download DiskMaker X 4b4:

1.  Download Link by @liondiskmaker
2. Download Mirror by @pixelgrinch
3. Download Mirror by @twoseat

All you need is DiskMaker X 4b4, the Yosemite Installer downloaded from the App store, and a USB thumb drive with 8GB or more.

Should you experience any problems, check out the Official Disk Maker FAQ page.

Quick note:
Sebastian mentioned in the comments that he had issues when he moved the downloaded Yosemite Installer file out of the Applications folder. For now please leave the installer where Apple downloads it to, your Applications folder.

Be aware that the content of your USB thumb drive will be erased during this process. Make sure to make a backup should you have anything important on your thumb drive.

I had a 16gb USB thumb drive on hand:


No need to worry about formatting your thumb drive in a specific format. The DiskMaker X will take care of it as long as the thumb drive is recognized by your Mac OS X installation.

  1. Download Yosemite through the app store. Don’t install Yosemite when the installer pops up after successful download. Go ahead and just quit the Yosemite installer.

  2. Launch the DiskMaker X 4b4 and select Yosemite from the first dialog box

diskmaker_x_4b4.png3. The previously downloaded Yosemite installer has been placed into the /Applications directory which DiskMaker X picked up on and offers to use this copy for the bootable USB thumb drive. So let’s go ahead and use this copy.


  1. DiskMaker X wants to know which disk to use, so let’s use the USB thumb drive option.


  1. Chose your USB thumb drive from the following dialog and continue.


  1. A friendly reminder to make a backup of the content of your thumb drive before it is being erased.


  1. The following dialog brings to your attention that administrator privileges are necessary to continue.diskmaker_x_4b4_permission8. Enter your administrator credentials when you are asked for it.


  1. Don’t be alarmed if your progress bar doesn’t update the progress bar status. Be rest assured that DiskMaker X is doing its magic. This process can take some time, so feel free to grab a coffee.


  1. Congratulations, DiskMaker X presents its final dialog after it finished creating your bootable USB thumb drive Yosemite installer.


  1. The USB thumb drive has been named and formatted properly by DiskMaker X


49 thoughts on “Mac OS X: How to Make an OS X Yosemite Boot Installer USB Drive The Easy Way

  1. Just want to add that I successfully created a boot drive with the same method as this article but used DiskMaker X 4b3.

    Decided to create another with 4b4 and kept facing an error of being unable to eject drive (part of the script to create the Install drive). Kept trying, nada.

    Rolled back to 4b3, and was able to get things running again. 4b4 just does not seem to work for me.

    Ran from 10.8.5.


  2. I did a boot USB with Disk Maker b4b and got the popup window “AppleEvent timed out (-1712)”.
    The USB information is not the same as you provided. It my case it is 6 387 251 571 bytes (6,39 GB on disk).

    I did the process under Yosemite itself, so my question is if the boot stick is OK to use?

    It looks ok – a big X inside the window, Intall OS X icon and Application folder icon.

    I’d paste the screenshot, but I cannot do this via comment here.

    BTW: I wanna install Yosemite from the scratch, because after upgrade from Mavericks I cannot change my wallpaper and Display Pref Pane does not work. (strange…. I hope Apple will address this bug asap).

    Best regards,


      1. I have the same error appearing when I tried using DiskMaker but it appears I am only 200MB short.

        I am using a 16GB USB drive and once it errors it say i have used 6,448,336,932 bytes (6.45 GB on disk). Comparing this to your completed USB above it appears I’m short. There’s no real indication as to what has occurred so I’m not sure how I can fix the problem.

        I am using an iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2012) running OS X Yosemite 10.10 and the installer is on another portable USB hard drive attached to the iMac.

        I’ll try copying the files from the iMac’s HD but otherwise I’m not sure what else I can try.

        Any suggestions?


        1. Copying the Installer to the Applications folder on the iMac seems to have worked. The process finished without error. Interestingly though it appears the used disk space is only marginally higher (6,454,186,020 bytes (6.45 GB on disk)), which is still less than the image above.

          I will now try installing Yosemite on my MacBook Air, fingers crossed!


        2. Hi Marty,
          I was just going to suggest to move the installer app into your applications folder, but you have followed up and mentioned you did that and then it worked just fine :).

          I appreciate you kept us posted through the end.

          Let us know if you were able to install Yosemite on your MacBook Air.


      1. iMac Late 2009, 27″, 2.8 i7 quad.
        Tried from Yosemite.

        After about 10 tries the boot stick has been created successfully.
        (the only change I did was to move the from my side USB disk to Application folder – it’s original location).

        Hope this helps.


        1. Thanks for keeping us posted on your solution for the issue you were experiencing. I will add this as a note to the step by step instructions.


  3. I also couldn’t get this to work. I was using mountain lion which kept putting osx base system in the way, asking to eject it. which I couldn’t. This happened trying various methods, not just diskmaker x.
    I turned to a bootable version of Mavericks I had on a external drive, loaded all the necessary gubbins and it seems to be doing it.


  4. Also got the time out on the first run. Second run after a reboot worked without any problems and resulted in the final dialog. Hope this helps…


    1. I repeated the process several times (reboot,logoff etc).
      (on Yosemite).
      Always an error.

      This time:

      “The disk could not be created because of an error: An error occured: -1728. Finder got an error: Can’t get disk “OS X Yosemite Install Disk”.


  5. • When I tried to use the DiskMaker X from within Mavericks OS X 10.9.5, I got this error:

    sh: -c: line 0: unexpected EOF while looking for matching `”
    sh: -c: line 1: syntax error: unexpected end of file

    • 4b4 worked fine for me from the last Yosemite OS X 10.10 beta (last GM).


    1. Thanks for the error report. I pointed the developer to the comments of this post.
      It seems so random, some people can make it work and others can’t, using the same Mac OS X Version.


  6. 4b4 works for me.

    i wonder how likely it is he can make a version that will allow several installers on one stick,
    like 10.8, 10.9 and 10.10 on a 16GB stick
    thoughts on that?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. All the installs I have done in the past, using alternative solutions, always always required to erased the entire memory stick. I wonder if it would work if the stick is partitioned and you could decide which partition to show and which ones to hide.


      1. It’ll let you choose if you partitioned it ahead of time. Just created a flash drive with installers for 10.6-10.10 for the variety of systems here at work, each on its own partition (I did set that up ahead of time).


  7. From the feedback I see here it would seem to be a good idea to wait till version 4 is out of beta.

    By the way, you can run the OS X installers without putting them on a bootable drive. I’ve run them from a hard drive on which I’ve archived the installers from Lion to Yosemite, among other things. You could put these on a thumb drive as well, without making it bootable. When you launch the OS X installer you get the opportunity to select the drive you want to install on. This presumes, of course, that you have a bootable system drive or partition to operate from. If you are installing over an existing version of OS X, this will work on that drive. However, to be on the safe side you should install it on a copy of your system in case something goes wrong. Remember Murphy’s law. You should have a current, working cloned backup of your system in any case. This makes reverting easy and protects you from mishaps as well. Another advantage of running the OS X installer from a hard drive as opposed to a thumb drive is that it runs much faster. You should never, I repeat never, upgrade the only copy of your system. Every time OS X gets an upgrade there has been a torrent of complaints on the blogs about how the upgrade messed things up. Most of these complaints are from people who failed to take appropriate and, in my opinion, essential precautions. Frankly I have little sympathy for these careless individuals. Enthusiasm can be a good thing. Too much enthusiasm is dangerous. While I like the convenience DiskMaker X provides, if it encourages you to take shortcuts you should resist the temptation. You don’t want to be among the unfortunate few who hose their only working operating system.


    1. I agree 100% a backup of the system drive is a must. I use CarbonCopyCloner for all my backup needs. I also have a time machine backup which works just as well and does backups in the background.
      I got struck by Murphy’s law myself so I learned my lessons pretty early in the game.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Thanks so much for your good work!

    Unfortunately, I also got the “AppleEvent timed out (-1712)” error.
    Running under Yosemite (after downloading the installer again).

    Any help? Thanks!


  9. I appreciate all the comments. Sorry that the 4b4 installer doesn’t work for some of you guys. I contacted the developer of this great tool. He is pretty responsive and I hope he can use the feedback to tackle some issues you mentioned.


  10. I am getting a message «Sorry, I can’t eject the volume OS X Base System. Please eject it and try again.» But there is no volume to eject and after starting again the same story. What should I do?


      1. Same problem.
        DiskMaker 40b4 don’t ask for admin privileges.

        MacBook late 2009, 8Gb ram, OS X 10.8.5 + 8Gb USB drive.
        Yosemite installer at default place (/Applications)


  11. I am also getting the — «Sorry, I can’t eject the volume OS X Base System. Please eject it and try again.». Even after I go into disk utility and eject the OS X Base System DMG and rerun the installer it generates the same error and remounts the “OS X Base System” image. Tried using both 16GB USB stick and an external drive, both create same situation and just fails

    2008 iMac 10.8.5, 6GB RAM


      1. Thanks for your message in my case, i wait after 4 HOURS…., I suppose thats is not « normal » your opinion about this long time ! My boot usb drive is exactly your image , but the window dont stopthe stuff… Is possible to stopt the window wthout problem to the drive ? Tha nks Antoine

        Le 23 oct. 2014 à 21:39, Pixel Grinch’s Blog a écrit :

        > >


        1. Hi Antoine,
          yes 4 hours sounds way too long. What version of Mac OS X are you running and which Mac do you have?
          How long does it take for lets say a 500mb file to be copied to your memory stick?


  12. Hello
    I have the same problem “can’t eject the volume OS X Base system” Error -128
    MacBook Pro mid 2012 Mountain Lion. SDHC 8GB


  13. I’m using 10.8.5 and when I try to use diskmaker x 4b4 I get “Sorry, I can’t eject the volume OS X Base System. Please eject it and try again.” Can you help me?


  14. Hey,
    i don’t know if it is okay to post this here – but i have had the same message like some of the other folks here. «Sorry, I can’t eject the volume OS X Base System. Please eject it and try again.»
    As long as this Problem isn’t solved, you can Copy this into the Terminal and the USB-Stick will get formatted and Yosemite gets installed automatically as long as you have the OS X Installer in your application folder.

    sudo /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ –volume /Volumes/Name-des-USB-Sticks/ –applicationpath /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ –nointeraction

    You just have to change “Name-des-USB-Sticks” into the Name of your Stick.


  15. hi ,i tried to install yosemite to a partition, it crashed saying”error ocurred trying to extract from package. esstential.pkg
    i remade boot usb…same thing

    any ideas


  16. Hi, My name Is Marcos. I have and older MacBook Pro, earlier 2008, and It have Yosemite installed and running not so well, my HD had bad blocks. I’ve tried to use Diskmaker X, but I receive an error message “The disk could not be created because of an error: An error occurred: 1.Could not find disk for /Volumes/OS X Base System [ Cancel ] [ ok ]. (1) I made a mistake, (2) My system is very bad. I’m using an 16Gb Kingston Pen Drive .


  17. FWIW – I hit the “-1712” error above with failure on fsck.
    I repeated the install after closing the “Install OS X” app that downloading Yosemite from the app store auto opens. (right-click on the icon to quit).

    That install (Yosemite to a 16GB USB stick) worked fine for everything except setting the icon, which the Diskmaker app told me was fine.

    Maybe this info will help others on this thread.


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