OS X Internet Recovery: If You've Tried Everything Else and It Didn't Help

Internet Recovery

The operating system of Apple computers is generally considered to be more robust than Windows OS and less exposed to various threats like malware and viruses. However, in some rare cases, it may need the reinstallation, too – it could be the only way to get rid of the essential problems. Luckily, this process does not take too long, so you will not have time to get annoyed. After all, the need to reinstall an operating system on your MacBook, iMac, or Mac mini may come right in the middle of the working day. If you are a lucky owner of the up-to-date Mac, you should know that it has a special OS X Internet Recovery option. It prevents the installation process from reminding you of a sloth.

The principle is simple: the feature makes it possible to set up the reinstallation process via a netboot type of mode accessed online. It is a way better solution than doing the whole stuff through a local drive. The article opens up more secrets of the Internet Recovery feature, which may be speedier and simpler method than a traditional approach with the local HD partition.

Often, people choose Internet Recovery just because their computer does not have a Recovery partition. Mind that unlike the hard drive partition, the Internet Recovery method will reinstall the version of operating system that was set on your machine by default from the very beginning. Only an HD partition method guarantees the latest version. If you have no desire to downgrade your Mac, the Internet approach is obviously not for you. However, if you are satisfied with the OS X that was shipped along with your device, go on and learn more about OS X Internet Recovery.

What Is Internet Recovery for Mac?

On the whole, OS X Internet Recovery mode is a standard option on all modern Apple computers: MacBook Pro / Air, iMac, and Mac mini. If a special repair disk partition has a copy of Disk Utility, Time Machine, the OS X installer, and the Terminal application, you can be sure your data will be saved.

Keep in mind that Mac’s hard disk should have a bare minimum of space to activate this reinstallation method. If it is trashed, Internet Recovery might not work. In some situations, it is also important to remember a Wi-Fi password by heart or have it written down beforehand as the process won’t start without an Internet connection. Please, note that Internet Recovery does not work with Enterprise Wi-Fi you have in your corporate environment. Also, it's recommended to attach the computer through an Ethernet cable to achieve the top-quality network connection. It will guarantee that nothing will go wrong during the process of reinstallation.

In general, any Mac released after 2012 is capable of running this reinstallation option.

Starting Internet Recovery on Mac: The Process Itself

Getting started? Do not hurry up – check the instructions below to make sure you are doing everything right to avoid any problems.

So, your OS X stops working in the middle of the important process. Your Mac does not have a Recovery Partition. What should you do? First of all, don’t panic. Second, make sure you have a newer Mac model – it can boot directly if the Internet connection is present.

  • Shut down the Apple computer and then turn it back on while holding Command+Option+R keys
  • Wait until a spinning globe shows up as well as the notification that tells Internet Recovery is about to begin. Mind that it will still take some time
  • You will soon see a progress bar. It makes sense that there is nothing left to do until it fills
  • The user should see macOS Utilities window. There, pick Reinstall macOS. The instructions will tell you what to do after – just stick to them thoroughly

It is important to add a few more words regarding the problems associated with this method of reinstallation. Internet Recovery works only with networks with WEP/WPA security. It refers to the majority of home Wi-Fi networks. However, if the user prefers a proxy network/PPPoE, it might result in certain issues. Experts recommend discovering another network instead or creating a USB Recovery Stick.

It will take around 5 minutes to load with the help of Internet Recovery. A speed of the Internet connection plays a big role in determining the required amount of time. In case you wish to run a full reinstallation of macOS, you may use the official App Store to upgrade to the recently released version of operating system.

SOS! Internet Recovery Mac Is Not Working!

Some users report the given error while attempting to use macOS Internet Recovery: "You can’t upgrade this version because a newer version is installed."

In this situation, a user should format the boot drive to Mac OS X Extended (Journaled) with the help of Disk Utility (⌘+r). It may also be helpful to format GUID partition map. This trick allows to enable Internet Recovery and downgrade back to the version, which arrived with your Mac initially.

Overall, the Internet Recovery option is perhaps the best idea to implement if you don't have the opportunity to use the recovery partition method. Once all techniques like safe mode, recovery partition, PRAM reset, and single user command fail, try Internet Recovery.