Preparing your Mac Computer for OS X Lion!

We all know Lion is coming, whether it is tomorrow or next week, Apple did say July. Since Apple released it’s GM build of Lion to developers, we thought it would be a good idea to help our readers prepare for this incredible upgrade. Follow along for a fool proof plan to an easy install of Lion!

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Let’s get started with this process.

First: Verify you are running OSX 10.6.8. Apple has made it a requirement that you are running this version in order to upgrade to it’s newest version of OSX. This is a pretty easy one to get done. Just go run Software Update and make sure you have all updates installed.

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Second: Lion is dropping support for Rosetta apps. So be sure to either remove those apps or upgrade them to the Intel version, if it has one. In order to determine if any of your apps use Rosetta, just open Activity Monitor and look under the Kind column. It will say PowerPC in Activity Monitor for any Rosetta Apps. You can also go to the System Profiler, Click Applications, and sort by Kind. There you can see if any use the PowerPC platform.


You will want to check that all your apps are up to date as well. The App that I use is called App Fresh. App Fresh scans your computer for all the apps you have installed and checks for updates to any of these. This could be especially useful if you are wanting an easy way to upgrade your PowerPC apps as well.

Third: OSX Lion requires 8GB of free space. For most of us, that should not be an issue. But if you are one of those people that have their drive with only a couple GB free of space, then this part is for you. Also, if you are wanting to start with a cleaner install of Lion, this will help you clean up all those old files. I use a program named OmniDiskSweeper. This little program scans your disk and shows you all the folders and files, and how much space they are using. You can use this to delete any large files, or maybe some old folders that you realize you don’t need any more.

Fourth: Backup, Backup, and Backup. If there is one thing that all of us should already be doing, it’s backing up our systems. I am a big fan of TimeMachine, and use that as my primary backup source. However, You can create an exact replica of your drive using Carbon Copy Cloner. This will take your current hard drive and write it to an image. It took my PC 2.5 hours to create an image of 80GB of data. It will also compress the data, bringing my backup down to about 60GB.

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That’s it! Now you’re all set. Hopefully, we will see Lion tomorrow morning, but if not, you can rest assured that it will be very soon. And you will be prepared for it to launch!

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About the Author

David is a Systems Engineer by day and a Competitive Triathlete on the weekends. He is an avid Apple fan who also loves everything Google. He writes on everything and loves to share news with fellow techies.