Project 081 Installation Guide

Project 081 Installation Guide

You've reached the Installation Guide. By following this guide you'll find out how to install Project 081 on your Late 2007 or Early 2008 Macs. After this guide, if all went well you should have a fully working Mac running 10.4.10 Tiger

WARNING: This guide is ONLY valid for Project 081 0.5 (current version as of 2022-03-22), if you're running 0.6 and this guide hasn't been updated yet, please do not follow along unless necessary.

This guide DOES NOT cover custom images. If you wish to use a custom image then follow the other guide.

The guide starts here.

Pt. 1: Making sure you have everything

In order to follow the guide you must have:

Pt. 2: Understanding the Risks

Pt. 3: Getting Started

Make sure you know what Mac you have. Do this by running sysctl hw.model. Results should be one of the following:

If the number value is lower than these then your machine can OFFICIALLY run Mac OS X Tiger and therefore doesn't need this (See download section for Mac OS X images)

If the number value is higher than these then your machine CANNOT run Mac OS X Tiger because the hardware is fully incompatible. Sorry, Apple made it that way. (Although feel free to try)

If you get nothing back, something is wrong with your OS or machine.

If you have a MacBookAir1,1: You will not have ANY graphics acceleration which means your OS might run slow. It should still run well because Tiger is lightweight but keep this in mind.

If you have a MacPro3,1: Your hardware may be unsupported if it was upgraded with components that Tiger doesn't natively support. Make sure to check what hardware you have before installing.

If you have a Hackintosh: Stop, this is the wrong place for that. Hackintosh users should follow a proper Hackintosh-focused guide such as the official OpenCore installation guide.

On a computer with a working internet connection and a web browser, check the Downloads section and download the image your model needs.


Make sure you get this right as failing to do so will leave you with a broken OS that may not install. You can download the image with any of the mirrors or with the wget or curl command listed for your download. Do not interrupt or cancel the download and be patient.

If you're downloading the image on a Mac running Mac OS X, you may wanna try mounting it before writing the image. If it doesn't mount then it's corrupted and you should definitely redownload the image to prevent wasting your time and potentially breaking your Mac/USB drive.

At this point, insert your USB drive into the machine you downloaded the image on.

If you wish to burn a DVD instead, you can do so as well but it's unsupported.

SD card booting is not supported (Why would one wanna do that anyway) Other methods are unsupported, try them at your own risk.

Pt. 4: Writing the image

Now that we have our image, understand the risks and know the model of our machine, let's continue with the guide by writing the image we just spent our bandwidth on!

To write the image, you will have many options available to you. In this guide, we're showing you how to use two of them, although only recommend the easy method because the second method isn't safe.

Using balenaEtcher

NOTE: If you are heavily against Electron (Chromium) based applications like myself, please do not use this method. balenaEtcher uses Electron so please keep this in mind. balenaEtcher also has telemetry built in.

Download balenaEtcher and install it on the machine you downloaded the image to. Here are some links you can use to download Etcher

For Windows users:

(Recommended) Visit the official balenaEtcher website ( and download it.

You can also download the portable version quickly using this link although it may be outdated:


For Mac OS X/OS X/macOS users:

(Recommended) Visit the official balenaEtcher website ( and download it.

You can also download the portable version quickly using this link although it may be outdated:


For Linux users:

(Recommended) Visit the official balenaEtcher website ( and download it.

AppImages may not work on your distro.

.AppImage AMD64 download:

.AppImage IA32 download:

NOTE: .debs only work on Debian based distributions.

.deb AMD64 download (Because .AppImage sucks):

.deb IA32 download (Because .AppImage sucks):

NOTE: .rpms only work on Red Hat/Fedora based distributions.

.rpm download






Once you have balenaEtcher installed and working, launch it using your preferred method. NOTE: You may need to format your drive in some cases although Etcher should detect it automatically anyway

Click 'Select Image' and select the Project 081 image you downloaded earlier.

Then select your drive (Be careful, you could potentially erase your entire boot drive). Then click 'Flash' and wait while it writes the image to your USB drive and verifies it.

Method 2: Using the Mac OS X/Linux Terminal

This method only works for Linux and Mac OS X users (although might work on BSDs). This is also the least bloated option but it can easily cause data loss if you're not familiar with the terminal.

If you are running a custom kernel (mostly for Gentoo users like myself), make sure you have HFS+ support enabled in your kernel!


Once the disk is no longer mounted, run sudo dd if=/location/p081.dmg of=/dev/diskX to format and write the image to the disk. You can see your disks using the lsblk command.

On Linux systems, it won't be /dev/diskX but /dev/sdX. Please keep this in mind.


NOTE: Some users may not have sudo available to them. In this case, use su or doas if available.

Again, make sure you get the right identifier as otherwise you'll likely erase the wrong drive. Be VERY careful.

Make sure you wait for the process to finish. Do not eject the drive until the image is fully written to the drive. Doing so may cause damage to the drive and will cause corruption.

Pt. 5: Installation

If you reached this point and didn't fail, you should have a USB drive (Or DVD) containing Project 081 The hard part is now done, the rest is pretty easy as long as you won't have more issues.

Make sure your Mac is plugged in, and then insert the USB drive into one of its USB ports.

NOTE that the official Apple iMac keyboards are known to cause issues when booting from USB devices so plug it into one of the ports on your machine.

Power on your machine and hold the Option key when powering your machine up. If you don't have an official Apple branded keyboard, it should be the Windows flag key. If you use Linux, this is usually your Super key or Mod key.

If you fail this way, try holding Left ALT instead. If you still cannot reach the menu, your keyboard may have a weird configuration. In this case try another keyboard.

Once in the boot menu, you'll want to pick the USB drive. This option may have the Project 081 logo with a Project 081 label but it may also be named 'EFI Boot' and have a regular hard drive icon.

If you are not sure which option is correct, unplug any other bootable devices or try booting until you get the right one.

After pressing enter, you should either see an Apple logo with a spinning wheel or a bunch of text. Both of these are normal. Please be patient and wait while it tries to boot to the Project 081 installer.

If all went fine, you should see either a window that looks like an installer with a nice message or a blue screen. If you see a blue screen, please wait a moment while it loads the


If you're stuck at a blue screen for a long time (10 or more minutes), the installer probably froze, in this case please contact me or add an issue on GitHub.

At the top of your screen, you should see either a 'Util', 'Utilities' or 'Tools' option. Click this option and then Disk Utility.

Select your internal or external drive (Install destination) and format it as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) Make sure you don't format the wrong drive. The drive should NOT be MBR but GPT.

Once you're sure you selected the correct drive (You may need to format the entire drive, not just a partition) click the 'Erase' button and then 'Erase' to confirm it.

Wait while it erases your drive and perhaps your memories. It shouldn't take too long. If the process fails, try again. Otherwise the drive may be failing.

Finally, exit out of the Disk Utility, select your drive and click Install. No need to customize as all the extra features have been taken out.

Patches will be automatically installed if needed. Now all you have to do is wait for the installation process to finish. It should automatically reboot so you can go grab a snack or something while it installs.

After the install, you may eject your USB drive or DVD from your Mac as it shouldn't be needed anymore.

It should automatically boot into your Mac OS X installation but if it doesn't, hold the Option key on boot and select the Mac OS X partition.

Pt. 6: If ..whatever happens

Pt. 7: Setting up your Mac.

Set up your Mac as usual, and enjoy your Project 081 install. Any features designed for officially supported Intel Macs should be working, even on your Late 2007/Early 2008 Macs. If some features are broken, create an issue on GitHub please so that I can fix it.

You just finished the Project 081 install guide.

If you have any issues or questions, have a look around the Wiki. If you would like to contribute.. then please consider creating pull requests or issues. Thank you for using the project.