MacOS is designed to run only on Apple hardware. But people who can’t afford a Mac for the cost and many other reasons prefer Hackintosh, a method to install macOS on a third-party device. Hackintosh is illegal, so what’s the alternative? ” Virtualization.” When it comes to virtualization, the first choice is Virtualbox. It is a multi-platform virtualization app that can run macOS as a guest OS on Windows, Linux, or on a Mac itself. Here we explain the steps to install macOS Catalina 10.15 on Virtualbox for Mac.
Install macOS Catalina 10.15 on Virtualbox for Mac
Virtualbox 6 has an inbuilt profile for installing macOS up-to High Sierra 10.13 if you have the ISO file. However, most of the Mac users can use High Sierra on their system unless it is aged. The following tutorial is useful for those who already have High Sierra on their Mac but unable to upgrade to Mojave and Catalina due to hardware limitations. Virtualbox lets you install and run macOS Catalina as a guest on your Mac if you follow the steps below.
- Download and install Virtualbox for Mac here, and the extension pack, here.
- Get the Catalina offline installer to your Mac’s Applications folder, and MacOS ISO for Virtualbox (optional).
- Download Alexander‘s macOS Virtulbox script from Github, here. Then extract the ZIP file to “macoscatalinavirtualbox” folder on desktop.
- Open Terminal app in macOS High Sierra or the host OS and run the following commands in the order.
- Install the Xcode command line developer tools when you see the prompt on the screen.
Now the script will automate the process of installing macOS Catalina on Virtualbox. However, it may require manual actions at certain steps of installation. Input the system password on Terminal if required, while it makes macOS DMG and ISO files for the virtualization. When macOS Catalina installer ends first stage of installation, press the Enter key for removing the disc image(.CDR) from the boot order. It will cause an installation loop if you do not disconnect the Catalina ISO or CDR disc at this point.
Terminal will restart the Virtualbox when you press the Enter key and final step of the macOS Catalina installation starts, and it last for about 10-15 minutes. This method for running macOS on Virtualbox may also also be used open & run 32-Bit apps on Catalina.
How to run macOS Catalina on Virtualbox
For me, it took nearly 1 hour to install macOS Catalina on Virtualbox for Mac on an SSD iMac 2011 variant. The Terminal app may look unresponsive at times, depending on your system speed. But if you follow the steps and give enough time, Virtualbox will boot into Catalina, as shown in the first image.
Check the above video to see macOS Catalina running on our Mac that has High Sierra as the primary OS. We won’t tell you how to install macOS Catalina on Virtualbox for Windows (for legal reasons), but you can, of course, use the hints here.