Scripts of possible interest to macOS admins Friday, Nov 13, 2020

GitHUB SOURCE : https://github.com/munki/macadmin-scripts/

macadmin-scripts

Some scripts that might be of use to macOS admins. Might be related to Munki; might not.

installinstallmacos.py

This script can create disk images containing macOS Installer applications available via Apple’s softwareupdate catalogs.

Run ./installinstallmacos.py --help to see the available options.

The tool assembles “Install macOS” applications by downloading the packages from Apple’s softwareupdate servers and then installing them into a new empty disk image.

If /usr/bin/installer returns errors during this process, it can be useful to examine /var/log/install.log for clues.

Since it is using Apple’s installer, any install check or volume check scripts are run. This means that you can only use this tool to create a diskimage containing the versions of macOS that will run on the exact machine you are running the script on.

For example, to create a diskimage containing the version 10.13.6 that runs on 2018 MacBook Pros, you must run this script on a 2018 MacBook Pro, and choose the proper version.

Typically “forked” OS build numbers are 4 digits, so when this document was last updated, build 17G2208 was the correct build for 2018 MacBook Pros; 17G65 was the correct build for all other Macs that support High Sierra.

If you attempt to install an incompatible version of macOS, you’ll see an error similar to the following:

Making empty sparseimage...
installer: Error - ERROR_B14B14D9B7
Command '['/usr/sbin/installer', '-pkg', './content/downloads/07/20/091-95774/awldiototubemmsbocipx0ic9lj2kcu0pt/091-95774.English.dist', '-target', '/private/tmp/dmg.Hf0PHy']' returned non-zero exit status 1
Product installation failed.

Use a compatible Mac or select a different build compatible with your current hardware and try again. You may also have success running the script in a VM; the InstallationCheck script in versions of the macOS installer to date skips the checks (and returns success) when run on a VM.

Important note for Catalina+

Catalina privacy protections might interfere with the operation of this tool if you run it from ~/Desktop, ~/Documents, ~/Downloads or other directories protected in Catalina. Consider using /Users/Shared (or subdirectory) as the “working space” for this tool.

October 2020 update

In late September, Apple made some changes to how their servers returned requested results. This led to installinstallmacos.py complaining about invalid XML and listing macOS installers with UNKNOWN build numbers, among other issues. If you encounter these issues:

  • Update to the current version of the script
  • Run it at least once with the --ignore-cache option, or remove the content directory to remove corrupted files in the content cache.
Alternate implementations

Graham Pugh has a fork with a lot more features and bells and whistles. Check it out if your needs aren’t met by this tool. https://github.com/grahampugh/macadmin-scripts


Legacy scripts no longer in development or supported

createbootvolfromautonbi.py

(This tool has not been tested/updated since before 10.14 shipped. It may not work as expected with current versions of macOS. There are currently no plans to update it.)

A tool to make bootable disk volumes from the output of autonbi. Especially useful to make bootable disks containing Imagr and the ‘SIP-ignoring’ kernel, which allows Imagr to run scripts that affect SIP state, set UAKEL options, and run the startosinstall component, all of which might otherwise require network booting from a NetInstall-style nbi.

This provides a way to create a bootable external disk that acts like the Netboot environment used by/needed by Imagr.

This command converts the output of Imagr’s make nbi into a bootable external USB disk: sudo ./createbootvolfromautonbi.py --nbi ~/Desktop/10.13.6_Imagr.nbi --volume /Volumes/ExternalDisk

make_firmwareupdater_pkg.sh

This script was used to extract the firmware updaters from early High Sierra installers and make a standalone installer package that could be used to upgrade Mac firmware before installing High Sierra via imaging.

Later High Sierra installer changes have broken this script; since installing High Sierra via imaging is not recommended or supported by Apple and several other alternatives are now available, I don’t plan on attempting to fix or upgrade this tool.

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