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Perform a Clean Install of OS X Lion on Your Mac


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OS X Lion Setup Assistant Completes the Install

Once the installation of OS X Lion is complete, your Mac will display a Welcome window. This marks the start of the registration and setup process for Lion. After just a few more steps, you'll be ready to use Lion.

  1. In the Welcome window, select the country or region where you use your Mac, and click Continue.

  2. A list of keyboard styles will display; select the type that matches yours and click Continue.

  3. Migration Assistant

    The Migration Assistant will now display. Because this is a clean install of OS X Lion, you can use the Migration Assistant to transfer data from another Mac, a PC, Time Machine, or another disk or partition on your Mac.

    I prefer not to use the Migration Assistant at this point, opting instead for a clean installation of Lion. Once I know Lion is installed and working correctly, I then run the Migration Assistant from the Lion installation to move any user data I need to the Lion disk.

  4. Select "Don't transfer now" and click Continue.
  5. Registration

    Registration is optional; you can simply click through the next two screens if you wish. If you do fill in the registration information, some of the applications you'll be using in Lion will be pre-populated with appropriate data. Specifically, Mail and Address Book will already have your primary email account information partially set up, and Address Book will have your personal entry already created.

  6. The first of the registration screens asks for your Apple account information; enter the email address and password, as requested. Not sure what your Apple account is? For most individuals, it will be the account they use at the iTunes Store or the Mac App Store. If you have forgotten your password, you can enter just your email address. This will help in setting up Mail later on.

  7. Enter your Apple account information, and click Continue.

  8. The registration window will display. Enter the requested information, if you wish. When you're finished, or if you prefer not to register, click Continue.
  9. Administrator Account

    Lion requires at least one administrator account to be set up. You can use the administrator account to perform most Lion housekeeping tasks, to create additional users, and to install any applications that require administrator privileges.

  10. Enter your full name. This will be the administrator account name.

  11. Enter your shortname. This is a shortcut name used for the administrator account, and the name of the account's home directory. Shortnames cannot be changed, so be sure you're happy with the name you enter; you'll be living with it for a long time.

  12. Enter the password you wish to use, along with any additional information requested, and then click Continue.

  13. You can associate an image or picture with the account you're creating, if you wish. If you have a web cam connected to your Mac, you can snap a picture of yourself to use. You can also choose one of many pictures already installed in Lion. Make your selection, and click Continue.
  14. Learning to Scroll

  15. The Lion Setup Assistant is just about done. The final step shows you how to use the new touch-based gesture system in Lion. Depending on the type of touch-based input device you have (Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, or integrated trackpad), you will see a description of how to scroll. Follow the instructions to scroll down through the text area, and click the Start Using Mac OS X Lion button.
  16. Just One More Thing

    That's it; you can start exploring Lion. But before you head off, use the Software Update service to ensure that you have all the latest patches, device drivers, and other undercover goodies your Mac may need to perform at its best.

  17. From the Apple menu, select Software Update, and then follow the onscreen instructions.

  18. Once Software Update has finished, you're ready to take your new installation of Lion for a spin.
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