How to Create a Bootable macOS Ventura USB Install Drive

Create a macOS Ventura boot installation drive

Creating a bootable macOS Ventura installer can be desirable for many advanced Mac users, whether to perform clean installs, install macOS Ventura 13 on multiple computers without having to re-download the installer, to serve as a recovery boot disk, or any other number of reasons why.

Creating a macOS boot installation drive isn’t particularly difficult, but it does require using the command line.

Before you begin, make sure that the following prerequisites are met:

How to create a macOS Ventura installation drive

Creating the boot installer requires a few steps:

  1. Insert the USB flash drive that will become the boot installer into the Mac
  2. Rename the USB drive to something obvious, like “VenturaUSB” in Finder
  3. Open the Terminal application on Mac by pressing Command+Spacebar to open Spotlight and then typing
    Press “Terminal” and return
  4. Enter the following command string into the terminal, the following syntax assumes you named the USB installation drive as “VenturaUSB”:
    sudo /Applications/Install\ macOS\ --volume /Volumes/VenturaUSB --nointeraction
  5. Press Enter and enter the administrator password
  6. The macOS Ventura bootinstaller drive is created and the terminal is updated as it progresses and completes

When you’re done, you can eject the USB installer and use it on any compatible Mac with Ventura, booting it like any other bootable drive.

The boot installer can be used to update other Macs to macOS Ventura 13 or perform clean installs.

How to boot from the MacOS Ventura Installer drive

Booting from the installer depends on the system architecture of the Mac you are using it on.

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Booting from the installation drive on a Mac with Apple Silicon (M1, M1 Pro, M2, etc.)

  • Connect the USB boot drive to the Mac
  • Turn off the Mac
  • On the Mac with the USB drive plugged in, hold down the power button and keep holding the power button until you see a startup options screen
  • Select the macOS Ventura installer to boot from

Booting from the installer drive on Intel Mac (X86)

  • Connect the USB boot installer drive to the Mac
  • Shut down or restart the Mac
  • Immediately hold down the Option key as the system boots, hold it until you see the boot volume menu to choose from, and from here select the macOS Ventura installer

After booting from the macOS Ventura installer, you can continue with the macOS Ventura installer to update or clean your Mac, use Disk Utility to perform tasks such as creating containers or partitions, use Time Machine to restore and more.

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