How to Create an OSE Linux USB using Mac Guide by Alex Au 2018

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Here are the actual commands I used to load OSE linux onto a flash drive. Comments included as `* This is a comment`

Successful Attempt


  • Find the name of the flash drive

diskutil list

  • Unmount the flash drive by its name, in this case, /dev/disk2

diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk2

  • Erase the flash drive with the command line
  • Set it up as FAT32, a microsoft format compatible w/ linux
  • Rename the disk as OSE in all caps to avoid a name error

diskutil erasedisk FAT32 OSE /dev/disk2

  • Restart computer
  • Use the arrow keys to select either the Boot EFI\boot\... entry (rEFInd) or the EFI Drive entry (Mac boot manager) from the list.
  • Click "Try without installing Linux"
  • Boom. Watch it load.


Failed Attempt

  • See below for my "Attempt #1", which failed because I saw the error from REFind, "Starting legacy loader / Using load options 'USB' / Please make sure that you have the latest firmware update installed. / * Hit any key to continue *, which means that Mac's firmware is conflicting with the linux startup sequence, and it needs to be formatted in another way to comply.


  • List your partitions, which is another entity different from and part of your disks

df -h

  • Unmount the partition by its name using this strange syntax

diskutil unmount /dev/disk2s2 Volumes/OSE on disk2s2 unmounted

  • Finally, download the linux.iso file onto the flash drive
  • Note that we target the "disk2" (the disk) and not "disk2s2" (the partition)
  • There is strange syntax here, adding an "r" in btwn /dev/ and disk2 for /dev/rdisk2
  • Use "CLT+T" command to check it's downloading progress
  • Not sure what bs= does, seems like a timeout prevention thing

sudo dd if=~/Downloads/OSELinux1.0.iso of=/dev/rdisk2 bs=1048576

  • Wait 30+ minutes for download to complete