Installing Tiger on a Snow Leopard MacBook

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My lab is planning to buy a MacBook that comes with Snow Leopard to test our RCP applications (Eclipse). We would also like to install Tiger to test our applications because many of our users are still on this OS.

Is it possible to install an older version of Mac OS X? Is it possible to install it on a virtual machine (e.g., virtual box) or should we install it on another partition (e.g., external hard drive?).

Did anyone try that before?


Lots of things either just don’t work or begin to experience problems if you install an older version of Mac OS X on a machine than the version that it shipped with. Mac OS X’s EULA doesn’t allow for virtualization(i.e. it is a guest operating system) and installing OS X 10.4 on an external drive would still not work with newer hardware. You may just want to get an older machine, or just test out your applications on 10.6

It depends – if you buy a new MacBook, it is unlikely you will be able to install Tiger on it. The drivers for the hardware would not exist in Tiger. However, if you bought a used MacBook that was released while Tiger was out, then you could install it.

Parallels does have a way to install Mac OS X inside of a virtual machine, but the required host OS is 10.5.8 or above and the required VM OS is also 10.5.8 or above. As far as I know, VMWare and VirtualBox do not support OS X virtual machines at all.

Although VirtualBox does not patently support Tiger nor does Tiger’s EULA accept virtualisation it can be done.

Please learn more here:

As an FYI, I installed Tiger Server in VirtualBox on a MacBook Air running MacOS High Sierra 10.13.5

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