Like the Nerdiest Boy Scout

With this week’s release of Apple’s latest OS X (aka “Mavericks”), I finally took the time to complete a nerdy little project of mine.

It starts with the ReadyCase

I was an Indiegogo backer of the ReadyCase which I recommend (although, my first-run case needed a little modification to work with my Belkin dock, YMMV). One of the biggest attractions is that it comes with a USB stick - something I never seem to have on me when I need it. Now, as long as I have my phone on me (i.e. always), I have my USB stick.

Partition It

As an early adopter, I got a 16gb version (the max now is 8gb). I split my drive into two partitions: 1 for the Mavericks installer (aka “Mavericks”) and a second partition for “important” files (aka “Data”). It was super simple to set this up using Disk Utility:

  • Both partitions are “Mac OS Extended (Journaled)”
  • I’m using the GUID Partition scheme (available under “Options”) - required for install disks
  • I made the 2nd partition encrypted, just in case.

I am thinking of potentially adjusting this into 3 partitions, though: Installer, Secret files (encrypted) and Scratch (for temporary transfers, etc).

Mavericks Installer

It wasn’t too tricky before, but Mavericks includes a nice little utility for creating “install media”. Once you’ve downlowded the Mavericks installer from the app store, just run:

/Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ --volume /Volumes/Mavericks --applicationpath /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\

Important Files

So far, my “Important Files” drive includes my ssh private key and a few other handy backups. However, I’m working hard so that more and more of my configuration is automated via my chef-workstation setup. Between that and all of my “in the cloud” data, I can pretty easily bootstrap a new machine in an emergency.

I am prepared.