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Archived - MacBook Air (Late 2010): Frequently Asked Questions about Software Reinstall Drive

Find answers to questions you might have about the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Your MacBook Air (Late 2010) comes with a USB Software Reinstall Drive that contains a copy of Mac OS X and iLife. If you selected to pre-install iWork at the time purchase, iWork is also included on the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive. Use this device instead of DVDs to reinstall your operating system and applications and to run essential applications and utilities.  Note: The MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive is read only.  You cannot erase it, reformat it, or reuse it as a general purpose USB storage device.  If you try to use the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive on a computer other than a MacBook Air (Late 2010), you will be offered two options: "Restore from a Time Machine backup" or "Restart the computer".  All menu selections are disabled.

  1. What is included on the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive?
  2. Can I use the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to do other things?
  3. How do I use MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive as a startup volume?
  4. How  do I access Apple Hardware test?
  5. Does iWork need a serial number?
  6. Can I use the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to install software on other Macs?
  7. How do I erase the hard drive and reinstall?
  8. I want to install Boot Camp.  Does the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive include Windows 7 drivers?
  9. Does MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive include any printer drivers?
  10. Does MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive contain software for CD/DVD Sharing?
  11. How do I install Rosetta, so that I can run older PowerPC-based applications?  
  12. If I accidentally remove one of the bundled applications, such as Safari or Mail, how can I get them back?  
  13. How do I get QuickTime 7 to play older video formatted content?
  14. I connected my MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to a hub or USB switch and it won't install. What is the best way to connect the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to my computer?
  15. Can I disconnect the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive from the USB port when installing software?

  1. What is included on the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive?
    The MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive contains installers for Mac OS X, iLife applications, and Apple Hardware Test.  Some drives also contain an iWork installer. Examine the labeling on your MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to determine what software you can install.
  2. Can I use the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to do other things?
    Yes, you can start up your computer from the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to select a Startup Disk, restore your system from a Time Machine backup disk or Time Capsule, reinstall Mac OS X, reset your administrative password, enable a firmware password, and run Disk Utility, among other tasks.
  3. How do I use MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive as a startup volume?
    1. Insert MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive into one of the USB ports on your MacBook Air.
    2. Press the power button on your computer, then press and hold the "C" key when you hear the startup tone.

    If your computer is already running:
    1 .Choose System Preferences from the Apple () menu.
    2. Choose Startup Disk from the View menu.
    3. Click the "Mac OS X Install" disc icon, then click Restart.
  4. How  do I access Apple Hardware test?
    Press the power button on your computer, then hold down the "D" key when you hear the startup tone.
  5. Does iWork need a serial number?
    No. This version of iWork does not need a serial number.
  6. Can I use the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to install software on other Macs?
    No. The software will only install on the MacBook Air it shipped with.
  7. How do I erase the hard drive and reinstall?
    See this article for instructions on performing an Erase and Install.
  8. I want to install Boot Camp.  Does the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive include Windows 7 drivers?
    No. The Boot Camp Assistant will download the correct Windows 7 drivers for your computer and offer to copy them to a CD or USB storage device.
  9. Does MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive include any printer drivers?
    Yes. You can install a limited selection of print drivers using the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive. Apple adds support for additional printer models frequently. After you have reinstalled the software with the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive, run Software Update before using a printer.
  10. Does MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive contain software for CD/DVD Sharing?
    You can use another Macintosh running Mac OS X v10.5.3 or later to share its optical drive with your MacBook Air (Late 2010). To install the "DVD or CD Sharing Update 1.0 for Windows" on a PC running Windows, download and install that software.
  11. How do I install Rosetta so I can use PowerPC-based applications?  
    When you try to open an application that was designed to run on a Mac with a PowerPC processor, Software Update will display a message that says "To open <Application Name>, you need to install Rosetta. Would you like to install it now?" When this message appears, click Install to download and install Rosetta.

    If you cannot use Software Update:
    1. Start up your MacBook Air from the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to reinstall Mac OS X.
    2. When the Install Mac OS X screen appears, click Customize.
    3. Click the box next to Rosetta and click OK.
    4. Click Install.  
    5. To bring your computer up to date, use Software Update after Mac OS X finishes installing.
  12. If I remove one of the bundled applications, such as Safari or Mail, how can I get them back?  
    You must reinstall Mac OS X from the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to restore bundled applications. To bring your computer up to date, use Software Update after Mac OS X finishes installing.
  13. How do I get QuickTime 7 to play older video formatted content?
    You can download it here.  To learn more about using QuickTime 7 on Macs running Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard, see this article.
  14. I connected my MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to a hub or USB switch and it won't install. What is the best way to connect the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive to my computer?
    Always connect your MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive directly to your computer's USB port. Do not use USB hubs, switches, or USB ports on an Apple LED Cinema display (or other display) with the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive.
  15. Can I disconnect the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive from the USB port when installing software?
    No. Never disconnect the MacBook Air Software Reinstall Drive from the USB port until the installation of software has completed. If it becomes disconnected, power off your computer, reconnect it, and start over.

 

Important: Information about products not manufactured by Apple is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute Apple’s recommendation or endorsement. Please contact the vendor for additional information.
Last Modified: Apr 22, 2014
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  • Last Modified: Apr 22, 2014
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