NetBoot not working on current hardware models

New Contributor III

Also posted this to the JAMF Nation site (, but thought I would post here as well as not everyone has begun using it yet.

We've received new iMacs and MacBook Pros (which have not undergone a hardware refresh and can still run OS 10.6) and are unable to NetBoot them using our existing 10.6-based NetBoot or a new 10.7-based NetBoot image created using that hardware.

The computers download the NetBoot image from the server and complete the boot process (verbose boot completes) but then the system just sits there with the background image showing (10.6 shows the Casper Suite background, 10.7 shows Apple startup white screen) and a movable mouse cursor. The computers have an IP address at that point and respond to pings, but cannot be connected to via SSH.

Older hardware models in our environment boot both NetBoot images without any problem. Our NetBoot server is running 10.6.8 Server.

Anybody have any suggestions or even seen this before?

Joe Friedel, iCIT
University of Wisconsin - Whitewater
Andersen Library, Room 2003F
(262) 472-1658


Valued Contributor


You didn't say what version of OS your netboot is! 10.6.something? Some of the hardware, although will work with 10.6, will only run with newer versions of 10.6. If you haven't, you ideally should make a 10.6.8v1 netboot image, although 10.6.8 will probably do.

For example, the Early 2009 Mac Mini required 10.5.6 or higher, whilst the Late 2009 model needed 10.6.1 or higher. In fact, it would be nice if Casper had a 'Minimum OS' value in the Inventory of machines.

As for running a 10.7 netboot from a 10.6.8 server, I haven't got this running yet. I started on this, but got diverted to other work.


New Contributor III

I've been trying with a 10.6.8 Netboot image and a new 10.7.2 Netboot image.


Not applicable

After the machine NetBoots you can hold down command V to see verbose mode and what the machine is doing. This will tell you where the machine is failing.

The new machines I believe require 10.7.2


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