You need a computer with Windows to run Mac OS X on Windows (of course). You will need at least 4 GB of RAM and a dual-core (two core) processor or better. Personally, the computer I was using for this had a 4-core processor and 12 GB RAM, which is way more than enough. You also need about 10 GB of unused hard drive space.
Right click on “My Computer” on your desktop and click “Properties” to check the stats on your computer. If it doesn’t directly tell you how many cores your processor has, look up your processor model on Wikipedia or Google. You also want to find out whether your processor is made by “Intel” or “AMD”. Computers with AMD processors will not work with Lion. If you have a computer with an AMD processor, and you want to install Mac OS X in a virtual machine, you will have to settle with installing Mac OS X Snow Leopard.
• Virtualbox : This virtualization suite is free, and though it doesn’t offer official support for Mac OS X, it works well enough.
• iAtkos : This is a popular distro of Mac OS X Lion. I won’t go into details, but you can download it from just about any bittorrent website by using a bittorrent client (it’s about 4 GB in size). Unlike the retail version of Lion, you don’t have to use a boot CD like iBoot to start the Mac OS X installer.
You don’t have to use iAtkos; all distros and “bootable” versions of Mac OS X Lion do essentially the same thing. All of these distros will be downloaded as ISO files or DMG files, which are DVD images. Be sure not to download a VMWare Image of Lion, as those versions don’t work with Virtualbox.
Step 1: Prep
Download Virtualbox, install it, and open it up. Also, if you want to be able to view USB devices from your Mac OS X Lion virtual machine, download the Virtualbox Extension Pack and run it before going to Step 2.
Step 2: Create a new virtual machine.
Virtualbox lets you run Mac OSX within Windows by creating a virtual machine, which is a program that simulates a normal computer. To create a virtual machine, open up Virtualbox and click “New” on the upper left. Give your new virtual machine a name, and choose “Mac OS X” for the OS Type.
I recommend assigning at least 2 GB of RAM to the virtual machine, but you can assign as little as 1024 MB of RAM. Every time you turn on Mac OS X, that RAM that you assign here will be used to run the virtual machine. The RAM will be given back to your normal computer after you turn Virtualbox off.
You’ll need to create a new hard disk for the virtual machine. Virtualbox will ask you what type of disk you want to create: VDI, VDMK, or VHD. VDI is the original format for Virtualbox, while VDMK is the format used by VMWare. If you’re considering getting a copy of VMWare, you might want to choose VDMK. Otherwise, just choose VDI. I recommend creating a dynamically expanding disk; the only other option, fixed-size storage, will eat up your hard drive.
Step 3: Give your new virtual machine an operating system.
Your virtual machine will now be created. But don’t stop now–you still need to change a few settings before your machine will actually work. Your new virtual machine will show up on the left column of the Virtualbox start page. Select your Mac OS X virtual machine (single-click) from the main page of Virtualbox, and open up the virtual machine settings. Once the settings open up, go to “System” and uncheck the “Enable EFI” box. This is by far the most important single setting that you will need to change.
EFI, which stands for Extended Firmware Interface, is a feature that helps operating systems start up. Unfortunately, Mac OSX requires ‘speshul’ EFI, so the EFI that Virtualbox uses doesn’t work.
In addition, make sure that “Enable IO APIC” is checked. Then, click on the “Acceleration” tab and check both of the options there. I’m not sure whether these options actually matter (EFI is definitely the most important variable), but it’s better safe than sorry.
Once you’re done with that, go to the settings for “Storage”. In the storage tree box, you’ll see a CD icon labeled “Empty”. Click on it and click “Choose a virtual CD/DVD disk file”. In the window that pops up, choose the .iso or .dmg file for iAtkos (or whichever distro you downloaded).
Step 4: Install Mac OS X Lion
Start up your virtual machine. You should come up to a screen with the black-and-white picture of the iAtkos Lion.
Press enter to startup the Lion installer.
Continue, and you will eventually come up to a page that asks you for a “destination” for your Mac install. Oh no, the page is blank! We’ll have to fix that. To do this, start up Disk Utility (located under the Utilities menu).
Mac OSX can only be installed on a completely clean disk, so you need to use Disk Utility to wipe your Virtualbox hard disk. Click on the Virtualbox hard disk in Disk Utility and erase it. Don’t worry, there’s nothing important on it.
On the installation page for Mac OSX, the Virtualbox hard disk should now be showing up. Select it and continue.
Once that’s done with, Mac OSX will install itself. This will take at least 20 minutes.
When the installation finishes, Mac OS X will crash. This is normal. Restart your virtual machine (make sure not to eject your copy of iAtkos from the virtual DVD drive of your virtual machine).
At the bootup screen, you’ll see an icon for the hard drive where you installed Lion. Select it (use the arrow keys on your computer) and press “Enter”. Lion will boot, and you should eventually be led to the Mac OS X setup screen. Fill it out, then mission accomplished!
Now you can eject iAtkos from your virtual DVD drive. Right-click on the CD icon at the bottom right of the Virtualbox window, and un-check the iAtkos DVD. (The below screenshot is different because it’s taken from my Snow Leopard guide, but it should look something like that.)
Step 5: Make the screen bigger.
Though this step is optional, I still recommend you do it anyways.
When you first use your Mac OSX, you’ll probably notice one thing: your screen resolution is 1024×768. Since Virtualbox doesn’t “technically” support Mac OS X, there’s no official way to change this. But here’s how you can change it anyways:
Open up Finder and go to the folder “Extras” in the main hard drive, and open the file org.Chameleon.boot.plist. Between <dict> and </dict> in the file, insert the following line.
Once you’ve saved it, reboot. Your resolution will increase to 1280×1024.
Step 6: Turn off updates.
First, an important note: DO NOT UPDATE NORMALLY. This is a golden rule of Hackintoshing, and it applies to virtual machines running Mac OS X too.
Anyways, Mac OS X is set to automatically update itself. This is bad. To turn off automatic updates, click on the Apple icon in the upper left hand corner of Mac OS X, go to System Preferences, and then click on “Software Update”. Uncheck the box that says “Check for Updates”.