[SOLVED] Mac pro 4,1 wont boot off anything

Devildjinn

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Jun 4, 2015
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Hi,
I recently acquired a mac pro 4,1 (early 2009?)
I am having tremendous trouble getting osx installed on it.
I have successfully installed Windows 10 on it, and all hardware inside checks out.
Problem is, I only have access to a Windows 10 pc and an old power mac g5.
I have tried multiple times getting the mac pro to boot off usbs, hard drives and DVDs, nothing shows up on the boot menu, only the Windows installation.
This is what I have tried :
Diskpart 2 different usbs, clean, convert gpt. Restore el Capitan dmg image to usb using transmac.
Tried the above with an old macbook pro hdd aswell.
Tried using a leopard install image
Tried using power iso to make the boot usb
Burnt a tiger.iso to a dvd
Rest pram, reset smc.
Used old g5 to make a boot usb with both leopard and elcapitan images

Nothing is working!
This mac is being extremely stubborn, and am at a total loss as to what to do.
I have bought a snow leopard retail install disc, and should be here in several weeks.

If anyone could please help me out I would be eternally grateful.

Thanks for reading
 

spinningstill

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To recap you put a normal SSD in a Mac Pro 4,1?

And installed Win10?

And cannot get MacOS to run?

As far as I understand. You would need to format the SSD in Mac utility (or run installer you ordered) for it to be a Mac and then install Win10 via bootcamp.

Highly recommend a SSD from OWC for this purpose.

You essentially have if I am not mistaken a PC running on a Mac. You have to do it the other way around. Install Mac OS then use bootcamp to install windows.

I use Win10 (installed via bootcamp) on my MBP to help PC users sometimes to walk them through tech issues on the phone (or zoom) since I don't use a PC normally. I do it to have Win10 in front of me to walk people through various issues they may be having.
 
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spinningstill

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The Mac will always launch in Win10 on start up unless you choose otherwise. Meaning if you are in Win10 it will launch back into Win10 and vis versa.

On start up hold the option key, it should give you both options Mac and Win10.

I am assuming you were in the MacOS and installed Win10 via bootcamp.
 

Devildjinn

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The mac came without a hdd. I put in a ssd.
I installed win 10 via usb.
I hold the options on boot and it only ever shows the win 10 install on the ssd.
No matter what I do I can't get it to boot off anything else.
 

spinningstill

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The mac came without a hdd. I put in a ssd.
I installed win 10 via usb.
I hold the options on boot and it only ever shows the win 10 install on the ssd.
No matter what I do I can't get it to boot off anything else.
Is that an Apple SSD or one from OWC? And was it formatted with Mac utility?

You installed Win10 via bootcamp?
 

Devildjinn

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No, the ssd is a normal ssd.
I didn't install Windows via bootcamp.
I installed it like every other pc, booted off usb.
The issue here is the firmware is not recognising any mac formatted usb I insert.
I didn't think the Windows hdd would have anything to do with a pre boot environment, am I wrong?
 

spinningstill

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Jan 15, 2018
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To recap you put a normal SSD in a Mac Pro 4,1?

And installed Win10?

And cannot get MacOS to run?

As far as I understand. You would need to format the SSD in Mac utility (or run installer you ordered) for it to be a Mac and then install Win10 via bootcamp.

Highly recommend a SSD from OWC for this purpose.

You essentially have if I am not mistaken a PC running on a Mac. You have to do it the other way around. Install Mac OS then use bootcamp to install windows.

I use Win10 (installed via bootcamp) on my MBP to help PC users sometimes to walk them through tech issues on the phone (or zoom) since I don't use a PC normally. I do it to have Win10 in front of me to walk people through various issues they may be having.
 
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Devildjinn

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Jun 4, 2015
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Yup, that's exactly right.
This is the problem, I can't get any media to be recognised by the mac to install macosx.
Have almost tried everything except the retail DVDs i am being sent.
Strange since no one else seems to have issues booting a install.dmg from a usb.
 

spinningstill

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Jan 15, 2018
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Yup, that's exactly right.
This is the problem, I can't get any media to be recognised by the mac to install macosx.
Have almost tried everything except the retail DVDs i am being sent.
Strange since no one else seems to have issues booting a install.dmg from a usb.
Right. The DVDs should work. Then install Win10 via bootcamp. You may need to format the SSD via another Mac maybe use an external enclosure making it an external drive to plug into another Mac. But maybe the DVDs will do it. But if not OWC has some good options, they are rock solid.
 

spinningstill

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I didn't think the Windows hdd would have anything to do with a pre boot environment, am I wrong?
You cannot launch MacOS from a Win10 environment. Thats actually against the Apple user agreement as far as I understand.

You may even consider putting the original HDD that came with the machine and formatting the SSD via an external drive (or another port) to make it able to have an MacOS. I think your machine can have El Capitan.
 

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