i am running mountain lion but need snow leopard to run pro tools is it possible to keep both operating systems

  • Asked about:  Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard

4 Answers from the Community

  • Best Answer:

    Yes, it is possible to keep both if you have a Snow Leopard and Mountain Lion partition. To do so, you'll want navigate to Applications->Utilities->Disk Utility. Select the top part of the drive, NOT the name of the drive (Default is Macintosh HD, do NOT select this).

    Once highlighted, click the Partition tab on the right. Then at the bottom, click the "+" tab. High light the 2nd partition and rename it to the right so you can differentiate the drives when installing Snow Leopard. From there you can choose the size of the partition by dragging the divider up or down. If you're only using pro tools, you may want to keep the Snow Leopard partition to a minimum of 10-15GB, enough to store pro tools and projects.

    After the partition is made, insert your Snow Leopard CD, run the installer to the NEW partition where pro tools will be, and it will restart and install on it's own.

    After that you just have to hold down the option key on re/boot and you'll be able to select which partition you wish to boot from.

  • The easiest way to achieve this is to add a partition your hard drive to take Snow Leopard. You can do this with Disk Utility, assuming you have enough free space to do so. Allow about 10Gb for a basic Snow Leopard installation, and then add whatever Pro Tools needs and use the result as a minimum partition size.

    This is non-destructive—you can add the partition without any need to format the drive—so you can do it on your main drive without losing data. It may take a long time to accomplish depending on how much free space there is on the drive. It would be wise to ensure you have a current backup before proceeding.

    You can find detailed instructions for adding partitions in OSX elsewhere on the web.


  • The Macintosh will allow several operating systems to be set up.

    Personally, I have four different OS configurations to start up from.

    You need to divide your hard drive into partitions (or attach an external hard drive). (To make partitions, use "Disk Utility".) Then, if your Mac's CPU is compatible with Snow Leopard, install Snow Leopard on one partition, while keeping Mountain Lion on another partition.

    To switch between each OS:

    1) When the Mac starts up and chimes, press and hold the OPTION key until a screen appears with various bootable partitions. Select the partition with the OS you want to start up in. (To select: use the tab key or a wired mouse. A wireless mouse doesn't always work for this screen.)

    2) Alternatively, use "Startup Disk" in System Preferences.

  • Yes - provided that your Mac is a 2011 model or earlier - you can use Snow Leopard. The easiest way would be to install it on an external hard drive, or to create a new partition on your internal hard drive.