Apple releases solutions for macOS reinstall issues affecting M1 Macs

macOS Big Sur
macOS Big Sur (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Apple has posted a solution to M1 Mac users' macOS reinstall issues.
  • The solution involves either creating a bootable installer or using Terminal through macOS Recovery.

After some M1 Mac users reported installation errors when trying to restore and reinstall macOS Big Sur on their new Mac, Apple has posted a new support document (opens in new tab) that provides some solutions to the problem.

The issue, as described by Apple, affected some users who were trying to reinstall macOS from macOS Recovery.

If you erased your Mac with Apple M1 chip before updating to macOS Big Sur 11.0.1, you might be unable to reinstall macOS from macOS Recovery. A message might say "An error occurred while preparing the update. Failed to personalize the software update. Please try again."

Apple has provided two solutions to fix the issue. The first method is to to use a flash drive, hard drive, or other Mac as a bootable installer that you would hook up to your affected M1 Mac.

If you have another Mac and a suitable external flash drive or other storage device that you don't mind erasing, you can create and use a bootable installer for macOS Big Sur.

The second method is a 17-step process that involves using Terminal through macOS Recovery. Apple says that, if neither option works, to contact Apple Support for further assistance and options.

If you have an M1 Mac affected by this issue, check out the full support article (opens in new tab) on the Apple Support website.

Joe Wituschek
Contributor

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.