Can I install from my external dvd drive as my internal is toast?

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    You might be able to install from an external optical drive. But if that doesn't work, options 2, 3 and 4 below will. Here are your options:

    1) Place Install Disc into external optical drive. Restart Mac and hold option key. If it works, you will be able to select the Snow Leopard installer "Mac OS X Install DVD". If it doesn't work (very likely) then do options 2, 3 or 4 below.

    2) use the optical drive on any Mac or PC on the same network. (do internet search for "Remote Install Mac OS X". Article HT2129 on the Apple site has full instructions.) If the other computer is a PC, simply insert the Snow Leopard DVD, open the folder for the DVD and click on setup.exe. This will open up an Install Assistant with "Remote Install Mac OS X". If another Mac is used, open the "Remote Install Mac OS X.app" that may be in that Mac's Utilities folder.

    3) get a flash stick (minimum 8GB in size). Reformat it as "Mac OS Extended (journaled)" or as GUID. On another Mac with an optical drive, "restore" the Snow Leopard DVD to the flash stick. Connect flash stick to your Mac. Restart (or StartUp) your mac while holding the option key. Select the flash stick and do the install. (For full instructions, do internet search for "Install OS X Snow Leopard from USB flash drive".)

    4) alternate method would be to make a disk image file (.dmg) of the DVD on another Mac with optical drive. Transfer .dmg file to your mac via a network. Create a new partition on your Mac that is about 10GB in size (formatted as "Mac OS Extended (journaled)". Restore the .dmg to the new partition. Restart your Mac and hold down the option button. Select the new partition to start up from and continue with the installation.

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