New imaging tool

FileWave has introduced a free new tool for creating compiled OS X images: Lightning.

Though they position it as a tool to help with Thunderbolt/Firewire imaging, it actually is a more general purpose tool. My initial impression is that if you are building compiled Lion or Mountain Lion images, this tool could replace the use of InstaDMG or System Image Utility for many people.

The user interface is quite simple – to create a new image you just provide the appropriate “Install OS X” application and any additional packages and applications to include in the image.

When you click “Create Imageset”, an ASR restore-compatible image is created in ~/Library/Application Support/FileWave/Lightning/ImageLibrary/.


You could then copy the asr.dmg, rename it if you’d like, and use it with any existing image deployment methodology you have, like Deploy Studio.

Kudos to FileWave for developing this tool, and special thanks for making it free to use.

Explore posts in the same categories: Deployment, Imaging, Lion, Mountain Lion, OS X

3 Comments on “New imaging tool”

  1. Maybe worth to mention that with lightning your host OS version has to match the OS version of the image you’re building.

  2. Jason Bush Says:

    I also want to mention that custom installers (MBP Retina or MBA 2012) can be created with this program. All you need to is swap the ESD dmg out with the custom build ESD in the 10.7.4 app store installer. I used it to create a custom ASR for use with JAMF. The recovery HD is created properly and restores correctly.

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