Any tips on doing a clean install of MacOS and getting hold of either Mojave (to boot from USB) or earlier version?

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@Kapirsnick
Thanks. I didn't want to upgrade to Catalina, just fresh install Mojave.

@voidspace There is a minimal rescue mode accessible at boot time, which you can use to (re)run the installer. This requires Internet access.

Not sure if physical media is still available.

@voidspace To access MacOS recovery mode, hold Command + R at boot:

support.apple.com/en-us/HT2013

Whether that allows you to install Mojave vs. Catalina, I don't know. Thought I went through this myself a few months ago (prior to Catalina's release).

@voidspace if your apple ID has downloaded previous versions of macOS, they should still be available in the Mac App Store under the purchases tab. There are actually 2-3 different recovery modes that will do different installers. One version will reinstall the current OS, and another will install the OS the machine shipped with. I believe you need an internet connection either way. The different recovery modes are cmd + R and another key combo, like shift, ctrl and/or alt.

@trashfloat
Thanks. Looks like they've discontinued that option. No version of OS showing under "purchases".

@voidspace apologies for the delay but I finally figured this out. Probably way too pate for your use case, but go to support.apple.com/en-us/HT2013. This links to other support pages that have direct download links for El Capitan thru Catalina. This requires no authentication

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