Re-Download Mac OS X Lion At Any Time

Written by Kevin

Forgot to save the Lion install file before upgrading? No worries you can download the Lion installer again from the App Store.

After several comments on our previous How to install Lion post and several questions sent to our inbox we felt we should address how to re-download Lion after you have installed it. As many of you have found out (some the hard way) when you download Lion OS X from the Mac App Store and install it the original install file gets removed when the install finishes.

This poses a problem to those who didn’t back up the file or burn it to a DVD for later use. If you’re like me and have 2-3 Mac’s in your house you really don’t want to download a 3GB+ file multiple times.

Luckily, there is a way to re-download the file if you prematurely installed it without backing it up. Follow these steps:

1.)  If you have the Mac App Store open then close it
2.)  Reopen the Mac App Store while holding down the Option key
3.)  Continue to hold the Option key and then go to the Purchases link
4.)  Within Purchases (and yes your still holding Option) click on the OS X Lion installer button. This will give you the option to download the OS again.

If this does not work for you or you happened to let go of the Option button during the steps you can also hold Option button again and click on the OS X Lion name within your purchase list to take you to the Lion App Store page, once it loads you should see an Install button like the image below.

You will not be charged twice for downloading the OS again, I’ve tried this twice now and it has worked like a charm. You will receive a pop-up if you try this on a machine where Lion is already installed, as it will be telling you that it is already installed on the machine but you can just click through it and continue the download.

Hope this helps!

About the author


Kevin is the Founder and Senior Editor of Tech Heavy. When he isn't writing about the latest tech tools he spends his days working in an IT department in Dubuque, IA. @kevincray


  • Oh that’s awesome – always handy just in case something goes wrong with the computer as well. 🙂

  • So this means that if you buy one copy, you don’t need multiple licenses?

    • Lena, yes, you don’t need multiple licenses. One copy will cover them all.

      • Wow, pirates around the world will be pleased. 😉 That’s cool though in a way.