OS X Mavericks is now available—for free!—and one of the most important tasks you can do is to create a bootable install drive. Now that OS X arrives only as a download, there’s no backup DVD to use if your Mac goes south. Yes, the Recovery HD is there (hold Command-R at startup), but what if the Recovery HD is also hosed?
In my OS X Pocket Guides, I’ve included instructions for making a bootable install on a USB thumb drive, but with Mavericks, the procedure got a lot more complicated (as if Apple deliberately wanted to gum up the works). So, in the latest edition—The OS X Mavericks Pocket Guide—I had to punt. But I’m punting to a great resource: Dan Frakes at Macworld (who clued me in to the changes in the first place).
Go read his article at Macworld here: How to Make a Bootable Mavericks Install Drive. It’s part of a great longer series on installing Mavericks.
While you’re at it, also check out Joe Kissell’s Take Control of Upgrading to Mavericks to make sure you’re prepped and ready for Apple’s latest operating system.