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I've seen it before, but after a few minutes of Googling I'm coming up empty -- does anyone know/remember what file OS X stores its version number in?

I'm trying to figure out the version of OS X on an external drive without booting into it. Note that solutions like the one here won't work as they all require you to be booted up with the drive in question.

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  • Just realized I can probably solve this by going to System Preferences' "Startup Disk" preference pane, but I'm still curious. – Krishen Greenwell Jan 20 '14 at 21:05
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Think I figured it out: On the disk in question, view the contents of the file "/System/Library/CoreServices/SystemVersion.plist". Thanks to JonoC at deploystudio.com/Forums/viewtopic.php?id=5541 for the tip about SystemVersion.plist and Justin Daigle at justindaigle.com/blog/2010/02/… for the absolute path to that file. (And, yes -- by the way -- System Preferences' "Startup Disk" preference pane did also show me the OS X version of my external disk.)

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