Mac OS X 10.7 (“Lion”) users who run into disk trouble may be able to get an USB recovery drive with a Lion installer for free from AppleCare if a tech support person decides that the situation qualifies, reports “ars technica” (http://macte.ch/XqghE).
The article says Apple sent out an internal memo to AppleCare and Apple Store employees earlier this week that USB flash drives with Lion are now available to give to qualifying customers, though the customer has to have explored other options first. Apple charges customers US$69 for a USB install drive as the company pushes the OS update as a Mac App Store purchase (it costs $29).
However, you can also create your own if you’ve already purchased Lion. You’ll need a saved Lion installer, a blank USB stick, and basic tools that come with Mac OS X. You can find info on how to do this at http://macte.ch/rUq2z .