Air to Air migration over Wifi... am I just screwed?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by wanderluster, Sep 14, 2014.

  1. wanderluster, Sep 14, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014

    wanderluster macrumors newbie

    Sep 14, 2014
    I'm migrating from a late 2010 Air to a current Air.

    Which means no ethernet ports and no firewire or thunderbolt on the older one.

    Is wifi my only option? And are the rumors true that this could take 32 to 192 hours? (Those are figures I've seen from other people.) I have 128gb [ETA: sorry, 256gb] drives and I'm supposed to get 25mbits/sec cable internet speed, but it's de facto 7 over wifi.

    I saw one site recommend setting up a dedicated wireless network between the two computers, but I don't know if that will speed things up or just safeguard against hiccups. I also hear there's a USB to ethernet adapter. If it's really going to take more than a day to migrate, maybe it's worth getting it?

    Any other advice? Experience with how long it will take? Thanks.
  2. DancyMunchkin macrumors member

    Mar 19, 2014
    Why not buy a external hard drive to do this?
  3. Newtons Apple Suspended

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    WHat are you trying to migrate.

    I keep my data in folder which are easy to copy and move to my new computer.

    With a 128GB drive you can't have that much to move, just do it.

    Copy your data files onto a CD or USB drive or a cheap external drive and move on!
  4. wanderluster thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 14, 2014
    I do have most data backed up on an external drive with Time Machine, but not everything.

    I'm worried about all those hidden files, in non-obvious places, application data, email attachments, etc., that get missed in a manual transfer (I've lost data along the way with every new computer). The Migration Assistant is supposed to catch everything, including the applications themselves (right?).

    Can I use the migration assistant to transfer *everything* to an external HD, and then from the external HD to the new computer? I'm worried it won't be able to port over the applications with the library files correctly in place without an OS on the HD.

    But I don't know. Thoughts?

    Anyone else have experience with how long the migration takes over wifi? i just don't want to be caught without a computer for 3 days, you know? Thanks.
  5. NorCalLights macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2006
    I have not done it over WiFi, however I have gone Pro to Air over ethernet.

    Just buy two Ethernet adaptors (one USB to ethernet for your 2010 Air, and one thunderbolt to ethernet for your new one) and do it that way. You can always return the adaptors when you're done. An apple store will only charge you 10% restocking.

    Or give it a shot over WiFi. Definitely make a peer-to-peer network between the computers. If you set them up right next to each other on their own network, it should go pretty quickly. I doubt it'll take 192 hours!
  6. ziggyiggy macrumors newbie

    Aug 31, 2010
    Your best bet would be either using an external hard drive to move what you want/ use Time Machine to do an exact migration. You can choose just your user data, don't have to move over settings. Or use ethernet adapters, which would still suck.
  7. macs4nw macrumors 601


    I'm assuming that you didn't have the 2010 Air backed up to a TC, which would have helped a lot, however Apple sells a USB Ethernet Adapter for $29. At the other end (your current Air) you'll need the Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter also $29, plus connecting Ethernet cable which will allow you to do it over Ethernet rather than WiFi, and that should speed things up considerably. But that seems like a rather elaborate, not to mention expensive proposition for a one-time deal.

    Kanex recently introduced a 'Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet + USB 3.0 Adapter', which would simplify things somewhat but that hub-like device lists for $79.95, so also not practical for a one-time file transfer.

    I would just bite the bullet and get things going over WiFi before retiring for the night, and check progress the next day. Just remember as long as you get all your files moved over without a hitch, it's only a one-time headache.
  8. Jebstyle macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2014
    Why not just do a full backup on your external hard drive? You said yourself you've already backed up some stuff. Just let Time Machine do a full backup (which you should be doing anyways so you have a backup) and then when you setup your new mac and connect the drive it will give you options on what to restore. :apple:
  9. macs4nw macrumors 601


    The 2010 MBAs have no Ethernet ports, so that'll have to be over WiFi as well, and won't save any time, but is in fact an extra step.
  10. wanderluster thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 14, 2014
    Thanks everyone for the tips. I'll let you know what I decide to do and how it goes down.

    Much appreciated!
  11. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Here is your answer right here. Just do a full TM backup then when you start the machine and it asks if you want to import data... say yes and point to the TM backup as the source. This will bring in all your apps and data and settings.

    Wifi will take a long long time, but keep in mind Migration Assistant does not move the OS, so the total of you Apps folder plus your Users folder would be about what would get moved.

    Just a warning. Do not setup and account then try to run Migration Assistant later as that will cause you no end of problems. Do the import as part of the system setup when you first turn it on.

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