Are Clean Installs still a thing?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by mtngoatjoe, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    Just curious... Do people need to do "clean" installs instead of just using migration assistant when they get a new Mac?

    I was under the impression this wasn't as important as it used to be back in the System 7 days.
  2. casperes1996 macrumors 68040


    Jan 26, 2014
    Horsens, Denmark

    Well, it isn't. But there can be issues cropping up that clean installs can fix still. Furthermore, sometimes it's just nice if you mess around with a lot of stuff, to easily get rid of all the traces of weird stuff you've played with. Sometimes easier and faster to manually get your stuff back, then to get rid of what you don't want.
  3. robo456 macrumors 6502


    Mar 3, 2008
    New Jersey
    I do this on my Windows and Apple machines every few years... usually when I upgrade a hard drive. I do a clean install... it's a good way to do some "Spring Cleaning" on apps or games I don't use on a regular basis. I also use it as a good time to clean up my documents, pictures, and videos too!
  4. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I still do it, as its the only way to guarantee a clean system devoid of the cruft that builds up over time. I restore my data, but the system is a full clean install, and the apps get manually re-installed.
  5. MacGizmo macrumors 65816


    Apr 27, 2003
    I used to do a clean install with every major OS upgrade. As maflynn said, it's a great way to clean out the system. I would re-install most of my apps manually—which forced me to really think about whether or not I even wanted/needed them to begin with.

    The last few versions of macOS, I've just updated over the old install with no issues at all. But I do miss that "new car smell" you get with a clean install.
  6. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    Migration Assistant is fine if the old computer was kept up to date and didn't have any software problems. Otherwise you'll transfer the problems. I have found that if the Mac OS X versions are off by a few generations. You are best off transferring your files only, clean installing your software and drivers and manually inputting your settings.

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