Best backup options for doing a fresh install?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by graphish, Feb 3, 2015.

  1. graphish macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2015
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    #1
    Hi All.

    Can anyone give me some advice on backing up my mac so that I can do a fresh install of Yosemite. I am currently backing up with Time Machine, but its taking forever!

    I'm not sure about using Migration assistant because I don't want it bringing any problems over (Safari slow and often unresponsive, just generally a bit slow all round). Frustrating when its only a year old...

    Was wondering whether I should just back up my data and network settings (email etc.. if poss) and fresh install my apps once Yosemite re-installed.
    Originally I just upgraded from Mavericks, I wonder if this is the problem....

    Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    What follows is my opinion and mine only. Others will disagree. Some will disagree vehemently.

    The best course of action for a "fresh install" is:

    1. Use CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper to create a bootable clone of your internal drive onto an external drive. DO NOT use Time Machine -- you want a FULLY 100% BOOTABLE drive. Nothing else will do if you run into problems.

    2. TEST the cloned copy by rebooting with the option key until the startup manager appears. Then select the external cloned drive with the pointer and hit return. You want to be certain the Mac -will- boot up from the external cloned copy.

    3. At this point, you'll need to have the installer for the OS you're installing "available", on the cloned drive. You may have to download a fresh copy.

    4. Now, with the installer ready-and-waiting (still booted from the cloned copy), use Disk Utility to re-initialize your internal drive. Partition and test as required.

    5. Next, launch the OS installer and "aim it" at the internal drive. Let the installer do its thing.

    6. Towards the close of the installation process, you'll be asked if you want to migrate your accounts, apps, settings and data from another drive. Yes, you do want to do this, and the drive with that stuff is already connected. So select the cloned backup as the source, and let the migration take its course.

    The migration time will vary, depending on how much data there is to be transferred.

    When done, you should be able to reboot to the internal, with the fresh copy of the OS ready to go, along with your accounts, apps, settings, etc.
     
  3. graphish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2015
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    #3
    Thanks for the info. But if I do a migration won't I bring any problems I had originally onto the fresh install.
    Also can I clone using a synology drive using Ethernet?
     
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #4
    [[ Thanks for the info. But if I do a migration won't I bring any problems I had originally onto the fresh install.
    Also can I clone using a synology drive using Ethernet? ]]


    That depends on "the problems" you were having.

    You can do a "manual restoration", but that will probably entail re-instaling EVERY app, re-registering EVERY app (if required), and you will have to learn how to move the contents of your home folder (it cannot simply be "copied" from one drive to another).

    What you want to do is up to you.

    Regarding synology -- I have no idea what that is.
    If you want the results I outlined above, use the tools I recommended above... ;)

    SD will do a complete clone of the internal drive without registration.

    CCC is FREE to download and is FREE to use for 30 days.
     
  5. driftless macrumors demi-god

    driftless

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2011
    Location:
    Chicago-area
    #5
    Yes, you will. I would do a manual migration just moving over data and doing a fresh install of all of the apps.
     
  6. robgendreau macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #6
    I'm not sure what a "manual migration" is. If you mean manually Finder copying stuff, it may or may not be successful, as Fishrrman noted. And you'd better know what to copy, the permissions for it, and where to put it. If you just have default applications and some non-Apple stuff you can restore from the Mac Apple Store or whatever, might work without too much hassle. Or it might not.

    The better plan is to figure out what is causing your problem in the first place; a trial and error reinstallation of everything is a rather blunt tool for fixing a Mac.
     
  7. jdphoto macrumors 6502

    jdphoto

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2014
    #7
    I agree with robgendreau, that it may be more prudent to try and find the source of the problem than do a whole reinstall. That said, I usually do a compete reinstall of my system every 2 years to keep things fresh.

    Also I agree with the OP to be wary of the migration assistant. I've never..I mean never it's, 0 for 4... transfer Microsoft office over to the new installation correctly without me having to go through the whole billion step process to uninstall office and put it back on.

    I'd back up all of your data files and make sure you have a way to reinstall all your software (either through app store, CDs, ISOs, etc..), then wipe clean with a Yosemite bootable USB and install fresh. Then drop in the applications and personal data. If the data is on an external drive and I copy the contents of the main Music, Documents, ect. instead of the directories them selves I've never had a problem with permissions.

    Hope this helps!
     
  8. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2012
    Location:
    Northeast
    #8
    CarbonCopy cloner is the best backup software I have ever seen.

    I also use Backblaze. Also the best. Have fun!
     
  9. WilliamG macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle
    #9
    Carbon Copy Cloner is good, but it doesn't seem to remember all my System Preferences -> notification settings (or my Dropbox login). So for me it's a 99.9% backup method, but it's definitely missing that last 0.1%.
     
  10. cincygolfgrrl macrumors 6502

    cincygolfgrrl

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2012
    Location:
    Somewhere In Time
    #10
    My last clean install

    On my last clean install, I installed the OS from the boot drive, then ran Migration Assistant but unchecked Apps. When that was done I loaded Apps from the App Store and Apps I'd purchased directly from the developer, one at a time. Beforehand I put together a spreadsheet where I listed each App, the source (App Store or developer). I also downloaded and saved developer DMGs on a separate drive.

    Doing it this way was extra work but otherwise easy. The benefit of loading Apps one at a time is I was able to edit what I moved to the newly clean computer. I only loaded the Apps I knew I was going to use.
     
  11. graphish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2015
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    #11
    You have given me much to think about. I have a time machine backup ready if all goes wrong! But thinking that I will backup all my data seperately, along with my music and photos also.

    I don't have a lot of software that I use apart from the usual Office and Adobe CS5 collection. But even now I'm thinking of doing Creative Cloud...

    The biggest thing for me is all my email accounts.. Is there a way of exporting just those settings and all my safari bookmarks?
     
  12. driftless macrumors demi-god

    driftless

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2011
    Location:
    Chicago-area
    #12
    Your Safari bookmarks and iCloud email will be added when you add your iCloud account. IMAP email accounts will be similarly populated.
     
  13. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #13
    OP wrote above:
    [[ But thinking that I will backup all my data seperately, along with my music and photos also. ]]

    AGAIN -- THIS is why you use CarbonCopyCloner (or SuperDuper).
    Either will produce a FULLY BOOTABLE BACKUP with everything there (that means all your files) in POFF (plain old finder format).

    You can export a copy of your Safari bookmarks while Safari is open.
    Just choose "Export Bookmarks" from the File menu and save it anywhere you want.
     
  14. graphish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2015
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    #14
    Is this because time machine makes you jump through hoops trying to find folders and files. Like mounting a disk image etc....
     
  15. graphish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2015
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    #15
    Now what to do with my Synology 1TB NAS...

    Now once I have done my fresh install and everything is working well!:)

    How should I use my NAS. I was thinking it was best to keep all my data on there to keep my iMac HD free.
    or should I keep all data on iMac and just do regular backups? (Best software for that?)

    Thanks, to everyone for there replies....
     

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