Best way to backup old mbp for new mbp?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by diamond3, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. diamond3 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 6, 2005
    I have a 2.26ghz, 500gb 13"mbp that I sold this evening for $1050 (i'm pretty stoked about that). I'm planning on buying a new mbp but it won't be here for several days. In the meantime, I need to backup all of my files (music, photos, downloads, docs, mail, contacts) except applications. I don't need the applications since I will be able to install on the new mbp later with the discs.

    Is time machine the best way to do this?
    I only have a mac pro with plenty of HD space and an external that won't hold it all and I can't/don't wan't to partition.
    Would you all suggest just going through and backing up individual files by copying them the HDs? Any applications that make this easier, or is it safer just to go through everything myself?

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but to back up the following this is what I had in mind

    iPhoto: go to user account and just copy the iPhoto library to backup HD. Then when I get my new mbp, copy it back to the user; pictures folder and start iphoto holding option. (Faces, geotag etc all maintained)

    iTunes: similar process as the above. All of my ratings, playlists will all be maintained as well as apps for ipod/iphone correct?

    Mail: not sure the best way to do this.I want every message that is in my inbox for 3 different mailboxes to show up on the new mbp without downloading them all again. Suggestions?

    Also, any tips of common files I should copy over that i might forget??? Thanks
  2. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    Backing up manually by copying files is just asking for grief and failure. Use TimeMachine or SuperDuper to handle the backup. If you do it using either of these approaches then using the Migration Assistant with your new Mac makes it drop dead easy for you to get up and running quickly and easily.
  3. diamond3 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 6, 2005
    Well, then I guess my next question would be how I would do such a thing using the HD on my mac pro? Do a time machine backup over ethernet to my mac pro without having to partition or reformat any of the HDs? I only have 108gb on the external and I've used up 180gb on my laptop HD.

    edit: Actually I could to a SuperDuper clone and I'm assuming save the clone to my same mbp HD. Then transfer it to the mac pro. The only question would be how to use the migration assistant to get the necessary files from the superduper clone on the mac pro?
  4. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    You can get a portable USB drive large enough to handle your 180GB laptop for about $60. That's what I would do.

    Do you not back up normally? :eek:
  5. diamond3 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 6, 2005
    Kind of. All of my really important files are backed up using dropbox. Pictures and music are on the mac pro as well for the most part. My problem is that I had an external HD (160gb original HD in the mbp) that I sold with the laptop because I won't need it if I upgrade the HD in the new mbp to 640 or 750.

    Here is what I'm thinking: the 160gb ext HD has only about 108 gb free, copy what is on it to the mac pro. Use it and do a time machine backup after I delete some unnecessary files on my laptop to get it under the 160gb space. Is there anything specific I should do on the time machine?

    On the new laptop, I will do a fresh install and then use migration assistant using the Ext. HD to transfer only the necessary files, not the OS. Is there anything wrong with that plan?
  6. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    That is more or less what I would do.
  7. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
  8. diamond3 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 6, 2005
    Alright, thanks for your help. I went ahead and used superclone to copy my HD after I deleted some unnecessary files. I had 159 gb on the external because snow leopard uses the different file structure. Time Machine wanted 174 gb even though I only had used 150gb of files I needed to backup.
    Now that I have the backup, I'll just use migration assistant. Hopefully all goes well. If I decide to buy a HD, I'll probably get one to replace the original HD in my new MBP.

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