Booting from older OS to use Adobe CS6

Charla

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 20, 2012
7
0
Brisbane, Australia
Hi everyone,
I feel I should be able to work this one out myself, but can't get my head around it. I have a reliable old MacBook Pro (17" mid-2010, hotted up a bit). I'm still using Yosemite as I'd heard my Abode CS6 software would have problems with all newer OS.
Now however I really need to upgrade the OS, but don't want to lose my ability to use CS6. If I update the OS and want to use my CS6 suite, would it be possible to boot an older OS from a USB/external drive and still access the same software and files? Or do I need to do something like a carbon copy of the drive (everything - OS, software, files etc) and boot from that?
Happy for any and all of your wisdom.
Many many thanks in advance.
Charla
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,384
5,622
What you could do is:
1. Buy an external drive (USB3 would be fine, it's backward compatible with USB2 on a 2010 MBP)
2. Use Disk Utility to erase the external drive to Mac OS extended with journaling enabled (GUID partition format)
3. Get ahold of a cloning app (CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper). Both of these are FREE to download and use for 30 days.
4. Use CCC (or SD) to create a bootable cloned backup of the internal drive.

Now, do this:
a. Power down, all the way off
b. Press the power button and IMMEDIATELY hold down the option key and KEEP HOLDING IT DOWN until the startup manager appears.
c. You should see the external drive in startup manager.
d. Select the external cloned drive with the pointer and hit return
e. Do you get "a good boot"? If so, get to the finder and try your CS6 suite.
f. Does it work?
 
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treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
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Honolulu HI
It would be helpful to know 1) what OS do you want to upgrade to (Mojave is not supported on your MBP, High Sierra is the latest OS for your MBP); 2) do you have a SSD or HDD in your MBP?

I have a external SSD with Mountain Lion from which I boot my 2012 Mini once in a while (normally it boots High Sierra).
 

dwig

macrumors 6502a
Jan 4, 2015
659
242
Key West FL
Do what Fishrrman suggests. You will then have an external drive that is bootable and contains all of you software and data. Disconnect that external drive and put it "on the shelf" for safety. You can then upgrade the OS on your MBP and test to see if everything is fine. If not, you can boot from the external and use it to clone back to the internal to undo the failed upgrade.

Personally, I'd consider a small modification to Fishrrman's steps. Get an external drive that is 2-4 times the size of your MBP's internal. When you use Disk Utility in Step 2, partition the new drive into multiple partitiions each the size of your MBP's internal. This way you can use CCC or SD to clone to one partitiion the first time, upgrade one OS version #, test, and if good then clone the internal again to a second partition. You are then able to safely upgrade the internal another step and still have your original OS on one partitiion, the first upgrade on the second and so on. I do this with my several Macs at work. I do them periodically just for backup, but I'll always do one just before any OS or major software upgrade and then keep that pre-upgrade clone for a good while. My external drives holding the clones usually have 3-4 partitions so I have 3-4 old versions to fall back on.
 
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Charla

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 20, 2012
7
0
Brisbane, Australia
Thanks everyone - that sounds like enough for me to go on to give it a red hot go.

I am guessing that backing up the 'internal drive' only means I don't have to copy ALL my data to the external drive?

Will post back if I have any troubles.

I guess I'll upgrade the newest I can go (if that's High Sierra). Don't mind Yosemite except it won't allow my iPhone to talk to iTunes! Have a 1TB SSD in the MBP, and also have SuperDuper so should be straightforward. Thanks for your help everyone, very much appreciated.
 
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treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
1,849
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Honolulu HI
If you install High Sierra with the APFS file system (the default when you have a SSD), your external bootable disk won't be able to read/write to the High Sierra APFS disk. On my external bootable Mountain Lion, it just says my APFS disk is an unrecognizable disk. A High Sierra APFS disk will see your Yosemite disk without a problem. If you have new data on High Sierra, you can connect an external HDD or flash drive formatted as HFS+ or cloud storage and transfer data from High Sierra you want to see on Yosemite. You can keep the HFS+ format when you go to High Sierra but it takes some extra steps and Apple would really like you to use APFS vs. HFS+ for the SSD boot system disk when you use High Sierra and Mojave.