Buying a Mac Pro. Have some q's.

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by capitanbuzo, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. capitanbuzo macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    #1
    Well, I was planing on buying a Mac Pro this Friday so I have some questions about peripherals I will be buying with it and some questions regarding migrating.

    1. I want to migrate over all my applications from my late 2007 MBP (FCS, PS, etc), their application data, documents, settings.. Well, pretty much everything. I have a Time Machine backup I could use or should I use migration assistant? Never used migration assistant so don't really know how it works.

    2. If I do go with migration assistant, I'd need it to transfer my iTunes library (with all my playlists I made over the years). The tricky thing with this is that I have all my videos stored on an external HDD. Will migration assistant move all these videos that are on my external HDD over and store them in a new location on my MP's HDD? I'd really have to hate finding all those videos individually if iTunes can't find them.

    3. I need to get new speakers with this system. I'm looking for something not too expensive. The speaker systems that I have been considering is a 2.1 Insignia system and a 2.1 Logitech System.
    Anyone have experience with either of these two systems?

    4. I've been going back and forth on my Hard Drive setup. I've been thinking of having 2 750GB HDD's for bay's 1 and 2 in software RAID 0, 640GB (for Windows) in bay 3, and a 1.5 or 2TB HDD for Time Machine. Any other suggestions? I do not want to go for any SSD's or raptors honestly.

    5. Lastly, I plan from buying my system from MacConnection on Friday or this Monday. According to MR's front page, SL will be available this Friday at Apple stores and Authorized Resellers. Do you think I will get a drop in upgrade with mine? Actually, a better question would be, do you think that if I call them up I could get them to include a copy of it? I already have to buy a copy of SL for my MBP and I would rather not pay another $10 for the upgrade on the MP.

    Thanks for the help.
     
  2. steve knight macrumors 68020

    steve knight

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    #2
    all you need to do is choose add to library and choose the external drive itunes will get them all.
    you can export your play lists and import them too.
     
  3. capitanbuzo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 17, 2007
    #3
    Yeah but I believe I will get duplicates of the data. Last time I did export library, (migrating data to a PC) the playlists couldn't find the videos that are on the external drive.
     
  4. steve knight macrumors 68020

    steve knight

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    Jan 28, 2009
    #4
    when you get done migrating. check under videos if there are videos there delete them as they are not the actual files then do add library and choose the external drive. this will copy them to the internal as long as you have itunes set to copy imported files.
     
  5. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #5
    When I purchased my Mac Pro, I used the migration assistant during the first boot of the Mac Pro to copy all my settings, data, iTunes and apps over from my MacBook Air. It took awhile doing it's thing, but it worked flawlessly. This is absolutely killer functionality that OSX provides... after years of working on Windows, I was blown away.

    Migration assistant will copy everything from your other computer, including iTunes, playlists, etc. Although I'm not sure how it handles the external drive content although it sounds like steve knight has some insights for you there.

    For audio, I would really recommend a USB audio interface and a pair of inexpensive studio monitors. The sound will blow away any computer speaker setup you might be considering. Perhaps look at the Blue Sky Exo setup... It's highly rated.

    For storage, I would get the machine with a 1TB drive (which will be a WD Black). I would then buy another WD Black 1TB for RAID0 which would give you very fast 2TB of main storage. Then buy a 2TB WD Green and setup a small Bootcamp partition (or whatever you think you need) for Windows and use the rest for backup. That leaves 1 bay open for the future - perhaps a fast SSD down the road :D.
     
  6. steve knight macrumors 68020

    steve knight

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    Jan 28, 2009
    #6
    how do you connect the two macs together when you use the migration assistant? also do you need a monitor on the computer your getting info off of?
     
  7. capitanbuzo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #7
    I believe you can use Firewire or an ethernet cable. I also believe you you will need a monitor to start the process.
     
  8. zmttoxics macrumors 65816

    zmttoxics

    Joined:
    May 20, 2008
    #8
    This is called Target Disk Mode, or TDM. Typically, you can put the old mac in TDM, connect it to the new Mac and select it as a volume to copy your user information from in the Migration Assistant. You can do this on first boot of the new Mac.
     
  9. Cynicalone macrumors 68040

    Cynicalone

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    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    Okie land
    #9
    FW800 is what I usually use. Start the Mac you are transferring from in Target Disk Mode. Doesn't matter if it has a monitor or not it just shows up to the new Mac as a FW drive.


    Last time I relocated iTunes I just connected my external to my new Mac and iTunes found the files just fine. Went from FW800 on an iMac to FW800 on a Mac Pro. iTunes acted like nothing had changed.

    I use Migration Assistant and have never had any real problems.
     
  10. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #10
    I do mine over the network - no extra cable required. Just be sure that your old Mac is up and running on the network and that your new Mac is connected to the network before you boot it for the first time. Then in the migration assistant choose the LAN option.

    Ideally, both computers should be connected by wired ethernet for optimal transfer speeds, but wireless should work fine too, it will just take longer.
     
  11. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #11
    This would work, though you might find yourself in need of a little more throughput, given the applications you've listed. That would mean stuffing drives in different locations, such as the Windows disk in the empty optical bay, and the time machine (backup disk) either in the optical bay connected to a SATA card (assuming the new machine is an '09), or in an external enclosure, and attach via some method (USB or FW to use an existing port, or via eSATA, again, a card would be needed).

    This would free up the remaining 2x (non RAIDed) HDD bays to increase the drive quantity for additional throughput.
     
  12. capitanbuzo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #12
    I plan on getting an external backup solution somewhere down the road (maybe getting SSD's then) but for now would prefer to just stay internal. I mainly can't decide between two 750GB drives in RAID 0 or two 1TB drives in RAID 0.
     
  13. capitanbuzo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 17, 2007
    #13
    I will probably go with something like that later down the road. For now, I am looking for something relatively cheap to replace my current speakers I have (a pair of HP Harmon/Kardon speakers that i got for free off of my friends dead computer).

    Another question I forgot to ask about. Will I see a difference in video performance if I use a VGA cable over a DVI or HDMI cable? I already have a long enough VGA cable running to where I will be putting my Mac Pro but I can go get a DVI cable or HDMI cable to replace it with. I will end up using a GTX 285 graphics card in the Mac Pro which is hooked up to an Acer H233H monitor at 1920x1080.
     
  14. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #14
    VGA is analog and I'm surprised you don't have signal noise over a long run. DVI is digital and will be immune to noise and provide the most accurate image possible. I don't know what VGA signal quality is like, I stopped using VGA about 6-8 years ago! :p
     
  15. capitanbuzo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 17, 2007
    #15
    Yeah well I was using it on a 6 year old computer and it was longer than the DVI and HDMI cable that I had. I guess I will end up getting a DVI or HDMI cable if I can't get a long enough DVI.
     
  16. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #16
    If both drives are of the same manufacturer and series, the larger the capacity, the better the througput. It has to do with the platter density, and the outermost tracks are faster. So you'd also want to keep the overall filled capacity to 50% or less if possible to get improved throughput. Once you hit the inner tracks, it goes downhill, and the smaller the capacity of the drive, the faster that happens.

    Hope this makes sense. :)
     
  17. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #17
    This reminds me of a question I asked elsewhere here and never got an answer...

    Does OSX do a good job of writing files from outside to in?

    I know for a fact that Windows spaces stuff out... for example, it will install the OS to the outer portion of the drive, put the swap file somewhere in the middle and then write other content here or there keeping large gaps of space between things to avoid fragmentation. It's for this reason that short-stroking Windows drives provides a benefit. Is OSX equally lazy in this regard or does it take more care to optimize placement of files to the outside tracks and in doing so, possibly create more fragmentation?
     
  18. capitanbuzo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 17, 2007
    #18
    Thanks for the help. Realistically, its more cost efficient to go with 1TB drives but was just thinking of the other options. Also, do you think there is going to be much of a difference using an HDMI cable to connect my MP to my acer H233H monitor than using a DVI cable?
     

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