Clean install of Lion, how to backup iTunes (incl iPhone settings/stuff)

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by flyguy79, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. flyguy79 macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2009
    I also want to do a clean install of Lion OS X on my MBP, but I got a couple of questions how to do so.

    1. Do I need to wipe the HD clean before I do a clean install from the USB stick? Or will there be an option for this once I boot form the USB stick with Lion on it?

    2. What's the best way to backup iTunes (incl. iPhone settings/stuff)?
    I've got TimeMachine on which I backup pretty much everything (for security), but other than iTunes I want to install all apps (Email, browsers,...) new. So a really clean new install.

    Is there a way to 'restore' just iTunes and all related files from TimeMachine on a clean install or is it easier to just copy all itunes/iphone realted files and settings externally and then copy them back over (over a new installation of iTunes)?

    Thanks for the help
  2. JTToft macrumors 68040

    Apr 27, 2010
    Aarhus, Denmark
    - I believe there will be an option for it.

    - You could just use your Time Machine backup. I used DVD backup (with iTunes' built-in feature) some time ago, and it works well, but if you have a large library that may not be your best option.

    - How are those two different? As iTunes comes with the operating system, you won't need to restore it, nor install it anew.
  3. flyguy79 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2009
    I never used TimeMachine to restore anything, so I didn't know that you can just restore parts from TimeMachine e.g iTunes (library, iPhone connection/settings)
    Cause I really don't want the rest of it, rather prefer to install all the other apps new.
  4. echo.park macrumors regular


    Aug 4, 2011
    As far as I know, after or while installing Lion, you can use some kind of migration assistant to get your music out of a Time Machine Backup you earlier created.
  5. ljones macrumors regular

    Oct 2, 2006
    Atlanta, GA
    When you first launch Lion, there is an option to use Migration Assistant to move an account over from a few places. I choose to do a custom port over and moved other things on my own, since TimeMachine seemed to have a bloated user account/library directory.

    This forced me to reinstall CS5 and a few other app, but Migration Assistant transferred all the others over fine.
  6. tallchris macrumors member

    Dec 11, 2010
    "1. Do I need to wipe the HD clean before I do a clean install from the USB stick? Or will there be an option for this once I boot form the USB stick with Lion on it?

    After you boot off the USB you need to select disk Utility, and you can wipe the HD
  7. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    You don't seem to understand what a "clean install" is so I'd suggest not doing it, and instead using Apple's method. If it screws up you can go to other options.

    Apple no longer includes a "clean install" option.

    The "clean install" procedure people talk about here involves erasing your boot drive; if you do that, and you haven't backed everything up (including iTunes libraries), it's gone forever.

    Start searching around on the internet; you essentially are going to erase everything (why, I dunno). Then you have to restore, migrate, manually copy, or manually reinstall everything, or a combo thereof. It's a long process, and you should figure out which of those options is going to work best with the minimal loss of data to suit your needs.

    Good luck.
  8. flyguy79 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2009
    For me a clean install is a whipping the hard drive clean so formatting it, then installing Lion OS form the USB stick, which I already prepare.
    Before I installed previous Snow Leopard from the CD/DVD I also made a clean install and installed every program, software, app new. But iTunes was always the biggest problem. So I think I know what it is.

    The reason I want to that is, that my MBP is so annoying slow right now. And I already tried most of the things suggested all over the web, to speed it up again. And I think its quite a healthy process to clean up your mess once a year anyways. My opinion.

    As I said I never worked with Time Machine before. The only thing I do is connect an external harddrive and run TimeMachine. I never used it to recover anything or use it to 'reinstall' the itunes library.
    (btw I have another service, which backs up into the cloud and I keep another hard drive with backups of important files as well)

    So back to my original question, this time around I want to find the easiest and fastest way to have iTunes library and whatever comes with it. So that once I have my clean Lion on (which I have now running) and iTunes with my present library, so that I connect my iPhone and it won't tell me this is another library or a new computer or another iPhone and iTunes then wants to delete everything of the iPhone and I have to install all apps, music, contacts, notes and whatnot again onto my iPhone.
  9. rekhyt macrumors 65816

    Jun 20, 2008
    Part of the old MR guard.
    I'm in the same situation as the OP right now since I want to nuke my hard drive (with backups, of course, in case I relent.) but I want to selectively restore some stuff, and with iTunes, I'd like to have everything restored for that (Song stars, album art, lyrics, ...)
  10. Ice-Cube macrumors 6502a


    Jul 27, 2006
    Somewhere over the rainbow
    The easiest way for me is to move the iTunes library (in your music folder) to an external drive, then copy it back after Lion is installed. All your album art, playlists, etc are restored. Its the cleanest and you don't need time machine for that.
  11. flyguy79 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2009
  12. Sfdoddsy, Aug 30, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2011

    Sfdoddsy macrumors newbie

    Apr 22, 2010
    I was able to reinstall iTunes with playlists intact (and everything else) from a Time Machine backup via Migration Assistant when I upgraded my Mac Mini to Lion.

    However, I wouldn't bet my life on it. Before installing Lion I cloned my hard drive with Carbon Copy Cloner to an external drive. If Time Machine restore doesn't work, you can just delete the iTunes folder in Music in Lion and copy your cloned iTunes folder in its place.

    If necessary, hold down the option key when you start iTunes and select your cloned folder.

    Always have a backup of your backup.

    I have 35000 or so songs which have all been carefully tagged. Aside from the cost of replacing the music if something goes wrong, there is the time to redo the organization. So I have daily backups of the entire system to the external clone drive, hourly Time Machine backups to another drive, weekly backups to yet another drive attached to my Airport and then every couple of weeks I take one of the backup drives to work and load it onto my iMac there.

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