Clean install or migration assistant to remove kernels

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by PaulTMA, May 25, 2017.

  1. PaulTMA macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2014
    Using El Capitan on a mid-2009 MacBook Pro. I've been troubled by kernel panics recently and in another thread I was advised to hit the restart button to eliminate these kexts forever, as I think there's a good chance that old Blackberry kernels etc from 2011 have been transferred over when I switched from an even older macbook three years ago. I have struggled to remove these kernels and have spent many days trying - I want them finally gone and that side of things cleaned up. Back then I think I used Superduper, possibly in conjunction with Migration Assistant and had no problems, though obviously I realise my current computer has inherited all of these troublesome files. I have just undertaken a full backup via Time Machine (which I have never used previously). My backup is on an internal HD in the optical bay. Obviously I want my install to be free from system clutter, particularly bad kernels, but would like to make the process as straightforward and effective as possible. So I have a few questions:

    - Should I use Migration Assistant or avoid it?
    - Is there a way to use it were I won't carry over kexts and other such clutter?
    - As a user of Logic Pro X, I have a lot of plugins downloaded. If I have to manually transfer everything back over, I am worried about messing this up and the plugins not being detected. Same with photos etc. - what is the best method here?
    I find the Library folders confusing, so am unsure about manually transferring over the individual contents, folder by folder. Do I need to do this? There's the worry that I won't know when it's even safe to then delete my backup.

    - Is there a simple way to get everything back after a clean install? I'm worried about getting something wrong or something getting lost along the way.

  2. Bending Pixels macrumors 65816

    Jul 22, 2010
    First, make sure the kernel panics aren't related to a hardware issue (like RAM crapping out). Personally, I'd do a clean install - but that's me (and has something to do with my long usage of that other inferior OS called Windows)
  3. PaulTMA thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2014
    I can't be certain, but there are no obvious signs that the RAM has been causing the issue. If I reinstall El Capitan I do get to wipe out these useless, difficult to shift kernels and if the problem persists, I guess I will then know if it's some kind of hardware issue. I'm just unsure the best way to go about it.
  4. Weaselboy, May 25, 2017
    Last edited: May 25, 2017

    Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    If you use Migration Assistant, any problems are likely to be imported again.

    No offense, but from your questions, I'm afraid you are very unfamiliar with were things are stored on your Mac and I don't want to see you lose data and get yourself in a bind by erasing everything and starting over.

    I do have a suggestion. Download and and run the app Etrecheck. It will create an anonymized report showing everything running on your system. Post that report here for us to have a look and we can try and help.

    Do the KPs stop if you boot to safe mode by holding the shift key? Safe mode stops all third party items like old kexts form running, so if that fixes it, that is a good indicator it is something old running we can ID and remove.
  5. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    I agree trying safe mode is worth it

    If you try the system in safe mode and still get panics, the Apple Hardware Test, a SMART test of the hard drive(s), and/or taking the system to an Apple Store to run MRI, may be worthwhile, before investing the numerous hours that a clean reinstall and manual setup can consume.

    Also, what do your logs say about the cause of the panic?

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4 May 25, 2017