Downgrading from Lion to Snowleopard – easy?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by Beliblis, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. Beliblis macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    #1
    Hi,

    For reasons mentioned in another thread (slack Photoshop CS6 performance on Lion), and with Mountain Lion getting so many mixed reviews, AND repeatedly hearing that SnowLeopard is still one of the best choices for productivity: I'd like to downgrade from Lion to Snow Leopard. (Got the original SL retail disc).

    Does it have to be a clean install – or is there a way of tricking the current (newer) system into a downgrade.
    (Whilst I'm not a Unix or IT expert, I know my way around Mac OS... system folders, library folders,...)

    How about Mail?
    I know Mail in Lion is a new version. Can I still migrate my current mail database from Lion to Snow Leopard?
    (even if it's only possible manually, i.e. moving the user/Library/Mail folder)

    Same for Safari Bookmarks?

    Thanks for your advice!
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    #2
    AFAIK, you can only do a clean install when downgrading. I'd say be sure to have your system backed up before attempting anything. I don't know about mail insofar as it being backward compatible - if I was a betting man, I'd say no. I think you may have better luck on safari.

    Why not try Mountain Lion, there's an upgrade path for that and you may find the issues you're experiencing with Lion has been resolved with ML.
     
  3. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

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    #3
    Pandora box, can of worms comes to my mind.

    Way too difficult, there are literary 1000s-10.000s of files that changed from SL to Lion, and then the folders, /Library /Bin /Private /sbin /System /usr
    just too many changes in there.
    The only way I think is or a clean install or an archive and install.

    And for mail and bookmarks, good luck with that, might work but it also might not.
     
  4. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

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    The Black Country, England
    #4
    Before you attempt to install it make sure your Mac supports Snow Leopard. If the model was released after July 2011 you will probably struggle to get the older OS working correctly.
     
  5. Beliblis thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    #5
    Well, it's a late 2011 machine: MacBookPro8,2
    But the early 2011 ones were a "MacBookPro8,2" as well... so it should work.

    As for SL vs ML:
    I'm very much production-orientated, and from what I hear SL was the best system for productivity.
    "Modern" features from ML such as Notification Center, Facebook-integration,... are not important to me.

    Might try a clean SL install on an external HD. Current internal drive is backed up (via CCC) anyway, so no fear of data loss...
     
  6. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

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    #6
    That's the way to do it, then if it boots into SL just move over the mail and safari data.
     
  7. Beliblis thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    #7
    I'm also considering a clean install of Lion. Problem is: I don't have a physical CD, or installer file...
    (I bought my MBP as a refurb from Apple, and it came with Lion preinstalled but no installer file or DVD)

    So: How to do a clean install?
     
  8. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

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    #8
    The late 2011 MacBookPro8,2 specifies 10.7.2 as the minimum OS and the early 2011 MacBookPro8,2 10.6.6. Just be aware the latest Snow Leopard retail discs are only 10.6.3.

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1159
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1633#retail

    That would be very sensible. :)
     
  9. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

    Joined:
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    #9
    There should be a restore partition on your disk, hold the option key while start up, it will show you if you have one, I think there is also a way to burn this but others or google might know more.
    It could also be an internet install AFAIK.
     

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