For a fresh install, is it better to restore with time machine or manually?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Suno, Mar 2, 2013.

  1. Suno macrumors 6502


    Dec 12, 2011
    This is the first time I'll be doing a fresh install of OS X and I was wondering what the best method of restoring my personal files would be. I'm unfamiliar with how Time Machine actually works, so I don't know if it backs up my personal files, applications, widgets, and whatnot, or if it copies preference files, and things of that nature as well. I -only- want to restore my personal files, as well as a handful of apps. Nothing else. I don't want any of the old, cluttered stuff from my current computer to get into the fresh installed OS...
  2. xShane macrumors 6502a


    Nov 2, 2012
    United States
    For a truly "fresh" install, you should do a clean install of OS X and then manually transport the personal files you need (such as from a flash drive).

    Remember to back up any files you think you even *might* need before reinstalling.
  3. Suno thread starter macrumors 6502


    Dec 12, 2011
    Thanks for your input.

    Is there any way to create some sort of text file containing a list of all of my applications/drivers? I know it's not called drivers on a mac but I can't remember what they're supposed to be called at the moment. I'm talking about things like Perian, FunctionFlip, etc.
  4. ritmomundo, Sep 13, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2013

    ritmomundo macrumors 68000


    Jan 12, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    I just did this on my new MacBook. My old one was running very slow, and rather than use Time Machine and inadvertently transfer the "problem" to my new Mac, I wanted to have a truly fresh install.

    I installed only the programs I actually use, manually set all my settings/preferences, transferred my media files from my "User" folder, and copied over the login.keychain from my latest TM backup. The only thing I don't see (and its not a big deal to be honest) is the iMessage history. I'm just wondering, for peace of mind, did I get everything? Or are there more files/folders (possibly hidden) that I should transfer?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated! :)

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