Guide for after you install your new hard drive?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by voltare, Jun 6, 2008.

  1. voltare macrumors member

    May 26, 2008
    I have found plenty of guides dealing with the physical act of installing a new hard drive in a macbook pro.

    But the actual installation of the OS and transferring files is not spelled out so clearly in posts I have found. As of right now, I do not have an external drive. I do not have time machine.

    How would I go about transferring my files and installing the OS so that my computer is the same as it was on the old hard drive?
  2. Radio Monk33 macrumors 6502

    Dec 4, 2007

    I also feel very confident about the physical swap, but then what?

    I wish there were more stickied threads with authoritative guides. Would hopefully cut down on redundant threads.
  3. voltare thread starter macrumors member

    May 26, 2008
    I'm really surprised this question has not been answered. I've read countless posts about people switching their hard drives. All of those posts had really precise instructions to change the hard drive but really vague references about restoring the software.
  4. freebooter macrumors 65816


    Feb 24, 2005
    Daegu, South Korea
    Open Disk Utility app, click Help, click Index, and read the topics of interest. You'll get a better idea overall this way, rather than gleaning tidbits posted here. Also, use search engines to find answers the above doesn't help with. The info is out there, probably on utube or, even.
    My tidbits:
    You'll need to have your OSX disks handy if you don't have an external drive to boot up on.
    If I'm not mistaken, once the new drive is installed, startup with OSX disc 1 in the ODD while holding down the C key--you may have to turn on the comp., insert the disk, then reboot. Hold down the C key until the blue screen comes up. From there, follow the onscreen instructions. It's easy. Transferring files is best accomplished via firewire targeted disk mode--check Finder help-- but if you don't have an external drive, you have to get one to put the orig. disk in, get online storage or burn a pile of dvds before you swap out the original drive.
    I just bought a new hd to replace the one that died in my iMac 24" white. I think it got too hot for too long due to dust build up--luckily
    I have back-up. :)
  5. ddoonie macrumors regular

    Jun 4, 2008
    For me personally, the easiest way is to make a bootable backup on an external firewire drive with superduper. Install new hard drive, and use migration assistant to transfer all my settings/apps etc.. right back over... To do it without an external drive, or another mac... Manually copy files and burn them to dvd's? Just buy one of these ( slide your old drive into it. I'm sure more experienced users will chime in, but thats the easiest approach in my books.

    or this, but firewire is better in my eyes... World Computing/USB2PATA25/
  6. freebooter macrumors 65816


    Feb 24, 2005
    Daegu, South Korea
    yes, ditto on the firewire

  7. Palladium macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Northern Ireland, UK
    The simple answer to your question "How would I go about transferring my files and installing the OS so that my computer is the same as it was on the old hard drive?" is that you need another hard drive! There is no getting away from that but there are several ways to achieve it.

    1. Get an firewire connected external hard drive. You could possibly borrow one with sufficient free space from a friend or buy one. They are not too expensive and are really essential for peace of mind. Any computer can suffer HD failure or at 2.00 am you could mistakenly erase something you really needed to keep or installing new software could scramble things (this is rare but it has happened). For peace of mind, you need to keep a backup.

    2. An iPod with sufficient memory can serve as a firewire HD.

    In either of these cases you copy the contents of your current HD to the external drive via some application such as Restore (found in DiskUtility) or either of the shareware progs, SuperDuper or CarbonCopy Cloner. Then you install the new HD and partition it using DiskUtility. If you are upgrading the operating system, you can attach the external HD and use Migration Assistant to move stuff over. Otherwise, boot from the external HD and use the aforementioned programs to copy everything to the new internal HD.

    3. If you really cannot get your hands on a firewire external HD, buy (and these really are cheap) an "enclosure" for the internal HD. This must be of the correct type. I'm not sure the type of HD in a MBP. For my MB, I bought a 2.5" eSATA enclosure which connects via usb. If you are running Leopard, you can boot from the usb drive and then clone it (using one of the above applications) to your new HD. I don't think this is possible with Tiger. With Tiger you install the operating system on your new internal HD and then use one of the "copy" applications to copy everything over from the old HD via usb. You can then use the old HD for backing up. It will presumably be smaller than your new HD so you will have to be selective in what you backup.

    4. Begin saving for a large external HD!

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