How hard is it migrate from one Mac Pro to another?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by AdiosVista, Sep 26, 2008.

  1. AdiosVista macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    I've been shopping around for a new Mac Pro but with the likelihood of new models coming out in just a few months, I can't justify spending all of that money now. My new plan is to buy a refurb and then sell it when the new upgrades are out. I have two questions:

    1) How well do Macs hold their value? Can I expect to get most of my money back if selling in a few months?

    2) How hard is it to migrate all of my files, preferences, etc. from one Mac to another? I wouldn't want to spend ages transferring everything from the refurb to the '09 model.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. brendon2020 macrumors 6502

    Jul 14, 2007
    migration assistant has always moved my stuff from mac to mac really well, never had any issues. I've done mac mini to mac pro and then to another mac pro. Only problem i find is its really slow, i usually leave it overnight.
  3. AdiosVista thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    Excellent, thanks for the input!
  4. Ice-Cube macrumors 6502a


    Jul 27, 2006
    Somewhere over the rainbow
  5. AdiosVista thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    I'm shopping on eBay right now and seeing what you mean... Personally, I would much rather buy refurb right from Apple than from eBay. From what I can tell, refurbs come with the same warranty as new and they claim it goes through a pretty rigorous quality check, so how can you go wrong? Anyone ever have a bad experience with refurb?
  6. robat282 macrumors newbie

    Sep 27, 2008
    Yeah, actually. On the 18th Sept I bought a 2.5 Macbook Pro from the refurb store. Received it on the 19th (friday), went away that and sat night so didn't have chance to use it till I was back on the Sunday - left it importing my iTunes music library and went out, got back and the thing had crashed, spinning colour wheel and not responding to anything so I powered off and on again, wouldnt boot. got a folders with ? in, restrcition sign and it wouldnt even boot off of the install DVD to start with (kept chucking the DVD out). Ran Apple hardware diag, everything passed fine - strange. Finally got it booted off of the DVD and disk utility didn't show the hard disk as being present. tried again, disk was present, verified disk and it passed fine, tried to reboot again and machine boots into DVD not hard disk, change start up disk to hard disk, still boots to DVD. try to reinstall mac os and it fails. Couldn't do much so called up apple monday morning, took it to apple store to see a 'genius' he ran some hard disk diags/repairs and it worked fine after that, could install mac os again. Had a couple of hangs in the week but other than that it was ok.

    Fast-forward to last night, exactly the same happens again, only this time I was playing WoW on it for about an hour...I've spoken to Apple this morning and they are happy to take the laptop back but becuase it's a refurb they won't swap it out for another Macbook Pro...just give me a refund and let me go buy another one. As yet I'm undecided what I want to do.
  7. macosxguy macrumors newbie


    Sep 4, 2006
    London, England
    Go for it.

    Migration to a new mac pro is very easy as long as the hard drive on the new mac pro is bigger or the same as the old mac pro. (You can't transfer files if they won't fit) I bought my 8-Core mac pro brand new, and I love it, 3 Terabytes of storage, blu-ray burner, 6 gigs memory, windoze Vista via bootcamp. It is the do it all machine. Best computer I have owned. But be careful when you upgrade the refurbished one with memory and stuff. I think apple changed the memory speed in the new models. So take it as it is, and yes they really hold up in value. And yes I have owned refurb before, a MacBook Pro and it worked perfectly. I then sold it and got a great value out of it.
  8. AdiosVista thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    So how do I know if it has the old or new memory? The one I'm looking at says:

    2GB (2 x 1GB) of 800MHz DDR2 ECC fully buffered DIMM
  9. ThirteenXIII macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2008
    You're correct with the Memory.
    Apple's new memory specs for the 2008 MacPro are 800Mhz FB-DIMMS

    What OS are you currently running on your MacPro? or do you not have a MacPro?

    If you do have access to both you can transfer via Target Diskmode, which is an easy way to do it.

    Migration assistant is useful, especially with Leopard, its pretty slick and easy.

    I'm not recommending this, it may or may not be efficient, but I have leopard on my machines.
    I had a previous Gen MacPro 2.66 and got a 2.8 8-Core Macpro, just cloned the 2.66 Leopard drive onto a new 640 Drive and put it in the 2.8 and i was good to go.
    Havent had issues at all, no migration assistance or data copying, just did a clone and it started up and read all the memory and applications just fine, all the drivers and information was fine.
    I even booted a MacBookPro from the 640 cloned drive, seemed to work fine.

    I havent ran into any foreseeable problems, but its so much easier to data transfer now than it was before and with PC/Windows.
  10. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    I always take the drive out of the old tower, and put it in the new one.

    If it doesn't boot the machine, you should be able to do and archive and install.

    And I've always like 2 boot drives on a tower, usually helps when an OS upgrade causes problems -- much easier to unwind a update by simply booting the other drive without the update. And it is simpler to repair drives by booting the other drive instead of tracking the DVDs migration pattern.
  11. AdiosVista thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    Thanks for the replies everyone. I picked up the new Mac Pro today and am loving it so far. I was still hesitant to buy refurb so I drove down to a local Apple store and purchased new instead. This was largely due to the fact that I checked eBay more and couldn't believe how well these machines hold their value, so I don't mind investing now if I can plan to get most of that money back. I had originally planned to buy this Mac as a temporary fix for getting away from Vista, then sell and upgrade to the new Macs that will likely be released in January. I have to say, I'm not sure I will need to upgrade that soon, I really like this Mac. My only complaint was that the store didn't have one with an 8800 GT pre-installed so they wanted to sell that to me on top of the base price for an additional $272. No way! Anyone have a recommendation on where I should shop for the 8800 now, or should I just go for the 3870 instead? I've seen these cards pretty cheap on eBay but I'm not sure which are the Mac compatible versions. Also, will I need to do anything software wise other than just plug the new card in for either of these cards? I'm ordering more ram from OWC as well (any better places or are they pretty reliable?).
  12. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    Personally, I would recommend the 3870 over the 8800, as it is at least cheaper than the $272 they want for the 8800, and it performs better in Core Image. 3D performance is close in comparison. Look at for the Core Image and 3D comparison. :)
  13. AdiosVista thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    Where does everyone recommend picking up a new card like this for the Mac Pro? Is the $272 8800GT on the Apple site really any different than if I bought from Newegg or somewhere else? Apple's prices on these things, along with Ram, are insane.
  14. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    They contain the EFI/Mac-capable ROMs, which I think required a larger EEPROM than most PC cards have.

    Finding a PC card with the larger ROM may work, haven't really looked since the card first came out to see if people found a good candidate for flashing to the Mac version.

    Also some of the Hackintosh sites may have a more direct approach for using these cards.
  15. AdiosVista thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    Cool, thanks

    I'm actually glad didn't get the 8800gt yet, the more I read, the more I hear the 3870 is a better option. Correct me if I'm wrong.
  16. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    You can order a 3870 from for $217.99USD. :)

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