I need a clear explanation please...

haiggy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Aug 20, 2003
1,319
68
Ontario, Canada
Alright,
So I know there are probably lots of documents/maybe even threads about this but I just need this one question answered quite simply and quickly:

What is the difference between Upgrade and Archive and Install?

Will Archive and Install keep all of my applications and everything or is it just system files and user files?

Would Archive and Install be a safer bet/more stable?

I think I'm going to do an Update because I don't want to go through the hassle of backing everything up but I'm wondering if Archive and Install can still achieve "backing up" everything while doing a fresh install at the same time.

Thanks - and sorry for posting a noob question lol
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,777
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Upgrade = files from your /system folder, /library folder, and /applications folder are deleted and overwritten as necessary.

Archive = the files are moved to the /previous systems/ folder instead of being deleted. You have two options; one is for OS X to try and put back your applications and your user data. If it fails for some reason to move an app back, it'll still be in the "previous" folder.

The other option is to have your user folder and all the apps quarantined in the previous folder. You can then manually move whatever you want. This is basically like upgrade except that system files that are overwritten or deleted are put in the /previous systems folder instead of being deleted.
 

unity

macrumors 6502a
Sep 30, 2005
926
0
Green Bay, WI
Q:What is the difference between Upgrade and Archive and Install?
A: When you upgrade, the default process, certain items are recycled. In going to Leopard, not much besides preferences, settings and other items. Depending on how certain apps installed support file, nothing is really affected adversely. In an archive a new system folder is created and nothing is recycled. All system preferences are new and if certain programs installed into the main library, like screen savers, those files are moved to the inactive archive.

Q: Will Archive and Install keep all of my applications and everything or is it just system files and user files?
A: Everything will be kept. Unlike windows, OS X keeps the apps and system fairly separated. But as mentioned before some apps have support files and they may have not been put in the right place, the user library, so they may break. So all that happens is the original system is archived aside and anew one installed. It will not touch the actual application folder. You will want to "preserve user settings" to keep your existing bookmarks, key chains and other personal items though.

Q:Would Archive and Install be a safer bet/more stable?
A: It should not matter, but I prefer to have a completely clean system so I always archive. Sometimes a bad preference file form the older system can cause problems in the new system.

I think I'm going to do an Update because I don't want to go through the hassle of backing everything up but I'm wondering if Archive and Install can still achieve "backing up" everything while doing a fresh install at the same time.

Exactly, again your only "archiving" the system file, not your personal setting or applications. Again, just make sure you select "preserve user settings" to retain the iTunes library and other personal settings.
 

haiggy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Aug 20, 2003
1,319
68
Ontario, Canada
Q:What is the difference between Upgrade and Archive and Install?
A: When you upgrade, the default process, certain items are recycled. In going to Leopard, not much besides preferences, settings and other items. Depending on how certain apps installed support file, nothing is really affected adversely. In an archive a new system folder is created and nothing is recycled. All system preferences are new and if certain programs installed into the main library, like screen savers, those files are moved to the inactive archive.

Q: Will Archive and Install keep all of my applications and everything or is it just system files and user files?
A: Everything will be kept. Unlike windows, OS X keeps the apps and system fairly separated. But as mentioned before some apps have support files and they may have not been put in the right place, the user library, so they may break. So all that happens is the original system is archived aside and anew one installed. It will not touch the actual application folder. You will want to "preserve user settings" to keep your existing bookmarks, key chains and other personal items though.

Q:Would Archive and Install be a safer bet/more stable?
A: It should not matter, but I prefer to have a completely clean system so I always archive. Sometimes a bad preference file form the older system can cause problems in the new system.

I think I'm going to do an Update because I don't want to go through the hassle of backing everything up but I'm wondering if Archive and Install can still achieve "backing up" everything while doing a fresh install at the same time.

Exactly, again your only "archiving" the system file, not your personal setting or applications. Again, just make sure you select "preserve user settings" to retain the iTunes library and other personal settings.
THanks both of you for the very thorough explanation I just couldn't bend my mind around in other threads :)
 

TheSpaz

macrumors 604
Jun 20, 2005
7,033
1
THanks both of you for the very thorough explanation I just couldn't bend my mind around in other threads :)
Be careful with Archive and Install. Since it moves your previous System folders and puts new ones in place, some files that were in those System Folders will not be there in the new ones thus breaking some of your Applications and you'll need to re-install them. Archive and Install can easily break: Quark, Photoshop, Illustrator, Aperture, Logic, or other Applications that install key components into the System Folder or Root Library folder. I would do an Upgrade if I were you.
 
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