Install clean OS on new SSD and transfer from HDD

Discussion in 'macOS' started by universaliz, Jan 12, 2017.

  1. universaliz, Jan 12, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2017

    universaliz macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2014
    I'm going to replace my harddrive in my MBP with a new SSD. Currently the HDD is running OS X Mavericks (10.9.5) but I would like to install macOS Sierra on the SSD.

    As I would like to start from a clean install I'm thinking of following the solution suggested on iFixit:

    Basically it suggests:
    1. Download the OS installer from the Apps Store.
    2. Plug in SSD in the MBP using a SATA to USB adapter.
    3. Run Disk Utility to partition the drive with GUID and format it with Mac OS Extended (Journaled) partition.
    4. Run the installer selecting the SSD drive.
    5. Check it is working correctly (reboot MBP holding Option key and select the SSD as the boot up drive).

    When I have done this I'm thinking of transfering my stuff from the HDD to the SSD and then finally replace the drives.

    If I follow these steps, will I be able to transfer my stuff from the HDD to SSD like I would normally do with an external harddrive?
  2. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    Yep, you'll be able to transfer your stuff from the HDD to the SSD normally (drag and drop) -- alternatively you can use Migration Assistant. A third option would be to make a Time Machine backup and restore that directly to the SSD, so it'll be exactly as you left it.

    Sky's the limit with installing a new OS on a Mac to be honest, there are so many different ways you can do it. :)
  3. Honza1 macrumors regular

    Nov 30, 2013
    The above is a good list. Keep in mind slight differences between them, though...
    1. Install new system + drag and drop your home folder - does not move applications with licenses and configurations. This is "cleanest" (least space, least old configurations) - but most work if you now have to move/reinstall apps and configure lots of stuff manually.
    2. Use Migration assistant to move stuff from either old hard drive or Time Machine - you get a choice what to move and can move from little (data only) to all (except system) - data, applications, configurations,... there is granularity in the process. I used this many times and it is nearly miracle method. This is my preferred way, you get everything working fast and back to where you were before (with some limitations due to OS differences). Use Hard drive preferably (not Time Machine) - faster.
    3. Restore Time machine - this will restore everything, including system. Since you are changing OS version, this is probably not the smartest way.
    Alternative 4: Use Carbon Copy Cloner or Disk Duper to clone your existing system onto new SSD and then upgrade system in place. This is kind of similar to method 2 above, but with more clutter and crap moved also and more chance something will go bad. But is also usable. Note, that after doing 5 macOS upgrades in place I had two failed totally which required reformatting the drive. I suspect that this was due to use of FileVault2 on those 2 machines. Have a good backup before touching anything.
  4. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Mar 21, 2011
    Australia, Perth
    I never rely on automated tools..... Drag and drop... old fashioned always works..

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