Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

qap

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 29, 2011
558
441
Italy
As the title, I want to clone my 2019 iMac to my MacBook Air M1. Using Carbon Copy Cloner usually is very easy and fast but with these damn beautiful ARM chips is not possible to boot the Mac like it‘s an external disk, so I have no idea on how to clone my imac to the MacBook. I suspect it’s impossibl, I don’t want to use migration assistant but I think is the only way... any other ideas?
 

Toutou

macrumors 65816
Jan 6, 2015
1,079
1,573
Prague, Czech Republic
I'm afraid that migration assistant is your only option. The process of booting the same install from both architectures is not ready at this moment and we don't know whether it will and with what degree of support.
 
  • Like
Reactions: qap

qap

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 29, 2011
558
441
Italy
They don't work on Catalina on Intel either, so OP, if your iMac is on Catalina, you probably don't have to worry about this.
I don’t think Catalina is ARM compiled also :p

Obviously I want to clone the last Big Sur to last Big Sur...

I also tried to make a clone from SMB, because if you start your M1 Mac in “share drive mode” it mounts it as a network (smb) drive, but I dont know how to clone a networ drive, I don’t think is possible.

It‘s weird because on intel Big Sur installation there’re all the ARM “files”/instructions.
 

deeddawg

macrumors G5
Jun 14, 2010
12,245
6,393
US
When I got my M1 MBP, I set up the new M1 using same username as my old MBP, then installed CCC and copied the files in from my old MBP's external clone.

Kinda wanted a "clean" install anyway so I reinstalled all apps I wanted to keep rather than trying to carry them over via Migration Assistant.
 

k-hawinkler

macrumors 6502
Sep 14, 2011
260
88
They don't work on Catalina on Intel either, so OP, if your iMac is on Catalina, you probably don't have to worry about this.

True. Unfortunately the latest version of EtreCheckPro will ignore 32-bit apps on the M1.
So they would only waste SSD space.
It’s best to remove 32-bit apps before using the migration assistant.
My 2 cents. I have been there, done it, and got the T-shirt. :cool:
 

k-hawinkler

macrumors 6502
Sep 14, 2011
260
88
When I got my M1 MBP, I set up the new M1 using same username as my old MBP, then installed CCC and copied the files in from my old MBP's external clone.

Kinda wanted a "clean" install anyway so I reinstalled all apps I wanted to keep rather than trying to carry them over via Migration Assistant.

That’s a great way to proceed. I should have done that. Thanks.
 
  • Like
Reactions: deeddawg

dmccloud

macrumors 68030
Sep 7, 2009
2,990
1,727
Anchorage, AK
I don’t think Catalina is ARM compiled also :p

Obviously I want to clone the last Big Sur to last Big Sur...

I also tried to make a clone from SMB, because if you start your M1 Mac in “share drive mode” it mounts it as a network (smb) drive, but I dont know how to clone a networ drive, I don’t think is possible.

It‘s weird because on intel Big Sur installation there’re all the ARM “files”/instructions.

While Big Sur installer is written for both Intel and ARM architectures, it will only install the version for your processor. So the version of Big Sur on your older Mac will be the Intel version. Furthermore, Rosetta will not be available on that build, so there would be no way to translate x86 code into ARM code, so even if you could get it to install, very little (if anything) would even run on the new Mac.
 

Toutou

macrumors 65816
Jan 6, 2015
1,079
1,573
Prague, Czech Republic
it will only install the version for your processor
Turns out this is not the case. From what I've heard and seen, Big Sur is universal binaries all the way through. For example you can find both the x86 and the arm64 kernel on both M1 and Intel machines, also most kexts I stumbled upon are universal.
Looks like there's some very esoteric stuff going on regarding the boot process, but there don't seem to be pieces of the OS missing on either architecture.
 
  • Like
Reactions: qap

qap

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 29, 2011
558
441
Italy
Turns out this is not the case. From what I've heard and seen, Big Sur is universal binaries all the way through. For example you can find both the x86 and the arm64 kernel on both M1 and Intel machines, also most kexts I stumbled upon are universal.
Looks like there's some very esoteric stuff going on regarding the boot process, but there don't seem to be pieces of the OS missing on either architecture.
This. Probabibly is something related to Carbon Copy Cloner that needs to install some boot "things", I hope in the future will be possible to clone intel to arm.
 

Fomalhaut

macrumors 68000
Oct 6, 2020
1,892
1,589
I don’t think Catalina is ARM compiled also :p

Obviously I want to clone the last Big Sur to last Big Sur...

I also tried to make a clone from SMB, because if you start your M1 Mac in “share drive mode” it mounts it as a network (smb) drive, but I dont know how to clone a networ drive, I don’t think is possible.

It‘s weird because on intel Big Sur installation there’re all the ARM “files”/instructions.
Presumably when you install Big Sur, the installer looks at the target architecture and only copies the version appropriate for the platform.

I think the old PPC/Intel releases actually had both binaries in the installed OS, so you could use the same external disk image (e.g. made with CCC or the equivalent at the time) to boot on both Intel and PPC Macs - at least for a couple of years until PPC was deprecated.
 

armoured

macrumors regular
Feb 1, 2018
211
163
ether
As the title, I want to clone my 2019 iMac to my MacBook Air M1. Using Carbon Copy Cloner usually is very easy and fast but with these damn beautiful ARM chips is not possible to boot the Mac like it‘s an external disk, so I have no idea on how to clone my imac to the MacBook. I suspect it’s impossibl, I don’t want to use migration assistant but I think is the only way... any other ideas?
Why don't you want to use migration assistant?

(There are valid reasons, but would help to understand why you want to do it this way)
 

Spindel

macrumors 6502a
Oct 5, 2020
521
655
I really don’t understand the problem.

I just restored from my TM backup that was from my 2013 iMac (Catalina) to my M1 Mini. I’ve had no issues, no need for 3rd party applications etc.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Modernape

qap

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 29, 2011
558
441
Italy
Because last time (15 years ago) I used Migration Assistan. it doesn't migrate the root folder and preferences files but only the ~/ (your user directory), so it was a paint to rewrite everything like Serial Numbers of the apps, preferences file etc...

But this time, Migration Assistant is improved! I've done the "clone" with it and it has worked very well, I still have to test some PGP keys and Homebrew apps but the apps like i.e. Adobe suite has been migrated frictionless. Very happy with it!

Plus I have some auto-login apps that are not ARM ready, and MA has copied all of them but they aren't auto-opened at the login, you have to confirm that you want to install and run Rosetta (to recompile them).

Very smart behavior! Kudos to Apple this time.

I still need to make a bootable Carbon Copy Cloner disk but I'll investigate in it in the next days, the trouble now, is that I cant' make a common/doyble with my iMac and MacBook M1 with the option to clone "update only the modified files" because one installation will not work on the other architecture, plus, if I open an Intel app with Rosetta it should delete the x86 files, so, make a clone it very dangerous because if I'll need to boot my intel iMac from this clone, I'm pretty sure will be impossible or some apps will be damaged!

But I can wait for the arm iMac ?
 
  • Like
Reactions: armoured

armoured

macrumors regular
Feb 1, 2018
211
163
ether
Because last time (15 years ago) I used Migration Assistan. it doesn't migrate the root folder and preferences files but only the ~/ (your user directory), so it was a paint to rewrite everything like Serial Numbers of the apps, preferences file etc...

But this time, Migration Assistant is improved! I've done the "clone" with it and it has worked very well, I still have to test some PGP keys and Homebrew apps but the apps like i.e. Adobe suite has been migrated frictionless. Very happy with it!
That's what I was getting at, Migration Assistant is much better these days. I prefer to do the migration from a carbon copy cloner version - and then if I like I can keep that disk as a 'frozen' version just in case.
I still need to make a bootable Carbon Copy Cloner disk but I'll investigate in it in the next days, the trouble now, is that I cant' make a common/doyble with my iMac and MacBook M1 with the option to clone "update only the modified files" because one installation will not work on the other architecture, plus, if I open an Intel app with Rosetta it should delete the x86 files, so, make a clone it very dangerous because if I'll need to boot my intel iMac from this clone, I'm pretty sure will be impossible or some apps will be damaged!
So you want to use one drive to 'sync' between two different macs?

I'm not going to claim super-expertise, maybe there's a way to do this, but I think that would have potential to be really problematic unless they're truly identical clones including of hardware.

Better to figure out a way to share/sync the important information and settings and not try to make them identical.
 

winna

macrumors regular
Nov 28, 2020
123
37
I really don’t understand the problem.

I just restored from my TM backup that was from my 2013 iMac (Catalina) to my M1 Mini. I’ve had no issues, no need for 3rd party applications etc.
How did you get Catalina to run on the M1??
 

nobackup

macrumors regular
Apr 19, 2008
200
40
As the title, I want to clone my 2019 iMac to my MacBook Air M1. Using Carbon Copy Cloner usually is very easy and fast but with these damn beautiful ARM chips is not possible to boot the Mac like it‘s an external disk, so I have no idea on how to clone my imac to the MacBook. I suspect it’s impossibl, I don’t want to use migration assistant but I think is the only way... any other ideas?
Carbon copy works kike a charm ans also target disk mode is fine
 

haralds

macrumors 68030
Jan 3, 2014
2,889
1,204
Silicon Valley, CA
Carbon Copy Cloner uses the Apple Software Restore (ASR) utility to clone the System Partition on Intel to work around new Big Sur restrictions. ASR does not work on M1.
For a new system, I really like using the Migration Assistant anyway. Although not as fast as CCC, it does a nice job of creating a clean install without losing apps and their settings.
 
  • Like
Reactions: qap

Freida

Suspended
Oct 22, 2010
4,077
5,870
Does the migration assistant preserve all settings etc.?
What I like about CCC is that it feels like I've switched a computer but there is no setting up at all. Even last opened safari tabs etc. is preserved. Actually, even logged in items are preserved. Does that Migration Assistant work like that also?

I'm going to do it tomorrow and currently doing a CCC copy but I wonder if things changed.

Unfortunately, I will be shifting from 2017 MBP to 2021 MBP so wonder if its even possible. (Mojave to Monterey)

Carbon Copy Cloner uses the Apple Software Restore (ASR) utility to clone the System Partition on Intel to work around new Big Sur restrictions. ASR does not work on M1.
For a new system, I really like using the Migration Assistant anyway. Although not as fast as CCC, it does a nice job of creating a clean install without losing apps and their settings.
 

lcubed

macrumors 6502a
Nov 19, 2020
540
325
Does the migration assistant preserve all settings etc.?
What I like about CCC is that it feels like I've switched a computer but there is no setting up at all. Even last opened safari tabs etc. is preserved. Actually, even logged in items are preserved. Does that Migration Assistant work like that also?

I'm going to do it tomorrow and currently doing a CCC copy but I wonder if things changed.

Unfortunately, I will be shifting from 2017 MBP to 2021 MBP so wonder if its even possible. (Mojave to Monterey)
should work fine. i migrated from a 2011 MBP running high sierra to my M1 using the migration assistant. flawless
 

Freida

Suspended
Oct 22, 2010
4,077
5,870
Where your sessions etc. all still logged in when you turned on M1 after the migration?

Did you have to set anything up or all was as if you never changed anything and its just somehow new computer :)


should work fine. i migrated from a 2011 MBP running high sierra to my M1 using the migration assistant. flawless
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.