Leopard: Clean install or upgrade?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by benlee, Jun 21, 2007.

  1. benlee macrumors 65816


    Mar 4, 2007
    Just thinking about leopard in October. I know its a ways away. But what are the pros and cons of a clean install vs an upgrade? I know with a clean install all 3rd party software will have to be reinstalled. How do you know what you can just drag from an external and what has to be installed?
  2. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Pros of clean install: Some people report that it makes them feel better, though they usually can't explain why.

    Cons of a clean install: Time required to reinstall everything you care about, risk of losing something you care about.

    Pros of upgrading: Faster, no potential loss of data, no disruption of your working environment.

    Cons of upgrading: None that I have ever discovered.
  3. SC68Cal macrumors 68000

    Feb 23, 2006
  4. davidtmarquez macrumors member

    Mar 14, 2007
    I'm a bit OC with my files. :))
    I would feel clean, but then, I'd rather upgrade. Not enough backup memory. :|
  5. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    I do an "Erase and Install" with every major Mac OS X upgrade (i.e. 10.X to 10.Y, not 10.X.Z to 10.X.W) just to minimize the risk of problems due to apps I've installed not working right with the new OS. Hopefully this will not be as much of a problem as it used to with previous Mac OS X releases.

    Anyway, on to the pros and cons:
    -Pros of a clean install I've already covered.
    -Cons of a clean install are having to reinstall all applications and the loss of most, if not all, of your custom settings in those apps.
    -Pros of an upgrade are that it's simple to do and generally doesn't change any of your settings.
    -Cons of an upgrade are that any applications incompatible with the upgrade process may complain after the upgrade is complete, and will require either a reinstall or a new version.
  6. Simon R. macrumors 6502

    Sep 25, 2006
    I never updated an Apple OS before - is it really possible to just do an upgrade? Is that selectable when you boot up the OS install CD? Would be nice as I have a lot of audio software and plugins installed.
  7. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    Indeed you can - it will be listed on the options when you insert the DVD for the new OS.
  8. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    ...which you aren't going to know until you reinstall that application anyway. I still don't see what is gained.
  9. mags631 Guest

    Mar 6, 2007
    I consider a clean install the best approach for me because it creates an opportunity to sort through all my junk, back up the important stuff, and re-install only necessary apps. I think this qualifies as an explanation.
  10. Bern macrumors 68000


    Nov 10, 2004
    I much prefer a clean install with a major OS update. I'll do an erase and install, sure it may take longer then doing a simple upgrade but I recall over in the official Apple Forum when Tiger was released many people doing a simple upgrade and having corrupted plist's and such screwing around with it.

    My moto is "keep it lean start off clean"
  11. psychofreak Retired


    May 16, 2006
    Add to that little things: I have some problems which would be sorted with a clean install of Tiger, but I can't be bothered...I will do with Leopard.
  12. Fairly macrumors regular

    Sep 24, 2006
    Cambridge UK
    Evidently this is all about feeling CLEAN. Outsiders take note: fanboys don't bathe often.
  13. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
    There is a third way, which I intend to take, of doing an Archive and Install.
  14. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    The "Placebo Effect" is also at play here.
  15. snickelfritz macrumors 65816


    Oct 24, 2003
    Tucson AZ
    I do clean installs for OSX point releases.
    It's a good excuse to dump all of the demos, downloads, stored emails, extraneous files, etc...
    ie: clean the house before bringing in the new furniture.
  16. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2007
    Bristol, England
    I thought that was an upgrade?
  17. Sbrocket macrumors 65816


    Jun 3, 2007
    There's "Upgrade", which just does a normal upgrade install and changes whatever files it needs to so that your previous OSX installation is then, in fact, a Leopard installation. (Magic!) If you have no misgivings about wanting a 'clean' system and don't have any reason to believe that an Upgrade install will cause problems, then this is your best bet.

    Then there's "Archive and Install", which will take all of your current system files and stick them all in '/Previous Systems' right before it does a completely clean install of the Leopard on your disk. You also have the option with this to "Preserve Users and Network Settings" which will automatically migrate your users and network settings (obviously) over to the new Leopard installation so you don't have to mess with the tedious method of doing it manually. For people that like a 'clean' install but don't want to both with the next option...

    Finally, "Erase and Install." Very simply it reformats your selected partition and install a perfectly clean and brand-spanking-new copy of Leopard on the fresh partition. Obviously if you had files you wanted to keep (like your Users folder), you would want to somehow back these up prior to doing this. For people who love taking the hard route and can't stand "dirty systems." Or if you're just really paranoid.

    Have fun! :p :D
  18. kbuddha macrumors newbie


    Feb 23, 2009
    New York, New York
    Being in IT for years and Dealing with Windows, and doing an Upgrade last night from 10.4 to 10.5, I am actually going to do a clean install tonight. The machine runs slower, my ichat flipped out when i did the upgrade and now won't connect anymore, and i spent hours last night trying to fix my airport. Since the upgrade, whenever my machine boots up and logs into the OS my airport doesn't recognize my router, and i have to diagnose it and then it runs fine. It truly is a pain. So tonite, Its a Reformat and Reinstall! I will post again if i notice any major differences.

    Last night I felt as though i shouldn't do the upgrade because this is a major upgrade "core" wise... We shall see what tonight brings!

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