Locations of Settings and Profiles, etc.

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Mhaddy, Dec 8, 2007.

  1. Mhaddy macrumors 6502

    Mhaddy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #1
    I recently upgraded Tiger to Leopard and while for the most part it's been great, I have noticed some hiccups that appear to be fixed from a clean install of the OS. However, before I hit the proverbial big red button, I'd like to ensure that I have everything backed up - and not just a clone of my existing HDD's, I'd like to do a select backup. I'm not worried about my movies, documents, pictures, music, and other types of multimedia and data, as that is all stored on a separate HDD that will not be formatted. What I am worried about are things like: where Mail.app stores its emails and settings, Safari bookmarks and settings, Aperture settings and its database of pictures, Photoshop actions, things like that.

    While I'm pretty sure I can do a spotlight or some such search for most of this stuff, what concerns me is if Mac stores things in multiple locations/directories and subsequently, how to import the data once I've reinstalled everything. Is there a program that I can use which can selectively backup application content (e.g., Mail.app's emails) and specific settings (e.g., Photoshop actions), and then reimport them afterwards? I would just hate to think I've backed up my 2600+ emails, format, reinstall, then find out I didn't copy over the "index file" or something like that.

    Any advice on how to proceed would be much appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. QuarterSwede macrumors G3

    QuarterSwede

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    #2
    I think it's more of a hassle to backup selected apps and data than to do a backup of the OS drive and then have migration assistant move your settings, and apps back (everything on the OS drive) during the install.
     
  3. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    LaLaLand, CA
    #3
    Yeah, you can use Carbon Copy Cloner, and if you need to restore everything, you can later use the Migration Assistant while reinstalling to bring it all back in. Everything is stored in your user account, mostly in your Library and documents folders. There are some things in the system folders though. Best thing you can do though is use Time Machine to back everything up, then use Migration Assistant to restore it if need be.
     
  4. Mhaddy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mhaddy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #4
    So there's no easy way out, eh? Well, I'll have to look into CCC and cross my fingers. Thanks!
     
  5. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    LaLaLand, CA
    #5
    CCC and Migration Assistant are the easy way.
     
  6. Mhaddy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mhaddy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #6
    The reason that I wanted to do a selective backup is because I only wanted to do a selective refresh. A lot of the apps and such that is on my Mac right now, I've either found better replacements for, or I don't use anymore - so I don't want to do a copy and paste dealy.

    What I think I might do is clone the Macintosh HDD onto an external one, replace the Mac HDD with say, a 500GB or 750GB, install Leopard, then slowly bring applications and settings back from the clone that I made. Sound like a plan? :)
     
  7. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    Solon, OH
    #7
    That plan sounds like the best option given your situation.

    Also, watch out for one little gotcha: Apple moved the iCal folder in Leopard, compared to Tiger, where iCal stores its calendars.
     

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