Migrating via Time Machine. Account doesn't transfer

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by wlow3, Jun 25, 2017.

  1. wlow3 macrumors regular

    Sep 9, 2008
    I'm migrating my data via a Time Machine backup from an old iMac to a new iMac. So far I've tried to do the migration at first boot. However, even though the data successfully transfers, the first boot routine asks me to create a new account and then sets up the new iMac with this new account without giving me the chance to choose the account on the Time Machine backup. So what happens is that it sets itself up as a new computer under the new account information I have given it. Afterward there is no sign of the old account in the User preference pane or in the login screen, however it does show in the User folder with all of my data.

    All the examples online, even on Apple's help pages, show the migration Assistant being used after first boot, saying that the new account will be replaced if it is named the same as the transferring account, but this replacement behavior is not evident if it does somehow occur on a first boot migration.

    I wonder whether I can just create an account and then point it to the transferred user folder, or will that screw something up.

    Anyone encounter this or have suggestions?
  2. cruisin macrumors 6502a


    Apr 1, 2014
    If you create the same user name and then run Migration Assistant, it should prompt you if you want to overwrite the existing user account with the one found in the backup. This has always worked for me.
  3. wlow3 thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 9, 2008
    Figured it out. On first boot migrations, don't use the account name that is suggested (you'd think that if you did a Time Machine migration, that it would notify you to enter the corresponding info). Delete it and enter what matches the account info from your old computer (though apparently capitalization doesn't matter). Then the new Mac will use the account from the Time Machine backup as it completes its setup (mostly - occasionally I'll come across an odd thing that didn't transfer, like a Safari extension, so keep your old computer around for a while).

Share This Page