Migration Assistant or start fresh?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by sboerup, Aug 23, 2010.

  1. sboerup macrumors 6502

    Mar 8, 2009
    My new hexacorer arrives tomorrow and am making plans for the switch. I originally I assumed I could remove my SSD from my current machine and just pop it in, but I reslized today that the 10.6.4 build is different than the current one that Apple has seeded to the community. Am I wrong that this wouldn't work?

    I'd rather avoid losing a lot of my settings that I've had for over a year, unless it will be better in the long run.

    I have never used migration assistant and have my doubts about it's effectiveness . . . but wanted to know what most of you guys did when the new machine arrived. Start fresh, time machine restore, superduper, migration assistant or any other methods?
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    I love using it unless the machine I'm migrating from had issues.
  3. Mr_Ed macrumors 6502

    Mar 10, 2004
    North and east of Mickeyland
    If you don't have a lot of apps installed, you might consider a fresh start. I did not want to go that route.

    I pulled my main hard drive from my old MP and installed it in the 2nd bay of the new one before turning it on for the first time. When Migration Assistant starts up, you have the option to migrate from an internal volume. I expect this is much faster than the Target Disk Mode Fire wire transfer from one machine to another. There is an option (checkbox) for transferring "files" which I checked so it transferred files installed outside of the usual places.

    Worked great for me and it did not take very long. Transferred all my files and applications.
  4. iMikeT macrumors 68020

    Jul 8, 2006
    If you're as OCD as I am, I would do a combination of both a migration and a fresh start.
  5. sboerup thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 8, 2009
    What all does Migration Assistant copy over? I'd rather start fresh honestly, might just clone the boot drive onto my SSD and go from there.
  6. Azure9 macrumors newbie

    Jun 24, 2009
    I usually do an "archive and install", then start up using the new OS.

    Then create two admin accounts, one with the same name as my old user account (eg "Azure") under the old OS, boot from it, then add a second temp account.

    Log out and boot up from the secondary account.

    Go into /users/ and trash the new "Azure" user folder the OS just created, noting the permissions.

    Copy my old "Azure" user folder from the old OS into it's place in /users/, adjust permissions if necessary.

    Log out and boot up from the "Azure" account, delete the temp account.

    Pretty much what you just did was install a clean OS, then move your entire user directory into it. I'm sure you could do this a simpler way, but this way I know for SURE all my data is moved across. This is the way I've done it on all my OS X macs. When you log into your user account again after the temp account, BOOM, it's setup exactly like your old mac :D
  7. eponym macrumors 6502

    Jul 2, 2010
    You can choose what does and what doesn't. You select:

    - Any users to bring over and their home folder contents
    - Applications
    - Misc. Files/Folders

    It's basically an expandable tree of checkboxes. You can bring all or parts of things.
  8. sboerup thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 8, 2009
    I might try the migration assistant then, just to see how it does. I have my home folder on a separate drive so looks like I can adjust some things with it. Thanks for the tips.
  9. 3282868 macrumors 603

    Jan 8, 2009
    I've done both a few times on my Mac Pro with Snow Leopard. Sometimes Migration Assistant can copy broken plists/startup items/launch daemons/etc that may hinder the systems process. My 2008 Mac Pro 8 core was getting slower over the past year from upgrading to Snow Leopard. I reinstalled and used the Migration Assistant and nothing changed. I did a clean install, and installed what ever apps I couldn't drag and drop from my "Time Machine" volume (you can open up your latest "Time Machine" backup and copy individuals files as any hard drive) and WOW, my machine was right back where it was when I first bought it. Over time, things can get on your system you aren't aware of.

    I finally started using "Little Snitch' and was amazed at how many different applications (especially web browsing) would request connections to random unknown hosts.

    Sorry for the rant, just a few pointers. Good luck :)

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