New Computer - Restore from Time Machine?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by idyll, Jul 12, 2016.

  1. idyll macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #1
    We have a brand new 27" 5k iMac and want it to be setup exactly like our old 2013 27" iMac that just stopped working.

    Is it possible to restore from our Time Machine and have all of our settings / data / applications just as they were on our previous iMac?
     
  2. Batgirl97 Suspended

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2016
    #2
    In short, yes it is very possible. In long, it is possible but you will only get all the user data, eg changes in /System, /Library, /usr etc will be lost(But unless you are a developer you probably have nothing of importance there).
     
  3. idyll thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #3
    Thank you for the quick response! Will I have all of my Applications and their settings? For example, we had one that did synchronizing to a NAS.

    what is the best way recover from Time Machine on to the new computer? Is it best to use Migration Assistant or via the OS X Recovery Partition?
     
  4. Benjamin Frost Suspended

    Benjamin Frost

    Joined:
    May 9, 2015
    Location:
    London, England
    #4
    Migration Assistant.

    It gives you the option of restoring from a Time Machine backup. It should transfer all your settings and applications plus all documents of course. I recently restored to a new iMac from my Time Machine backup, and everything restored. You can also keep your Time Machine history for your backup. It will ask you whether you want to keep it when you first try to backup the new computer.
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #5
    Just use Migration Assistant like Benjamin mentioned. It will bring everything over.

    Just make sure you do this as part of the original setup when prompted. What you don't want to do is setup the Mac with an account then after that try to use Migration Assistant. That can cause all sorts of permissions issues.
     
  6. Ledgem macrumors 65816

    Ledgem

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2008
    Location:
    Hawaii, USA
    #6
    Applications should all have their settings and behave as if nothing ever happened, but there's no guarantee it will be that way for all applications. Just as an example, Photoshop CS3 used to generate a message as if it had just been freshly installed whenever I'd restore from a Time Machine backup, necessitating entering the product key. I don't recall any other applications doing that and as far as I can remember all of the settings were retained, but it goes to show that some applications might handle the restore process a bit differently.

    The recommendation about doing a migration rather than a partition recovery has to do with theories about drivers and other things that OS X might tailor to the specific hardware. The idea is that with migration OS X will transfer over user data and leave behind hardware-specific system data, whereas a straight partition recovery will copy over everything verbatim without further customization. Not sure how true it is, but it's one of the reasons people recommend migration assistant instead.
     
  7. KoolAid-Drink macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2013
    Location:
    California
    #7
    I'd recommend a straight restore via the Recovery Partition. May work better if you have Office/PS or other product key-enabled products installed.
     
  8. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #8
    It won't help with that. The MS and Adobe apps that require registration reentry do that because they recognize the hardware UUID has changed, and no matter how you move things over... that will still happen.
     
  9. Benjamin Frost Suspended

    Benjamin Frost

    Joined:
    May 9, 2015
    Location:
    London, England
    #9
    I did that once. It meant that it treated my restored account as a new one with no relation to the old one, which caused a few issues. I've learnt my lesson.
     
  10. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #10
    Yeah... it is a mess. Mr. Pondini (RIP) has a good explanation of the UserID problem at this link.

    http://pondini.org/OSX/MigrationProblems.html
     

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