New iMac: Restore Back-Up of Old iMac, or Clean Install and Transfer Files

Discussion in 'iMac' started by rayward, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. rayward macrumors 68000

    Mar 13, 2007
    Houston, TX
    I'm going to be getting a new iMac in the new year. I have a back-up of my current iMac on a Time Capsule, so it should be possible simply to restore the latest back-up to the new iMac, but I've heard that Time Machine might not have a full back-up of everything. I also believe that I can migrate from old to new directly, via firewire.

    Alternatively, I could simply have a clean install on the new iMac, and transfer all the files over my (wired) network, although I have a clone of my old PC under Parallels, and I'm not sure how this could be transferred.

    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
  2. dmackerman macrumors member

    Dec 7, 2009
    I am having the same debate while I await my new iMac to arrive. The main thing that concerned me was that I would be "bogging down" the new machine with old stuff that I didn't really need. That's why I decided on just using Migration Assistant, but not having it transfer over my apps. I'll reinstall all of my apps, I will just have it transfer over my home directory.

    You'd be surprised at all the stuff you won't need and don't use on a regular basis that doesn't need to be restored to your new least I know I will.
  3. harcosparky macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    Personally I am a " Clean Install " person, and always have been.

    It's a great opportunity to do some house cleaning.

    When working I tend to create multiple copies of things, stored in different places often times forgetting to clean up the unwanted files. I store my Photo and Music libraries on a separate HDD so they are not an issue. My "Documents" and "Download" folders can get awfully cluttered from time to time.

    Also over time I try various apps, often time abandoning them, yet forgetting to remove them. Having said that I have a drive I use to copy all libraries and folder to right before I do the Clean install in addition to a Time Machine backup.
  4. peskaa macrumors 68020


    Mar 13, 2008
    London, UK
    Clean install.

    My i7 arrived today, and I had the choice of restoring from my Mac Pro backup or going from scratch. I went for the latter, as it means there's less chance of any screwy settings being transferred and it is easy enough to copy files over manually.
  5. oftheheavens macrumors 68000

    Jul 9, 2008
    cherry point
    i originally backed up from my macbook, but my i7 was running sub-par. so i redid a clean install and transfered everything. This caused my i7 to run A LOT smoother and it is now as fast as I thought it would be.
  6. rayward thread starter macrumors 68000

    Mar 13, 2007
    Houston, TX
    Thanks folks. Clean install it will be.

    I won't be junking my old iMac, so it's not like I will lose anything I forget to copy over.
  7. powerbook911 macrumors 68040


    Mar 15, 2005
    I have "transfered," using Firewire about my last 5 Macs going back to 2005. I think my machine still runs fantastic compared to other Macs I use.

    However, if my Quad ever comes, I'm going to try to do a fresh install, if I can find all my license keys. I think after 5 years, it is time to start fresh. Of course, my document folders and whatnot can come right over. It's the behind the scenes stuff that I hate to keep transferring.

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