New SSD - Boot from Time Machine

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by spamurai, Dec 6, 2016.

  1. spamurai macrumors member

    Mar 23, 2012
    I'm replacing my Hard Drive with a SSD today on my 2011 MBP.

    Once the new HD is in, can I boot from my latest Time Machine back up I have on an external Hard Drive?

    I backed up yesterday.

    If so, how can I do this?

    Or do I have to go to the Apple Store to install an OS? As I don't have an install disc.

  2. steve-p macrumors 68000


    Oct 14, 2008
    Newbury, UK
    I don't know if you can boot from a Time Machine backup disk or not, but with a 2011 you don't need an install disk. You can use Internet Recovery (boot while holding down Option Command R, enter wifi password if necessary) and then pick "Restore from Time Machine Backup" from the menu.
  3. spamurai thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 23, 2012
    My time machine back up is on my Hard Disk, no on wifi? How does that work? Or will it download an OS from the internet?
    I've not heard for internet recovery before.
  4. CoastalOR, Dec 7, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2016

    CoastalOR macrumors 68010


    Jan 19, 2015
    Oregon, USA
    CAUTION: Internet Recovery will download and install the OS your 2011 MBP shipped with, which is probably 10.7. It looks like you are currently running OS 10.9.5 from you sig.

    The Time Machine backup using OS 10.9.5 is bootable since it includes the Recovery Partition. Connect the Time Machine drive, boot holding the option key and select the Time Machine drive from the boot manager. When the Recovery Partition is running, run the Disk Utility and format (erase) your new SSD for Mac OS Extended (Journaled), quit Disk Utility, select (do not install) Restore OS. You can also migrate your old data from Time Machine during the setup after the OS install.

    EDIT: Good catch by Weaselboy below. You need to select Restore OS, do NOT install.
  5. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Yes you can, as long as you are not on El Capitan. Prior to that it will work. For some reason Apple broke this feature in El Capitan.

    Just attach the TM drive and option key boot to it. From there you will see a recovery screen where you can use Disk Util to format the new drive. Then quit Disk Util and click restore. Note you want to "restore" here not install the OS on that same screen. This will restore the OS version that is on the TM disk.

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