Problem using thunderbolt cable to migrate from old to new IMAC

Discussion in 'iMac' started by nsitaram, Jan 13, 2014.

  1. nsitaram macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    Location:
    Michigan USA
    #1
    First post from mac user for several years. I am trying to migrate all data from my mid 2011 27" IMAC (running mavericks) to new 2013 27" IMAC (using same mavericks 10.9.1) with thunderbolt cables. Was able to do everything correctly using migration assistant and both screens shows data is migrating. However screen shows estimated time as 60 hours (for about 500G transfer) and below that is a notation "Connect a Thunderbolt or Ethernet cable to transfer data faster". Apparently the iMacs are using the internet to transfer even though a thunderbolt cable is connected to both iMacs. Can anyone help please? Apparently I have 60 hours to wait for a solution! Should I unplug both Macs and try again after turning off wireless? I have avidly followed this forum for many solutions in the past and now am in a pickle. Please help
    Natraj
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    I would try this:

    - DiSCONNECT the ethernet cable into the back (if there is one)

    - TURN OFF wireless (Airport)

    - CONNECT the thunderbolt cable between both Macs

    - Open the Network preference pane.
    - Toward the bottom left, there is an icon that looks like a "gear"
    - Click it and choose "Set Service Order"
    - Actually, with ethernet disconnected and wireless turned off, you should see only thunderbolt. But...
    - If you see anything more, grab "thunderbolt" and drag it upwards to be at the top
    - Close System preferences.

    Then.... try again.
    Any better?
     
  3. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #3
    Do you have your "source" machine in "TargetDiskMode"? I believe that is a requirement when using a Thunderbolt cable (or FireWire too) to migrate your data from your old machine.

    Boot the source machine while holding down the " T " key until you get the "lightning bolt" icon on the screen.

    I just did this with a MacBook Air and MacBook Pro and 300GB took about 15 minutes.
     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #4
    With Mavericks now you can do IP over Thunderbolt, so a direct connect would work without target disk mode, but using TDM mode would be just as fast (or faster) and would easily avoid the issue the OP is having with his machine trying to use wifi for the transfer.

    OP>> Like hfq mentioned... follow the target disk mode with Thunderbolt instructions about half down the page in this Apple support article.
     
  5. AppleFan360 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    #5
    When I recently migrated my system using Target Disc Mode and thunderbolt, the time started out at 1 1/2 hours then went up to the 80 hours then back down again to about 2 hours.

    In other words, that time left counter is almost always wrong. Mine ended up taking about 2.5 hours with 500GB of data.
     
  6. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #6
    The speed estimates may be based on the file size density at the moment of measurement. Once you start hitting larger files, the estimate may be more accurate due to less file management overhead.

    My transfer of 300GB in about 15 minutes over the Thunderbolt was also really fast due to having very high speed SSD disks at both the source and destination ( 2012 MacBook Air ==> 2013 MacBook Pro). I was surprised at how well it did!


    -howard
     
  7. AppleFan360 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    #7
    As far as we know, the OP's machines are not both SSD so quoting 15 minutes is a bit misleading. Even if one of the machines is a regular hard drive, it will be hours, not minutes.
     
  8. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #8
    Yes, I agree ... That is why I added the clarification that the times I encountered yesterday with this method were fast due to the presence of SSDs at both ends.

    The OP will only see transfer rates consistent with the slowest drive connected ... but my original post was a method to be sure he was actually using Thunderbolt and not ethernet/WiFi for the transfers.

    Sorry if I misled anyone...
     
  9. nsitaram thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    Location:
    Michigan USA
    #9
    Hi all: Thanks for the advise. I had just read Fishrrman and just started to follow his advise when the apple support call back came thru and confirmed the advise. Apparently the key thing to do was to turn Wi-Fi OFF on both machines - otherwise wifi will take precedence over thunderbolt communication. First I had to shut off the machines and then turn off wifi before starting migration assistant on both macs. This time the time for transferring 500G was 4 hours (instead of the 40-60 hours that was showing before). Problem solved andf thanks again for all the help and support.
    Natraj
     

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