reformat hd when going to panther from jaguar?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by pounce, Jul 27, 2004.

  1. pounce macrumors regular

    Apr 10, 2004
    i have a powerbook running os 10.2.8. it will be getting switched to 10.3.whatever to get my airport express configured and so forth. so that will happen soon. with that in mind, in this transition, should i expect to wipe the hard drive and start over? could i just update the os and leave the apps and email and such on the drive? if i should wipe the drive, is there an "easiest way" to retain my users settings so i can come back to them after the os update. thanks for any tips.

    ps: in the futures i'll get a big old ipod, perhaps a 60 gig one, and do the home on an ipod whatever it's called thing where i can back up the personal stuff that way. in the meantime i'll need to find a different way.
  2. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus


    Oct 8, 2002
    The Bamboo Forest
    When you install Panther you won't have to format your drive or anything. Just do an Archive and Install which will (if I remember correctly) back up your old system (hence the archive) and install the new system. If anything is screwed up you can go back. I usually just do the update instead of the Archive and Install but maybe I'm too trusting...

    Either way it will not erase your apps or mail or any of that stuff. It will just upgrade the current OS to Panther.
  3. LeeTom macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2004
    I really think it's important to erase and do a clean install when you upgrade to a new OS. Others may disagree, but it's just so solid, I don't want to mess with any other way. Also, it's best to reinstall the apps that need to be installed, instead of just backing them up and copying them over. many apps leave little files in the system and user library folders, and it can be a pain to get them all.

    That being said, for your user directory, you can just backup the whole thing and then drag the things over to your new setup once you have it. If you don't have an external hard drive, do you have a 2nd computer or friends computer you could transfer stuff over to temporarily? it's a little faster than burning a dvd.

    Also, I tend to not backup the Library folder in my user dir, just Documents, Music, Movies, Sites, Pictures, Desktop, and Download folders. I like to go back to zero saved settings with a new OS, so I know where it starts from, and then customize it from there.

    Lee Tom
  4. pounce thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 10, 2004
    so it's as simple as me backing up my user directory.

    i don't mind reinstalling the apps. so long as the other user stuff is intelligently handled. that being the case i'll go ahead and probably wipe the drive and then reinstall apps and then copy over the user directory.

    so that would do it, right?
  5. neoelectronaut macrumors 68030


    Dec 3, 2003
    Southeastern Louisiana
    That's what my big worry is, either in possibly upgrading to Tiger in a few months or getting a new Mac in the future...there are so many damn apps in the applications folder, and in a few other places on my computer that there's no way I can remember them all. lol
  6. pounce thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 10, 2004
    going through a similar operation on a windows 2000 machine at home recently was a big big pita. also, i still haven't gotten everything in outlook moved from the old drive to the new one. an amazing headache, more improbable considering it's such a popular email prog on windows.

    the mac transition i'm doing -appears- to work the way things -should- in this day and age. i don't have much critical on this powerbook, so i'll try wiping the drive to see what i get.

    looking more forward to tiger next year, but the 10.3 upgrade to get the airport express i just bought all configured is pretty much a necessity. so i'll do this os upgrade as an interim thing. tiger i'm actually excited about getting. i will wipe the drive for tiger.
  7. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    Actually, it isn't possible to reverse an Archive and Install operation - the old system can't be made bootable. However, you do have the option of saving your users and network settings when doing an archive and install...if you do go that route, and don't have a recent backup of your user files, I'd recommend doing this instead of an upgrade. However, if you have your user files backed up, by all means go with an erase and install - you're much less likely to encounter trouble that way.
  8. oldfart macrumors member

    Jul 30, 2004
    Can't help but wonder if anyone ever reads the "READ ME" file that comes with all updates, installs, etc. :rolleyes:

    It can save your butt when you do upgrades ;) ....but then what do I know, I'm just an Old Fart :eek:

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