Transfering config from iMac to new Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by pkiula, Jun 29, 2008.

  1. pkiula macrumors member

    Mar 29, 2008

    I have just bought an iMac. I am enjoying configuring it, installing apps, some of which I have to buy because free alternatives do not exist.

    My question: when I buy a Macbook Pro in the near future, as I intend to, will I have to set it up all over again from scratch, or could I somehow "ghost" my settings etc from my iMac to my MBP?

    Thanks for any pointers! (Note: newbie alert)
  2. varmit macrumors 68000


    Aug 5, 2003
    When you first turned on your iMac, as when you will turn on your future MBP, there was the Setup/Migration Assistant right after the intro video. One of the options was a Mac to Mac transfer, which will move all your user, application, and system settings to the new MBP. The only extra equipment other than the two computers is a firewire cable.

    You can even start the Migration Assistant after you have been using the Mac. Located in the Applications folder, Utilities Folder, called Migration Assistant.
    These are the basic screens and directions that will be displayed to you when you do it when you get your MBP.

    Its very simple to do, just might take some time to complete which depends on how much data, and applications you have on the iMac. But its a set and walk away while it completes the move.
  3. startwithz macrumors newbie

    Jun 27, 2008
    Also, if you choose not to transfer your settings the first time you use your new Mac, you could run Migration Assistant. Just look for it under spotlight, and run it. The utility is very easy to use, and just requires a working firewire cable or that both computers are on the same network (or both wireless enabled), However, doing a network migration is much slower than using firewire, so I'd recommend buying a firewire cable if you dont have one already.
  4. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    Is it possible for the OP to use a time machine backup (current) and use a time machine backup to his new MBP?
  5. pkiula thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 29, 2008
    Wow, thanks varmit and peachpit. That sounds like magic. What have I been going with Windows all this time!

    My questions:

    1. As the previous poster asked, can I do this with time machine backup? Not really a must but nice to know.

    2. What about applications like Adobe CS3 etc. Will all the pesky "activation" stuff be transferred automatically too? I don't how that works in macosx (like windows' registry?)

    Also, quick additional question about the keyboard in osx. In windows if I did ctrl and left arrow key, it would select word by word. The home, end, ctrl home, ctrl end -- all these key combos had a function and this function would be the same across the entire OS. This doesn't seem to be the case in osx. Where can I find a list of shortcuts for osx?

  6. startwithz macrumors newbie

    Jun 27, 2008
    I dont know about applications being transferred, but i expect that the applications would likely be fine. If there were a problem with serial code authentication, I know one trick to fix the problem involves repairing permissions on your drive, then deleting the file which contains the authentication information for that program...then reopening the program and entering your serial number. This process causes the program to rewrite the file, and should make it function again.

    About time machine: There are two ways to use a time machine backup to configure your new mac: 1) migration assistant can actually pull parts of your time machine backup onto a new computer. 2) The other option is to boot to your leopard install disk and essentially restore all of your information from a time machine backup. Once you've booted to the install dvd, there is an option in the utilities menu for restoring a computer using a time machine backup. Keep in mind, this second option is a complete restoration.

    lastly...many of the functions which you would use the ctrl key in windows for are done using the cmd key on macs. To select individual items the way you would have with ctrl in windows, hold down the cmd key. Here is a good link for learning some of the mac keyboard shortcuts:
  7. varmit macrumors 68000


    Aug 5, 2003
    1) Yes, Time Machine is one of the choices during the Migration.

    2) I believe the activation should be transfered. But if its not, you can just reactivate it. I have CS3 installed on two Macs, but usually I'm just using my powerbook and not my mini.

    3) I believe instead of Ctrl+arrow, its Option+arrow. Option button should be next to Ctrl, its also the Alt key. And for copy and paste, its Apple+C and Apple+V.

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