Using Migration Assistant to transfer Time Machine data

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by jensvium, Jul 1, 2013.

  1. jensvium macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2008

    I just switched my old 320 GB HDD with a new solid state 128 GB HDD.

    The 128 gb hard rive is now my primary hard drive and the 320 gb hard drive have been mounted as a secondary hard drive instead of the Super Drive in my macbook pro.

    Now I want to transfer the data from my Time Machine backup to the now clean 320 gb hard drive. But using Migration Assistant I can only transfer to my primary hard drive which is too small, is there anyway to transfer it to the secondary hard drive ?

    Manualy going through the backup and moving the files is not an option since the files are spread out in thousands of folders.

    Does any one know how to solve my problem ?


    Jens, Denmark
  2. priitv8, Jul 1, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2013

    priitv8 macrumors 68040

    Jan 13, 2011
    I did it so:
    1) onto the SSD I put only the operating system (symbolic linking /Users folder's contents to HDD), except for the admin user, just to make sure I can start the system and sign in solely from SSD
    2) I put /Users/myhome folder on the HDD

    That way I could simply move /Users via copy-paste from TM backup onto the HDD

    3) System Preferences > Users & Groups > right-klick on account > Advanced Options... and set the users' home folders to new locations on HDD.

    NB! I suggest you do these changes from SSD-homed admin account, the HDD-homed accounts are not able to sign in until their home folders are in place and account's advanced settings correclty point to them.
  3. jensvium thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2008
    But how do you copy/paste the user from a time machine ? I can't select a single user that is up to date, the data from the user is spread out onto many different folders according to changes made in the data.
  4. priitv8 macrumors 68040

    Jan 13, 2011
    Generally, under OS X, user's home folder, that descends from /Users folder, is the place where that user's data is organised. As a matter of fact, that's the only place a regular (not admin) user has write access in the first place.
    So, I take the folder from /Users folder and restore it to new destination. That will include all particular user's Downloads, Documents, Music, Pictures, Movies, personalisation settings etc.
    If there any other folders descending from / (root) the user used to update, then you need to move those manually, and you probably can even choose whether onto SSD or HDD.

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