What is the best way to go from old MBP to new MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Hans-C, Jul 23, 2019.

  1. Hans-C macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2019
    When going from an older mac book pro (2015) to a new 2019 mac book pro, what is the conventional wisdom on making that transfer? Is it a better approach to start with the fresh 2019 MBP and set it up and then for any files not brought over via iCloud when doing the initial set up, manually move over those files/documents and download/install any apps? Or, is it better to use the Apple Migration Assistant?
  2. Cosmo M3 macrumors regular

    Cosmo M3

    Sep 4, 2010
  3. Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016
    How long is it since you last did a brand new clean install?

    My gut feel is that you don’t want to be migrating archaic system and configuration files with you. It’s a bit like an OS update. I wouldn’t update from Lion all the way to Mojave through every OS without doing a few clean installs on the way. But undoubtedly some folks do. My personal preference is to do a clean install every few years. Maybe 3-5, nothing crazy I don’t think.
  4. Hans-C thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2019
    Thank you. I always like to understand the why of one way versus the other. What are the benefits of using Migration Assistant? Is it ease/convenience? I had been thinking start fresh (and manually bring over what want) was a better approach so don't pull over any garbage to foul things up and with iCloud these days, all keychain passwords, docs, pics, etc. will populate into the new MBP after initial set up. But, I can also see that Migration Assistant might bring some benefits forward.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 23, 2019 ---
    The old MBP is a 2015 version and I have not done a fresh, clean install on it ever. It has been updated with each successive version of Mac OS.
  5. Howard2k macrumors 68020


    Mar 10, 2016
    In order of priority, I would go with:

    * Clean install, manual data move.
    * Migration assistant.
    * Full restore from Time Machine.

    They also happen to reflect the time involvement from longest to shortest too. If you had a MacBook Pro from 2012 (for example) and then migrated to the 2015 and are now migrating to a 2019, I'd be doing the clean install for sure. But that's not the case, if I understand correctly, so if everything is working well on the current 2015 (from a software perspective) and there are no oddities, I would certainly consider Migration Assistant.

    I think a full restore is something I'd do if I needed to be up and running really quickly from an HDD/SSD failure or similar.

    I did a clean install of Mojave on my 2015. If I was going to a new 2019 today I'd very likely use MA. Perhaps a clean install if I had time to burn.
  6. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    If time isn't an issue. Then manually transferring files is best for a clean system. Although with some apps it can be a pain due to their hiding databases in the ~/Library/ folders. Many of those apps sync via the cloud now. It isn't as big a deal as it used to be.

    Usually I take a semi-automatic approach. For a reliable migration. Most errors in migration come from moving applications and system settings. Therefore I use Migration Assistant for User folders. Applications are manually installed. System settings are manually applied.
  7. pshufd macrumors 65816

    Oct 24, 2013
    New Hampshire
    I do a clean install. No need to carry around years of crap for several more years.
  8. Hans-C thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2019
    The only files I can see I might have some trouble with moving manually (or perhaps it may be better to move them manually) is the iTunes library. Years ago I transferred a bunch of music from CDs into iTunes and I think there is a fair amount of that transferred from CDs music that is not part of the iTunes catalog. To get these over, is migration assistant a better approach or would it be better to manually copy the iTunes library file and implanting that in the new MBP?

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7 July 23, 2019