Will Genius migrate data from old Mini to new?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Bill Fitz, Apr 12, 2015.

  1. Bill Fitz macrumors newbie

    Apr 10, 2015
    In the next week or so I'm going to replace my 2011 model Mac Mini for a new 2015 Mac Mini from Apple.com.

    I only have one monitor so it will be difficult to use Migration Assistant at home here to transfer all my files from the old Mac Mini to the brand new one.

    Once I get the new Mac Mini, do you think a Genius at an Apple Retail Store would be willing to perform the Migration for me if I bring both Mac Minis to an appointment?

    Thank you.
  2. Pieterr macrumors regular

    Mar 22, 2015
    The Netherlands
    You only need to hook up your monitor to the new Mac mini. When you start your new Mac for the first time, you are asked if you want to transfer data from an older Mac. Just have the old Mac turned on and connected to your local network.

  3. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Do you keep a backup drive?

    It could be either a Time Machine backup or a cloned backup such as those created by CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper.

    At the appropriate point in the installation/setup process, the installer will ask if you wish to migrate data from an older computer or drive.

    Backup the old Mini just before you set up the new one, and have the backup drive "close-at-hand" and ready to connect...
  4. Bill Fitz thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 10, 2015
    Unfortunately, I do not have a back up drive.

    Per Pieterr's comment, does this mean that the migration can be done over my wireless network as long as the old Mac Mini is turned on? I suspect so but just want to double-check.

    If so, I'm sure the wireless network migration option will move a lot slower than using a Time Machine backup.

    Thank you!
  5. Pieterr macrumors regular

    Mar 22, 2015
    The Netherlands
    Yes, via Wifi is possible.
    But better connect the two Macs with an ethernetcable to your router for doing the migration.
  6. Celerondon macrumors 6502a


    Oct 17, 2013
    Southern Cal
    Very Painful And Inconvenient

    Say Bill! :eek:

    Get a backup drive ASAP. Very soon you will have a brand new Mac mini. This situation is one example of how Time Machine or CCC could improve your computing experience. Even under warranty, it would be very painful and inconvenient to encounter one of the more serious backup required scenarios.
  7. tdhurst macrumors 601


    Dec 27, 2003
    Phoenix, AZ

    Yes, you can migrate the data over WiFi.

    You won't need more than one monitor.

    But as previously mentioned, take this chance to buy an inexpensive 3.5" USB drive, back up the old computer, then restore to the new one.

    Then you'll have a reliable backup solution, too.

    And yes, backing up and then restoring via USB is going to be much faster than restoring over WiFi. Much, much faster.
  8. Bill Fitz thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 10, 2015

    Yes, I am going to buy the Airport Time Capsule.

    btw, the new Mini will be equipped with Flash Storage so that should be pretty good.

  9. MRrainer macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2008
    Zurich, Switzerland
    You could also use target disk mode. Apparently, it also works with Thunderbolt.


    I've migrated my data via TimeMachine and that was really super-easy.
    It even allowed me to skip certain stuff that I didn't want to clutter up the new machine with.

    Apple has really figured this one out.
  10. Celerondon macrumors 6502a


    Oct 17, 2013
    Southern Cal
    Flopping for the Fishrrman

    Fantastic Bill!

    That Time Capsule will do just fine. With any luck, it will save you from “flopping” for the Fishrrman. (Perform an Advanced Search for “fish out of water” in the “Mac mini” forum to see what I mean.)

    Which new mini model are you after? Did you make a decision yet? Either way, I agree that an SSD (flash storage) will improve your experience.
  11. bunnspecial macrumors 603


    May 3, 2014
    Not exactly the same situation, but I recently set-up a new rMBP for someone using Migration Assistant from her old, c. 2007 iMac.

    I booted the iMac in TDM, plugged a Thunderbolt-Firewire dongle into the rMBP, and used a FW800 to FW400 cable to connect the two computers together. The whole process took a little over an hour.

    Since your 2011 has Thunderbolt, you can do everything without all the dongles and special cables I used.

    Boot your old Mini in TDM by connecting a keyboard and holding down "T" while powering up. If you have a display connected(not necessary) you will see both the Firewire and Thunderbolt logos bouncing around the screen. The only thing you really need to boot it is a keyboard, and you can even disconnect that once you have it started.

    Connect it to your new Mini via a Thunderbolt cable. Your new Mini should recognize the old one as a mounted volume(essentially as if it's an external hard drive). You can then use Migration Assistant on the new one and select the old one as the source drive.

    It shouldn't take terribly long, although the biggest bottleneck will be the speed of the platter drive in your old Mini.

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