Migrating To A New Mac

I used to hate the Apple migration tool. There always seemed to be problems, the applications never transferred correctly and I swear my iTunes settings never carried over. Worse yet, my Keychain never copied completely, forcing me to change far too many of my passwords.

But it worked last time, when I transferred everything from my aluminum MacBook to my new MacBook Pro. Everything was there and the process was far faster than I expected. Most of my keychain, mail and contact settings synced up perfectly with my MobileMe account, too.

Here’s the process I went through to get this done. The Apple migration tool appears whenever you start a Mac for the first time, or reinstall the operating system from a blank disk.

I’ve never migrated from a Time Machine backup (knock on wood) nor from another volume, but the process would seemingly be the same. Restoring via Time Machine would take FOREVER.

This is my old MacBook Pro. I started it up while holding down the “T” key. I love the improved graphic here. The original ones were very ugly.

I used a Firewire 800 cable, making this the first time I’ve connected two Macs together with that cable. Before I used a Firewire 400-800 cable and prior to that, a Firewire 400 cable. I used to think transdisk mode (why they don’t just call it Firewire mode is beyond me) was super cool.

I had already done this step, but because the cable wasn’t plugged in yet, I got the screen anyway. Or maybe it just showed that way. I don’t remember.

When I migrate my sister from her Powerbook G4 to my old MacBook Pro next month, I won’t transfer the Applications, to make sure she won’t need Rosetta. I kinda wish we could be more selective than all or nothing, but this works just fine.

I think it will take about 90 minutes (update: 88 total minutes, not including the system updates I have to download and install after I finished migrating).


Update: 90 minutes later and I typed the beginning of this post. Not bad. Everything is here, save for a few registration numbers. Be sure to remember to deauthorize your old computer on ALL your iTunes and Audible accounts or it will be a pain in the ass to reset.