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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Apple’s Migration Assistant

I know this is not an iPad topic but the story is worth telling on this blog.  Apple’s Migration Assistant is a lifesaver if you buy a new system and want to transfer everything from your old Mac including applications, data, and settings.  Windows also has such a utility but I have never been able to get it to work right.  In fact, we are now also being told that we cannot even upgrade in place from the Beta test of Windows 8 to the final code.  Noooooo!  That would be too easy.  Instead, the loyal testers of Windows 8 (myself included) will have to format our systems and start all over when Microsoft releases the final product in Oct.  Typical Microsoft.

Last month I bought a new MacBook Air.  I use a lot of virtual machines.  I have VMs for Windows XP, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 7 Pro, and Windows 8 so you can see how the new MacBook with 8GB of RAM was very attractive to me.  While on the road teaching I went to the Apple Store in Charlotte, NC and started the process of migrating to a new system.  

Here is a brief summary of how the migration:
6:30 p.m. system purchased, left the Apple Store.
7:30 p.m. started the Apple Migration Assistant.
8:00 p.m. realized that using 802.11 to migrate will take from 24-44 hours this was not going to work well.
8:20 p.m. connected the two MacBooks with my Thunderbolt cable restarted Migration Assistant.  (If you are going to do this be sure to hold down Option-T while booting the source machine.  This will turn the source system into nothing but a Thunderbolt drive.)
8:55 p.m. done.  Completely Done!

I didn’t have to fix anything it was a seamless full migration to the new hardware and it left the correct new OS in place. End story.  Well done Apple.  

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