Thursday, September 3, 2015 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Migrating to a New Mac in the Real World

Michael E. Cohen:

Pack-rat that I am, I keep an Ethernet cable in my Cupboard of Arcane Connectors: I strung that between my new iMac and the Time Capsule before I started the migration. I could have used the Time Capsule’s Wi-Fi connection instead, but restoring a backup that way would have taken considerably more time — the last time I did a migration over Wi-Fi, it consumed a full weekend.

[…]

The first obstacle was the appearance of a dialog that told me the Mac was “preparing” to transfer my backup: it had no progress indicator and, as minute after minute passed, it gave no impression that any progress actually was being made. In my younger, more impatient days, I would have forced a reboot and tried again, but that night I told myself to wait an hour before giving up. After “only” 30 minutes, though, the “preparing” dialog was replaced by one with a progress gauge, and, what’s more, a time estimate!

[…]

Before I could even get to that, though, I had to deal with a flurry of requests for my iCloud password. Dialog after dialog came up requesting it, four or five in a row. This flurry was finally followed by an alert telling me that some of my apps required app-specific passwords, and the alert offered to help me create them. The alert didn’t tell me which apps needed those passwords, but I noticed that it sported a Messages icon.

[…]

Since I couldn’t deauthorize my old Mac (no hard drive, remember), I deauthorized all the computers using my account, and then authorized my new one. My media was once again accessible.

[…]

The moral of this episode: It’s not over until it’s over. Even if you get your Mac successfully migrated, you will likely find a few things that need tweaking and readjusting in the days and weeks ahead.

Adam Engst:

I always have a nightly duplicate of my boot drive, but in a case like Michael’s where it died late in the day, even a nightly bootable duplicate wouldn’t have been enough because he would have had to try to figure out what had changed during the day. In that kind of a situation, something like Time Machine or CrashPlan that runs all the time is more likely to be up to date.

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