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New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: phuture
Date: August 24, 2019 05:05PM
Hey guys,

I'm getting a new MacBook Pro. I usually use the migration ass't, but I'm wondering if I will have better performance if sett up as scratch.

My question... Is there a way to copy over settings so all my internet passwords and basic settings get retained? Also all my email accounts in Mail added.

FYI, my business is ecommerce, so most of my work is on browsers and editing pix in iPhoto. Nothing particularly heavy, but I want to have the fastest machine possible.
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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: rich in distress
Date: August 24, 2019 05:15PM
I prefer not to use migration assistant. A nice Time Machine backup is more than enough for me.
Head over to SysPrefs's iCloud pane, and mark everything that applies for your rig. This will be the easiest.
Second choice is to look for specific files, like address book db, keychain files, etc. but, why?...

Edit: Leader!!



• back to confinement






Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/24/2019 05:15PM by rich in distress.
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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: Sarcany
Date: August 24, 2019 05:30PM
Quote
phuture
I'm getting a new MacBook Pro. I usually use the migration ass't, but I'm wondering if I will have better performance if sett up as scratch.

Probably.

If you migrated to your current Mac from a previous Mac then you are likely to have a lot of kruft that you don't want or care about that doesn't need to be migrated.

Quote
phuture
My question... Is there a way to copy over settings so all my internet passwords and basic settings get retained? Also all my email accounts in Mail added.

No.

Bookmarks and other browser-related stuff is pretty easy. You can copy the Safari folder from the ~/Library folder and the Firefox and Chrome support folders from the ~/Library/Application Support folders to bring that stuff over.

But where you used to be able to simply copy the ~/Library/Mail folder to the home folder on a new Mac, you can't do it anymore. The Internet Accounts settings won't get populated with that move.

...The iCloud Mail sync option should be the solution to this, but it isn't.

Anyway, you're better off letting Mail build new clean databases than pulling in the old stuff that's probably been converted multiple times between the original Mail database format and the V2/V3 formats used in recent versions of the OS.

Ideally, you're using a service like Gmail or Office365 or your mail server uses IMAP. In such a case, you can simply add the accounts back in the Mail app in Mojave and all of your email will repopulate.

If you have "on my Mac" email folders and one or more POP email accounts then it gets a bit more complicated. I suggest exporting your "on my Mac" mailboxes (Control-click and opt to "Export Mailbox" for each mailbox you'd like to export.) Then import those mailboxes into Apple Mail on the new Mac after you've set up Mail for your various accounts.

Quote
phuture
FYI, my business is ecommerce, so most of my work is on browsers and editing pix in iPhoto. Nothing particularly heavy, but I want to have the fastest machine possible.

What version of the OS is on your old Mac?

Are you genuinely using iPhoto, or was that a typo?

You should be using the Photos app. If you're using an old version of iPhoto then your iPhoto library will need to be converted to a Photos library on the new Mac, but it's easy to do -- just copy the contents of the Pictures folder from the home folder on your old Mac to the home folder on the new Mac.

...

Regardless of whether you are using the Migration Assistant or just copying documents and settings over to the new Mac, it's usually easier to do so via a USB 3.0 backup drive than it is to do directly from the old Mac.

Got a Time Machine backup drive or clone?







Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 08/24/2019 05:32PM by Sarcany.
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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: phuture
Date: August 24, 2019 06:10PM
Thanks for the great replies. I will take your advice and set this one up clean. I'm upgrading from a 2013 MB Air running Mojave.

I think it will be somewhat tedious, but worth it. I do have a USB3 ext drive.

Is copying/exporting keychain saved passwords straight forward?


Regarding Mail... I have a few gmails accounts and 2 POP domain based accounts. I want to make sure all my old messages get moved over. Need to figure that out.
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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: Sarcany
Date: August 24, 2019 08:17PM
Quote
phuture
Is copying/exporting keychain saved passwords straight forward?

Nope.

Apple has been moving stuff from the Login keychain to the Local Items (iCloud) Keychain. It can complicate things.

You can try this... Create the new user account on the new Mac with the same username and password as the old one, replace the contents of the ~/Library/Keychains folder with the contents from your old home folder and immediately reboot. The passwords that were saved in the Login keychain should come over this way, but I can't promise that all of your passwords will come over properly.

Long since time to start using a password-manager like 1Password or LastPass.







Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/24/2019 08:18PM by Sarcany.
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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: August 24, 2019 09:02PM
Stopped using Migration years ago, copies too many unneeded files.

Long since time to start using a password-manager like 1Password or LastPass.
or maybe Enpass.



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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: rich in distress
Date: August 24, 2019 09:14PM
Whoa whoa... Sarcany made me double check. I didn't write the whole sentence. It should have read:
"Head over to SysPrefs's iCloud pane on the computer with the keychain you want to keep, and mark everything that applies for your rig (including Keychain). Sign in on the new machine with the same iCloud credentials and iCloud will take care of everything, this will be the easiest".
I've been carrying the same keychain for a long time, on at least five devices, and never had to do anything but keep using the same iCloud nick.
Best password manager. Every other password manager is an unnecessary security risk, at least for apple users.
I hope it's a known fact that passwords are kept and nicely managed in Keychain Access.app. It's clunkier in iOS @ Passwords and Accounts, but it can be done effectively.

Regarding your pop mail accounts, consider this if you will:
Have your domain based accounts forward mail to an IMAP account. I suggest iCloud, but you may want to use the same Gmail you already use.
Create a mailbox on the IMAP account and a rule to direct mail coming from the domain into said mailbox.
Copy the old POP mailbox into the new IMAP mailbox (drag&drop would work fine).
But anyway...



• back to confinement






Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/24/2019 09:24PM by rich in distress.
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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: Sarcany
Date: August 24, 2019 09:33PM
Quote
rich in distress
"Head over to SysPrefs's iCloud pane...

Apple's history with cloud services is not great.

I've seen the contents of the iCloud keychain disappear and the change propagate to all of a person's devices.

Restore from backup and within a few minutes the new keychain is wiped, too.

Apple support's response: Oops! Yah, that happens.

Use a password manager.



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Re: New Mac: migrate or set up as new?
Posted by: sekker
Date: August 25, 2019 06:52PM
I use iCloud and shared storage to move over documents.

That will be great way to go.

I do also use 1password, but I know that's not an unanimous decision here.
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