Upgrading to Intel
March 30, 2007 10:39 AM   Subscribe

Should I use the Migration Assistant when updating from a Powerbook to a Macbook Pro? Or just reinstall the software and/or look for Intel native or Universal binaries?
posted by four panels to Technology (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Migration Assistant seemed pretty much flawless to me when I used it to switch to a MacBook. All my apps survived the transfer, along with other handy stuff like my Calendar Entries / Contacts / Playlists / Photo Albums that would have been a time consuming hassle to move manually.
posted by roofus at 10:49 AM on March 30, 2007

Much of your software is probably already Universal Binary (most free/shareware programs are), so you might was well use the migration assistant to bring everything over... it works pretty well. It is especially useful for transferring over your data and media (itunes music, photos, emails, etc) in an intuitive, seamless way.

Then after you've done the Migration Assistant, install any Universal apps that you didn't already have on your powerbook.
posted by stilly at 10:58 AM on March 30, 2007

Use Process Viewer, sorted on the processor type column to tell what's still PPC on your machine once you make the move.

Migration assistant worked well for me.
posted by tomierna at 11:32 AM on March 30, 2007

I did it both ways (I destroyed a MacBookPro recently).

The first time, I hand copied everything , ignoring old shareware/apps I wasn't using. This took over a day. "OH crap, wait, yeah, I want that. No, that's not a UB, but I need the registration info"

The new machine? I didn't have the time. Just went and ran the migration assistant.

When done, I kept running the Activity Monitor to see what stuff I was running wasn't a UB (particularly widgets).
posted by filmgeek at 11:38 AM on March 30, 2007

I think tomierna means to say "System Profiler" rather than "Process Viewer".

Applie menu, About this Mac, More info...

Software, Applications. See the "Kind" column.
posted by cmiller at 11:39 AM on March 30, 2007

I was pleased with using the Migration Assistant. Having the cookies movie over in Safari was extra nice.

The only app that I had a problem with was Photoshop CS2. It wanted to be activated on the new machine. I had to de-activate it on the old one first, but aside from that everything "just worked" from the get go.
posted by birdherder at 12:33 PM on March 30, 2007

After migrating your apps and data, to get new UB versions of your apps, I'd recommend either the AppUpdate widget (which I've used on my iBook G4: works great!) or AppFresh (which I have not used yet). Both pull the version data from the apps and checks it against Apple and VersionTracker for newer data.
posted by CipherSwarm at 12:51 PM on March 30, 2007

I just moved from an G5 iMac to a MacBook Pro. I decided to take the opportunity to do some reorganizing and house-cleaning, and so I did not use Migration Assistant.

Instead, I copied over applications and directories by hand. I also went through /Library/* and ~/Library/* and copied over preferences and configuration files for applications that I wanted to continue using.

I expected to run into some problems, but this all worked very well. The first time around I missed one mail.app configuration file, which I had to go back and fetch. Also, my old copy of Photoshop gives me a warning when I startup, but I think that just may be an artifact of the fact that it is not a universal binary. But I didn't have to reinstall any software from disk, I didn't have to reenter a single license code. It worked great, and now my disk is much cleaner and more organized. This only took an hour or so.

Of course, if you're happy with your current setup and just want to create a mirror image of it on the new machine, you should just go with Migration Assistant. But I wouldn't be intimidated by doing it by hand.
posted by alms at 8:59 PM on March 30, 2007

Migration assistant is soooo easy, so if you like tedious tasks like hand copying files and remember where you put all your registration codes, be my guest, else just use it.
posted by KimG at 3:07 PM on March 31, 2007

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