Man Attempting to Move Leopard
August 18, 2008 7:41 AM   Subscribe

Great MeFites, I come bearing but a humble request. I bought a MacBook Pro about six months before Leopard was released. When it finally came out, I installed it on a partition on an external drive, which I would boot from (because OS X is awesome like that, amirite?) so I could test out all my apps. Now I'm ready to commit to Leopard full-time - what's the best way to go about transplanting my Leopard partition?

In my head, I would copy everything precious to the external drive, and then go into Disk Utility and select "Restore" (I'm not in front of my Mac right now, so I don't know the exact option, but it's a tab that comes up in the main pane when you select the root drive in the left-hand pane), where I would select Leopard as the source, and my internal drive as the destination. However, the internal drive is just slightly bigger than the Leopard partition - would this present a problem?

Also, what are my other options? Specifially, Carbon Copy Cloner comes to mind - is this what I need?

Also also, I would like to merge my Adium chat logs - any programs available? If this isn't possible, I'll settle for simply copying them to my Documents folder, and using Spotlight.

A thousand thank-yous in advance.
posted by indiewizard to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: If it were me, I'd copy everything you need from the internal drive to the external drive, boot off the external drive, and use SuperDuper to (1) erase the internal drive, and then (2) copy the contents of the external drive to the internal drive (full backup). I've done this particular operation several times before, and have not had a problem.
posted by jaimev at 8:11 AM on August 18, 2008

Carbon Copy Cloner is free. Super Duper ain't, but it's more user friendly and free for what you want to do, which is a straight copy. jaimev has the right strategy.

Merging Adium logs is a wee bit trickier, but it's just a case of copying the stuff in the log directories (~/Library/Application Support/Adium/Users/Default/Logs/) over.

Since OS X isn't like Windows, you can't just drag the base directory across from one volume to the other. But you can do it from the Terminal with cp -R -n.
posted by holgate at 8:34 AM on August 18, 2008

As long as the leopard partition on the external is bootable and set up exactly how you want, and you're ready to erase the internal drive, you could just pop the leopard install dvd into your computer. Do a clean install and when you're given a chance to migrate your user account(s) do that. When you plug in your external (bootable) volume it will see that as another 'computer'.

That's what I did anyway. Worked fine. I didn't really want to trust superduper/ccc to copy the entire OS over.
posted by sero_venientibus_ossa at 10:39 AM on August 18, 2008

Carbon Copy Cloner is free. Super Duper ain't...

Actually, for a simple cloning operation like this, I'm pretty sure SuperDuper is free. You pay to get a code that unlocks features like scheduling, smart updates, sandboxing, and scripting.
posted by jaimev at 3:06 PM on August 18, 2008

Hmm...I don't know that I'd bother with any of this other software: just back the thing up to an external drive using Time Machine. Then, you should be able to boot into the Leopard DVD and restore from the Time Machine backup to your MacBook Pro drive...

Although sero_venientibus_ossa's way might be just as easy. Dunno which would take longer. It takes some time to install the OS, but then again it takes some time to copy the whole partition over (migrating is selective, you can just do your user info and apps, for example, if you'd like).

But, this is just one of many ways to do it, these should all work fine. Obviously the main requirement for all is an external drive big enough to hold your current Leopard partition.
posted by dubitable at 9:10 PM on August 18, 2008

Response by poster: After a finger-bitingly long transfer with SuperDuper (which I neglected to mention I had experience with, and probably should've considered from the beginning), I ended up being able to boot directly into Leopard on my internal drive. The only thing obviously wrong is it neglected to transfer my LittleSnitch rules, which is no problem for me.

Other than that, everything's honky-dory.
posted by indiewizard at 8:28 AM on August 20, 2008

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