Currently Being ModeratedJul 17, 2013 1:54 PM (in response to mountainmamma)
Make one last TimeMachine backup of each computer. Start a computer with the Snow Leopard (10.6) system disk (I assume you have the commercial release, the disk with a Snow Leopard on it) and its TimeMachine drive connected. To boot with the SL system disk, turn the computer on and immediately press & hold the 'C' key when you hear the chime. Once you see the Apple logo you can release the key.
After choosing your language you'll be at the installation screen. In the menubar select Utiltiies, and choose Disk Utility. Select the computer's hard drive and choose 'Erase'. Quit Disk Utility when it finishes erasing (it shouldn't take long) and you'll be back to the SL install window. Do it. This step will take 30-60 minutes. Eventually the installation will be completed and you'll be asked a few questions. Eventually you'll come to the Setup Assistant.
Read this article about Migration Assistant. SA and MA are basically the same thing, they are different in that you get one chance to migrate your account(s) and software with the SA - after you've installed the new operating system or started your Mac for the first time. You can run MA at any time but there are reasons why you are best off running the SA.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 18, 2013 6:14 AM (in response to dwb)
OK--I can find operating system disks back to OS 7.5 & the box with original disks for every laptop box back to the first iBook I bought, but can't find either the Snow Leopard disk I used to upgrade my 5 yr old Macbook or the box for my husband's laptop that will soon be mine. His Pro is a 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 purchased 6 months after my son's Pro 2.4 Ghz Intel 2 Duo. I have the original disks for the slightly older computer. Would I get into trouble if I use the install disk from the Duo to wipe the drive of the i5 and then use Setup Assistant to get my stuff from the Time Machine backup onto the i5 Pro? The install disk is OS 10.6.3 & the Pro & Macbook are both running 10.6.8. If this shouldn't be done, then I'll probably just migrate my stuff onto his computer without reformatting the drive. I just wanted to start out with a clean drive before putting my stuff on his. I plan on upgrading his computer to Mavericks when it comes out. My Macbook was too old to upgrade to Mountain Lion, and when I wanted to upgrade his to Mountain Lion he wouldn't let me--didn't want to change anything on a computer that was working for him. This is from a man who keeps most of his files on the desktop despite my pleas to get them in folders in the document folder. The Air is too good for him, but I need a computer with the optical drive & have an ethernet connection and this transfer made the most sense for us. My ulterior motive is to buy a retina display Macbook Pro when they finally upgrade that line.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 18, 2013 6:26 AM (in response to mountainmamma)
The system installation disks that came with each Mac are specific to that model. (Today we get no installation disks, we download it instead, progress that for me isn't a step forward. Editorial comments off ). You can try booting the newer MBP with the older DVD, it might work but I'm betting not. If it does boot you should be safe to use it. However, that leaves you with the other two computers still to swap. The Snow Leopard is available here for a very reasonable price and will work on all your computers.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 18, 2013 6:53 AM (in response to dwb)
Thanks for this information. I'm going to keep looking for the Snow Leopard disk I know I have somewhere but will probably break down and buy another copy of the disk if I can't find the one I know I have, rather than risk problems with the transfers. I just hate to pay for something I know I already have--although I've bought multiple versions of all my Beatles albums since I started buying when there were only vinyl albums!
Currently Being ModeratedJul 18, 2013 7:06 AM (in response to mountainmamma)
Yes...back around 1999-2000 I sold my PowerBook and went looking for the box which had discs etc. Problem was I couldn't remember if I packed it away at home or at my office and to make matters worse, since buying the computer we'd moved into a new home and I'd moved into a new building at work. Found the darn box two years later when I went to sell my wife's PowerBook.
I can't do anything about the darn boxes, but I now keep all my discs in a disk carrier even if it means throwing away a nify little box. The disc box/envelope means nothing. Those discs are a pain to replace!
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