Well after some time and some help I received over on this thread... Migration assistant ... I ended up in a Catch-22 which only sneaker-net could get me out.
Given that sneaker net worked like a charm.
SImilar problem here, migrating from an old MacBook Air to a new one (directly, not via backup).
During the new Mac's initial setup, I followed all the steps properly as instructed (and made sure the original machine's Firewall was off). I tried both my main WiFi network and an ad hoc network, with Internet Sharing. (Ad hoc proved VERY finnicky to even get a connection. Miserable--it would work or it wouldn't, and I had no power over it: it would fail on the same config where it would succeed. A shame, because ad hoc would be the ideal, low-interference way to get the fastest WiFi transfer. And it's a method Apple's support site even suggests.)
No matter what I did, both machines just stuck at "Looking for other computers" forever. I spent hours trying to get it to work. I wasn't going to buy an ethernet adapter, nor a new external HD (with some third-party backup software as a workaround) just so I could power on my new Mac and have my stuff on it.
Eventually I gave up, installed without migrating, and then ran Migration Assistant after the fact. That DID connect OK (took about 1 hour per 10 GB and was done by morning).
But doing it that way was a mess: there was NO warning when I did the initial setup that I should not use my own name as the main account if I planned to migrate later. Who knew? I couldn't migrate after the fact because I had the same name on both machines. Well.... of course! Don't most people keep the same name? It's as though you're not expected to ever buy another Mac unless you're a newlywed woman. (None of which would be an issue if migration would happen during initial setup as it should.)
So I had to create a superfluous extra account with admin privileges, run Migration Assistant from there, replace the redundantly-named new account, and then find and delete the redundant account where it was stashed during migration. Lastly, I deleted the superfluous admin account as well. THREE accounts needed to be involved, for a process ANY Mac-to-Mac buyer will face. There was nothing special about my migration.
I don't think most users could even figure out all these steps.
A loyal Air user buying a new Air should not be such an incredible hassle. It "just doesn't work."
Ok I finally got Migration Assistant to work, transferring from MacBook Pro running OS X 10.6.8, to new MacBook Air running Lion 10.7.
I ran software update on the MacBook Pro. I then also manually installed the patch/update for the 10.6.8 Migration Assistant, which allows it to interface with Lion machines:
(Why does this not get installed automatically when running the software update...)
I then went into System Preferences on both machines.
Under Security I turned off the firewall.
At this point I tried to use Migration Assistant, with the computers connected by ethernet cable - and got the "looking for other computers" message on both machines.
I went back into System Preferences on both machines.
Under Sharing, I checked the box Internet Sharing - and ignored the dire warnings how my ISP would cut me off etc. and activated this.
I then restarted Migration Assistant on both machines, and was able to run it no problem.
Hope this helps as it took me a couple of hours of messing around to figure this out...
Once Migration Assistant has finished, you should go back into Sharing and uncheck the Internet Sharing boxes on both machines.
This was, word for word, my experience. What a nightmare! In addition, I had to update Migration Assistant on the old computer before it would work. I also had to create an Admin account, migrate, then put my name on the new computer as a second admin... oh lord, I don't even really know what I did, only that it worked minutes before I would have thrown my poor new Air off the balcony. Of course, all is well now and I love my new machine....
All solutions seem to stem from updating your original OS before starting Migration. If everything was saved on an external with Time Machine before the patch on Snow Leopard, and my only OS was wiped clean and installed with Lion, has anyone found a solution to import the saved Time Machine backup onto Lion successfully?
If I didn't have Carbonite all of my data would still be stuck on my external with no way to import it...Come on Apple...you tout this feature as being revolutionary, simple, and sure-proof. The only simple thing is that it 'simply' doesn't work..
Same problem here. Been searching for HOURS tonight, and nothing has worked. I've tried EVERYTHING in EVERY permutation, turning on internet sharing, turning on file sharing, creating an ad-hoc network, trying migration asst. in different order each time, literally everything suggested in this thread & many others. Apple support on this is PITIFUL. As Morgan says, it "just doesn't work." And this is something VERY basic that nearly every user will want to deploy on a new machine.
Upon a suggestion from another thread, I'm going to try a different tack. I'm going to use 3rd party software (SuperDuper!), a well-known & trusted backup utility, and create a bootable backup on an external drive, then open mig. asst. and choose the "time machine or other disk" option, and see if that works. I'll report back if it does. Not hopeful, though.
I know this is a bit of a rant, but I hope someone from Apple is reading these forums-- I've been an Apple loyalist all my life, and no company is perfect, but recently, there have been some GLARING issues that are well-known & reported all over these & other forums, but Apple doesn't seem to want to acknowledge them. The airport dropped-connection problem is one (I've had this problem on 2 different Macs recently). After they were basically forced to acknowledge the antenna-gate problem (after basically blaming their users for "holding the phone the wrong way"), there seemed to be an air of conceit/contempt coming from this company that I don't remember in years past.. Sigh, is this how you become the world's most valuable company?
Good suggestion - I finally managed to get my migration working.
I have a brand new mac mini with Lion now updated to 10.7.1; my old mini (to migrate from) is 10.6.8 + the manual install of the migration assistant update + firewall off on both computers (attemped to migrate using wifi and Ethernet). I kept getting stuck on the new machine saying authorisation required and a 6 digit code - nothing I could do would make it work (no sign of the code on the old mini) so in the end I did this:
1: Backed up my old mini using SuperDuper to an external disk (you could use TimeMachine but I find that very clunky personally, and very slow over wifi for 100G or so)
2: On my new mini selected backup from other disk and restored just fine from my SuperDuper image
I love Mac's but oh my goodness this is really poor of Apple and all these folks saying it does not work yet they don't patch it - surely it's common to want to copy from your old Mac running the latest patch of 10.6 to a new Mac running the latest patch of 10.7? Looks like no one tested for that scenario. Hopefully soon I won't care with a working system but this was certainly in the "just doesn't work" category for me and 2 hours of wasted time! Hmmmm
Tiberious (great handle)--
Yes, I'm restoring right now using the SuperDuper method, and it appears to be working (not finished yet, but at least I'm as far as transferring files). Don't know if we could say the same for Apple's own Time Machine, but I don't use it anyway; I find it clunky too.
One caveat: if you want to keep the same account username (& short name) on your NEW machine (which presumably most people would) migration assistant won't let you restore the same username from your old machine if you are ALREADY logged in to the NEW machine with that same username. To work around this, simply create another admin user account on your NEW machine (not a bad idea to keep an alternate "ghost admin" account anyway), log into that account, and run migration assistant from there. Then, choose the 3rd option to replace the same-named account on the new machine with the one you're restoring from your old machine. Hopefully this is clear-- it's a bit arcane, but Apple has not given us a "simple and elegant" solution that "just works" yet, so hopefully most people with this issue will glean the correct procedure.
Best of luck!
Thanks - I did indeed have to create a ghost admin account for the very reason you stated - got there in the end!
Not exactly out of the box all this but I'm up and running now (and I was using SuperDuper for a full clone anyway). I'm glad this discussion was on the forum as I was really stuck!