5 Replies Latest reply: Sep 18, 2011 9:10 PM by Dkk82d
mlsred Level 1 Level 1



I don't have a great deal of experience with Mac but a friend of mine has just purchased a MacBook Pro to replace their aging MacBook.  They have tried to use the migration assistant to move files etc across but got in a bit of mess with multiple accounts and duplicate files etc appearing on the new MacBook, the migration assistant seemed to fail and was run several times but some files were copied whilst others were not.


Anyway, I am thinking that as there is nothing of importance on the new MacBook Pro, it is effectively only a few days old, that I will do a factory reset and start again with a clean slate as it were. Assume this is relatively easy to do, and that I can do this with the software that is already installed on the MacBook pro? I don’t believe they got any CDs/DVDs with the MacBook pro so assuming that the  factory reset/restore info is already loaded on the disk?


Can someone advise how to do this and if there are any risks?




  • a brody Level 9 Level 9
    Classic Mac OS



    Any changes made prior to the restore to that particular machine will be lost.  So backup any data you want to be imported after the restore.  Here are backup directions*:



  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7
    Apple Watch

    Is this a brand-new MacBook Pro?  If so, it should be running Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion), which does not come with install disks.  To reinstall, you simply hold down command-R at startup to boot into recovery mode.  From there, you would erase the hard drive with Disk Utility and reinstall the system.  Note that you'll need a good internet connection, as it will need to download a lot of data.  (Not sure exactly how much, but the installer downloaded from the App Store for older machines that didn't come with Lion is 3.76 GB.)


    There shouldn't be any risk to doing that if all the data is stored elsewhere.  And don't try to use Migration Assistant, use the Setup Assistant that asks about importing data from an old machine the first time you boot the new system.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7

    Follow Thomas Reed's advice with Lion Recovery and then simply use the same partition drive name and user name on the new machine when going through the setiup.


    Then instead of using Setup Assistant which asks to transfer from another Mac, just skip that part.


    Software Update, then install programs from fresh sources and finally transfer the contents of the user file folders (Music, Pictures, Documents etc) of the old Mac into their respective folders on the new Mac. (you can use a external drive or Firewire Target Disk Mode for this)


    As long as the partition name is the same and the user name is the same, the pathnames match in iTunes and you don't get exclamation points to missing songs as their locations don't appear to have moved.


    Also because you installed OS X first and updated, then installed programs, then lastly user files which change often, your boot drive remains optimized for maximum performance longer than if you used other methods.


    Lots of people complain their computers slow down after using migration and or setup assistant. So by following my steps you avoid that slowdown.


    Also by installing programs fresh and transferring files manually, you avoid any pitfalls with certain software that doesn't run correctly on OS X Lion, namely Rosetta programs and anti-malware/root level installed programs which also could be the cause of your issues.


    Migration and Setup Assistant blindly copies, there is no intelligence as it's impossible to catagorize all third party software accuratly so by installing what programs you use from fresh sources you ensure it works for Lion.

  • mlsred Level 1 Level 1

    Thanks very much for all the advice, really appreciated

  • Dkk82d Level 1 Level 1

    I am running into the exact same problem as you.  I would like to start from scratch as I have no new files, but I am concerned that in order to get the programs I want from iLife, namely iPhoto and iMovie, the help instructions say that I will have to buy them from the App store for $50! Is this the way you understand it?  I think this looks like another Apple scam!