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RE: Mac OS X v10.7 Lion - Updated Advice Please

2570 Views 32 Replies Latest reply: Jun 1, 2012 12:49 PM by DMerz RSS
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DMerz Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
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Feb 26, 2012 10:33 AM

Hello,

 

I would like to get some general updated advice regarding installing OS X v10.7 Lion.  I am currently running Snow Leopard v10.6.8 and am quite happy with it.

 

However; I purchased, back in October 2011, a OS X Lion v10.7 USB stick.  I have yet to install it because I read about a lot of negative issues. Or maybe I just interpreted that they were negative?

 

I have only one "third party" SW - ClamXav which runs fine with Snow Leopard.  Everything else is Apple SW.

 

So, my questions:

 

1)  What is the latest, regarding stability and issues for OS X v10.7 Lion?  Experience/Opinion-wise, is it in good shape to install now?

 

2)  The version on the USB stick is v10.7.  I assume if I install it from the stick, that SW Update will get me to current level.  Is that correct?  Is that version level still v10.7 or v10.7.x?

 

3)  Is it necessary or just recommended, before I update to Lion, that I do a "bootable clone" of my current setup?  If so, can someone point me to a "solid" set of instructions to do that?

 

4)  I read, just recently, about the new, upcoming OS X Mountain Lion.  Can I skip Lion and wait for Mountain Lion (install Mountain Lion from Snow Leopard)? 

 

5)  RE: Snow Leopard.  Is there a cutoff point/time that Apple will not support Snow Leopard?  Or, another way to ask the questions is, can I stay on Snow Leopard forever (If it ain't broke, don't fix it)? 

 

I apologize for all the questions and thanks in advance for the help and advice!

 

Regards

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.8), 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4 GB Ram, 250 GB HD
  • Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,155 points)
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    Feb 26, 2012 10:46 AM (in response to DMerz)

    DMerz wrote:

     

    1)  What is the latest, regarding stability and issues for OS X v10.7 Lion?  Experience/Opinion-wise, is it in good shape to install now?

    In my experience 10.7 is quite stable and always have been for me. However, this is a community for support issues. So you will find more people here having troubles than not.

     

    DMerz wrote:

     

    2)  The version on the USB stick is v10.7.  I assume if I install it from the stick, that SW Update will get me to current level.  Is that correct?  Is that version level still v10.7 or v10.7.x?

    Yes, the version on the USB stick will install 10.7.0, which you will then be able to upgrade via Software Update to 10.7.3 which is the current version.

     

    DMerz wrote:

     

    3)  Is it necessary or just recommended, before I update to Lion, that I do a "bootable clone" of my current setup?  If so, can someone point me to a "solid" set of instructions to do that?

    It isn't necessary but it is strongly recommened that you have some form of full disk backup available to you, along with a plan concerning how to restore, before you install a major update to the OS such as this. Whether that backup is bootable or not is entirely up to you. In fact if you are not using Time Machine now you are just asking to lose data at some point in the future. It is not a question of if but when that data loss happens. Backups are essential whether you are upgrading the OS or not.

     

    DMerz wrote:

     

    4)  I read, just recently, about the new, upcoming OS X Mountain Lion.  Can I skip Lion and wait for Mountain Lion (install Mountain Lion from Snow Leopard)? 

    No one here can answer that question since the upgrade requirements for 10.8 have not been announced by Apple yet.

     

    DMerz wrote:

     

    5)  RE: Snow Leopard.  Is there a cutoff point/time that Apple will not support Snow Leopard?  Or, another way to ask the questions is, can I stay on Snow Leopard forever (If it ain't broke, don't fix it)? 

    Yes, you can stay with 10.6.x for as long as you like and as long as the software you use continues to function. No one forces you to upgrade the OS on your computer. That is a choice.

  • macjack Level 9 Level 9 (50,445 points)
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    Feb 26, 2012 10:55 AM (in response to DMerz)
  • Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,155 points)
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    Feb 26, 2012 11:58 AM (in response to DMerz)

    Yes, the TM backup will enable you to recover in case of an accident or other "disaster." You should also have the original OS restore discs handy just in case, as well.

     

    A clone and a TM backup are a bit different in functionality. While both methods create full-disk backups only the clone is generally bootable. The TM backup is not. Which you rely in is entirely up to you, although, clone backups are not generally incremental like TM. In my opinion neither one is better than the other, just as long as you have current backups that you make sure are working periodically.

     

    Before I install a major update like this I will ensure I have a current TM backup and do a clone of my HDD just in case. But I like redundancy. This is not necessary for everyone, and I would suggest that you having a current, up-to-date TM backup will be sufficient.

  • Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,155 points)
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    Feb 26, 2012 6:12 PM (in response to DMerz)

    You're welcome.

  • MadMacs0 Level 4 Level 4 (3,320 points)
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    Feb 26, 2012 9:43 PM (in response to DMerz)

    DMerz wrote:

     

    4)  I read, just recently, about the new, upcoming OS X Mountain Lion.  Can I skip Lion and wait for Mountain Lion (install Mountain Lion from Snow Leopard)? 

    As someone has already said, the requirements have not been stated yet, but rumor has it that some number of older Mac's will be excluded Mountain Lion Kills OS X Support For A Number Of Macs, Here’s The List.

    5)  RE: Snow Leopard.  Is there a cutoff point/time that Apple will not support Snow Leopard?  Or, another way to ask the questions is, can I stay on Snow Leopard forever (If it ain't broke, don't fix it)?

    Apple has always stopped providing updates to the OS and Security updates for all but two versions. Thus when Mountain Lion is released, it's almost a given that Snow Leopard will no longer be supported with any updates.

  • Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,155 points)
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    Feb 27, 2012 10:18 AM (in response to DMerz)

    You're quite welcome.

     

    What you might want to do is just wait for when 10.8 is released and make a decision then. You may be able to go right from 10.6.x to 10.8.

  • SteveKir Level 3 Level 3 (545 points)

    I did a test a few months ago, by restoring my Lion OS from my Time Machine. It seemed to work but Mail had no messages, and there were some other significant errors which made the restoration a failure. (Over the last year TM has shown faults three times which required me to erase it and start again.) I do not rely on TM for other than recovering individual files from recent versions.

     

    On other backup solutions, I use Carbon Copy Cloner to produce an automatic bootable backup at 9 am every morning (CCC has the ability to create a schedule.) I also make another CCC backup every three weeks on a USB external HD (to safeguard, to some extent, from  a virus or major glitch being carried through to the daily backup.)

     

    You asked for the latest regarding stability and issues for OS X v10.7 Lion? I installed Lion last Summer on my mid 2011 iMac. My system is clean of all haxies and other things that modify the OS. It continues to have 13 anoyances/glitches/bugs which cause me to grit my teeth, with no sign of Apple producing a cure nor even any recognition of problems. However, out of all the millions of Lions installed, my problems probably affect a small minority. But that does not make me happy. I will not upgrade the OS ever again unless I am forced to.

  • Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,155 points)
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    Mar 3, 2012 9:48 AM (in response to DMerz)

    DMerz wrote:

     

    Hello Michael and SteveKir,

     

    I@ Michael - I like the idea of waiting for 10.8.  The only concern is that I bought the Lion OS X v10.7 USB stick back in October, 2011 for $69.00.  So, will I be able to use it to install v10.7 and then go to v10.8?  Or would the v10.7 USB stick be useless at that point?

    It's really up to you how you proceed. Since you have the USB installer why not use it. However, if you wait for 10.8 and upgrade to that then, yes, that 10.7 installer would be of no use to you. However you can probably repurpose the physical flash drive if you like.

     

    DMerz wrote:

     

    Anyway, do you think I could get away with repartitioning the LaCie 1TB external drive I have for Carbon Copy Cloner or should I get another separate ext HD for that?  I would only do the Cloner for the MB Pro.  If I needed another ext HD, what storage size would be adequate?

    My preferred method is to have a seperate HDD for the clone, so at least two external HDDs. One for TM backups and one for a bootable clone. This may be too redunant for you, but it's how I like to work.

  • SteveKir Level 3 Level 3 (545 points)
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    Mar 4, 2012 3:50 AM (in response to DMerz)

    I agree with Michael. Putting your system OS on the same drive as the CCC bootable clone is not what I would do. If the drive fails, you lose both: "eggs in one basket" and all that. I had 3 LaCie FireWire drives about 5 years ago, one holding my CCC clone and one a backup of my Final Cut movies etc. Both failed within a week of each other!!! The failure was in the internal circuitry of the power supply in each drive. I was able to recover some data by using a data-recovery firm. That incident taught me a lesson. Despite the failure, I have continued to buy LaCie drives, partly because they seem to the only ones that will reliably boot a Mac (Western Digital drives are said not to be reliable concerning booting a Mac). I read somewhere that LaCie had improved their reliability.

     

    Note that for a drive to be bootable, it must be partitioned using the GUID method, even if only one partition is needed. (Disk Utility offers GUID). I see no reason not to have another partition in the same drive as a CCC bootable clone (or even 2 other partitions.)

     

    Also, my second "once every 3 weeks" clone is a USB drive and it boots up OK. (It used to be said that a Mac cannot boot from a USB drive but with the newer Macs that seems not to be a problem.) It is a (bare) SATA drive taken from my old G5 and installed in a USB case. USB drives seem to be cheaper that FireWire drives but Mac-bootable ones seem to be difficult to get.

     

    Incidentally, my TM is on another LaCie Firewire drive.

  • Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,155 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 4, 2012 7:29 AM (in response to SteveKir)

    I agree with Steve about LaCie. I've had a small handful fail on me but I still like the overall quality of the products based on the number of their drives I've purchased over the years.

     

    I also have a Western Digital My Passport SE USB that I've recently purchased that has been working well for me to boot my MBP.

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