6 Replies Latest reply: Mar 4, 2007 11:44 AM by Bojan Landekic
Bojan Landekic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Is it possible, without a reinstall, to merely transfer the install from a desktop to a laptop?

For example, transfering an installed, configured and customized MOSXS (Mac OS X Server) 10.3 from a G4 350 to a much more powerful Macbook or Dual G5?

The alternative of reinstalling, then reconfiguring, then repopulating with content and user's data, simply seems ridicilous!

Essentially the concept of machine-independent replication.

iMac G3 233, Mac OS 9.1.x
  • Niel Level 10 Level 10 (265,505 points)
    You can use SuperDuper to clone a Mac OS X installation from one computer to another, but the destination computer must be capable of starting up from the cloned system, which none of the MacBook nor the G5, nor any other Mac which shipped with 10.4 is capable of doing with the system mentioned in your example. A system cannot be cloned between a PowerPC and an Intel Mac with the possible exception of the Universal Binary Mac OS X 10.4 Server package.

    (20179)
  • Bojan Landekic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    That's both ridicilous and pathetic.

    If Tiger is installed on a Macbook and on a Dual G5, the system is the same, although perhaps the executables vary due to the architectures.

    However, the user/admin changes, settings, themes, preferences, are all 100% architecture independent. There is absolutely zero reason for all of these not to be cloneable.

    If this application you have suggested is not capable of performing this task, then there is a clear market need for such a tool. As Apple's hardware and software offerings change, there seems to be a need for such a tool.

    I simply haven't been able to locate it, so I keep copying things manually. Now I'm being forced to learn how to code because the companies that do the coding don't think ahead.
  • Niel Level 10 Level 10 (265,505 points)
    If this application you have suggested is not capable of performing this task, then there is a clear market need for such a tool. As Apple's hardware and software offerings change, there seems to be a need for such a tool.


    This is the purpose of the Migration Assistant, which apparently isn't part of Mac OS X Server due to complexity. You can use Carbon Copy Cloner to move over an account's home folder and the data associated with it, but the NetInfo or OpenLDAP database will need to be set up manually unless it is preconfigured on the source system and both the source and target disks are running the same Mac OS X revision. Other parts of a Mac OS X installation may contain files which are designed for a specific architecture; if one of these is copied over between architectures, system performance may be affected or the computer may not start up properly.

    (20184)
  • Bojan Landekic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    What I'm suggesting is that no aspect of a system configuration should not be transferable, cloneable, or whatever the appropriate term is. Certainly different architecture's system files will be different, obviously the extensions will differ, sizes, dates, and so forth - however the configuration of a system, such as services, data, and process files will not differ. The hosts file does not change between architectures tremendously, and neither does the DNS nor firewall configurations. And even if they do, it is these settings that I am interested in transfering, and user settings, data, themes, etc.

    In other words, anything that is not architecture-specific.
  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (46,120 points)
    > however the configuration of a system, such as services, data, and process files will not differ

    Yes they will - or at least they can.

    Take for example, network configuration. Your laptop may have an AirPort card. Your G5 doesn't. Oops.

    Typically you're going to assign different IP addresses as part of the migration (so that both machines can be online at the same time). This is going to affect any configuration that depends on the IP address of the server. Off hand this will include Open Directory, IP-based virtual hosts in apache, numerous firewall rules, DHCP server settings, and more.

    That's not to say it can't be done, but to believe and expect that everything is 100% transferrable with no issue is a little naive.
  • Bojan Landekic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I disagree with the naive part. While there are aspects that may be hard-coded to specific IP addresses, basic regexp can update every IP dependecy in an entire system with proper system administration methodologies. Thus if a firewall rule, IP-based virtual host, a hosts file, a round-robin DNS setup, and an smtp junk table all refer to a given IP, they can all be replaced with a variable and/or a regexp tool at the time of migration.

    In fact, it makes little sense to edit each individual file manually with an IP address - makes far more sense to simply utilise a system-wide IP address tool that updates all the variables on the administrator's behalf.

    I think it silly, naive, and a waste of time, to hard-code manually IP addresses, such they can change, should change, and are rarely in control of a given organization to whom they may be allocated to - and far too often are upstream dependant. Unless you own your own /8, in that case, please hire me!