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New Power Mac G5 models include "System Migration" feature; more details

New Power Mac G5 models include "System Migration" feature; more details

MacFixIt has learned that the just-announced updated Power Mac G5 models are the first to include Apple's new "System Migration" feature. Apple's website states:

"Apple simplicity lets you add a Power Mac G5 to your creative studio without days of downtime configuring a new system. The new Mac OS X setup assistant helps you effortlessly move user accounts, system preferences, documents and applications from an old Mac to a new Power Mac G5 -- and the transfer is FireWire fast."

This feature evidently works in the following manner:

  • On first boot, you're given the opportunity to connect a FireWire cable between your new G5 and your old Mac.
  • The Setup Assistant walks you through various types of files on your old Mac -- user folders (and accounts), applications, system add-ons, etc. -- and lets you choose whether or not to transfer them to your new G5.
  • The Setup Assistant then proceeds to transfer the appropriate files and completes the setup process.

As moving from an old Mac to a new one has always been one of the biggest hassles involved in upgrading your computer system, we welcome the concept behind this new feature; we're anxious to see how well it performs in real-world use. If you've ordered a new Power Mac G5 and end up using the System Migration feature, please drop us a note at Late-breakers@macfixit.com.


UPDATE Since we first reported this new feature on Wednesday, we've received more details about the actual procedure courtesy of reader Brian, who sent us screenshots of the System Migration process (the first few steps of which are simply explaining how to use FireWire Target Disk Mode):

  1. Intro screen: The Setup Assistant asks the user:
      Do You Already Have a Mac?
      If you are already using a Mac equipped with FireWire, all the important information from the old Mac can be automatically transferred to this new one. To do this now, you will need to connect your old Mac to your new one using a FireWire cable. The information on your old Mac will not be affected.
    The user is given the choices "Yes, transfer my information," "No, do not transfer my information," or "Learn More" (which we assume provides a Help Viewer window with more info).
  2. Step 1 screen: The next screen reads:
      Step 1: Connect FireWire Cable
      Connect a FireWire cable between this new Mac and your old Mac. Press Continue when finished. If you don't want to transfer your important information, click Go Back.
      If you are transferring from a portable Mac, be sure to cnnect it to a power adapter.
  3. Step 2 screen: The third screen reads:
      Step 2: Restart Your Old Mac
      Restart your old Mac while holding down the "T" key. Important: Continue holding down the "T" key until you see the FireWire symbol on your old Mac. This may take up to 30 seconds.
  4. Step 3 screen: The fourth step allows you to choose what data is to be transferred from the old Mac to the new one. The choices are:
    • User accounts (all or selected accounts)
    • Network settings
    • The root-level /Applications directory
    • "Files and folders" on the hard drive (We're assuming this means that the Setup Assistant searches for any other non-system-related files and folders not located inside user home directories, in order to ensure that no files are lost.)
    As you select data types, the Setup Assistant shows how much hard drive space is available on the new Mac, along with the amount of space required by the data to be transferred.
  5. "Transferring" screen: After completing Step 3, the Setup Assistant begins the transfer of data, providing you with a progress screen noting which data is being transferred.

  • Late-breakers@macfixit.com
  • Intro screen
  • Step 1 screen
  • Step 2 screen
  • Step 3 screen
  • "Transferring" screen
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