I’m in the process of migrating to a new Mac. It is proving surprisingly cumbersome to do so. The Migration Assistant I tried in peer to peer mode stalls as soon as one of the laptops (and then both) falls asleep, and does not resume when woken up. Giving it expects to take several hours to copy everything it isn’t viable to stay next to it just to keep both machines awake. I set both up to not fall asleep, but those are system settings within a user account it appears, and it logs out of those when doing the migration. I could migrate from my Time Machine to the new laptop, which also needs the Migration Assitant however, which loops me back to the falling asleep bit.

So I’ve decided to do the migration by hand. That’s actuallly not entirely unwelcome as it allows me to ignore the accumulated detritus of working on the old laptop for 7 years. It’s just a lot of work to think of how to copy over certain databases, licenses, settings of specific tools etc. It will have to happen in stages, and partly as needs arise.

All the software I intend to keep using is installed (Evernote nor Things are making the move with me). I’ve copied over my documents archive, and connected the new laptop to my Nextcloud cloud. Next steps are setting up my e-mail and calendar accounts in Thunderbird, and migrating my Alfred snippets. After those I’m good to go for working on the new laptop. Anything else is non-essential, and can be dealt with in stages. This includes image and music libraries, book collections, etc. It likely will be a good while until I’ve added the various tweaks and twiddles to reduce friction in my workflows, to mirror 7 years worth of tweaks on the old system.

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  1. My migration was a little smoother, but only a little. For starters, the new iMac came with High Sierra installed, despite being bought several months after Mojave was released, so I had to upgrade macOS before I could restore anything from my Time Machine backups. Also, I knew that the Fusion Drive would be a performance bottleneck in the long-term, so once I’d gotten all my important applications reinstalled I could clone the system disk to an external SSD, boot from that and repurpose the Fusion Drive for archival storage.

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