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Can we pull this YouTube vid please!

How To Transfer Your Mac's Data to a New Hard Drive SSD

We shouldn’t promote cloning apps! At one point they were useful with HDD’s of old.

Today we have hidden partitions (Internet Recovery) and newer file systems (HFS+ Vs APFS) that these cloning apps just don’t work and can leave the system appear working but is not setup correctly when you need recovery services.

We should focus people to use Migration Assistant, Yes it’s a bit slower as each file is CRC’ed as its copied over. And yes you do need to transfer the user accounts. In the end you get a better image!

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Hi Dan, our video team went ahead and removed that one, it’s definitely old practice, we just didn’t get around to curating. We may have some others floating around out there too! Thanks for the heads-up! =)

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Thanks! Sam.

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Does the MacOS partitions not work like common PC partitions where they're visible to any descent clone tool? I know up to 10.9 and that was clone safe so this is new to me. I also had what Apple would call an obsolete system because I held onto it so long (2009). I can figure other OSes out, but 10.9 was the last one I know well.

Since I hold onto systems so long, it’s possible I may have missed out on some of these features because of my upgrade policy - I only upgrade after 4-5 successive processor generations when I compare it to the current platform I run (Ex: Haswell->Ryzen 2) UNLESS the machine breaks down and is a total loss.

My gripe with cloning is it carries over the preexisting mess. It's less to do with these complications than carrying over a messy configuration.

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Not that simple! Each OS has its unique way of working. MS Windows and MacOS-X/MacOS are different enough you can't use a Windows cloning App to prep a Mac drive as well as the other way.

The issue here is the cloning app makers have to stumble around trying to reverse engineer how Apple does things so they are doing the same, then to add to this Apple altered the file system so that alters things still again.

Many people go cheap finding something on a share site and expect it will work but it likely is old and moldy! And of course they are not going to pay for the update either! So that adds to the mess.

Don't get me wrong I like free too but not something at this level.

So the bottomline is cloning is very passé in the Mac world! Stick with Apples tools Disk Utility, OS Installer and lastly Migration Assistant.

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Now it makes a bit more sense. Until the R&D is paid for, nobody is going to update the Apple specific clone tools to handle these hidden partitions and APFS. The issue is the majority, rather than the minority who get there's going to be a snag and either pay for an APFS clone tool or clean install and then do a Time Machine backup or use Migration Assistant. APFS has too many complications to *consider* using it, even on an SSD. The only way I'd willingly use it is if it was forced upon me and I can't reject it.

I know the MacOS era where you could kind of interchange tools as long as it's a bit-for-bit copy and the tool you use doesn't care what's on the drive (but you are on your own fixing the partitioning). It's the tools that aren't entirely bit-for-bit you have problems with. These were the days when the partitions were less of a nightmare and you could sort of get away with it if you were okay with changing the partitions yourself.

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APFS has its place on PCIe/NVMe SSD drives. SATA HDD's & SSD,s need to stay with HFS+ as a boot drive.

The issue is how the data flows work on these very different I/O's. SATA is transactional A then B, then C ... Unlike PCIe/NVMe which allows concurrent transactions A1, B1 & C1, then A2, B2 & C2 and onward.

These flows can get into trouble with APFS on SATA drives as the queue depth is not large enough so processes can hang.

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Curious, would a program like Clonezilla work for mac? It is a self-bootable linux environment and does a bit level clone through command line. If you use a usb boot device boot to usb and run clonezilla off usb, wouldn’t it be able to clone mac os completely? I don’t spend a lot of time on macos so I could be wrong, but ive used clonezilla on windows and linux no prob bob. Thanks.

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Clonezilla Does not support APFS file system which is what High Sierra & Mojave use.

In years past I had used it quite extensively on SATA HDD's & SSD's. I'm not sure if its very good with AHCI/NVMe based SSD's as unlike SATA you get into concurrent reads & writes which could cause the drive to overheat, either the drive drops down into slow mode or shuts down or just fails. This is another reason you need to be careful with cloning apps with the newer drive technology.

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Huh. Thanks for the info. I have not tried using clonezilla with nvme drives yet as I have never had the need to clone an nvme drive yet. It works wonders on sata drives though! I'm going to look into it though. Thanks for the heads up!

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Dan will be eternally grateful.
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