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How to use the Migration Assistant in Mac OS

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Posted in: Apple, Tech Tips

Getting a new MacBook comes with the challenge of moving precious data from your old Mac. A quick way to overcome this is to use the macOS Migration Assistant, a built-in app designed to transfer files, applications, and any data you have from your old Mac to a new one.

With this tool, you won’t have to bother about transferring files manually. You will need a stable Wi-Fi connection on both Mac devices to begin. Place both devices close to your Wi-Fi source. The transfer speed depends on the data size and your Wi-Fi connection.

Before you begin the file transfer process with Migration Assistant, confirm any antivirus software installed on either Mac is turned off. Also, install all software updates for both Mac devices if required. A simple step-by-step guide is provided below.

 On Your Old Mac

  • Go to Finder, select Applications in the sidebar, and then select Utilities.
  • Next, open Migration Assistant and click “Continue.” (Opening Migration Assistant will log you out of all other apps on your Mac and limit you to using only Migration Assistant on your computer until you finish the transfer so make sure you are ready to do that.)
  • Enter your Administrator password at the pop-up prompt and click OK. This grants Migration Assistant permission to access your files.
  • Choose how you want to transfer your data by selecting ‘’To another Mac’’. Then, click Continue. Follow any other prompts.
  • Click Done in Migration Assistant on your old Mac. All the data on your old Mac will still be retained even after the transfer.

On Your New Mac:

  • Set up your new Mac. Migration Assistant will pop up during this process. Choose how you want your data transferred; from a Mac (choose this if following along with this tip), Time Machine backup, or startup disk. Click Continue.
  • Select the option for your old Mac when asked where you are transferring data from, then click Continue.
  • A six-digit code will appear on both computers. Confirm they are the same and click Continue on your old Mac.
  • All transferable data will appear on your new Mac and be automatically selected. Click Continue to proceed.
  • Create a new administrator password by clicking Set Password, then enter a password. This will also serve as the login password to your new Mac. Confirm the password by re-entering it, then click Set Password.
  • A green checkmark will appear beside your account name. Click “Continue” to initiate the transfer process.

Note: Do not use both computers during the transfer process. Your Mac’s screen might also go dim during the process. Upon completion of the transfer, your new Mac will restart automatically. But you can also restart manually by clicking on Restart Now.

  • Click Done on your new Mac, and your computer will restart to complete the transfer process.
  • Log in on the new Mac device to finish the setup. All transferred data is now on your new computer.
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