Local data migration

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Reader John Spahr is finally ready to make a commitment and needs just the gentlest push to seal the deal. He writes:

My Mac Pro has two hard drives. One of them has Tiger installed on it, which is what I normally use. I installed Leopard on the other to see what it was like. Now that 10.5.2 is out, I’m ready to use Leopard on a regular basis but my third-party applications aren’t cooperating. When I launch them from the Tiger drive some can’t find their registration and others are missing support files or the custom settings I’ve created. Is there a way to clean up this mess?

Use Migration Assistant. Most people think of Migration Assistant as a one-time tool you use when you want to move data from an old Mac to a new one, but it works locally as well.

Boot from the Leopard drive and navigate to the Utilities folder within the Applications folder at the root level of the drive. Launch Migration Assistant, press the Continue button on the first screen to get started, and enter your Administrator’s password when prompted. On the Migration Method screen select the From a Time Machine Backup or Other Disk option and click Continue. On the next screen you’ll be prompted for a system to transfer from. Select your Tiger disk.

You’ll then be prompted to select the users whose data you’d like to transfer information from. At the very least, you should select your user account. You can choose other accounts if you’d also like to transfer their settings and data.

You’re then prompted to select the kind of items you’d like to transfer. You’ll have the greatest success by leaving all three options—Applications, Files and Folders, and Library—checked. (Note that if you have a newer version of an application on your Leopard drive, it won’t be replaced by an older version from the Tiger drive. The newer version will remain.)

Click the Continue button and wait as Migration Assistant goes about its business.

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