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I have the following setup and am attempting the use Migration Assistant over Ethernet:

  • Source machine: Early 2009 24-inch iMac running OS X 10.9
  • Destination machine: Latest MacBook Pro Retina running OS X 10.9
  • Connection: direct Ethernet cable between machines

When I use Migration assistant following Apple's documentation I pass through the confirmation code step on both machines, and then get as far as the "Checking Source Machine" screen on the destination, and am stuck there for about 10 minutes, at which point the destination machine jumps back to the language selection setup page, and the source machine says "This machine is attempting to reconnect to your other Mac".

At this point I'm at a dead end: Attempting to proceed through the setup again on the destination gets me nowhere, and the only option on the source machine is "Cancel Transfer", which quits Migration Assistant there and ends the whole process.

On the source machine I've turned off LittleSnitch, which I normally have running, turned off Apple's firewall, and enabled file sharing.

What am I missing? Are there other settings somewhere that I need to check? I've also tried using FireWire to connect my machines, but have a different set of issues there.

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I reproduce the same problem on a migration attempt: MacOS X 10.9 → MacOS X 10.10 above a direct Ethernet cable connexion without any other network interface on (no Wi-Fi, no Bluetooth…). –  daniel Azuelos 2 days ago

1 Answer 1

I have the same setup except my iMac sports Thunderbolt. I had the same problem and never solved it, but I did find the following work-around helpful:

Place the iMac in Target Mode by going to Apple|System Preferences|Startup Disk, make sure your startup disk is highlighted, select Target Disk Mode and confirm. Connect the computers by Firewire or Thunderbolt (TDM does not support Ethernet). Start Migration Assistant on the MacBook Pro, allow it to change your system, and select the iMac's startup disk.

From there it is easy sailing - choose what you want and how to handle the user accounts and you are home and dry! Don't forget to eject all connected iMac drives before unplugging the cables.

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