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I have a new Mac, and I want to selectively move files over from an old Mac. I've sold the old Mac and need to ship it today, so what I really want to do is simply take a complete copy of the HD in the old Mac before I erase and reinstall for the new owner.

I have a 500gb usb 3 disk I was going to use for this, I don't want to create a bootable clone, instead just want a complete copy of the old disk maybe as a dmg etc, any ideas?

Not thinking CCC, or restore using dskutil as it's overkill.

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You had two questions in here. This site works better when there is only one question per question. That way, it's easier for other people to find solutions if they have the same problem. I've edited out your second question, but feel free to ask it separately. – patrix May 18 '14 at 16:26
up vote 1 down vote accepted

There are several options to solve this:

  • if you are in a hurry, just format the external drive as HFS and drag whatever files/folders you wanna keep from the old Mac to the external drive.
  • in case you want to keep the whole content of your old Mac (and assuming the external drive to be at least as big as the current one) using either CCC or Disk Utility to mirror the drive to the external one is the fasted option.
  • use Disk Utility to partition the external drive into two partitions (with one having the same size as your current disk) and do a 1:1 copy
  • or you can use Disk Utility to create a DMG of your current drive by
    1. starting Disk Utility
    2. selecting your current disk in the list
    3. selecting (in the menu) "File -> New -> Image of disk1"
    4. pick a location on the external drive to store the DMG
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Indeed, what I'd like to do though is make sure I don't forget anything, so really I need to take everything and look thru it later, having said that I don't want to have a bootable, clone, just a dmg with the contents of my old disk – Woodstock May 18 '14 at 16:29
Is it possible to mirror the old disk to a dmg? (not a bootable clone) but simply a dmg – Woodstock May 18 '14 at 16:34
Yes, but why? Cloning with Disk Utility is the same as using DU to create a clone DMG on the external drive – patrix May 18 '14 at 16:38
thanks, maybe i'm confused, when i restore the start up disk to an external, it takes the whole external disk (even though its bigger than the start up disk) I don't want the whole disk hijacked by the clone, just a dmg so It can live along side other files on my external disk, how can i do this? thx – Woodstock May 18 '14 at 16:42
Or better instead of the dog partition the new disk so that one partition is the same size as the original data and mirror the drive – Mark May 18 '14 at 17:33

There is a app on your drive already.

The Migration

in /Applications/Utilities

Try it.

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Pretty good alright, but It's not fine grained enough – Woodstock May 18 '14 at 16:31

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