I did a new OS X installation via Parallels as a Virtual Machine and configured it as Node for our Jenkins Build Server. I did this because I wanted to do an isolated installation to test adding all the needed packages and then either reinstall our Mac Mini (the "real" Jenkins Node) or clone the system and put it on the Mac Mini.

And that's the point: Does anyone have experience cloning an OS X from one Mac to another?

  • I'd be tempted to do a migrate rather than clone
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 7:42
  • OK, using the OS X migration assistant?
    – chritaso
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 7:43
  • Yup - I've actually never used it Mac to Mac; but I was floored at how good it was from a creaky old WinXP machine recently. I'd go for it because a) it might just work & b) if it doesn't just wipe & try the clone, use CCC or similar. I'm worried the clone may not boot in another machine, though, hence the migration suggestion. Do the Migrate as part of setting up the new Mac, because it will import as a new account, not merge with any existing account on the new machine. I got that bit wrong & had to juggle accounts afterwards;-)
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 7:47

2 Answers 2


Each OS X installation is specific to the hardware model and characteristics of the Mac. The installer creates a set of drivers and configuration files for the specific hardware. So you cannot really clone from VM unless it is exactly the same as your Mac Mini.

Try migration. I am not sure if you can migrate from a VM but you can always try. Make sure that VM is visible on the network (give it its own IP address).

  • my first thought was to try the config steps in a VM and then reproduce them on the mac mini, but then I thought that cloning might work. but yeah, I think I will try the migration. thanks
    – chritaso
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 15:09

You're better off just getting the data moved, instead of really moving the installation itself.

Personally I think it's a benefit that you actually get a clean system to start from - but I guess that depends on the person.

I see this guy did it with Windows, from Parallels to a Boot camp installation: https://forum.parallels.com/threads/moving-parallels-image-to-boot-camp.10145/

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