Migrating data the long way

My Macbook Pro (MBP) has been acting slowly recently; I wouldn’t want to attribute it to upgrading to Lion, but I think that’s almost certainly the major cause. I was happy to live with this (though my son and his mum constantly complain about the speed of the games and activities on the CBeebies website).

However, I recently came to back up the machine (Time Machine onto a Time Capsule) and it kept locking up. I did all the things that the various forums and knowledge bases suggested to no avail.

Not wanting to do anything major without having a back-up (my most recent back-up being on a now-defunct Time Capsule) I figured I should get my data onto another machine. Fortunately, I had been wanting to do this for some time. I have a Mac Mini at home that’s got an Eye TV plugged into it and I wanted to have this as my major media device. This would mean transferring all my music and photos from the MBP onto the Mini:

  • iTunes library and associated folders (2500 albums, plus a couple of films, TV series and podcasts)
  • iPhoto library (~3000 photos)
  • Aperture library (a couple of events)

I chose to do this in a very laborious (read time-consuming) way. I dropped each item into the Mini’s drop box and then backed up the Mini. Then I copied the library to the correct location and did another backup. Then I loaded the relevant application and made sure all was working and did a third backup. Then I deleted the copy from the drop box and the MBP (followed by a fourth and final backup). I did this for each of the libraries. Happy to say that all is working on the Mini. Fortunately I wasn’t in any hurry to get this done.

The next step will be to strip down the MBP and re-install from scratch. I’m hoping that this will both sort out my speed issues and allow me to get Time Machine working successfully. I’ll let you know how that goes in due course.

How To: Migrate Mac Mail RSS Feeds

I’m in the process of moving all my work from a MacBookPro onto an iMac. For various reasons I couldn’t do a transfer of all data (in fact, just didn’t want to as there’s lots of other stuff on the MBP that I don’t want on the iMac) and so have been doing it piece-by-piece, which has been long-winded, but relatively easy.

One of the final things I needed to do was transfer the RSS feeds that I have in Apple’s Mail application. Again, I could have simply copied the whole of the Mail settings across (as described in this article) but, well, I’d got this far and decided I’d carry on. Plus I couldn’t find anything definitive on the ‘net about it so figured it would be a good exercise.

Here’s what I did:

  1. Copied ~/Libraries/Mail/RSS folder and contents across (using Dropbox). (~ = your home directory; /Users/YourLoginID.)
  2. Started Apple Mail on the target computer. ‘RSS’ should now appear in the left hand list, if it wasn’t there already, and the feeds should appear in there when you expand the ‘RSS’ item.
  3. At this point the RSS feeds don’t (appear to) work. So I selected each (or all, using multiple selection) of the feeds in the left hand list and selected ‘Mailbox -> Rebuild’ from Mail’s menu, and they all repopulate.
  4. At this point I ended up with loads of unread messages, so I again selected all the feeds, right (control) clicked and selected ‘Mark all Messages as Read’.

I hope this is of use to someone out there. If you have found a better way, then please share it, as I couldn’t find anything else.