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As I am about to venture out of Snow Leopard Land into the Bright Shiny New World of OS X 'El Cap,' there's cause for concern - and this question: Is there any way to prevent the OS from auto-installing immediately upon completion of download? I do not want it to install until I want it installed - which is after I'm backed up, etc. Can I perform any kind of action to save the installer as a .dmg file on a thumb drive or an external hard drive, or is that possibility prevented by the OS's .dmg directive(-s)?

If it's possible, please provide steps required to successfully download and then store the El Cap installer as a .dmg until I'm ready to activate the OS. Thanks in advance.

Someone else asked a similar question previously so here's my detailed response on MacInTouch.
 


I was never ever able to create an El Cap installer for my Snow Leopard Mac Minis using the USB stick and Terminal createinstallmedia method, after several tries.

When I went ahead and used a full El Cap installer to upgrade directly from Snow Leopard -> El Capitan, it all went well, and I had zero issues. All apps and documents remained intact, except for a few Rosetta derelicts, which I don't miss as much as I thought I would (or at all).

Then I made an El Cap installer stick, and a Sierra install stick, using the excellent DiskMaker X app which is a godsend. Use it instead.
 


I've finally accepted that 'Snow Leopard,' much as I've enjoyed it, is at EOL [end of life]. Spoke with the Apple Store today, and they sent a link that'll let me download 'El Capitan' instead of 'High Sierra,' which is the only available option in the Apple Store's menu. Some questions:

1. I'm considering emptying an external hard drive and directing 'El Cap' there for install. The rep said install begins immediately upon completion of download. I'm still stuck in the days of downloading a .dmg and then choosing where the install goes before clicking it. It seems prudent to download to the external hard drive, if that's not the case and it's now an 'Immediate Install.' I'd rather have the external hard drive installed on, than the internal hard drive. I don't want Snow Leopard' overwritten on my internal hard drive. I'll do that later if things work out well from the external hard drive install.

2. Is it even possible to do what is outlined above? If so, can I boot from the internal 'Snow Leopard' hard drive and then call up the 'El Cap' system from the external hard drive, or is that a 'no-go'? Do I need to boot from the 'Snow Leopard' external hard drive if that's the OS I want to use, or is switching possible? If Option 2, then I'll need to install my softwares on the external hard drive afterward.

3. What I'm attempting to achieve is an upgrade of OS operability while retaining as much of the functionality that exists in the 'Snow Leopard' version as possible. I already accept that my legacy software requiring 'Rosetta' emulation will be lost in 'El Cap' and 'High Sierra.' I'm trying to arrive at the method that will introduce the smallest degree of interruption to my workflow. For example: I have no clue as to whether Photoshop CS6, Illustrator CS6, or InDesign CS6 will transfer to 'El Cap' successfully. I've read pros and cons about transferring those softwares to 'El Cap' as well as to 'High Sierra.' Don't know which to believe, but I know my browsers (Firefox 48, Citrio, Chrome, Safari 4.1, etc.) are all well past EOL status. It's now at the point that my emails are being affected to the point of becoming inaccessible.

4. At this point, there is no other physical computer (e.g., another Mac) in the picture. It's all internal to the Mac Pro (mid-2010) and the external hard drive. Can I therefore safely conclude the Migration Assistant will not be needed in this 'upgrade-of-sorts'?

5. That's pretty much the situation as it exists. I plan to clean off an existing external hard drive for download / install of 'El Cap,' and then proceed to download and install onto it. I'd like to do a backup using CCC, but have never used it before. Any tips on where to find information about using it correctly to (a) back up files and (b) make a bootable copy is welcome. Dumb question time: How does one re-install the information contained in the CCC backup to the internal hard drive? Is it just a simple 'point 'n click,' or is there a lot more to it I still need to learn about? Thanks again. All replies appreciated.
Here's an easier way:
  1. First make a clone (or two) of your internal drive.
  2. Check to see that your Mac will boot from the clone.
  3. See that a copy of the El Capitan installer is on the clone.
  4. Boot from the clone
  5. Erase the internal drive using Disk Utility.
  6. Run the El Capitan Installer from the booted clone to install on the internal drive.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Then I made an El Cap installer stick, and a Sierra install stick, using the excellent DiskMaker X app which is a godsend. Use it instead.
A few notes on DIskMaker X:
  • It's an AppleScript app that runs the createinstallmedia program.
  • It doesn't run under Path Finder (so quit Path Finder, if you're running it).
  • It will give you some choices and notes about the target device.
  • You'll need to provide admin username/password.
  • It can take some time to do its work and not be terribly informative while it's doing so.
  • When it's done, there will be invisible /Library, /System and /usr directories on the install drive, along with the visible installer app.
  • After creating the bootable installer, plug it into a USB port and restart while holding down the Option key to select it at startup.
 


Here's an easier way:
  1. First make a clone (or two) of your internal drive.
  2. Check to see that your Mac will boot from the clone.
  3. See that a copy of the El Capitan installer is on the clone.
  4. Boot from the clone
  5. Erase the internal drive using Disk Utility.
  6. Run the El Capitan Installer from the booted clone to install on the internal drive.
First thing to do is to se tup a complete backup. My recommendation is to always have 2 backups minimum, one a full clone backup and the other a Time Machine backup (this can contain the original Snow Leopard and continue on with new updated OS if desired).

Once that is done, then you can run the OS installer from the newer system, but if you are going to be running CS6 InDesign, I would not recommend any system past 10.10.x, as all newer OS's cause issues with InDesign projects when they are of large size and cause multiple crashes of InDesign (with out of memory notices).

I would also recommend doing a though cleaning of your current system. Manually, I clean out all of the caches in the 3 areas, log files and also go through prefs folder and delete any app prefs that you no longer use. Also any apps that still use the older PowerPC code will need to be replaced. I also prefer to run DiskWarrior software to check your boot drive for directory issues.

Once all this is done, then run the installer OS. Note: CS6 Photoshop & Illustrator do not have issues with the newer OS's yet, unless you upgrade to High Sierra 10.13.x and its new APFS file system, then they will not run.

And don't get me started on the new APFS; it is definitely not ready for prime time. Biggest issue is there are no tools to repair an APFS volume if something goes wrong, and this is something Apple is responsible for by not providing developers the info needed to get it working. So, Apple if you would listen, please provide the tech info for developers, so they can make their programs work for us.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
...if you are going to be running CS6 InDesign, I would not recommend any system past 10.10.x, as all newer OS's cause issues with InDesign projects when they are of large size and cause multiple crashes of InDesign (with out of memory notices).
Are others also seeing problems with InDesign CS6 and macOS 10.13 High Sierra?

A family member, who just got a new MacBook Pro at work, uses InDesign heavily, and it's been miserable on the new laptop, crashing frequently, after working fine on an earlier retina MacBook Pro. (And the organization doesn't want to move to Adobe Creative Cloud nor pay for it.)
 


Dang! So many replies and so much great expertise! Thanks to all for sharing your knowledge. In the interim, I realised I have a spare 750[GB] internal hard drive in my Mac G5 (pre-Intel) running 'Tiger.' I can unmount that, re-mount it in the 'Snow Leopard' Mac, and install 'El Cap' onto that drive. (There's also a G3 with Mac OS 9.2 in the room, but I'll leave that one alone.)

I greatly appreciate the heads-up about going past 10.10.x with InDesign too, since that's what I'm using for all my book layouts. Does the same warning apply to 'Sierra,' or is it 'High Sierra'-specific? Thanks again to all!
 


Dang! ... I have a spare 750[GB] internal hard drive in my Mac G5 (pre-Intel) running 'Tiger.' I can unmount that, re-mount it in the 'Snow Leopard' Mac, and install 'El Cap' onto that drive. ...
Check if the old drive was formatted using the old APM (Apple Partition Map). If so, to boot El Capitan it needs to be reformatted/partitioned to use the current GUID partition map. This will wipe out all the data on it, so you may need an intermediate drive to copy off the data to, before formatting, and copy back the data after formatting.
 


I bought a low-end MacBook Air a few months back to use as a travel machine, with my main machine remaining a desktop Mac Mini holding my complete files and giving me a large screen and a good keyboard.

I tried migrating selected files with key information (like log-ins), but that never worked very well, and trying to clean up the mess a few days ago resulted in a total meltdown that left me unable to boot the machine, with a first-level Apple tech online unable to overcome the problem.

She bumped me up to a second-level tech, who walked me through an erase and reinstall that involved a minimal migration and a change of user name (from my_name to my2_name). I had to re-enter Internet account names and some passwords, but some other things (like Safari settings) were migrated by sharing them through iCloud. He recommended sharing documents through iCloud or by copying them onto the MacBook Air, which so far works.

He also said that changing the user name helped avoid problems for reasons that he did not explain well. When I told him I had important files going back 30 years, he admitted that Apple's procedures weren't intended to deal with that. So far, the MacBook Air is working much better than before, including sharing files between it and the Mini, which had been somewhat problematic.

Looking back, it's clear that Apple both did a poor job of telling users what it was trying to do with Migration Assistant and did not address the many different ways in which we use our Macs. Building sharing of Safari settings into iCloud Drive is a nice trick, but I prefer Firefox, and its settings don't share. Nor do Internet Account Settings managed through System Preferences or the passwords for WiFi networks share through iCloud. (That may be because I have yet to enable Keychain sharing through iCloud, because I want to be sure how it works lest I break something.)

I find the need to change user names when you migrate between machines a nuisance. It does seem to improve file sharing, but it should be possible to design around that.
 


I tried migrating selected files with key information (like log-ins), but that never worked very well...
Using Migration Assistant to move selected files is tough, if not impossible. It sounds like your situation requires continuous synchronization of files between a laptop and a desktop, and the Apple solution for that is iCloud.
Building sharing of Safari settings into iCloud Drive is a nice trick, but I prefer Firefox, and its settings don't share.
Mozilla offers a Firefox account, which is described as "Take Your Web With You. Synchronize your bookmarks, history, tabs, passwords, add-ons, and preferences across all your devices."
Nor do Internet Account Settings managed through System Preferences or the passwords for WiFi networks share through iCloud. (That may be because I have yet to enable Keychain sharing through iCloud, because I want to be sure how it works lest I break something.)
Syncing of WiFi networks and passwords is a major feature of iCloud Keychain.
I find the need to change user names when you migrate between machines a nuisance. It does seem to improve file sharing, but it should be possible to design around that.
I have not found it necessary to change user names as I migrated from one Mac to another. They have all had the same short and long user name since I started using OS X many years ago, although I can see why it would be necessary in your case, if the procedure for solving your issue included creating a second user account.
 


In late December of 2015 I treated myself to a brand new iMac Retina 5K (27-inch 4GHz Intel Core i7 with 32 GBs RAM and 3TB Fusion Drive and 4GHz AMD Radeon R9 M395X graphics card).

This replaced my 8-year old 24-inch iMac, which was getting rather long in the tooth. One of the very first things I immediately noticed with my new iMac was how incredibly fast it booted up or restarted compared to my old machine. I was in heaven!

Now to my problem: Lately, after trying out Mojave 10.14, and discovering it killed at least two very important (to me) apps, I used OS X Recovery to erase my internal drive and use my Time Machine backup to go back to High Sierra 10.13.6. All went well... supposedly.

However, my previous super startup times have turned into a mini-nightmare! It never bothered me to have to restart my new iMac for software updates and new program installations, because I knew how fast it would restart again - no time at all! Now, however, things have slowed to a crawl! What used to take a minute or less from the chime, now takes a good 5-minutes or more. I decided to try another restore the other night to see if it would make a difference, and it took 15 to 20 minutes just to actually startup in Recovery mode alone!!!

What on earth has happened to my gloriously fast machine?? The first recovery was a Time Machine backup from before I installed Mojave, so erasing my drive should surely have erased any remnants of macOS 10.14, right?

Now even a simple restart takes 45 seconds before the chime rings in, followed by another 77 seconds before the white Apple even appears! This is followed by 182 seconds of watching the blue progress bar crawl across the screen. This used to zip across so fast before!

What has Mojave done to my incredible Mac!? Help!
 


Using Migration Assistant to move selected files is tough, if not impossible. It sounds like your situation requires continuous synchronization of files between a laptop and a desktop, and the Apple solution for that is iCloud.
Thanks for the suggestion. After seeing complaints about how easy it was to delete files accidentally from iCloud, I had been cautious about using it, but you make a good point, and I'll add that to my working plans.

Mozilla offers a Firefox account, which is described as "Take Your Web With You. Synchronize your bookmarks, history, tabs, passwords, add-ons, and preferences across all your devices."
Thanks - I had seen that "take your web with you" option when I updated Firefox, but had ignored it because I don't use a smartphone. But you're right, that's something I could use to synch a laptop with my desktop. There are so many options these days that it's easy to miss some important ones.
 


... iMac Retina 5K (27-inch 4GHz Intel Core i7 with 32 GBs RAM and 3TB Fusion Drive and 4GHz AMD Radeon R9 M395X graphics card).
... after trying out Mojave 10.14 ... I used OS X Recovery to erase my internal drive and use my Time Machine backup to go back to High Sierra 10.13.6. ... However, my previous super startup times have turned into a mini-nightmare! ... Now even a simple restart takes 45 seconds before the chime rings in, followed by another 77 seconds before the white Apple even appears! This is followed by 182 seconds of watching the blue progress bar crawl across the screen. This used to zip across so fast before!
Since you erased the file system and restored from a backup, you shouldn't have any parts of Mojave on the drive.

My guess is that it's your fusion drive (note the emphasis I added in my quote of your post). I'm guessing that the restore process didn't bother to try and figure out what files belong on the SSD part of the fusion drive and what files belong on the hard disk drive part. So you've (effectively) got files randomly scattered across both devices. In other words, you're booting from a hard drive and not from the SSD in your fusion drive.

As I understand it, macOS will optimize the fusion drive over time, moving high-priority files into the SSD part and low-priority files out. So I would like to say that your system will speed up over time as macOS builds up the statistics necessary to do this, but I don't know how long it will take for this to happen. Nor do I know any way to force it to happen faster.

Another thing to look out for: Mojave probably converted your fusion drive to APFS. It was probably HFS+ before the installation. As I understand it, fusion drives using APFS have a different allocation algorithm compared to those that use HFS+. You may want to boot your (High Sierra) recovery partition and completely wipe (e.g. remove all partitions) from the Fusion drive and re-create it as an HFS+ volume before restoring your High Sierra backup.
 


Since you erased the file system and restored from a backup, you shouldn't have any parts of Mojave on the drive.

My guess is that it's your fusion drive (note the emphasis I added in my quote of your post). I'm guessing that the restore process didn't bother to try and figure out what files belong on the SSD part of the fusion drive and what files belong on the hard disk drive part. So you've (effectively) got files randomly scattered across both devices. In other words, you're booting from a hard drive and not from the SSD in your fusion drive.

As I understand it, macOS will optimize the fusion drive over time, moving high-priority files into the SSD part and low-priority files out. So I would like to say that your system will speed up over time as macOS builds up the statistics necessary to do this, but I don't know how long it will take for this to happen. Nor do I know any way to force it to happen faster.

Another thing to look out for: Mojave probably converted your fusion drive to APFS. It was probably HFS+ before the installation. As I understand it, fusion drives using APFS have a different allocation algorithm compared to those that use HFS+. You may want to boot your (High Sierra) recovery partition and completely wipe (e.g. remove all partitions) from the Fusion drive and re-create it as an HFS+ volume before restoring your High Sierra backup.
Hello David. Many thanks for your detailed help. I was so hopeful that your suggestion might work, but, alas, after erasing my Fusion drive and reformatting it as HFS+, then restoring my drive from my Time Machine backup, I have restarted a couple of times now, and things are just as slow as before. I guess I’ll just have to learn to live with it this way. (I also reset the PRAM and pulled the plug for 30 seconds to reset the something-or-other.) But thanks so much for taking the time to offer your help! Greatly appreciated!
 


Hello David. Many thanks for your detailed help. I was so hopeful that your suggestion might work, but, alas, after erasing my Fusion drive and reformatting it as HFS+, then restoring my drive from my Time Machine backup, I have restarted a couple of times now, and things are just as slow as before. I guess I’ll just have to learn to live with it this way. (I also reset the PRAM and pulled the plug for 30 seconds to reset the something-or-other.) But thanks so much for taking the time to offer your help! Greatly appreciated!
Similar problem with my wife's 1-year-old iMac with SSD. The solution for her was to erase the drive, reinstall the OS, then migrate from Time Machine, except exclude the System and Network files from the migration. Before the migration begins, there is an option to check which files to migrate, and simple turn off the System and Network Files checkbox.

That fixed everything for her, except for her saved mail files (no idea why). I was able to find the files on another backup and import them to Mail, so she seems 100% back now.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Wrestling with migration to macOS Mojave, I'll just point out for others in the same boat that some critical security settings may be found down in... Security & Privacy > Privacy > Accessibility as well as Security & Privacy > Privacy > Full Disk Access
 


What on earth has happened to my gloriously fast machine?? The first recovery was a Time Machine backup from before I installed Mojave, so erasing my drive should surely have erased any remnants of macOS 10.14, right?
I have the same iMac as you and also suffered the first time I installed Mojave with a slow Mac, network problems and many apps not running. After pouring over the Web and deleting various old configuration files, I installed Mojave on an external drive and migrated my files across. This was a success, so having that as a fall-back position, I erased my internal Fusion drive with Disk Utility while running Mojave from the external drive and clean-installed Mojave before migrating files across. It was a complete success. Since then I've also done another iMac but used the App Store version of Mojave; again it was immediately successful.

In case you have old files causing the hiccup, I'd suggest doing an Internet search if you haven't done so already. Looking for "Mojave installation problems, network problems" and the like, as well as looking on Apple's support site, which has many links to outside advice. Also, there are many settings to tweak if you run EyeTV, Adobe CS5 and others, to get them to run in Mojave. Many can be done before installation.
 


Just a warning about a bad experience I am still recovering from. I have enjoyed owning and upgrading a 2009 Mac Pro for 9 years (including ports and the CPU itself!) - now running reliably in macOS 10.13.6. It's now obsolete, due to the Mojave requirements.

Despite careful Time Machine (TM) and Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC) backups, I was not able to use Migration Assistant to get a usable system on a new Mac Mini. I'm now re-installing everything by hand and moving files by hand where it makes sense to do so onto the Mini boot disk; most bulk storage will go onto external devices because of the exorbitant cost of Apple SSD.

Regarding the attempted automatic file migration via TM: there were about 8 tries using direct connect to the the Mac Pro system with various different details - all attempting to transfer either the whole system or all files except system files and network settings and at various times deleting those apps (files) known or suspected to be incompatible with Mojave. And, BTW, I was online with two senior Apple service techs at various points in this 3-day saga. Non-TM migrations resulted in a bricked Mini - the transfer of what should have been only data and app files somehow trashed Mojave to the point that it would not boot.

I finally, at the instruction of a senior Apple tech, switched to an attempt to use a TM backup (which, BTW, will only work if your TM backup is on an external disk that is pluggable to both the originating computer and the new computer - I had to make one because my TM backup was on an internal disk on the Mac Pro - it cost 5.5 hours to make the external TM disk).

Once that was done, I got a real surprise: TM actually reported that it was not able to use the new backup, because the computers were different models. I may be naive, but that absolutely floored me - after all, we (the Apple senior tech and I) selected to just move applications and data files and I had already deleted a bunch of known/suspected incompatible files that (BTW) had never disturbed the Mac Pro in all of its many OS upgrade through High Sierra - no system files and no network settings, no system-specific stuff, and nothing that should have tripped a model-dependency).

After that surprising failure, there were mumbled protestations from the "senior" tech about Mac OS Extended vs. APFS file systems and my use of the Nvidia graphics accelerator software on the Mac Pro (which I had removed, BTW), and "probably lots of incompatible software", but that was all in the context of the last "senior" tech saying he really did not know what was causing things to fail.

In summary, a really bad experience due to too little info on incompatibilities of Migration Assistant with some older Mac systems (apparently), the absolute requirement that TM run on an external disk, but its ability to run without warning on an internal disk, and the mysterious (at least to me and it seems to the senior tech, too) and deeply surprising incompatibility of TM backups across models of computers.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Just a warning about a bad experience I am still recovering from
I also had an amazingly bad experience trying to migrate to a new 2018 MacBook Pro, and the problems seemed to be associated mostly with Apple's own updater software, which failed on an iTunes update and failed incredibly badly on a Security Update, after having done some other updates successfully. It was all so bad, I ended up erasing the drive and installing macOS Mojave from scratch via Internet Recovery (Command-Option-R). I eventually managed to migrate about 500GB of stuff from a Carbon Copy Cloner copy of my main macOS 10.12.6 Sierra system. I had a bunch of issues with specialized utility software vs. Mojave's new security mechanisms, but things seem to be basically working OK now.

So, in my case, the main culprit seemed to be buggy Apple installer software. From your description of your problems, it sounds like you could have some issues with data integrity / hardware (or very obscure software).

One tool that has helped me with some of this stuff is Synchronize Pro X, which can compare two folders to give you a list of differences and then let you manually select which items to sync and which to leave alone (or delete). The most troublesome folders are the folders that Apple manages within the user's home directory - Library, Pictures, Music, etc., which mix up a user's own content and settings with Apple content and settings and third-party content and settings - a real PITA to sort out, especially when changing software versions.
 


Despite careful Time Machine (TM) and Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC) backups, I was not able to use Migration Assistant to get a usable system on a new Mac Mini.
...
In summary, a really bad experience due to too little info on incompatibilities of Migration Assistant with some older Mac systems (apparently), the absolute requirement that TM run on an external disk
Sorry to hear about your troubles. You can use the migration assistant on a complete system disk backup, such as a CCC bootable backup on an external disk (caveat: I have done in the past, but not with Mojave). I found this far more reliable than going from machine-to-machine (and possibly from TM).

Two other suggestions: I have also found it more reliable to first create a dummy user on the new machine, complete all updates, check/repair the boot disk and basically confirm it is stable (ideally, make a CCC backup of this stable installation, too). Only then launch Migration Assistant and migrate from the good CCC backup. (The dummy user account can be deleted later).

Also, make sure the data you are migrating fits comfortably on the new machine - which may mean deleting/excluding a CCC archive folder if you have one, as well as other non-critical filed. I don't know how well the assistant handles out-of-space issues, and wouldn't want to test it.
 


…I have also found it more reliable to first create a dummy user on the new machine, complete all updates, check/repair the boot disk and basically confirm it is stable (ideally, make a CCC backup of this stable installation, too). Only then launch Migration Assistant and migrate from the good CCC backup. (The dummy user account can be deleted later). …
This doesn't cause problems with the UID 501 vs 502 vs 503 etc. file ownership? We had some discussion about this a while back. The first user gets the 501 ID, the second 502, and so on. The imported files from a typical installation have a 501 ID. Thus, the second new user (502 ID) will not be able to access his own files which have the 501 ID from the previous computer. Have you had this problem, or did Apple fix it somehow?
 


This doesn't cause problems with the UID 501 vs 502 vs 503 etc. file ownership? ... Have you had this problem, or did Apple fix it somehow?
I didn't pay close attention to that discussion - I thought it had something to do with creating a user with the same (short?) name. I have done this, literally creating a user with a name like 'dummy' and didn't have any issues. I never even looked at the UID numbers.
 



Ric Ford

MacInTouch
One tool that has helped me with some of this stuff is Synchronize Pro X, which can compare two folders to give you a list of differences and then let you manually select which items to sync and which to leave alone (or delete). The most troublesome folders are the folders that Apple manages within the user's home directory - Library, Pictures, Music, etc., which mix up a user's own content and settings with Apple content and settings and third-party content and settings - a real PITA to sort out, especially when changing software versions.
There's also a donationware utility, SyncTwoFolders, that seems to be a simpler app, designed to sync folders with a "simulation" mode to check on results prior to making the actual changes.

(I haven't tried out SyncTwoFolders, as I already bought Synchronize Pro X, which seems to cover all the bases, and I have some experience with it over the years.)
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
In case you have old files causing the hiccup, I'd suggest doing an Internet search if you haven't done so already. Looking for "Mojave installation problems, network problems" and the like, as well as looking on Apple's support site, which has many links to outside advice. Also, there are many settings to tweak if you run EyeTV, Adobe CS5 and others, to get them to run in Mojave. Many can be done before installation.
Graham Needham is trying to keep up with Mojave issues at MacStrategy, and he has a page of Mojave compatibility notes and other information worth checking before attempting a migration.
 


Over the summer I tried a couple of the Mojave betas and installed the Security Update 2018-002 on my Mac Pro 4,1 (long ago updated to the 5,1 firmware and a 6-core processor). Despite this, my Boot ROM version remained at MP51.0085.B00.

A couple of weeks ago I did a "trial run" of Mojave 10.14.1 (using a spare drive) and this time I was glad to see that my Boot ROM was updated to 140.0.0.0.0. Although the test of Mojave was largely successful, I reverted to using High Sierra for the present (using my “main" drive).

Back in High Sierra, I noticed that my next Time Machine backup was a very large one. Although I was a bit puzzled by this and marginally annoyed at the squandering of my backup drive space, I attributed it to just one of those Time Machine things.

Over the subsequent two weeks I have noticed that a couple of sites that care about such things have asserted that I am on a "unknown" computer and have asked for verification.

It now occurs to me that maybe these two things are connected. I am guessing that maybe the ROM update has made my Mac look like a "new "computer and has forced the full Time Machine backup and made me look like a stranger to web sites.

Is this expected behavior after a ROM update?
 


I got as far as the firmware update with Mojave on my cheesegrater 5,1. That's just as well, I guess! (Encrypted SSD and I don't want to de-encrypt, install, re-encrypt.)

I did get lazy on my laptop (2015 MacBook Pro), and that was a serious mistake. I should have backed up first but thought I had a recent backup. I didn't! It dated back at least three years. The update from, get this, APFS v1 to APFS v2, corrupted the startup drive beyond Disk Utility's meager repair skills.

After a while I remembered I have a USB 3 hub (duh) for the USB port on this “Pro” laptop (I have no Thunderbolt drives or adapters), and was able to boot from my cheesegrater backup, run Carbon Copy Cloner, and back up to a spare drive. It had no problems. I then reformatted the built-in drive and am now restoring. Hopefully, Mojave will run without problems.

I have to seriously warn people about getting rid of, or updating, all their software before going to Mojave. I thought everything was up to date, but apparently LittleSnitch hadn't been checking in and Malwarebytes hadn't been updating, and both are very resistant to being uninstalled unless you download the uninstaller, and that's hard to do when Mojave won't recognize any of your network ports or the USB drive!

Moral of the story: these guidelines—back up first, always; manually check that all auto-launched software is updated—are in place for a reason.
 


... Moral of the story: these guidelines—back up first, always; manually check that all auto-launched software is updated—are in place for a reason.
I have a correction to my earlier Mojave horror story. Removing all that software was no help. The problem was that I had to do this in Terminal:
Bash:
sudo rm -rf /etc/sysctl.conf
It's five lines of leftover junk. Apparently the OS kept trying to access the network and that config file brought it all to a halt. Hence insane beachballing, which I thought was from an old version of... something. It's insanely bad programming that would grind the system to a halt over and over and over, make the network and USB drive inaccessible, and bring no hint of what was going on.

Thanks to "dmauch" on the Apple discussion forums - a Level 1 poster!
 


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