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I'm currently running 10.5.8 on my macbook and thinking about upgrading it to SL. However, I fear that some programs I have might not be compatible with SL considering in particular I've read both positive and negative comments on running Photoshop CS3 on SL system. So in case some programs do not work well with SL, I'm wondering is there a simple way I can restore from SL to Lepoard keeping all programs installed and all files intact?

I think I'll create a bootable backup using disk utility, but I'm not sure if, God forbid, anything should go wrong, I could restore everything back to how they were before upgrading by restoring backup using disk utility?

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closed as not a real question by Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007, Diogo, Renan, Randolph West, Joe Taylor Aug 3 '12 at 8:41

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I think the preferred way of going about this is:

  • Create a bootable backup of your disk using Disk Utility, Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper

  • Make sure this bootable backup actually works. Go to System Preferences » Startup Disk and change it to your bootable volume. Now reboot your Mac and you should be running from the backup. Change your startup disk back to the internal hard drive.

  • Upgrade to Snow Leopard

  • Make sure you try if everything works and try not to let your installations diverge, i.e. don't install new applications, change documents, etc. unless you want chaos later on.

If everything works at this point, hooray, there's nothing to worry about. If, however, you run into problems, you should note that there is no way of downgrading OS X other than doing a full reinstall of the system. This means that you have two choices at this point:

  1. Do a clean 10.5 installation and selectively migrate back data from your bootable backup. This is possible via the Migration Assistant, but it will probably not work that well for all applications you might have installed. I'm particularly unsure about Photoshop and other Adobe products which tend to create a lot of files on your Mac's hard drive.

  2. Restore the bootable backup to your local hard drive and pretend like nothing happened.

The key point here is that you're sure your backup works. If anything doesn't run smoothly after the upgrade, you can just pull it back. And if you didn't change any files you were working on, you won't lose anything important.

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Thanks for the help. Hope the upgrade goes smoothly though, so I don't need to go through all this hassle. – vul3 Aug 3 '12 at 4:21

To be honest. I have never seen a "Clean" method of doing this. However i have done it.

What i did:

Carbon Copy to Clone the drive to an EXT HD. Reformat repartition the drive, migrate the files and folders back.


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That would work for softwares like Photoshop too? or just files? Thanks :) – vul3 Aug 2 '12 at 18:43
Software too. Never had an issue, But just to be safe, i would clone the entire drive. – David Murray Aug 2 '12 at 20:52
I see, thanks! I'll make sure I do that. – vul3 Aug 3 '12 at 4:19

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