A client, G, has just bought a new Aluminium Powerbook to replace his aging Titanium model. It was my job to transfer his data and set up the new machine. What a breeze! The only problem I had was that I hadn’t asked G for his password before he went out of town for a few days.
First I started up the old machine, ran a few routine maintenance tasks and ensured his Virtual PC was correctly shut down and that everything else was “in order”. The next step was to start up the new machine. It asked me to insert Install Disc number 1 and after a short time it had what it needed from there. Next it asked me if I wanted to transfer data from an old computer. It then stepped me clearly and easily through the procedure of connecting a Firewire cable, restarting the old machine and choosing the items to transfer.
An initial estimate of hours to transfer the data was way off, and after about 20 minutes G’s 4.5Gb of data had been moved across. The Assistant then showed how to disconnect the Macs. An alert advised me there had been a problem transferring G’s anti-virus software and a text file on the desktop provided a record of this. On starting up G’s computer though it was hard to see any difference between the old and the new. The Dock items were identical, some files on the Desktop were all there. In fact, everything was just exactly where I expected it to be.
I spent a little while doing some checking and tinkering, tried to use Software Update but ran into the problem that I didn’t have G’s password so I couldn’t actually install the updates. I could have reset his password, but elected not to.
When I delivered the new Mac to G yesterday he instantly got to work, thrilled that even his desktop pictures were the same. This client is an author who doesn’t want to know a lot about his Mac; he just wants to use it for writing, playing music, watching and listening to the online BBC News, some web surfing and referring to some information available via Virtual PC.
Setup Assistant weighs in at less than 1Mb, but it’s beautifully done, clear, straightforward and fully functional. The only possible glitch for an average user would be that you need the correct Firewire cable to connect the two machines. I picked up a $20 cable from Dick Smiths and it worked just fine.