Best way to Clone OSX Hard Drive from Time Machine Backup, before SSD Upgrade

Hi all,

I am looking to update my ageing Macbook Pro (Early 2011, 13-inch) with an SSD but am unclear how best to go about transferring OSX and all files/ prorams to the new SSD.

I have never tried anything like this before- what would be the most straight-forward way of doing this?

I currently back up to an enternal USB drive using Time Machine. Am I able to just go ahead and install the new SSD, connect my Time Machine drive to the Macbook and reinstall OSX Sierra and all of my files this way, or would this method not work?
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More about clone osx hard drive time machine backup ssd upgrade
  1. I've never done this through time machine but I know one method that works. Get a bootable media of OSX installer that you can run from a USB drive. Restart your mac with the SSD connected over a USB adapter. Boot from the USB. Instead of running the OSX installation setup, open the Disc Utility. From there you can just drag and drop the partition from your current hard drive to the new SSD in the "restore" section. It's the easiest way I know, but as I said, I'm not sure if it's possible with the time machine app.
  2. Best answer
    I just did this.

    I can recommend two things.

    1) Download Carbon Copy Cloner. It can make an exact duplicate of the internal drive to an external drive, including recovery partitions. It has a 30-day trial that will let you do this.

    2) Get a USB to Sata cable. Connect your SSD as an external.

    Using Carbon Copy Cloner, you can make an exact copy of your internal drive to the SSD. After you've done that. You can hold Option while booting up, to bring up the menu to select the boot volume.

    Choose the external drive. If it boots normally, you are all set. Just swap it into the laptop. Once you do that, don't forget to go into System Preferences and choose the new default boot volume. If you don't it will search for the old one every boot up, and will take a long time.
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