I wanted to share a recent migration I performed, not using Apples Migration Assistant, but a manual migration from one profile to another on the same computer.
The reason the decision was made to migrate to a new profile was due to the existing profiles inability to connect to iCloud. I attempted to reset many settings, iCloud, Key Chain, permission repairs, certain preferences pertaining to your iCloud and syncing all without success. At first I thought it was something to do with the iCloud account itself but after creating the new profile and logging on to iCloud using that account I found that everything functioned as it should.
So what could’ve been the problem?
I find that the best course of action sometimes is to stop troubleshooting and to solve the problem. In this case the solution was to just create a new account and migrate data. It’s not the best solution as you lose all your saved passwords in the keychain (assuming keychain sync is off in your iCloud Settings, which it was) and the potential of some programs that you have installed will need to be re-activated.
The first step in manual migration is to create a second account on the same computer. Next is to turn on multiple login within system preferences – user settings.
Apple Mail: in this case I found it just as easy to re-create all the accounts the client had in the program since they were all IMAP accounts. Once everything started thinking I could continue on to other things.
Safari, Google Chrome and Firefox: The data for all of your settings is located in your user library – Application support. Copy these folders and paste them into the new account within the same folder.
Documents, Music, Photos and Desktop: all of these files were moved from the original account into the shared folder located in the user folder. The one thing you have to remember is before copying any of these folders to the new account it’s best to Get Info on these folders from the new user and make sure you propagate correct permissions down through the folder. Once this is finished you can copy this information to the new folder locations.
As you can see some parts are a bit complicated but these steps are sometimes necessary to create a stable user profile. I may have forgotten a few steps along the way as I explained it so please feel free to contact me with any migration needs you may have.