2015 iMac problems

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I have always just updated my MacOS over the old one. Also, for my last 4 Macs I just migrated everything to the new machine. I have never done a clean install, not to save time but to just keep things simple.
So Terri, what Folders are not not copying to your new install?

Get yourself a program called AppCleaner. Anytime you want to get rid of a program that doesn't come with it's own uninstaller, use it instead of just dragging to the trash. It'll get rid of the other files that sit out there. Most of the time they're not doing any harm but larger system wide type programs like Microsoft Office, Adobe, etc., tend to come with more bloat than necessary.
I use that program, too!! It's great!
 
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I have always just updated my MacOS over the old one. Also, for my last 4 Macs I just migrated everything to the new machine. I have never done a clean install, not to save time but to just keep things simple.
So Terri, what Folders are not not copying to your new install?
I reformatted the hard drive before I did the new operating system install. So, all my software, photos, documents, etc. were wiped away. The computer is just like a new computer and I am reinstalling all the software from new downloads and am manually bringing over the photos and documents from my backup. It's time consuming and a bit scary, but I took good notes before I did the reformat of the hard drive. I made sure I had all the installation keys of my software. I'm still not fininished but so far have not encountered any problems. Everything seems to be running much faster than it was yesterday morning.
 
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I didn't read all the threads, but I went from a 2014 15" MacBook Pro to a MacBook Air M1. The M1 absolutely smokes the old MacBook Pro. Runs silent and cool and the battery lasts forever. If you are thinking about moving to an M1 mini, I don't think there are any downsides. I would up the RAM, though. The M1 is fast, but with only 8GB RAM, it will write swap files to your flash hard drive which will age the storage more quickly than otherwise. It doesn't impact performance at all (from what I can tell) but could lengthen the overall life of your computer, if you want another 6+ years out of your next Mac.
I am sure I will eventually go this route.
 
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This process probably cleared a lot of cruft that builds up on our systems over time. Sadly software packages are notorious for leaving garbage behind across upgrades and uninstalls. Adobe is particularly bad. When you remove ALL Adobe software from your system you would be amazed at how much it leaves behind.

I hope this process makes your system more responsive.
So far, so good!!
 
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I reformatted the hard drive before I did the new operating system install. So, all my software, photos, documents, etc. were wiped away. The computer is just like a new computer and I am reinstalling all the software from new downloads and am manually bringing over the photos and documents from my backup. It's time consuming and a bit scary, but I took good notes before I did the reformat of the hard drive. I made sure I had all the installation keys of my software. I'm still not fininished but so far have not encountered any problems. Everything seems to be running much faster than it was yesterday morning.

If I (when) buy a new computer I should just start it up without any migration. Then I should install all apps. After that drag the folders I have hightlighted from backups to the new Mac?

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When I buy a new computer I start fresh and skip the migration assistant and all that, simply begin with setting up the machine as new, and since I do use iCloud for bookmarks, mail, etc., some things are brought right to the new machine from that anyway. Then I tinker with the settings to get them to my liking. Only after that do I copy certain folders from the older machine to an external SSD and then plug in to the new machine and plop the folders down in the appropriate location (Photos, Documents, etc.). I install apps again, checking my files for the license key if needed, and soon I'm up and running. The last time I bought a new machine, though, the M1 MBP back at the end of December 2020, I did not intend to use that machine as my primary computer so did not put some apps or files into it, just the ones I knew I'd need and want in there. This system works out pretty well for me.
 
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If I (when) buy a new computer I should just start it up without any migration. Then I should install all apps. After that drag the folders I have hightlighted from backups to the new Mac?

View attachment 1685473
I would recommend that, but i'd also nest more of those folders into the default ones that come installed with MacOS. And instead of moving the top level folder, move smaller chunks under each one. If you try to move that one folder, it's going to be multiple GB's each and may take a while whereas multiple smaller chunks will move easier. And don't move Dropbox, let it re-sync after you re-install the program.

Or you could just get a NAS and store most of the files there and only work with a handful of local files...makes migration, importing, and such much easier as you aren't stuck with backups being up to date and files that could get lost.
 
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I would recommend that, but i'd also nest more of those folders into the default ones that come installed with MacOS. And instead of moving the top level folder, move smaller chunks under each one. If you try to move that one folder, it's going to be multiple GB's each and may take a while whereas multiple smaller chunks will move easier. And don't move Dropbox, let it re-sync after you re-install the program.
Thanks for the dropbox info.
I don't mind moving large numbers of docs. I assume there won't be ownership problems.
 
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Thanks for the dropbox info.
I don't mind moving large numbers of docs. I assume there won't be ownership problems.
If I (when) buy a new computer I should just start it up without any migration. Then I should install all apps. After that drag the folders I have hightlighted from backups to the new Mac?

View attachment 1685473
I don't move the music, desktop, documents, etc. folders themselves. I just move the files that I want out of the old folders into the new music, desktop, documents, etc. folders that are created on the new computer. I find it's a good time to clean up and sort through old files. I am deleting a lot of old files today instead of adding everything to the newly installed OS. It takes a lot of time, but feels good to do that sort of deep cleaning!!
 
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When I buy a new computer I start fresh and skip the migration assistant and all that, simply begin with setting up the machine as new, and since I do use iCloud for bookmarks, mail, etc., some things are brought right to the new machine from that anyway. Then I tinker with the settings to get them to my liking. Only after that do I copy certain folders from the older machine to an external SSD and the plug in to the new machine plop the folders down in the appropriate location (Photos, Documents, etc.). I install apps again, checking my files for the license key if needed, and soon I'm up and running. The last time I bought a new machine, though, the M1 MBP back at the end of December 2020, I did not intend to use that machine as my primary computer so did not put some apps or files into it, just the ones I knew I'd need and want in there. This system works out pretty well for me.
I'm not installing everything on my newly installed OS. I rarely use office apps now that I'm not working. I have Office 365 on my Dell laptop, so I felt no need to put those apps on the iMac. If I do need them I will add them later. Right now I've installed, Photoshop, Lightroom Classic, Bridge, Final Cut Pro, App Cleaner, and Pages, Carbon Copy Cloner, and a couple of other various apps. I want to keep this computer as clean and fast as I can. It really is quite zippy today.
 
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Thanks for the dropbox info.
I don't mind moving large numbers of docs. I assume there won't be ownership problems.
I only avoid large number of files at a time in case something goes wrong or it causes something to pause. I've never understood the cause, but it's caused me to never do it again.

I've never seen ownership problems when pulling a file off the computer and putting it on an external or something.
 
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I sure appreciate all of you helping me. Even though most of you suggested I get the M1 Mac Mini, I feel I can hold off for a while. I've been editing a few photos and my old iMac is performing very well. I can live with it for a while longer. The Mac Mini surely does sound like a great way to go and I'm sure it's what I will eventually do. It seems like such an attractive way to go to have the computer and monitor separate (like the old days before I got my first iMac). That way they both don't have to be replaced at once when you want to upgrade. I love the monitor suggestions and the link to the apple refurbished computers will come in very handy when I do finally upgrade. Thank you all so much. (Also, I'm feeling pretty proud of myself that I pulled off this reformat and reinstall process without a hitch!! It was actually quite fun to do. I'm still working on going through the old files on my backup and only bringing back what I really need. That will take a while because it is tedious work.).
 
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I might have come up with a clue on why mine was running slowly. Checking around in PS I found I'd turned off the GPU. All sorts of things work better with it on.
 

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