Upgrading to MacBook M3 Air from 2013 Intel MacBook Pro

It’s with great sadness that I announce that I am finally moving on from my 2013 I5 based MacBook Pro.

I have customized the OS software and applications quite a bit over the years.

I think it will take me several days at least to configure the new MacBook Air from scratch to get customizations working reliably.

Not looking forward to having to move the licenses. I imagine I would have to do that if I migrated or installed fresh.

Do you think it would be worth at least trying a migration or is the possibility of introducing random bugs too great.

My thought is I could at least give it a try and if it was too flaky, I could start from scratch.

I am assuming that once the applications updated, I would be getting the Apple Silicon based apps

What else am I missing?


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I migrated from my 2019 5k iMac to a 2021 m1 mpb. It was flawless. Everything just worked.

Seems to me the big question is whether you have eliminated All of your 32 bit apps.

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Since you can run both machines at the same time, I think it is worth doing a manual transfer. Frustrating and slow but worthwhile.

It will give you the opportunity to figure out which apps require deauthorization, which require explicit saving of preferences/data, etc… The information will be very useful in case you have to do a nuke and pave. Also it will let you evaluate which apps no longer have a place in your workflow.



Or, as I learned the hard way, some apps will install a limited number of times then lock permanently. Now I always deauthorize (remove licenses) before reinstalling an application.


I’m going to be in a similar situation to @SteveU75, and that’s what I’m going to do, for all the reasons you mention, and to avoid any cruft from getting transferred into my new system.

I’ve never tried this, but fwiw: Manage all your installed software at one place with Homebrew Bundle

I use Homebrew regularly but never this bundle idea. However not everything I want to use is Homebrew-ed; for example GNU’s gurgle report writer — even if somewhat out of date — would be useful for some projects I am involved in but it isn’t on Homebrew neither is PSPP (GNU’s re-implementation of the stats package SPSS).

I like to do fresh installs because after a certain number of years I accumulate a bunch of software I no longer use. The software has to earn a place on my new laptop. It is more effort, but worth it to me. Since it has been over 11 years for you, I bet you have a large list of unused apps installed.