Invaluable tips for restoring a Mac OS X Time Machine backup to a new drive

I recently replaced my hard drive in my 2008 MacBook Pro. After following the excellent step-by-step instructions here, I booted up from my install DVD formatted my new drive, selected the option to restore from backup and was shocked to not see my new drive as an available target drive. I can’t find the post where I found this invaluable tip, but apparently it’s a known issue with the install DVD and the ‘restore from backup’ feature that if you’ve just formatted a new drive, you need to press ‘back’ all the way back to the language display screen before going forward again to get to the restore option. Now you new drive appears as a target drive for the restore. Bizarre. Ok, well it works.

The great thing about Time Machine on the Mac is that it’s effortless to restore your whole machine from a backup. This was the first time I’d tried it to a new hard drive but it worked without any issues. Well, almost…

Not thinking, I booted my machine for the restore from my original Leopard DVD but I had upgraded my machine to Snow Leopard some time back. Restore completed without an issue, rebooted, got a kernel panic! WTF! That’s the first time I’d seen that on my Mac. Quick bit of Googling later, rebooted from the Snow Leopard DVD, redid the restore and now all is ok.


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