My girlfriend's old MacBook Pro 2009 (5,4) stopped working. I have tried several times to reinstall OS X, but could not do so. There appears to be something really really wrong with the OS.

Since she is not opposed to the idea of using Ubuntu instead of OS X, I am currently trying to transfer all of her files to my Linux machine using an ethernet crossover cable.

Since OS X does not work at all, I am using the Ubuntu 13.04 live DVD to access her files.

At first I thought the job would be simple. My plan was to set up network interfaces, plug in the crossover cable, set up an NFS share on the Macintosh HD, and rsync all 150GB of her files over to my machine. Then install Ubuntu 13.04 as the sole operating system, and transfer the files back over.

But, alas, things are not that simple. NFS doesn't seem to like Apple's HFS+ filesystem. At least, I can not get it to work. I also can not find information about how to configure it. Since all of that takes time, I'm wondering if there's a simpler, better solution.

I thought of using an rsync daemon, but since both computers are running Ubuntu (the client is using 12.10), and since I can mount the HFS+ hard drive in order to browse through her files, and since both computers can ping each other, it just seemed like there would be an easier way to do this than trying to configure NFS.

  • 3
    Why not just rsync via SSH or native rsync? No need for NFS. – depquid Apr 16 '13 at 19:08
  • How about removing the drive from her Mac, plugging it into the Linux machine, mounting it, and copying the files natively? – Stabledog Apr 16 '13 at 21:48
  • the linux machine is an asus netbook, stabledog. – ixtmixilix Apr 17 '13 at 21:34

I recommend that you use scp. This requires you to install the ssh server on your 12.10 with sudo apt-get install openssh-server if you have not already done so. Make sure both machines have a fixed IP address and that they can ping each other if you use a cross-over cable.

Then under 13.04 you mount the HFS+ file-system e.g. under /mnt/hfs. After that

cd /mnt/hfs
scp -rp . username@ipaddres:/dir/to/backup

The username has to be an existing user on the 12.04 machine, with a password. ipaddress should be the IP address of the 12.04 machine. /dir/to/backup should be on a file-system on 12.04 that has enough free space.

The ssh server does not need further configuration after installation, much less hassle than trying to get NFS to work. And no extra installs after booting from the 13.04 DVD.

  • How would that be different from using rsync (which is what the topic starter suggested in his last paragraph)? – Vincent Apr 16 '13 at 21:43

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