My G4 OS 10.4 won’t boot into target disk mode. This is very frustrating as I want to migrate my settings to my new 24in iMac. Any ideas?
FireWire Target Disk Mode is an incredibly useful tool to help you transfer information from one Mac to another. When connected in this way, one computer appears as an external hard drive on the other’s Desktop. To copy data, all you have to do is drag it over. In fact, it’s the method Apple uses when moving your settings with the Migration Assistant.
This process is such a staple of Mac maintenance and troubleshooting that you could well think that it’s always been available. Regretfully, this is not the case and some early FireWire-equipped models where unable to support target disk mode.
You don’t mention what type of G4 Mac you have, but if target disk mode doesn’t work, we’ll hazard a guess that it’s one of the early PowerMac G4s. A full list of compatible machines is available here: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1661.
Since you don’t seem to be able to use this method, you have a couple of options open to you to move your data over: use an external hard drive as a go-between or connect your Macs to a local network and share your files that way.
If Target Disk Mode fails, there are other alternatives to transfer your settings to another Mac
To transfer your settings and internet passwords, perhaps the best solution would be to get a MobileMe account – you can try free for 60 days – and use that to sync your Macs.
Set MobileMe up on your G4 first. Select the Sync section of the MobileMe System Preference and choose what to sync (such as your Safari bookmarks, calendars, contacts, even your keychain passwords). Once you’ve done this, and have the information you want recorded in your account, do the same to your new iMac but when it comes to sync your computer with MobileMe, instruct it to erase any info from your iMac and get it all from MobileMe instead.