Best way to opgrade MACPRO OSX 10.4.11


Hello guys,

I have a MAC PRO with MAC OS X version 10.4.11 installed.
I have no idea how to upgrade this machine the right way, because there is so many newer systems. (Leopard, with or without snow and Lions with or without stripes.. ;o)

Can anyone guide me in the right and most safe direction here? Do I loose my files?

2 x 4 Ghz Dual Core Intel Xeon
Memory: 5GB 667 MHz DDR2 FB-DIMM

Thanks in advance



The safest way to do anything is to have an external disc and backup all your stuff to that.

When I upgraded I had all my files and apps on Time Machine.

I upgraded the system and then using the Migration Assistant it restarted using the last Time Machine copy. Nothing was lost. Even my passwords were retained.

I have a MacBook laptop and that is too old to update to Mountain Lion. I have to stay with Lion.

Once you have your backup in place. Try a Mountain Lion download. It will tell you if it can't upgrade. If this is the case, you will have to upgrade to Lion.

You could just copy all your data to an external disc, do an upgrade and then download the data, but Time Machine and Migration Assistant is the easiest.


Your MacPro that came with Tiger cannot run Mountain Lion (10.8), but would run anything older.
Tiger did not have the feature of Time Machine, so backup would be very simple. In fact, much better would be if you don't have all 4 hard drive slots filled, to simply add a new hard drive to one of the slots, install either 10.5 or 10.6, and on first restart after that install, will ask if you want to transfer files from another hard drive. You say yes, and choose your 10.4 system hard drive, already in place. The migration should go smoothly. After that migration completes, run Software Update, until completely up-to-date. If you have 10.6, then the updates get you to OS X 10.6.8 - where you could update to Lion, although the App Store does not have that available now. I suspect that you can get a Lion installer download at an Apple store if you ask for it. I searched around, and found that you have to call AppleCare, and ask for a sales rep, who will provide you with a download code for Lion, if you want to do that. Lion (10.7) is still about $30, afaik.


Periodic backups fall under the category of Best Practices having nothing to do with OS upgrades. Backing-up to an HFS+ (Journaled) FireWire external hard drive using the second most recent version of Carbon Copy Cloner will produce a bootable drive with all of your current files. A USB drive will work, but not nearly as well.

Then acquire a retail MacOS X 10.6 Snow Leopard DVD and do a simple upgrade. Then run Software Update until you have all the latest versions of all Apple Snow Leopard software. This will include the Mac App Store. If you need Rosetta to run PPC software, then you must stay with Snow Leopard. If not, then pop for the newest OS that your Mac Pro will run. It is well worth the $20.