Best way to migrate RW to new Mac


I’m moving macs and need a simple way to migrate. I’m not using the migration assistant because too much cruft is moved with it, so I’m doing a clean install. I will however have a Time Machine and SuperDuper backup. Is there an easy way to copy over all plugins and themes that doesn’t require me finding all my license codes again?

I also don’t have a complete list of all my plugins. do they all reside in one place? If so where?



I’ve been through this a couple of times myself. Personally I prefer to do it all manually because I figure less can go wrong such as something being missed. I always backup my sites and software to a USB drive which makes it easier to move everything to a new computer. That is what I would recommend.

I’ve effectively started with a new iMac following my disastrous OS Sierra upgrade that resulted in the Macintosh HD being readable but not writable - and not bootable! As the OS install partition was still OK, I managed to reinstall El Capitan on an external USB drive and then did a restore from Time Machine to the USB drive.

Having now got a backup to my backup, I reformatted the internal drive, installed Sierra successfully and then restored from Time Machine. No major issues and the 2010 iMac seems to be running faster so I’m content.

Thanks guys.

For anyone interested, the path I chose was as follows (after a clean install (in my case El Capitan)):

  1. Install Rapidweaver and add your license
  2. Go to your backup (in my case SpuerDuper) to:

/User/Username/Library/Containers/com.realmacsoftware.rapidweaver/Data/Library/Application Support/Rapidweaver

  1. Copy the whole folder to your Desktop or some place else from your backup
  2. Go into the Rapidweaver folder you just copied and select all the “.rapidweaverplugin” files and right-click and “open with” > Rapidweaver 7. This will open Rapidweaver and install the plugins.
  3. In the Rapidweaver folder you copied from your backup now go to the “Stacks folder”. Select all the stacks and right-click and “open with” > Rapidweaver 7. This will install all your stacks.
  4. In the Rapidweaver folder you copied from your backup now go to the “Themes folder”. Select all the Themes and right-click and “open with” > Rapidweaver 7. This will install all your Themes.
  5. In the Rapidweaver folder you copied from your backup now go to the “Snippets folder”. Select all the Snippets and right-click and “open with” > Rapidweaver 7. This will install all your Snippets.
  6. In Rapidweaver click on “Library” and “Updates”. This is only necessary if you have not updated your Rapidweaver library in some time. Update all items highlighted.
  7. You will need your license keys for various stacks/plugin etc.
  8. Open a project and you should be good to go.

I too bought a new iMac and am having trouble transferring RW. I was able to install RW 5.4 but I was using RW 6.5. Unfortunately I only can find the license # for 5.4. When I try to up to update the 5.4 to 6.4 it ask me if I want to purchase 6.4. Any help would be appreciated. I have an external hard drive that I can transfer from time machine.

@CloisonneArt this might help

Hi Simon,

I just got a new iMac and I wanted to install RW on a clean Mac. Your step-by-step description was just great!!! Thank you!



This has not worked for me. I think I’ve copied all things mentioned, but I cannot get some stacks (at least Prettyphoto3) to work.

On another help article I saw I needed to copy all the rwsw files, but I only have one, from a sample download. I think I’ve seen them before, but not now on the old computer.

Any suggestions? This has to be a relatively common problem, as computers get outdated.

Richard - I’ve never heard of Prettyphoto3 so I searched the web and found info at the following link. Could it be that it is not a stack but a jquery (I know nothing about that!)?

Good luck,


@svsmailus Simon, I’ve just used your guide as my new iMac Migration Assistant didn’t port all of my rw stuff across from the old imac. Thankfully your guide was spot on and now I’m back in business. Very many thanks for sharing this.

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Hi all, long time since I’ve been on here (changed careers from building websites to building houses!)

I’m struggling with the double trouble of migrating from RW 6-2 to RW8 and also migrating to a new iMac (but without the aid of migration assistant as I have an issue with using that which Apple just can’t overcome.

I’ve set up RW8 on the new Mac and have found the RW projects on the old Mac. What I’m struggling with is the plugins, themes etc and how to a) find them on the old Mac and b) migrate them across.

I’ve looked at Simons guide above but don’t have (or can’t locate) the folder structures he mentions. I can’t even find the sort of file extensions he mentions either (no .rapidweaverplugin files found on the old Mac)

Any help would be appreciated

edit - I’ve found numerous stacks folders dotted around - most seem to contain just a couple of files called stacks_ie.css and stacks.css. There are folders with stacks in them but they all seem very old.

I don’t remember, where exactly Rw6 stored the addon folder. I haven’t had 6 on my Mac for some time.
Does the old Mac still run or are you trying to work from a TimeMachine (or other backup)?
If RW6 is still running you should be able to right click on a third party theme, plugin or stack and select revel in finder. Y You can then get the path from finder.

The old Mac is still running but RW6 isn’t. To cut a long story short one of the things Apple got me to try while trying to solve the migration assistant issue was an upgrade to the old Mac which screwed up my keychain info and other stuff and now RW6-2 doesn’t want to start. RW5 starts ok strangely enough.

Have you tried “hunting” around your user library on find?
As I said I haven’t had RW6 up for sometime, perhaps someone else can give you a clue, you might be able to sea the forum for the path.


~/Library/Containers/com.realmacsoftware.rapidweaver/Data/Library/Application Support/Rapidweaver

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For those brave souls upgrading to Catalina, I thought I’d share my upgrade path.

As Catalina is fully 64 bit with no 32 bit support, I’ve gone for a clean install using the very helpful internet recovery method (basically hold down CMD+OPT+R when you start up the machine). You do need an internet connection. The disk utility allowed me to erase my hard drive (after TimeMachine & SuperDuper! backup!). I then installed Catalina. Everything went rather well.

My Rapidweaver migration went as follows:

  1. Use the handy menu “Rapidweaver > Reveal Addons Folder” to find where all my stacks, themes and plugins are installed. You could copy the entire “Library” folder and then copy it back once you have installed Rapidweaver, but I didn’t want the caches and settings as I didn’t want any old cruft appearing.
  2. Copy Addons folder to external hard disk
  3. On the new machine install Rapidweaver.
  4. Open an example project to ensure all folders and preferences have been created in the Library.
  5. Open the Add-on folder on the new machine
  6. Copy your back-up Addons folder from your external drive.

There are some issue with plugins. When I first launched Rapidweaver with the Addon’s folder from my old setup, a warning told me what was not compatible. You can then either get updates, or note the offending plugins, shutdown Rapidweaver and delete them from the Addon’s folder.

You will need serial numbers for plugins and stacks. I normally download an order history from the companies I purchased them from so it’s not too problematic.


What about the preferences folder (the one that has all the serial numbers and info) why can’t be move to the new Mac?

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