Question Help! Need help transferring data from notebook with a broken screen.

FrenchQuarter

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Feb 19, 2013
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Help! Broken screen on 2015 MacBook 12” USB-C ... Need help transferring data.

Hello!
I have a major dilemma and need help/advice.

I have a:

2015 MacBook 12” 8GB RAM 512GB SSD 1.3GHz BTO.
(Single USB-C, not Thunderbolt.) (Not Pro, not Air, the 12”.)

PROBLEM:

Something heavy from the ceiling fell and crashed onto it, and killed the MacBook screen. The screen isn’t broken at all, but the hinge is, and I assume maybe a wire or connection inside, that feeds video to the screen. There is a deep dent around the hinge and the MacBook no longer closes. (The screen is not cracked, but the area above the keyboard near the hinge has a dent, and I assume this killed feed to the display.)

I THINK the logic board, etc is OK. The screen is black — but the keyboard lights up, and sound is made via volume buttons. The working light-up keyboard and volume make me think the MacBook processor/logic board/SSD internals are OK.

NEED HELP:

I need to transfer all my data and files from the 2015 MacBook 12” single-USB-C to either a new computer or a bootable hard drive.

I have a lot of OPEN web browser tabs in both Safari and Opera that I want to save and not lose. (Both are set to automatically reopen last session.)

Preferably, I don’t want to just copy files — but ALL my prefs, etc so I don’t lose web browser tabs, and all my customization options and settings, or my apps and licenses.

All the Apple stores/repair shops are closed in my area, so I have to fix this myself.

MY OTHER COMPUTER:

2014 MacBook Pro 15” 16GB RAM 1TB SSD
(USB-A 3.0, Thunderbolt 2) (No USB-C.)

POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS...
(Please offer your advice, other suggestions, and INSTRUCTIONS):

(1A)
I buy a USB-C AV adapter, HDMI cable, and HD TV/Monitor ... use this as the new/second display — and keep the MacBook as-is with broken display but functional main computer body.

(1B)
HOW do I get the second display to work when the MacBook screen is currently dead? (I can’t see anything yet... I can only use the keyboard blindly. Is there a button-combo, etc?)

(This would just be a short-term solution, as I really want to get all the data off the MacBook 12” to a new drive or computer, in case something else dies, and so I can eventually leave it with a real repair shop when they re-open.)

(2A)
I already have a 2014 MacBook Pro 15”. Can I possibly combine the 2 (two) MacBooks into 1, or something similar?

Both SSDs (1TB and 512GB SSD/hard drives) are completely FULL, so there is no significant extra space available. ...I can buy a separate external hard drive, or external drive enclosure, etc.

Can I somehow get/duplicate the 512GB SSD from inside the 2015 MacBook 12” to a separate EXTERNAL BOOTABLE drive?

FYI: Everything about the MacBook 12” is non-removable. The SSD is soldered onto the logic board, so I can’t just remove it. I’d have to find a way to duplicate it, etc.

(2B)
What are my options working with a second 2014 MacBook Pro 15”? (SSD-full/no extra storage available.) (Remember, I am blind with a broken screen on the 12”.)

How do I proceed with these options?

(3A)
I buy a used/wiped 2017 iMac 27”. (This will have an empty drive, and enough available storage.) Can I just transfer/migrate my MacBook 12” to the iMac?

(3B) How do I with a broken screen? How do I shutdown/restart when I can’t see? Can I just use target disk mode (link both computers via USB-C and press “T” on startup)?

Anything else?

(4)
All the Apple repair shops are closed, so I can’t have a repairman just replace the cable/display/components — for quite some time... plus I want to transfer my data before leaving at a repair shop.

(5) My ideal solution is somehow using my working 2014 MacBook Pro 15” that I also already own, and making a duplicate bootable drive from the broken-screen 2015 MacBook 12” ... but I am not sure how to do that... Does anyone have instructions?

(6)
ANY OTHER suggestions, advice, and instructions?

THANK YOU!
 

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