How to Connect Imac To Macbook Pro Via Thunderbolt

Share This:

The MacBook Pro is Apple’s flagship laptop, offering a powerful and versatile computing experience in a sleek and lightweight design. But the capabilities of your MacBook Pro don’t stop at its own hardware – you can also connect it to other devices, like an iMac, to expand your options and make the most of your computing resources. Here’s how to connect an iMac to a MacBook Pro using Thunderbolt technology.

First, if either of the computers has macOS 11 or later installed, you’ll need to use a Thunderbolt cable for the connection. If both computers are running macOS High Sierra or earlier, you can use a Mini DisplayPort cable instead.

Once you have the necessary cable, connect it between the two computers’ Thunderbolt ports (or Mini DisplayPort on systems with macOS High Sierra or earlier). Then go into System Preferences > Network on both Macs and make sure Thunderbolt Bridge appears in the list of interfaces on left. If not, click + (plus) and select Thunderbolt Bridge to add it, click Create, and click Apply.

Now that your two Macs are connected via Thunderbolt Bridge, you can access files stored on one computer from the other computer as if they were stored locally – perfect for sharing large files quickly without having to upload them online first! You can also use one Mac as a display for the other if they’re close together; simply press Command+F2 while logged into the “host” Mac to enter Target Display Mode and use your second Mac as an external monitor.

Connecting via Thunderbolt is easy once you know how – so get creative with what you do with it! Whether it’s taking advantage of Target Display Mode or sharing files quickly between two machines, there are lots of ways that linking up your iMac with your MacBook Pro can benefit you.

How to Connect Imac To Macbook Pro Via Thunderbolt 1

Connecting Two Macs Via Thunderbolt

Yes, you can connect two Macs via Thunderbolt. To do so, you will need a Thunderbolt cable and both computers must have USB, USB-C, or Thunderbolt ports. When the computers are connected via the cable, one of them will appear as an external hard disk on the other. This is called target disk mode. If either computer has macOS 11 or later installed, a Thunderbolt cable must be used for the connection to work.

Using an iMac as a Monitor for a MacBook Pro

Yes, you can use an iMac as a monitor for your MacBook Pro. To do this, you will need to make sure that the iMac has macOS High Sierra or earlier installed, and that the MacBook Pro was introduced in 2019 or earlier and has macOS Catalina or earlier installed. Additionally, you will need to connect the two Mac computers using a Mini DisplayPort cable. Once these requirements are met, you should be able to use the iMac as a monitor for your MacBook Pro.

Transferring Data Between Macs Using Thunderbolt Cable

To transfer data from one Mac to another using a Thunderbolt cable, first, connect the two computers via any of their Thunderbolt ports. Then, open System Preferences on both Macs and select Network. Make sure that Thunderbolt Bridge is listed in the list of interfaces at the left side of the window. If it isn’t, click the + (plus) icon and select Thunderbolt Bridge from the list, then hit Create and Apply. Once you have done this on both Macs, you will be able to transfer data between them over your Thunderbolt connection.

Connecting Two Macs Directly

To connect two Macs directly, you will need to use an Ethernet cable. Begin by plugging one end of the Ethernet cable into the Ethernet port on one computer, then plugging the other end into the Ethernet port on the other computer.

Next, open System Preferences on each Mac and click Sharing. Note down the computer name for each Mac.

Finally, choose Apple menu > System Settings and click Network in the sidebar. Select Ethernet from the list on the left and ensure both Macs are connected to the same network. If they are not, click Advanced and select a different network from the Wi-Fi menu in order to connect both computers to it. After that, you should be able to access files between both computers using their respective computer names.

Can an iMac Be Used as Just a Monitor?

Yes, an iMac can be used as a monitor for a PC as long as the iMac has a Thunderbolt port or Mini DisplayPort and offers target display mode. To use the iMac as a monitor, you’ll need to connect the PC to the iMac using either a Mini DisplayPort cable or a Thunderbolt cable. Then, press and hold down the Command + F2 keys on the keyboard connected to the iMac while it’s turned on. This will enable Target Display Mode and allow you to use your iMac as a monitor for your PC.

Connecting Two Macs to Transfer Files

Yes, you can connect two Macs together to transfer files. To do so, you need to turn on File Sharing on both Macs. Once File Sharing is enabled on both Macs, you can access the other Mac’s files through the Finder. In the Finder, choose to Go > Network, then double-click one of the computers or devices that display and enter your username and password. You’ll be able to browse the folders and files of the other Mac and drag files to and from that computer.

Transferring Data Quickly Between Two Macs

The fastest way to transfer data between two Macs is to use Migration Assistant. This built-in utility allows you to easily transfer all of your data, such as documents, applications, music, and photos, from one Mac to another. All you need to do is connect both Macs to the same network and then launch Migration Assistant on both machines. You can then follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process. Migration Assistant also works wirelessly for more recent MacOS versions (such as Big Sur or Monterey), so long as Wi-Fi is turned on for each computer and both computers are near one another and connected to the same network.


The MacBook Pro is a powerful and versatile laptop from Apple, featuring the latest Intel processors, high-resolution displays, and up to 16GB of RAM. It’s ideal for users who need powerful performance for demanding tasks like graphic design or video editing. It also features a range of ports, including USB-C, Thunderbolt 3, and a full-size HDMI port for connecting to external displays. With its slim profile and long battery life, the MacBook Pro is an excellent choice for anyone looking for an all-around capable laptop.

Share This:
Photo of author

James Walker

James Walker has a deep passion for technology and is our in-house enthusiastic editor. He graduated from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, and loves to test the latest gadgets and play with older software (something we’re still trying to figure out about himself). Hailing from Iowa, United States, James loves cats and is an avid hiker in his free time.