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Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 02:07 PM
Hi guys,

I have a 128GB ssd and it's finally completely filled up with applications crashing. I'm unable to make any more space as primary consumers of space are my itunes and iphoto libraries which I'm unable to reduce.

So I thought why not upgrade my ssd. I called up Apple retail store and was told that one can't upgrade the ssd on a macbook air because everything is fixed in place and the slightest mistake could scatter the lithium polymer from the batteries everywhere.

My reaction was: wtf. My ssd is full and I need to upgrade. Are you telling me I need to buy a brand new mac?!

Anyway, what can I do here? Can anyone recommend a shop in London which will do the upgrade from 128GB to 512GB SSD for me?

Many thanks.



simsaladimbamba
Aug 30, 2012, 02:10 PM
The Aura Pro is your only option: http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/SSD/OWC/
Or do you have a MacBook Air from before 2010 (2008 or 2009 model)?

Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 02:14 PM
This is what I have:

http://s18.postimage.org/hki4knud5/mba_spec.jpg

How do I fit the SSD you linked to? I wouldn't like to do it myself to be honest.

simsaladimbamba
Aug 30, 2012, 02:17 PM
This is what I have:

Image (http://s18.postimage.org/hki4knud5/mba_spec.jpg)

How do I fit the SSD you linked to? I wouldn't like to do it myself to be honest.

Videos on how to do that: http://eshop.macsales.com/installvideos/macbook_air_2010/

JootecFromMars
Aug 30, 2012, 02:18 PM
Failing being unable to upgrade, you could always move your iTunes and iPhoto library off to an external HD or large USB stick.

Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 02:22 PM
Failing being unable to upgrade, you could always move your iTunes and iPhoto library off to an external HD or large USB stick.

Yes I was wondering about doing this. Is it just a case of moving these and then updating locations in iTunes and iPhoto? I noticed in the case of iPhoto I cannot even go into the folder - it seems to be some sort of special folder which if you double click opens iPhoto. Also I guess doing this will mean I won't be able to sync new iTunes or iPhoto content to my iPhone and iPad without having the external drive always attached which I could live with I suppose.

PBG4 Dude
Aug 30, 2012, 02:22 PM
Failing being unable to upgrade, you could always move your iTunes and iPhoto library off to an external HD or large USB stick.

This would be the more cost effective solution unless you're dead set against needing to carry anything beyond your laptop. (although some USB sticks are very very small)

Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 02:23 PM
Videos on how to do that: http://eshop.macsales.com/installvideos/macbook_air_2010/

Thanks. I guess I'll have to find a UK equivalent seller.

simsaladimbamba
Aug 30, 2012, 02:25 PM
Thanks. I guess I'll have to find a UK equivalent seller.

OWC is the ONLY seller of those, and as far as I know, those SSDs can only be bought online, or maybe you find something via your eBay channel.

Or you take a look at this (http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Nifty-MiniDrive-More-Space-Pretty-Package), as it probably can hold your music and/or photos.

Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 02:25 PM
This would be the more cost effective solution unless you're dead set against needing to carry anything beyond your laptop. (although some USB sticks are very very small)

Well one of the reasons I have an 11" MBA is that I want the bare minimum footprint of weight when carrying. Surprisingly even the most recent highest spec MBA in an Apple Store is only 256GB. I understand this is because of cost. The 512GB would be too expensive for most people but to be honest these days smaller capacities are just not big enough. I'm not a power user and my MBA still ran out of space admittedly after a few years.

Weaselboy
Aug 30, 2012, 02:26 PM
http://www.apple.com/uk/itunes/itunes-match/

If music is what is filling up your drive maybe iTunes Match would help?

Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 02:32 PM
Or you take a look at this (http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Nifty-MiniDrive-More-Space-Pretty-Package), as it probably can hold your music and/or photos.

No SD slot on mine. :(

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http://www.apple.com/uk/itunes/itunes-match/

If music is what is filling up your drive maybe iTunes Match would help?

Very interesting thanks. But this raises a few questions. Will it be suitable for music not legally purchased ;) and when playing music away from wifi will it use up all my 3G allowance (currently 500MB). Not sure if this is ideal.

Weaselboy
Aug 30, 2012, 02:52 PM
Very interesting thanks. But this raises a few questions. Will it be suitable for music not legally purchased ;) and when playing music away from wifi will it use up all my 3G allowance (currently 500MB). Not sure if this is ideal.

It will match any music on your drive regardless of source. Yes, it will use your 3G if away from wifi (assume you have some kind of 3G data dongle?). But you can still keep songs on your drive to play when away from wifi, you just don't have to keep them all.

Here (http://arstechnica.com/apple/2011/11/itunes-match-your-questions-answered/) is a pretty good overview of how it works.

tdhurst
Aug 30, 2012, 03:31 PM
I use iTunes Match and archived many of my older photos using dropbox (without syncing those specific folders to my computer).

Still cheaper than a new SSD, but if you're dead set on it, it's easy to do.

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Very interesting thanks. But this raises a few questions. Will it be suitable for music not legally purchased ;) and when playing music away from wifi will it use up all my 3G allowance (currently 500MB). Not sure if this is ideal.

Yes to the first one.

Yes, streaming will use up 3G if you use it on while not on WiFi.

mmomega
Aug 30, 2012, 04:00 PM
Yes I was wondering about doing this. Is it just a case of moving these and then updating locations in iTunes and iPhoto? I noticed in the case of iPhoto I cannot even go into the folder - it seems to be some sort of special folder which if you double click opens iPhoto. Also I guess doing this will mean I won't be able to sync new iTunes or iPhoto content to my iPhone and iPad without having the external drive always attached which I could live with I suppose.

To get to your pictures, right click your "iPhoto Library" file and choose "Show Package Contents"

From there you should see a folder labeled "Masters". This is where your photos are.
All of your photos will be in corresponding folders labeled by the year > month > day.


I would suggest a small 320-500GB USB drive that doesn't require an external power source.
Something like or similar to the WD Passport (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822236202).
Grab a silver one to more closely match your laptop.;)

Mike in Kansas
Aug 30, 2012, 04:23 PM
To get to your pictures, right click your "iPhoto Library" file and choose "Show Package Contents"

From there you should see a folder labeled "Masters". This is where your photos are.
All of your photos will be in corresponding folders labeled by the year > month > day.


It's usually a bad idea to go poking around in the iPhoto database. Unfortunately iPhoto doesn't have the ability to "relocate masters" like can be done in Aperture. I have heard of folks who have moved those "masters" and were able to get iPhoto to find them again. However, it doesn't always work and once you break the database you are in trouble.

Another option may be to create multiple iPhoto libraries, and only keep the ones on the SSD that are most important and move the others to a stick.

If you have Photostream turned on with automatic creation of events, you can fill up your SSD quickly with a bunch of so-so photos. Cleaning out those events is usually a good idea.

Narada
Aug 30, 2012, 04:27 PM
Thanks a lot guys. So I think the most economical option is for me to use the smallest size yet largest capacity external HD for iTunes, iPhoto and automatic Time Machine backup. At the moment I'm only doing the last of those three. Currently I have a Samsung 1TB drive (****************KexIo) which I'll continue using.

It's a bit slow being USB2 but I doubt my MBA supports USB3 :( Yet another reason to get the latest MBA! I'll still be putting as much of my music as possible on my iPhone and iPad but it'll be from my external HD.

Regarding a new SSD I'm hesitating to spend a small fortune on it when I can just buy a new MBA for a little more money. And iTunes Match, although a great feature, I don't think I'll need if I start using an external HD.

By the way, I'm very new to this forum and I just want to say you guys are phenomenal. So many answers so quickly. I'm very glad to part of this Apple community.

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It's usually a bad idea to go poking around in the iPhoto database. Unfortunately iPhoto doesn't have the ability to "relocate masters" like can be done in Aperture. I have heard of folks who have moved those "masters" and were able to get iPhoto to find them again. However, it doesn't always work and once you break the database you are in trouble.

Another option may be to create multiple iPhoto libraries, and only keep the ones on the SSD that are most important and move the others to a stick.

If you have Photostream turned on with automatic creation of events, you can fill up your SSD quickly with a bunch of so-so photos. Cleaning out those events is usually a good idea.

Hmm. So there goes my iPhoto relocation idea. To be quite frank I don't really need iPhoto. The only reason I use it is so that I can flick through photos quickly and delete the bad ones. Doing so in preview is well impossible as far as I can tell. So I can probably just stop using iPhoto. I'm quite happy to browse through image files manually without needing to store them on the SSD. If you guys know of a decent image browser let me know. Good point about photostream - I hadn't realised these go into iPhoto too. Not to mention the iPhone imports on every connect.

stchman
Aug 30, 2012, 04:36 PM
To the OP:

You can go buy an SSD for your 2010 MBA, but $720 USD for 480GB is pretty steep.

You can also get a portable HDD, you can get a USB3.0 500GB model for ~$60 USD and move your photos and iTunes media to it.

tdhurst
Aug 30, 2012, 04:38 PM
To get to your pictures, right click your "iPhoto Library" file and choose "Show Package Contents"

From there you should see a folder labeled "Masters". This is where your photos are.
All of your photos will be in corresponding folders labeled by the year > month > day.


I would suggest a small 320-500GB USB drive that doesn't require an external power source.
Something like or similar to the WD Passport (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822236202).
Grab a silver one to more closely match your laptop.;)

DO NOT SCREW AROUND INSIDE THE IPHOTO LIBRARY FOLDER UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING.

If you'd like to offload the library, copy the entire thing and then open iPhoto holding down Option.

Seriously though, don't screw with the iPhoto library.

Jamie37211
Aug 30, 2012, 08:45 PM
If you're wanting to upgrade this is precisely what you'll want:

http://eshop.macsales.com/search/MBA2010.240

The bundle kit is $319 for 240 GB PLUS you get an external enclosure, so you can keep the 128 GB for file backup, etc.

I did this for my 2010 11" Air, and from the cloning of my old drive to the new to booting with the new drive installed took a little over an hour, with most of that time used for the clone. Worked like a charm.

I saw you post about buying a new MacBook Air being "only slightly more"...maybe if you went ape and got the 480 GB. 240 has been a beautiful thing, and the little slim 128 GB SSD external is a great bonus.

Good luck on whatever you decide to do.

mmomega
Aug 30, 2012, 09:56 PM
DO NOT SCREW AROUND INSIDE THE IPHOTO LIBRARY FOLDER UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING.

If you'd like to offload the library, copy the entire thing and then open iPhoto holding down Option.

Seriously though, don't screw with the iPhoto library.


First rule is to backup your library of course

I have never had problems combining multiple iPhoto libraries.
I just recently combined 7 separate libraries, whenever I format my hard drive I'll copy my iPhoto library to storage and date it.
Once I reload iLife, I open iPhoto, File, and Import to Library, point to the folders.
Every photo now in one library.

I'm sure some must have screwed some stuff up before so be careful and backup before doing anything.

iamsen47
Aug 30, 2012, 10:23 PM
You don't need to carry all your photos and tunes with you all the time. Offload them onto that external disk, and then carry a 32~64gb usb stick with you in case you need the additional space.

You could even upload your trimmed itunes library onto the stick but I wouldn't recommend leaving it plugged in the whole time especially when you're outside. People get careless. People that are not you. You get careless too.

Narada
Aug 31, 2012, 07:49 AM
If you're wanting to upgrade this is precisely what you'll want:

http://eshop.macsales.com/search/MBA2010.240

The bundle kit is $319 for 240 GB PLUS you get an external enclosure, so you can keep the 128 GB for file backup, etc.

I did this for my 2010 11" Air, and from the cloning of my old drive to the new to booting with the new drive installed took a little over an hour, with most of that time used for the clone. Worked like a charm.

I saw you post about buying a new MacBook Air being "only slightly more"...maybe if you went ape and got the 480 GB. 240 has been a beautiful thing, and the little slim 128 GB SSD external is a great bonus.

Good luck on whatever you decide to do.

Thanks. This was very helpful. I don't know why but I have a tendency to overcompensate for any problems I'm having. I was thinking of the 480GB originally and was put off by the cost but I suppose I could go for the 240GB which might be enough as long as I don't put my entire music and photo collection on it. Plus I'll have an external drive though I wonder if it'll be any smaller than the Samsung I have which I linked to above. I'll have a think about this. (Why are the OWC ssd sizes so irregular and different from apple sizes!)

LeeM
Aug 31, 2012, 08:35 AM
Get a look on eBay, a few apple 256gb for around the 200mark last time I checked

sam67uk
Aug 31, 2012, 09:23 AM
to OP

As you're in the UK, give these guys a go http://www.allmacshop.co.uk/category/743/SSD-storage-Internal/

I bought an OWC 240GB SSD from them last month. Worked out cheaper than getting one from the US and paying import duties. And they offer next day delivery and the price has dropped too!

I should also point out, they supply the necessary toolkit to remove the back cover and the SSD included in the price.

tdhurst
Aug 31, 2012, 10:36 AM
First rule is to backup your library of course

I have never had problems combining multiple iPhoto libraries.
I just recently combined 7 separate libraries, whenever I format my hard drive I'll copy my iPhoto library to storage and date it.
Once I reload iLife, I open iPhoto, File, and Import to Library, point to the folders.
Every photo now in one library.

I'm sure some must have screwed some stuff up before so be careful and backup before doing anything.

Nor have I, but like you, I have always made sure to back up and copy my entire iPhoto library, not just some of the files inside it.

Jamie37211
Aug 31, 2012, 11:12 AM
Thanks. This was very helpful. I don't know why but I have a tendency to overcompensate for any problems I'm having. I was thinking of the 480GB originally and was put off by the cost but I suppose I could go for the 240GB which might be enough as long as I don't put my entire music and photo collection on it. Plus I'll have an external drive though I wonder if it'll be any smaller than the Samsung I have which I linked to above. I'll have a think about this. (Why are the OWC ssd sizes so irregular and different from apple sizes!)

I remember reading something about the reason for the quoted capacity of the OWC drives being different from those of the stock Apple SSDs, but couldn't track down where. It might have been in one of the tutorials I read before I made the purchase. But it has to do with how OWC quotes the actual usable capacity of the drive.

The external drive enclosure is about 6 inches long, 1.5 inches wide and about .5 inch thick at its thickest point (it tapers back to front to mimic the taper of your Air). So, longer and skinnier than the external you linked above, but still quite tiny. It is also USB 3.0 as I recall, but backwards compatible with our 2010 Air USB 2 ports.

And I guess this has me questioning precisely how large your iTunes and iPhoto files are. I have a moderately sized iTunes library (around 60 GB) but my iPhoto library is comparitively small - I don't recall the size at the moment and don't have my Air with me to check. So, for me, 240 GB is vast and spacious.

hfg
Aug 31, 2012, 11:37 AM
Hmm. So there goes my iPhoto relocation idea. To be quite frank I don't really need iPhoto. The only reason I use it is so that I can flick through photos quickly and delete the bad ones. Doing so in preview is well impossible as far as I can tell. So I can probably just stop using iPhoto. I'm quite happy to browse through image files manually without needing to store them on the SSD. If you guys know of a decent image browser let me know. Good point about photostream - I hadn't realised these go into iPhoto too. Not to mention the iPhone imports on every connect.

Just in case it was overlooked ...

If you do a lot of photo deletion in iPhoto, you have deleted the iPhoto "trash" (not the OS X trash, the iPhoto trash)? If not, you probably have a LOT of space being wasted on your drive with deleted photos. :)


-howard

wolfpuppies3
Aug 31, 2012, 12:25 PM
OP: You mentioned that 256 GB is the largest SSD available for MBAs. Not true, my 2012 has a 512 GB SSD. My 2011 has a 256 GB SSD, the largest available then but the largest now is 512 GB. You are right, though, they are pricey.

Narada
Sep 4, 2012, 04:56 AM
Just in case it was overlooked ...

If you do a lot of photo deletion in iPhoto, you have deleted the iPhoto "trash" (not the OS X trash, the iPhoto trash)? If not, you probably have a LOT of space being wasted on your drive with deleted photos. :)


-howard

Thanks a lot for this. I had no idea. I had 159 photos in iphoto trash. I deleted them. I did a before and after check on the terminal but it didn't seem to make much difference but nevertheless at least it's cleared.

Before:

Filesystem Size Used Avail Capacity iused ifree %iused Mounted on
/dev/disk0s2 112Gi 76Gi 36Gi 68% 19956322 9456046 68% /


After:

Filesystem Size Used Avail Capacity iused ifree %iused Mounted on
/dev/disk0s2 112Gi 76Gi 36Gi 68% 19961901 9450467 68% /


My HD info is as here (http://s16.postimage.org/kjn3r7j39/hd_space.jpg) after some attempts to clean up as per the advice on this thread. I've also got a samsung 1TB portable external hd attached.

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OP: You mentioned that 256 GB is the largest SSD available for MBAs. Not true, my 2012 has a 512 GB SSD. My 2011 has a 256 GB SSD, the largest available then but the largest now is 512 GB. You are right, though, they are pricey.

You're right but 256GB is the largest you can get *if* you buy in the retail store which I always do. I rarely ever order Apple machines online. I just prefer the in-retail-store environment plus it's easier to get certain discounts signed off like student discount etc. Retail stores at least in the UK keep three different specs for mac notebooks and the highest spec for the MBA unfortunately has a 256GB. Understandably as 512GB would be far too expensive for most people and Apple wouldn't sell any of the top spec if they were to put that in.


NOTE: Btw the delay in me responding is due to the forum not emailing me when there's a new post. Not sure what's going on there.