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Old Jan 2, 2013, 04:33 PM   #1
3lite
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Question about MBA storage

I have a 2012 MBA Air 13 128Gb storage.

I am fine with 128 storage as I mainly use a laptop for school purposes and what not.

But if somewhere down the line I may need more memory...

1. Are the OWC SSD for MBA as good as the ones that Apple uses?

2. Would a external HD suffice and what are its disadvantages (besides having to carry it) since it isn't SSD?

3. Do you guys know of any good external HD for MBA? I'm looking to mainly store music, photos, etc.

Also, how much Gb storage should I leave free at all times to have optimum performance? About 30Gb right?

Thanks.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 04:41 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3lite View Post
1. Are the OWC SSD for MBA as good as the ones that Apple uses?
Yes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3lite View Post
2. Would a external HD suffice and what are its disadvantages (besides having to carry it) since it isn't SSD?
You can buy an external SSD or HDD.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3lite View Post
3. Do you guys know of any good external HD for MBA? I'm looking to mainly store music, photos, etc.
Any external drive will work, as long as you can connect it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3lite View Post
Also, how much Gb storage should I leave free at all times to have optimum performance? About 30Gb right?
Generally speaking, it's good to leave at least 10% of your internal drive free. More is better.
Performance Tips For Mac OS X
Freeing up drive space in Mac OS X
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 04:45 PM   #3
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I read on here the owc gave a MBA owner issues on the actual size and fitting of the drive.

Might want to check for that thread OP. I have the 512 apple drive so I cannot speak with any knowledge on the matter.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 05:10 PM   #4
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Man it's so crazy to me how little space is actually usable when you think about it

128 GB SSD is what is on the box

120 GB is the actual size of the drive

20 GB is used upon first set up of Mac

You have to leave about 20-30 GB to keep SSD running smoothly

So essentially you are given about 75 GB of space that you can actually USE. You get a bit more than half of what you think you are buying. Insane
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 08:17 PM   #5
3lite
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Originally Posted by tigres View Post
I read on here the owc gave a MBA owner issues on the actual size and fitting of the drive.

Might want to check for that thread OP. I have the 512 apple drive so I cannot speak with any knowledge on the matter.
Yeah I saw that. I think they definitely made a mistake on his...

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Yes.

You can buy an external SSD or HDD.

Any external drive will work, as long as you can connect it.

Generally speaking, it's good to leave at least 10% of your internal drive free. More is better.
Performance Tips For Mac OS X
Freeing up drive space in Mac OS X
Is there a difference? I've heard SSD is quicker but I'm not sure what they exactly mean by that.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
Man it's so crazy to me how little space is actually usable when you think about it

128 GB SSD is what is on the box

120 GB is the actual size of the drive

20 GB is used upon first set up of Mac

You have to leave about 20-30 GB to keep SSD running smoothly

So essentially you are given about 75 GB of space that you can actually USE. You get a bit more than half of what you think you are buying. Insane
Yeah, I know! I just hope with each future update to the OS it's still 20 GB and not more.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 08:38 PM   #6
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Is there a difference? I've heard SSD is quicker but I'm not sure what they exactly mean by that.
Yes, a SSD is much quicker, makes no sound and has no moving parts. A HDD has a spinning disk which makes noise and has much slower read/write performance, by comparison.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:29 PM   #7
3lite
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Yes, a SSD is much quicker, makes no sound and has no moving parts. A HDD has a spinning disk which makes noise and has much slower read/write performance, by comparison.
Since it's external would it really be that big of a difference? Since it's going to be limited by the USB and all.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 12:04 AM   #8
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I know it's not a lot of additional storage but I use a 32GB micro USB flash drive with my 11" air. I only have the 64GB because I really didn't need much, but I figured for $40 to get an additional 50% of memory isn't a bad deal. I leave it plugged in all the time and it works perfectly.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 12:41 AM   #9
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I got the 256GB which should be plenty for me unless I decide to run windows on here as well. However, I have started thinking of picking up a flash drive as a quick, easy back up of certain files. The cost of these drives is dropping like a rock and it seems like an easy way to carry around some files without having to worry about packing an external harddrive around or sacrificing internal storage.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 02:53 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
Man it's so crazy to me how little space is actually usable when you think about it

128 GB SSD is what is on the box

120 GB is the actual size of the drive

20 GB is used upon first set up of Mac

You have to leave about 20-30 GB to keep SSD running smoothly

So essentially you are given about 75 GB of space that you can actually USE. You get a bit more than half of what you think you are buying. Insane
it's long been known that both Apple and PC makers state the unformatted capacity of their drives - formatted capacity is always a few % less

20 to 30gb of free space for an SSD drive to run smoothly? - I don't think that part of your statement is correct.
and actually initial setup of the OS X - the installed Applications, System and Library Folder should total less than 15gb - plus how many additional apps you want to install of course.
you can always delete the stock ones you are never likely to use.

and if one still ain't happy, then pick up a 500gb external HDD for $80 for the excess data.
the basic 13" Air with 128gb SSD is still fantastic value for money when compared with anything the opposition has to offer when everything's weighed up
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 03:25 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by 3lite View Post

Also, how much Gb storage should I leave free at all times to have optimum performance? About 30Gb right?

Thanks.
I'd aim for about 20-30GB free most of the time also.

Why?

- temporary storage space for patches
- space for OS X to use temporarily for on-the-fly file defragmentation
- space for hibernation file, swap, etc.
- some space to keep local time machine backups of files in between your regular time machine backups


Yeah, sure - you CAN fill up your disk. But you lose functionality (time machine local backups), cause problems with upgrades, etc.


This is why i believe the 64GB MBA is a total waste of time and shouldn't be sold (IMHO it only exists as a cheap entry price to up-sell to a higher model once the user is interested). 128GB is limiting enough, and for a machine that "just works" the user shouldn't be constantly paranoid about free space...


IMHO - serious use with a 128GB air (or hell, any machine with an SSD really - they're all too small for the price) means you "need" some sort of home storage (NAS) that you can keep your long term storage on so you're not constantly scrimping for storage or considering what to delete - and use the 128GB flash as short term storage for "current" data.
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Last edited by throAU; Jan 3, 2013 at 03:31 AM.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 03:36 AM   #12
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I'd aim for about 20-30GB free most of the time also.

Why?

- temporary storage space for patches
- space for OS X to use temporarily for on-the-fly file defragmentation
- space for hibernation file, swap, etc.
- some space to keep local time machine backups of files in between your regular time machine backups


Yeah, sure - you CAN fill up your disk. But you lose functionality (time machine local backups), cause problems with upgrades, etc.


This is why i believe the 64GB MBA is a total waste of time and shouldn't be sold (IMHO it only exists as a cheap entry price to up-sell to a higher model once the user is interested). 128GB is limiting enough, and for a machine that "just works" the user shouldn't be constantly paranoid about free space...


IMHO - serious use with a 128GB air (or hell, any machine with an SSD really - they're all too small for the price) means you need some sort of home storage (NAS) that you can keep your long term storage on - and use the 128GB flash as short term storage for "current" data.
I agree with your values. Anything less than those amounts impacts real world performance which gets annoying fast. Based on my first hand experience 256GB is optimum on the minimum end of things, and I believe Apple does too. It's just a shame they charge a huge premium for it.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 04:44 AM   #13
throAU
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Yup.

256GB is enough to compromise a bit and have some music, movies, data, etc on your machine without constantly needing to store on external disks.

128 can be done, but it is a bit painful.

64gb is a joke
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 10:55 AM   #14
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Can anyone explain this to me?

Look at the finder available storage.

WTH is this backup under system storage pane?

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Old Jan 3, 2013, 11:47 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by tigres View Post
Can anyone explain this to me?

Look at the finder available storage.

WTH is this backup under system storage pane?

Attachment 387688
What you are seeing these is space taken up by Time Machine's local backups. You can ignore it and OS X will manage the space and shrink it if the space is needed. If it is bothering you, you can turn Time Machine off then back on and the space will be wiped.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 12:42 PM   #16
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What you are seeing these is space taken up by Time Machine's local backups. You can ignore it and OS X will manage the space and shrink it if the space is needed. If it is bothering you, you can turn Time Machine off then back on and the space will be wiped.
Well I'll be, learning all the time.

Thanks Weaselboy, you were 100% correct. never knew that existed.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 01:17 PM   #17
53x12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3lite View Post
I have a 2012 MBA Air 13 128Gb storage.

I am fine with 128 storage as I mainly use a laptop for school purposes and what not.

But if somewhere down the line I may need more memory...

1. Are the OWC SSD for MBA as good as the ones that Apple uses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Yes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Yes.

You can buy an external SSD or HDD.

Any external drive will work, as long as you can connect it.

Generally speaking, it's good to leave at least 10% of your internal drive free. More is better.
Performance Tips For Mac OS X
Freeing up drive space in Mac OS X
I disagree GGJstudios. It all depends on if you can get it to fit. Seems like a common problem around here.

In addition, you forgot to mention the issue of the Sandforce controller. OWC just uses the standard Sandforce firmware, whereas the Toshiba/Apple SSD uses a custom developed version of the Sandforce firmware.

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthre...troller&page=4
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 01:24 PM   #18
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20 to 30gb of free space for an SSD drive to run smoothly? - I don't think that part of your statement is correct.
Multiple people have stated it's true. That you should leave somewhere around that area free at all times or your SSD will experience undesirable results

Quote:
and actually initial setup of the OS X - the installed Applications, System and Library Folder should total less than 15gb
No. When I first bought my 128 GB MBA the first thing I did upon set up was check how much space I had left. It said something like 99.XX out of 120.47. My MBA came with 10.8.2 so it's possible it uses more space than previous versions.
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Old Jan 3, 2013, 05:22 PM   #19
3lite
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Multiple people have stated it's true. That you should leave somewhere around that area free at all times or your SSD will experience undesirable results



No. When I first bought my 128 GB MBA the first thing I did upon set up was check how much space I had left. It said something like 99.XX out of 120.47. My MBA came with 10.8.2 so it's possible it uses more space than previous versions.
Yeah same with me... 120Gb free out of the box.

Now I'm at 95 after installing MS Office and FireFox.
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Old Jan 4, 2013, 09:15 AM   #20
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Whatever is minimally adequate today will soon be uselessly inadequate.

Some's good, more's better with memory and storage. An external SSD connected via USB3 is quite quick though not as fast as an internal SSD.
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Old Jan 4, 2013, 07:53 PM   #21
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No. When I first bought my 128 GB MBA the first thing I did upon set up was check how much space I had left. It said something like 99.XX out of 120.47. My MBA came with 10.8.2 so it's possible it uses more space than previous versions.
I think we're starting to split hairs here - like I said, if you delete the native Apps you don't use, for example GarageBand and all the loops plus maybe iMovie, etc, you'll trim that used space well down under 20gb.

My Apps take up 6.47 gb
System Folder - 6.06 gb
Library - 2.11 gb
grand turtle - less than 15 gb

my User Folder takes up the rest.

I guess the sensible outcome is to opt for a 256gb SSD in the first place then everyone can be happy
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Old Jan 4, 2013, 09:15 PM   #22
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Whatever is minimally adequate today will soon be uselessly inadequate.

Some's good, more's better with memory and storage. An external SSD connected via USB3 is quite quick though not as fast as an internal SSD.
What do you mean by quick? Isn't it just storage?
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Old Jan 4, 2013, 09:18 PM   #23
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What do you mean by quick? Isn't it just storage?
It takes time to read and write data.
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Old Jan 4, 2013, 09:57 PM   #24
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I think we're starting to split hairs here - like I said, if you delete the native Apps you don't use, for example GarageBand and all the loops plus maybe iMovie, etc, you'll trim that used space well down under 20gb.

My Apps take up 6.47 gb
System Folder - 6.06 gb
Library - 2.11 gb
grand turtle - less than 15 gb

my User Folder takes up the rest.

I guess the sensible outcome is to opt for a 256gb SSD in the first place then everyone can be happy

I left iMovie and garageband on the MBA and I believe I am at 104 GB free (out of 128GB). I did however get rid of the languages and other clean up.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 01:22 AM   #25
3lite
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I think we're starting to split hairs here - like I said, if you delete the native Apps you don't use, for example GarageBand and all the loops plus maybe iMovie, etc, you'll trim that used space well down under 20gb.

My Apps take up 6.47 gb
System Folder - 6.06 gb
Library - 2.11 gb
grand turtle - less than 15 gb

my User Folder takes up the rest.

I guess the sensible outcome is to opt for a 256gb SSD in the first place then everyone can be happy
Could you tell me which applications you deleted? And is it recommended to keep certain native apps?
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