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Old Mar 1, 2013, 12:15 PM   #26
CraigJ
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I've ordered the following:
Mac Mini i7 2.6 with the 1TB drive,
OWC 240 SATA III Pro SSD w/ Mac Mini data doubler
Hitachi Travelstar 1 TB, SATA III w/ 32MB cache (NewEgg still shows the old spec for this drive, but customers report getting the updated drives, and Hiticha just updated their website.)
16GB RAM from Crucial (would be nice if the Mini had 4 slots - the i7 supports 32GB RAM)

My plan:
install the memory, software, and generally get everything set up on the stock drive, then back it all up with Time Machine to my external USB3 drive.

Install the SSD in place of the original 5400 RPM drive, install the 7200 RPM drive using the data doubler from OWC, let disk utility make a fusion drive and reinstall Mountain Lion using internet recovery, then restore from TM.

I will set the original drive aside as an emergency backup drive.

I have never done this before (at least on a Mac, been doing it on PCs for 25 years) Does anyone see any issues with this procedure (excepting opinions on whether or not Fusion is a bad idea, and Hitachi vs WD discussions (seems moot now that WD owns them anyway) )
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Old Mar 1, 2013, 02:29 PM   #27
kenoflife
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yes - huge issue with installing the data doubler.
people who've had previous experience w/ doing their own installations having parts come off of the circuit board, horror stories.
I did the simple SSD swap w/o moving the board and that felt comfortable.
http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1529054

I've added a drive on my macbook pro, added hard drives on earlier minis.

But wouldn't touch doing the data doubler myself on the 2012 w/ a ten foot pole.
be careful! - its pretty tight in there.
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Old Mar 2, 2013, 04:11 PM   #28
MJL
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The problem with the data doubler is that most people do not use the correct tools to do the job and then use their fingers to lift wires out of their sockets etc. which is where the mishaps happen because they have not got enough control.

I've had four different Mac mini's and found that on one occasion the standard Torx screws were not Torx 8 but Torx 9 (!!!!!!). Fortunately I have a complete Torx set so did not strip the heads.

I use two spudgers for some cables as well as some small tweezers and some proper fitting allen keys, not forgeting that I work on an antistatic workbench with wrist starps (each wrist). ( I have in previous jobs seen the damage done by not using antistatic procedures so don't even think you know better by not doing it. Failure is not immediate but reliability is affected over the life of the machine - can fail a year or two later but still earlier than the properly maintained gear)
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Old Apr 13, 2013, 01:03 PM   #29
moral-hazard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJL View Post
The problem with the data doubler is that most people do not use the correct tools to do the job and then use their fingers to lift wires out of their sockets etc. which is where the mishaps happen because they have not got enough control.

I've had four different Mac mini's and found that on one occasion the standard Torx screws were not Torx 8 but Torx 9 (!!!!!!). Fortunately I have a complete Torx set so did not strip the heads.
Good points. The tools OWC supplies are decent. I also have the iFixit driver kit which was a great addition while working on this. I'd say just make sure to work slowly and don't be afraid to rewind/re-watch each step of the video a few times before actually performing it. I think overall this is a very doable operation for most people, just requires a few hours of careful preparation and work
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Old Apr 14, 2013, 01:45 AM   #30
Drharrington
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Easy install. Don't be the least bit worried about doing it.
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Old Apr 14, 2013, 02:36 AM   #31
barkmonster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CraigJ View Post
I've ordered the following:
Mac Mini i7 2.6 with the 1TB drive,
OWC 240 SATA III Pro SSD w/ Mac Mini data doubler
Hitachi Travelstar 1 TB, SATA III w/ 32MB cache (NewEgg still shows the old spec for this drive, but customers report getting the updated drives, and Hiticha just updated their website.)
16GB RAM from Crucial (would be nice if the Mini had 4 slots - the i7 supports 32GB RAM)

My plan:
install the memory, software, and generally get everything set up on the stock drive, then back it all up with Time Machine to my external USB3 drive.

Install the SSD in place of the original 5400 RPM drive, install the 7200 RPM drive using the data doubler from OWC, let disk utility make a fusion drive and reinstall Mountain Lion using internet recovery, then restore from TM.

I will set the original drive aside as an emergency backup drive.

I have never done this before (at least on a Mac, been doing it on PCs for 25 years) Does anyone see any issues with this procedure (excepting opinions on whether or not Fusion is a bad idea, and Hitachi vs WD discussions (seems moot now that WD owns them anyway) )
It would be worth investing in a universal drive adapter or 2.5" USB 3.0/2.0 enclosure and clone your current drive to the travelstar that way.

This avoids command lines and doing a complete system restore. You just clone your boot drive to the new drive, name it the same as the old one before installing it and then restart once you've fitted the new drives internally.

If you buy an enclosure you can use the original 5400rpm internal drive in after swapping the drives over.

This way you don't even need to boot into recovery mode to retore anything, you just boot up as normal, attach the travelstar, format it with Disk Utility (GUID partition table for Intel) then clone your boot drive to it. You can also repair permissions on the drive while it's still in the enclosure at that stage too.
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Last edited by barkmonster; Apr 14, 2013 at 02:42 AM.
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Old Apr 14, 2013, 01:59 PM   #32
kenoflife
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drharrington View Post
Easy install. Don't be the least bit worried about doing it.
I broke off a header on the board doing it -
and I'm fairly good at this kind of stuff.
I added a drive to my macbook pro, changed harddrive
on 3 other minis.

Scared s#tl#ss of trying it on a 2012 mini again
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Old Apr 14, 2013, 02:21 PM   #33
Drharrington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kenoflife View Post
I broke off a header on the board doing it -
and I'm fairly good at this kind of stuff.
I added a drive to my macbook pro, changed harddrive
on 3 other minis.

Scared s#tl#ss of trying it on a 2012 mini again
Ugh... Sorry to hear of that... I've done four of them with no issues. I did pull the wires off the IR clip in a moment of haste on one of them but I just didn't freak and reinserted very carefully. Works fine...

What exactly did you bust and how??
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Old Apr 14, 2013, 04:23 PM   #34
woodbine
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I am not sure if this has been answered somewhere on this forum, but I am following the OP's route almost identically. The OWC SSD and the WD Black will both be clean drives. Can I simply boot of my ML SD card and create the Fusion drive via Disk Utility? Or is it a bit more complicated. Thanks for your patience.
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Old Apr 15, 2013, 05:22 AM   #35
opinio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moral-hazard View Post
I would not recommend Hitachi drives. I prefer WD. I have the following WD drives:
  • 3 x WD Caviar Green 2TB
  • 2 x WD Caviar Black 1TB
  • 2 x WD Scorpio Blue 320GB
  • 1 x WD Scorpio Blue 500GB
  • 1 x WD Scorpio Black 750GB
  • 1 x WD Scorpio Blue 1TB (link below)

All are great -- have never had any of them die on me. Link to the 1tb is below. Just bought it as well as the 750GB black pictured in my install pictures. I am very happy with both. B&H is a great retailer.

$79 free shipping -- this is a 5400rpm but makes a great storage disk.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc..._Blue_2_5.html
Hitachi owns WD now (noting you prefer WD over Hitachi). Also the I have both a 750GB Scorpio Black and the 1TB HGST (Hitachi 7200). They are similar in a practical application (for speed) but the Hitachi has double the cache (32 versus 16) and is Sata III so it will give you a 6G negotiated link. The Scorpio black is still Sata II. Yes I know it does not operate at those speeds. I am just pointing out is is specked up better than the scorpio black.
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Old Apr 16, 2013, 02:55 AM   #36
blanka
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Why is everybody taking out the Logic Board? I read lot of guides that don't do this, or just move it 5mm which still allows all cables to remain connected.
It is not that you can screw the second drive in place or so, when removing the LB completely. It will still "hang" semi-loose with its screws in the slots.
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Old Apr 16, 2013, 05:05 AM   #37
donlab
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blanka View Post
Why is everybody taking out the Logic Board? I read lot of guides that don't do this, or just move it 5mm which still allows all cables to remain connected.
It is not that you can screw the second drive in place or so, when removing the LB completely. It will still "hang" semi-loose with its screws in the slots.
In order to install second drive one must remove logic board.
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Old Apr 16, 2013, 05:12 AM   #38
blanka
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I see video's installing a second drive without removing it. So what is the deal? The non-logicboard-removing video looks much easier, and the fixing looks similar. And it has less chance of destroying the infrared sensor and power light.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymGnXdwvabg

Last edited by blanka; Apr 17, 2013 at 09:52 AM.
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Old Apr 18, 2013, 12:00 AM   #39
blanka
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I finally received my lower bay SATA cable, and I just installed a Samsung SSD and Scorpio Black with the procedure in the video above.

Conclusion: DON'T REMOVE THE LOGIC BOARD. It is TOTALLY UNNECESSARY.

Changed 2 things:
Instead of the screws on the side of the lower drive, I popped the 2 rubber things that come with the cable into the holes in the mini, and the 2 little threaded pins in the drive. It prevents a possible rattle.
As a spacer, I put the black frame that came with the Samsung on top of it. You have to put it under the SATA cable from that drive, otherwise you will pull it out of its connector when you install the Scorpio on top.

Note: The 2 screws that hold the bottom plate and fix the Wifi antenna are not Torx 9, that driver slips in them and damages the heads, they are hex nuts 2mm. So for the best screwing, have a 2mm hex wrench at hand too.
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Old Apr 19, 2013, 09:27 PM   #40
AC Rempt
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This other technique is certainly interesting, but I still think I'd go with the OWC kit because of their video instructions make it a good deal easier. When I installed my SSD, I used their kit and didn't damage anything. For me, it was amazingly straight forward.

YMMV.
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Old Apr 19, 2013, 09:45 PM   #41
philipma1957
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Well the owc data doubler is the better way if you do it correctly..

But if you do the short cut you can cheat with this in between the case and the ssd.

http://www.amazon.com/3M-Mounting-50...ble+sided+tape


very small pieces on the case two pieces 1/8 by 1/4 on the none sata cable end and just 1/8 by 1/4 near the sata cable side
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Old Apr 20, 2013, 07:36 AM   #42
blanka
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Originally Posted by AC Rempt View Post
I still think I'd go with the OWC kit because of their video instructions make it a good deal easier
I used the kit too (30$ on ebay straight from China incl. shipment, as buying from OWC is a pain in the EU), and it was great (it misses a 2mm hex bit though, as does the OWC one), just did not use the logic board tool. The rubber things and other fasteners in the kit made the mounting very solid though.
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Old Apr 20, 2013, 12:52 PM   #43
AC Rempt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blanka View Post
I used the kit too (30$ on ebay straight from China incl. shipment, as buying from OWC is a pain in the EU), and it was great (it misses a 2mm hex bit though, as does the OWC one), just did not use the logic board tool. The rubber things and other fasteners in the kit made the mounting very solid though.
Not having to remove the motherboard--and essentially not having to disassemble the entire computer--might have eased my anxiety at the process, now that I think about it. The worst bit for me was the fear that I was ruining my mini, and that's why I went with OWC. It was purely a psychological thing to make me feel more confident.

Good news! It worked! ;-)
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Old May 15, 2013, 06:02 AM   #44
elite327
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First time poster and new to Macs so any tips are appreciated. I've had my mini for 3 months and I took my time and installed OWC data doubler kit w/ Sammy SSD and orig. HDD. Everything seemed to go ok, but now I have a couple bugs I haven't figured out yet. I had installed 16 GB ram prior to SSD installation and was working ok for about a month, but now only 8 GB is recognized. I tried each chip individually and reseated the Ram a couple times, but still it sees them as only 4 GB each. I tried a new install of Mountain Lion after that and now I can't get Command-r to work either.
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Old May 15, 2013, 07:23 AM   #45
opinio
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Originally Posted by elite327 View Post
First time poster and new to Macs so any tips are appreciated. I've had my mini for 3 months and I took my time and installed OWC data doubler kit w/ Sammy SSD and orig. HDD. Everything seemed to go ok, but now I have a couple bugs I haven't figured out yet. I had installed 16 GB ram prior to SSD installation and was working ok for about a month, but now only 8 GB is recognized. I tried each chip individually and reseated the Ram a couple times, but still it sees them as only 4 GB each. I tried a new install of Mountain Lion after that and now I can't get Command-r to work either.
On the RAM issue... are you saying each module only shows 4GB each? what if you put only one in? you get only 4? I am just wondering if the process of elimination shows it is a faulty single RAM chip or is it the mini logic board? If it is a RAM chip, return it, if it is the logic board then you have a bigger problem that probably can't be fixed in here

Also have you got some other RAM to try? Unlikely it is two faulty chips but if it is, that would potentially explain both problems you have. You might be able to also narrow the problem down. For example if the other RAM chips are showing 'half' then it is unlikely to be your RAM.

On the CMD R issue, that could be a simple bluetooth issue. the CMD R on the BT keyboard at boot up is notoriously temperamental. Apple says to hit CMD R the second you hear the chime, BUT I have found if the BT connection gets out of whack then even that does not work. So there is a simple fix, get a standard windows USB keyboard and hit the windows button (icon) and R. That works in place of CMD R on a mac keyboard.

Also if you have deleted the recovery partition you could try CMD-Option-R to for it to boot into internet recovery.

If the USB keyboard does not work then I think you may have a logic board failure. In which case you need to rebuild the mini to make to make it look stock and return it.

Also two other options that probably wont work is to reset the SMC and PRAM. Google the sequence of all that. It is simple key pressing but does follow a sequence.
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Old May 20, 2013, 06:00 AM   #46
elite327
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Thanks for the detailed response and I got the RAM issue worked out by going back to the 4GB stock memory. I'll send the ones I bought to be replaced. I used the Command-Option-R and I believe you we're right on and somehow the recovery partition was deleted. I'll try to google it and see what I can do from here to create a Fusion drive.
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