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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:47 AM   #76
flopticalcube
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Originally Posted by omgwut View Post
Does anyone know if dualbooting Windows OS would reap the benefits of a Fusion Drive like OSX does? I mean would it be able to recognize the dual volumes as one and use them in a similar fashion, or is this just something that is managed by OSX on a software level?

If not, I assume Windows OS would just see the SSD and HDD as two seperate mounted volumes then, right?
Only one HFS+ partition can exist on an SSD under Fusion. Windows has to go on the HDD (non-Fusion).
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:47 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by charlituna View Post
So the headline is false. It's not Apple's Fusion Drive at all.

It should read more like "Computer Geek manages to emulate Apple's Fusion Drive in his own setup"
Fusion Drive is just a marketing term for a software feature, it's not special hardware. It's low-level software that combines a HDD and SSD, using the SSD as a giant RAM cache for the HDD. The article is not 'emulating' Fusion Drive, he was able to convince Mountain Lion that his two drives should be treated as a Fusion Drive. It seems to be functionally equivalent to what Apple is shipping, as it is operating in the same way.

Having said that, it'd be nice to see both independent verification that this works, and performance tests.

Last edited by petsounds; Oct 31, 2012 at 11:56 AM.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:47 AM   #78
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Does this mean that through the CoreStorage method he employs we can create a ZFS formatted boot volume?
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:48 AM   #79
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Originally Posted by ALR26 View Post
So he has an internal SSD and an external HDD with a single drive letter,
OSX has no concept of "drive letter." WTF are you talking about.

Quote:
what makes that a "fusion" drive? Nothing! There's no proof this is what Apple calls Fusion Drive technology. The article is a fail.
The article demonstrates automatic tiered storage, which is exactly what the Fusion drive is.

Quote:
P.S. There's Windows software out there that will combine various drives into a single "hybrid" volume. Does that mean that's "fusion" drive software? I think not.
AFAIK, Windows has support for combining drives as a JBOD volume (literally means "just a big old disk"). That is not the same thing as automated tiered storage, in which the operating system manages which data gets written to which volume based on usage requirements.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:49 AM   #80
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I like the idea of the FusionDrive - had it myself some years ago as a matter of fact, but who cares.

What I am interested in:
What happens if the SSD in this setup fails? (after complete re-writing to the HDD of cause) Maybe the author or anyone else could test this.
Would be a great option to beef up my 27" without the hassle of splitting my data and still have the benefits of the SSD while working.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:50 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
Fusion Drive is the software tech. When I select "Fusion Drive" when configuring a MacMini what I am really selecting is a SDD and a HDD combo, not a physical item called a "Fusion Drive."
Bingo! And I think this is a good thing. Otherwise it'd just be yet another hybrid drive on the market, and we've got plenty of those flying around.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:51 AM   #82
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Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
So it's Apple's poorly worded tech name, and the fact that I can select Fusion Drive instead of HDD, when it's already in every computer running 10.8.2, that has caused my misunderstanding.

Fusion Drive is the software tech. When I select "Fusion Drive" when configuring a MacMini what I am really selecting is a SDD and a HDD combo, not a Fusion Drive per-se.
It's best to think of this as a different kind of new RAID array (even though it's not RAID). Before this developer's tests, it wasn't completely clear how Apple was implementing the Fusion Drive, and whether it was partially hardware-based. It's still not 100% clear, but it's now looking like it's software-based and can work with any 2 drives, just like RAID. In the past, Apple offered RAID as a build-to-order option for some models, just as they're now offering Fusion Drive as an option, but it's effectively just saying "Do you want us to include 2 drives and set them up as a 'Fusion Drive'?"

All that said, this article is not meant for the average Joe ordering a new Mac from Apple. To them, it will be just one drive, a Fusion Drive. Apple's term is a marketing term for them, it's not a "tech name". This article is meant for us tech nerds who are either interested in how it works or like rolling our own unsupported solutions. The interesting thing will be whether Apple exposes this to everyone in disk utility and makes it easy to set up a Fusion Drive on other Macs.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:51 AM   #83
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Originally Posted by Erukian View Post
I have a 128gb ssd and a 1tb in my macbook pro. I can't wait to see if I can get this working. Also, I wonder if there are any issues with bootcamp when two drives are working in 'fusion'.
There shouldn't be, because BootCamp has to exist on it's own FAT32/NTFS partition and that will be separate from the "Fusion" partition.

So when running OS X on the "Fusion" partition, you can see the BootCamp partition, but when running Windows on the BootCamp partition, you would not be able to see the "Fusion" partition.



And instead of RAID, we should be using "BIG" or "SPAN" since all the physical disks are concatenated and presented as a single disk.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-RAI...SPAN.2C_BIG.29
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:51 AM   #84
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Originally Posted by brainzilla View Post
I like the idea of the FusionDrive - had it myself some years ago as a matter of fact, but who cares.

What I am interested in:
What happens if the SSD in this setup fails? (after complete re-writing to the HDD of cause) Maybe the author or anyone else could test this.
Would be a great option to beef up my 27" without the hassle of splitting my data and still have the benefits of the SSD while working.
You get to use Time Machine to restore your data from backup. lol

Apple's method of merging two drives in this fashion instead of just using the SSD as a persistent cache (like Intel's tech does) does sacrifice some reliability for speed.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:52 AM   #85
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If you store your system and applications on your SSD, and your iTunes library, your Photo libraries, your Video and Media files on your Hard Drive, there is no need for this "Fusion" system. I like the way my system works as it is, I don't want the system "moving" files between the two drives and slowing things down. My system is fast as lightning!
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:54 AM   #86
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Originally Posted by charlituna View Post
So the headline is false. It's not Apple's Fusion Drive at all.

It should read more like "Computer Geek manages to emulate Apple's Fusion Drive in his own setup"
Well that's like saying I'm emulating Time Machine because I set it up with command line tools instead of the GUI. There is no GUI to set up a fusion drive, but the operating system has the tools to do so, and that's what he used. There is no difference.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:54 AM   #87
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Originally Posted by tipp View Post
It's best to think of this as a different kind of new RAID array (even though it's not RAID). Before this developer's tests, it wasn't completely clear how Apple was implementing the Fusion Drive, and whether it was partially hardware-based. It's still not 100% clear, but it's now looking like it's software-based and can work with any 2 drives, just like RAID. In the past, Apple offered RAID as a build-to-order option for some models, just as they're now offering Fusion Drive as an option, but it's effectively just saying "Do you want us to include 2 drives and set them up as a 'Fusion Drive'?"

All that said, this article is not meant for the average Joe ordering a new Mac from Apple. To them, it will be just one drive, a Fusion Drive. Apple's term is a marketing term for them, it's not a "tech name". This article is meant for us tech nerds who are either interested in how it works or like rolling our own unsupported solutions. The interesting thing will be whether Apple exposes this to everyone in disk utility and makes it easy to set up a Fusion Drive on other Macs.
So any Mac that's running 10.8.2 I can install a SDD and a HDD and I'll exploit "Fusion Drive" without having to go through Apple?
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:55 AM   #88
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Originally Posted by CausticPuppy View Post
literally means "just a big old disk"
Sorry to get nitpicky, but it's actually "Just a Bunch Of Drives/Disks".
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:56 AM   #89
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Originally Posted by WestonHarvey1 View Post
Is this really exactly the same as Apple's implementation of Fusion Drive? That wasn't made clear to me by the article.
I agree.

It's ironic for this to show up today. I sat in a conference yesterday that Apple put on where an engineer talked about imaging. I asked him specifically about imaging a fusion drive and he said that it's treated as one drive period. I asked him if Apple was doing something in their firmware/hardware to make imaging tools see it as one drive and he simply answered with a "yes".

The conference was for people in education who support Mac and iOS devices so it's important that his information be accurate...and it might even if this guy is saying that this is possible with other Macs. I'll have to do more investigating on this as I get time. I would wonder now if someone could take a fusion drive and split them off to where there is just an ssd and hard drive. I'm not sure why someone would want that but if they did, perhaps it's possible.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:56 AM   #90
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Originally Posted by Limboistik View Post
AFAIK Mountain Lion has built in handling instructions for Fusion drive.
But, on the hardware side, doesn't it require a custom controller?
that was my initial suspicion too but judging by the results the guy got it looks like it's software side only (I still want to see a teardown of a new imac though). and so easy too - just 3 very basic diskutil operations, one of which is a list to read off UUIDs, lol. hence trivial to automate.
There should be a reason however why Apple doesn't want to officially support this on older macs. they've done similar things in the past many times like with non-supported TM backups and there were some real reasons to do so, so I wouldn't trust the stability of this solution too far.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:56 AM   #91
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Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
Fusion Drive is the software tech. When I select "Fusion Drive" when configuring a MacMini what I am really selecting is a SDD and a HDD combo, not a physical item called a "Fusion Drive."

I'll rephrase my original statement, Apple misleading is misleading.
How is that remotely misleading. Do you know what "Fusion" means. Nuclear fusion is where two atoms are smashed into a new one. The dictionary app on Mac OS X comes up with this definition for fusion

" ... the process or result of joining two or more things together to form a single entity ... "


The misleading part here would be if it is was just one device. If it is just one device how can there be a fusion?
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:57 AM   #92
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Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
So any Mac that's running 10.8.2 I can install a SDD and a HDD and I'll exploit "Fusion Drive" without having to go through Apple?
Precisely the cause of joy you see from some here.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:58 AM   #93
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Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
So any Mac that's running 10.8.2 I can install a SDD and a HDD and I'll exploit "Fusion Drive" without having to go through Apple?
That's what these tests seem to show, but unless someone does a side-by-side comparison with an actual, shipped Fusion Drive Mac, we won't know for sure. Also, for now this is unsupported by Apple and possibly even something they'll block in the future.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:59 AM   #94
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Originally Posted by ALR26 View Post
So he has an internal SSD and an external HDD with a single drive letter, what makes that a "fusion" drive? Nothing! There's no proof this is what Apple calls Fusion Drive technology. The article is a fail.

P.S. There's Windows software out there that will combine various drives into a single "hybrid" volume. Does that mean that's "fusion" drive software? I think not.
This actually is exactly the same implementation of Fusion Drive. Read up more on Fusion Drive if you need to. It is simply enterprise level auto-tiering between an SSD and a HD. It is something that has been done for years on enterprise servers, that Apple has packaged nicely and put into a desktop with an SSD and HD.

Hopefully someone comes out with a clean, simple and stable solution to set this up on older systems.
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:59 AM   #95
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How is that remotely misleading. Do you know what "Fusion" means. Nuclear fusion is where two atoms are smashed into a new one. The dictionary app on Mac OS X comes up with this definition for fusion

" ... the process or result of joining two or more things together to form a single entity ... "


The misleading part here would be if it is was just one device. If it is just one device how can there be a fusion?
Becomes if two things are fused...
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form a single entity
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 11:59 AM   #96
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Originally Posted by Cappy View Post
I would wonder now if someone could take a fusion drive and split them off to where there is just an ssd and hard drive. I'm not sure why someone would want that but if they did, perhaps it's possible.
John Siracusa offered the opinion that he believes it could be done using Disk Utility (at the Terminal level, if not the GUI). The system at the hardware level sees two separate drives, so it should be possible to manipulate them that way and "break" a Fusion partition into it's component physical drives.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
...
A "Fusion Drive" is two physical drives presented as one logical drive. So it is both two devices and one device at the same time.

Maybe they should have called it the "Schrödinger Drive".
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 12:02 PM   #97
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Originally Posted by Intarweb View Post
So any Mac that's running 10.8.2 I can install a SDD and a HDD and I'll exploit "Fusion Drive" without having to go through Apple?
It would appear that way. I am curious to see some side-by-side performance tests, as well as any implications regarding Time Machine backups (I don't expect any, though).
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 12:03 PM   #98
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Well that's like saying I'm emulating Time Machine because I set it up with command line tools instead of the GUI. There is no GUI to set up a fusion drive, but the operating system has the tools to do so, and that's what he used. There is no difference.

"Computer Geek manages to operate computer without GUI, is triumphant!"
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 12:03 PM   #99
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I am curious to see some side-by-side performance tests, as well as any implications regarding Time Machine backups (I don't expect any, though).
There are issues if the Time Machine drive has Lion backups:

Quote:
"If you first used a Time Machine backup drive to store images that originated from a computer with OS X Lion v10.7, you cannot select Fusion Drive backup images from the backup. Fusion Drive images must be the first ones to be written to the Time Machine backup drive to be selectable. After the initial Fusion Drive backup image is written to a Time Machine back up drive, you can add OS X Lion images to the drive and you can use it without limitations.”
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Old Oct 31, 2012, 12:03 PM   #100
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I've been using a Seagate Momentus 500GB Hybrid drive for 2 years in my 2008 MBP after I ran out of space on the original 200GB drive. I was curious myself about how a hybrid drive would perform vs this new Fusion drive and found this article:

http://www.zdnet.com/mac-fusion-driv...re-7000006661/
That article doesn't show any tests or experience whatsoever with this software. The author is postulating that it will operate one way vs another, but really has no idea how the drive type will handle large files because he's neither used it nor has an intimate understanding of the algorithms. I would understand if a 128 GB SSD is too small for some users to get the best performance out of the software, but that is a hardware limitation that could be remedied, not a limitation in the software.

As far as HFS+ goes, I guess he's right, I do not know much about it, but the MacRumors article shows that ZFS can also be used as well. So again, this is not a limitation in the software, just the default file system in Mac OS that could also be remedied.

And as far as corruption if you were to use HFS+, why wouldn't you have backups for the inevitable?? Problem solved...no file system will prevent a physical failure.
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