Create your own "Fusion Drive" in your Mac Mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by That-Guy, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502

    That-Guy

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Just come across THIS GUIDE to create a Fusion like drive and its got me thinking :D

    Do you think this will be very reliable?

    Do you think its worth the hassle while installing Mountain Lion?

    I was thinking about having an 128gb SSD as my boot drive and the original 500gb HDD as my Data/Storage drive.
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Pakaku

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    #2
    I run an SSD and harddrive in my Macbook Pro, and don't see any reason to "fuse" them together...
     
  3. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    #3
    Quite a few articles out on that. Yes, I plan to give it a shot, but I'm going to wait a little bit to see what if any issues crop up for folks.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    #4
    Seems to me without the software logic to move most used apps to flash, the only thing this trick will do is slow down the SSD. I'd be interested to see before and after results for this hack.
     
  5. oYx
    macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #5
    That "moving" stuff happens automagically once the disks are fused.
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    dasx

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2012
    Location:
    Barcelona
    #6
    My thought exactly. I just have an SSD (no other regular drives in it) but I don't see why I'd like to lose more control on my machine...
     
  7. macrumors 68020

    MattZani

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    I've ordered a Mini with a 1TB drive, with the intention to add an SSD in the near future, and making it a Fusion Drive.

    Is there any downside to this though?
     
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Pakaku

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    #8
    And I just thought of something: what happens to one drive if the other one fails? Does it work like a RAID-0, RAID-1, or something else?
     
  9. jmxp69, Nov 3, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2012

    macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    #9
    Still would like to see some benchmark results.

    Edit: Seems the block level tiering happens in in Core Storage, so this looks legit.
    http://arstechnica.com/apple/2012/10/more-on-fusion-drive-how-it-works-and-how-to-roll-your-own/


    Momentus XT Hybrid drives used firmware on the drive itself to redirect frequently used data to flash which is why I thought there might be a drive firmware dependency.

    "Seagates Adaptive Memory™ technology uses algorithms to monitor data usage in real time, ensuring frequently used data is stored in the NAND flash memory and dramatically improving system-level performance."
    http://www.seagate.com/internal-hard-drives/laptop-hard-drives/momentus-xt-hybrid/
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    shinji

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    #10
    Anyone have an answer for this? Nothing about it in the Apple documentation either http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5446 but apparently any Mac with a Fusion drive comes with a unique version of Disk Utility...
     
  11. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2009
    #11
  12. macrumors 65816

    dasx

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2012
    Location:
    Barcelona
    #12
    My guess is it's neither of those. It's just as if it was one single drive. So if it fails, it fails. Period. (just like if a regular 1TB drive failed).

    It's nice and all but I don't get why would anyone really wanna emulate this when they already got an SSD and an HDD. The ability to choose what you put in what disk is better than a SO making the decision for you.
     
  13. macrumors 6502

    MatthewAMEL

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #13
    A Fusion Drive is technically more fragile than a single device. If one of the components fails, it's toast.

    The Disk Utility that will be in 10.8.3 will handle the creation and management of Fusion Drives in a GUI, but you can do all that with CLI now.

    Just look at the posted guides and get familiar with the diskutil 'cs' commands.

    The biggest benefit for my MacBook Pro was giving me one large volume that functionally has the same speed of an SSD. (240GB SSD + 500GB HDD)
     
  14. macrumors 65816

    cocacolakid

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2010
    Location:
    Chicago
    #14
    I'm interested in doing this with my MBP (and maybe 2011 mini), but I want to see more reviews of it and I'm a bit worried that once Apple releases 10.8.3 they will find a way to disable the mod. They've done it before by breaking third party TRIM support (although the developers figured out how to reinstate it). I also watched a Blackmagic speed test of the DIY Fusion Drive and the speeds were extremely slow. That doesn't mean that it's not fast in real world use.

    The speed tests start at about the 5 minute mark:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_odnNpv-FQ
     
  15. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #15
    So, is the BYO 1TB Fusion drive offered by Apple nothing more than a 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD pre-setup using Core Storage utilities. Meaning this DIY method would be exactly what you get when you order the 1TB Fusion Drive option from Apple?
     
  16. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    #16
    That's the theory. All indicators are that the Fusion Drive is a separate SSD and HD combined with Core Storage. But there is no way of knowing if this will be supported by Apple in future releases of Mac OS X, meaning they could shut down the third-party support...
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    cocacolakid

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2010
    Location:
    Chicago
    #17
    I also have questions about backups, such as, if we make a Time Machine backup of the Fusion Drive, and Apple kills DIY Fusion in a later update, it appears that after we reformat the hard drives there is no way to separate the data on the Time Machine backup to the two now separate drives. The only solution to that would be a fresh OS install and using Migration assistant to move apps/documents/etc. from the Time Machine backup onto the two separate drives.

    That's not a total nightmare, but enough of a problem to make me want to sit this out until we know more. I moved to Macs from a Hackintosh because I got tired of constantly having to play catch up to Apple's updates that broke the Hackintosh settings. For the average user who just wants something that works and isn't keen on tinkering, this is not something they should be messing with.
     

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