DIY Fusion Drive

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Chunk72, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. Chunk72, Dec 13, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2012

    macrumors member


    Mar 16, 2008
    Durham, UK
    I've got a new late 2012 Mini for my in-laws, 2.3 Quad along with the requisite Samsung SSD and Crucial RAM.

    Just waiting for the 2nd drive kit to arrive from OWC.

    I've read all the threads so apologies if I missed it but has anyone successfully cloned the existing drive to the new fusion drive (all partitions)?

    My plan is to clone the existing HDD without ever booting the Mini then restoring all the partitions to the freshly created Fusion drive.

    Also has anyone found a source for the right version of disk utility?

    Thanks in advance

    Found the info I needed at
  2. macrumors 603

    Feb 20, 2009
    "Also has anyone found a source for the right version of disk utility?"

    I believe you already have the tools you need.

    Try this (no guarantees, but it should work):
    1. Back up the contents of the current drive in the Mini to an external source using CarbonCopyCloner so that it's BOOTABLE. DO NOT USE Time Machine! And TEST your clone before proceeding, to be sure that it will boot the Mini.
    2. Install the second drive (that's the SSD drive, correct?)
    3. With both drives installed, boot to the recovery partition
    4. Once booted from the recovery partition, open Disk Utility
    5. At this point, DU should survey the situation, and discover that there are both a HDD and an SSD present, but not "fused".
    6. In that case, DU will offer to "repair" the drives -- and in the process of so doing, will -automatically- "fuse them together".
    7. When done, you will now have a "fusion drive" (with nothing on it).
    8. Reboot from the cloned backup drive
    9. RE-CLONE the contents of the backup back to the fusion drive.

    When completed, you should have a fusion drive with the contents that were originally on the non-fused HDD drive...
  3. macrumors 6502

    Nov 17, 2005
    Halifax, Canada
    I had no luck cloning to my home-made Fusion drive, instead I installed fresh on it and then migrated from the clone using Migration Assistant.
  4. macrumors regular

    Sep 5, 2007
    Same here. Easiest way to do it (done it twice now), was :

    - due the physical work to get the drive in place.
    - Boot up holding Command-R to get into Recovery Mode
    - Use Terminal to do the Fusion Work
    - Restore from Time Machine backup (or, reinstall OS X Fresh and Migrate).

    Very easy.
  5. macrumors 65816

    Dec 31, 2008
    I cloned mine with no issue; I simply clone my single drive to a single USB drive, installed my SSD, made the Fusion drive, booted from USB, then cloned with CCC. However, do we know for sure that a homemade Fusion works? I've been meaning to test-fill mine and see what happens. I've heard that once the SSD fills, that on pre-2012 hardware it will simply take to using the HDD; it doesn't keep the free buffer. Don't know if that's true of all homemade Fusions or just on pre-2012s.
  6. thread starter macrumors member


    Mar 16, 2008
    Durham, UK
    I fitted the OWC kit which came today. Thanks to all the advice I had the 2nd drive in and the mini back together in no time at all. Very straightforward if you watch the video's and use good lighting to see what your doing.

    Cloning the original drive as a backup, creating the fusion drive and restoring the OS took about 90 mins altogether.

    Having used an SSD 3.4 i7 iMac 2011 for a year I have to say I am impressed with the speed of the 2.3 mini so much so I ordered a 2.6 which will be here before Christmas.

    Thanks for all the advice in the threads, it is very easy to see how damage can be caused but its nothing to be scared of if you are competent and have the right tools. My in-laws are going to love this!
  7. macrumors regular


    Apr 3, 2010
    is that Recovery 10.8.2 ??... I´ve got a new Mini Server 2.6/16/2*1TB and I´ll switch one of disks to a Ocz Vector 512GB SSD, and do a fresh install from usb thumb. Disk Utility should automatically create a Fusiondrive for me right??
  8. macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2009
    Got an error, found work around

    I tried to restore from Time Machine but it said there was an error in setting up the Recovery drive (on the Fusion HD) so I just a fresh OS X and then restored from Time Machine

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