SSD Question

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by AcesHigh87, Dec 24, 2012.

  1. AcesHigh87, Dec 24, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012

    macrumors 6502a

    AcesHigh87

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    #1
    My friend is getting a new Solid State drive because his current 60GB one isn't really big enough for his needs. I've been in the market for an SSD for awhile now to try and speed up my old macbook so I asked if he would give me his old drive. Since he has no use for it he said sure which is great because I don't really have the money. While 60GB is small I mostly use my iMac now so I think I can manage as long as I move my iPhoto library and stuff.

    Anyway, before we go through with the transfer and everything I wanted to see if anyone knew whether or not the drive would even work. I don't know the EXACT model but it's made by G-Skill and uses the SandForce controller. It's similar to this: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231613

    I believe the only difference is the speeds between that model and his. In any case I ask because I know people usually suggest Crucial M4 drives or Intel SSD's for macs because they don't work well with SandForce controllers. Is this true? If so, what happens?

    It's free so I'm willing to try regardless but if it's going to completely not work it doesn't seem like I should take the time and effort required to switch my computer over.

    Any help with the above question would be GREATLY appreciated.

    Edit: Removed question about external enclosure. It'll be easier to have one and if it doesn't work I'll find a use for it anyway so I ordered one off newegg.
     
  2. macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #2
    Had a 60Gb Sandforce based SSD in my G4, now my Mac Mini and it's being fine. Sped everything up no end on my old Mac, a little juggling of your documents and music etc... to another drive and it runs perfectly as a superfast boot drive. Going back to a 7200 or 5400rpm drive feels like it takes an age to do the slightest thing after using an SSD as your system drive!
     
  3. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    AcesHigh87

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    #3
    haha hopefully my 5 year old macbook doesn't end up feeling faster than my 1 year old iMac or I'll end up wanting to rip it apart and put an SSD in.

    In any case, am I right to assume the process of a clean install is easy? I've heard this is best for SSD's. I'm just going to format the SSD (which will be in an external enclosure), re-download the Lion installer (can't get ML on my macbook unfortunately), run it and set the destination to the SSD. Once that's done I'll restart holding option to make sure it boots fine then just swap the drives (SSD internal, HDD into enclosure) and drag the stuff I want over.
     
  4. macrumors member

    Joined:
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  5. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Location:
    MindState
    #5
    Choose Samsung 830 (but not 840) or 840 pro.
    I use 256GB Samsung 830 series and it is super fine with my MB Pro 5.1.
    I also use older Samsung 64GB 470 series in my mac mini 2.1. Also happy user. I also believe apple uses SSD's from Samsung, as native ones. Not quite shure thou.
    Once you'll try SSD you will never choose hard drive!
     
  6. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    AcesHigh87

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    #6
    I have no choice in the SSD. I don't have money to buy my own (would likely be a Crucial M4 if I could) and he's willing to give me his old one for free so I can't complain.
     
  7. barkmonster, Dec 27, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2012

    macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #7
    I had my original system on the SSD from my G4 and put it in the Mac Mini with a DVD to 2.5" drive bracket. You could just as easily put the drive in a 2.5" USB case and use the case later for your original drive.

    To clone my system, I ran Migration Assistant on the Mac Mini to transfer all my data from the SSD to the internal drive of the Mac Mini, then restarted. This was how I suddenly noticed how slow a standard hard drive boots compared with an SSD.

    After that, it was simply case of cloning the internal drive to the SSD with Carbon Copy Cloner set to "Delete Anything That Doesn't Exist On The Source" then rebooting from the SSD.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    AcesHigh87

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    #8
    Well I re-downloaded the Lion installer today and I'm just going to try running that and selecting the SSD (in an enclosure) as the desired drive (after formatting of course) so hopefully that will work. I just think a clean install would likely be best and I can transfer stuff over after. If it doesn't work though I'll try the method you described.
     
  9. macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #9
    Format the SSD, do a clean install, then run migration assistant. It's not worth risking anything else.

    I just used Migration Assistant without doing a clean install and I've had endless issues with permissions changing on folders on my system drive. I literally had to backup some folders to disk images, delete the folders entirely then put the files back before I stopped having to do stupid things like typing my password to delete files or files only copying not moving, it's really annoying.
     
  10. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    AcesHigh87

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    #10
    Sounds like a solid idea. So:

    1) Put SSD in enclosure, use disk utility to format as Mac OS X Extended.
    2) Run Lion installer, select SSD (still in enclosure) as the destination drive.
    3) Swap the drives, putting SSD as internal and HDD in the enclosure.
    4) Run Migration Assistant.

    Does that sound about right? I'm not sure entirely sure if I should run migration before or after swapping the drives.
     
  11. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    AcesHigh87

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    #11
    Just in case anyone is curious, the upgrade went off without a hitch. I just popped the SSD in my enclosure, ran the Lion installer (choosing the SSD as destination) and then ran migration assistant.

    Everything is running well and really fast. I shut down my computer and ran a boot off the old drive and it took 2 minutes and 9 seconds to get from the chime to useable. For the exact same account and applications with the SSD installed it took 36 seconds. Blackmagic is reading it around 70mb/s write and 130mb/s read which isn't bad for a 2008 macbook.

    Only problem is a lack of space (2.3GB at the moment free) but I should be able to clean that up.
     

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