2009 MacBook Pro HDD/SSD Upgrade

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by nickphoto, Feb 22, 2012.

  1. nickphoto macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Now I know there's a million of these threads. Just haven't found one that answers all of my questions yet, so forgive me if you guys are sick of answering these questions.

    I've got a 2009 Macbook Pro 5,3 running 8gb RAM and a 500GB 5400RPM drive.

    I work as a photographer and have a large Lightroom Catalog active (~200gb). Currently my setup is too slow.

    So I've ordered an OWC 240gb SSD with an Optical Bay Caddy and a Hitachi 750GB 7200RPM HDD with external enclosure. I've decided that the HDD should go in the original drive to protect it since they're more susceptible to shock damage, SSD in the optibay.

    I'd like to have the SSD running a fresh install of OSX Snow Leopard (Lion isn't compatible with a couple programs I use) and run all of my Apps from the SSD. What's the easiest way to install OSX onto the SSD?

    I'd also like to set it up so I have active jobs on the SSD as well as the Lightroom Catalog and cache folder.

    Everything else can be on the HDD.

    I've done a tonne of reading and I'm still a bit confused about the best way to set this up.

    Thanks in advance for any help.

  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    If you also get a caddy for your ODD, you could pop in the 10.6 DVD, install Mac OS X onto the properly formatted SSD and be done with it.

    I also have an SSD and HDD in my 2009 MBP and made a 10 GB partition on my HDD, where I cloned the 10.6 DVD onto and saved some updates for 10.6 onto.
    That way, I can reinstall Mac OS X everywhere, if needed. I also made a 125 GB partition for a direct clone of my SSD, in case the SSD fracks up.

    Or is that not enough answering?

  3. nickphoto thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Thanks, that helps a lot.

    I'm guessing I'll be able to install my SSD in the external enclosure that comes with the HDD and then install the OSX 10.6 onto the SSD from the DVD I've got?

    What about the rest of the setup? Any ideas?
  4. nickphoto thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Soooo.... thinking aloud here.

    If I do a Carbon Copy Clone of my current running system with everything included except my User folder to the SSD. Then do a separate clone of the User folder to the HDD will I be good to go once I relink the SSD to the HDD User folder?
  5. natejohnstone@g macrumors regular


    Jan 6, 2007
    I just installed an SSD on my 2009 MBP this week. Went smoothly.

    --I used Carbon Copy Cloner to clone my old hdd to an external drive.

    --Installed the new SSD

    --Booted from the new external boot disk

    --Formatted in internal SSD

    --Clone my hard drive onto the SSD

    --Enjoy life

    If you want to install a different OS, you could probably do it afterward. Otherwise, maybe you could install it from the original install DVD after you've formatted the new SSD.
  6. nickphoto thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Thanks Nate, that sounds easy enough, my problem comes from having the dual drives, one boot/app drive and a second data drive.
  7. calviin macrumors regular

    Nov 16, 2008
    What I did is CCC my original HD into my SSD. If you have too much stuff already, move it onto another drive or simply don't select it when you're using CCC. Press CMD+R to select as the drive to boot-up and voila. Done.
  8. nickphoto thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Thanks Calvin. I've done that now. The SSD has the clone of my whole computer except the "Desktop" folder. The "Desktop" folder was too large as that's where I store most of my photos and music (220gb worth).

    So what I did was cloned the Desktop folder onto the HDD. It resides under User->myusername->Desktop.

    I now need to make a symlink to point the SSD "Desktop" folder to the HDD "Desktop" folder right?

    How do I do that. I'm freakin lost and have read a bunch of stuff. I know I need to be in terminal and 'cd' to the original file location, but how do I do that. How do you 'cd' somewhere? Utility nub right here.
  9. calviin macrumors regular

    Nov 16, 2008
    Whoa. Uhh. You're making this a lot more complicated than you have to. Unless you're doing something a lot different, you shouldn't need terminal at all. I'm not sure what you mean by syslink. Your HD would automatically be detected and you can go into the desktop folder on your HD to access them, even if you were booting off the SSD.
  10. nickphoto thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Cool so I've now worked out how terminal works a bit more. I can cd around and work out where I am with pwd. From there I was following the directions in here: http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=2001110610290643

    I could do most stuff, create the link, move around etc. Just not delete the Desktop folder in order to replace it as instructed here... http://mattgemmell.com/2011/06/21/using-os-x-with-an-ssd-plus-hdd-setup/

    Following those instructions I end up with a symlink to the desired location sitting within the desktop folder, not replacing it.

    Driving me a little crazy.

    Can anyone help here?
  11. nickphoto thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2012
    Worked out the Symlinks with a fresh brain this morning. I was just in the wrong directory to delete what I was trying to. Got it all working beautifully and boy is it quick. Really really good upgrade to excellent performance.

    Here's a list of helpful links I gathered in the last week while researching and installing. Hopefully it's of help to someone in the future doing this upgrade.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SU9CHGQd7Ww data doubler install vid

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZ3d...xt=C3171635UDOEgsToPDskI42db9mORNvzC27_z-uZIw OWC HDD replacement video

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=680228&page=66 MCE Optibay thread and information from MacRumors

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=12483448&postcount=22 Formatting the SSD before cloning or setting up a new OSX install.

    http://gigaom.com/apple/how-to-replace-your-macbooks-optical-drive-with-an-ssd/ Helpful general article, split folders, symlinking and making symlinks.

    http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=2001110610290643 Making symlinks and background info on Symlinks.

    http://mattgemmell.com/2011/06/21/using-os-x-with-an-ssd-plus-hdd-setup/ Some more general info and symlink info.

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