2011 iMac BTO w/ SSD - add second drive?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by djjoshuad, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. djjoshuad macrumors newbie

    Mar 10, 2012

    I've done a fair bit of searching but all of the information I can find on adding a hard drive to the 2011 iMac relates to replacing the main drive. I would like to add a secondary drive for Bootcamp purposes. I loathe windows but I do want to play a game that isn't available (yet) for mac... so Bootcamp is the best option. Here's my setup:

    2011 3.4 Ghz 27" iMac BTO
    256G SSD (Apple) Main drive
    No secondary drive

    I originally ordered it this way because I store all important things on a networked linux server w/ RAID. I didn't envision needing more internal storage, or I would have just ordered the iMac with the secondary drive already installed. Now I have a need for that space. Windows plus the game require 40-ish Gb of storage... and I'm not going to carve out nearly 20% of my apple SSD for this purpose. I /think/ I've read that the BTO iMacs with the SSD-only option can accommodate a second drive easily. As in - the cables, bay, etc are already there, just empty. I'm sure that if this is possible, someone has already done it... I have a Seagate Barracuda 7200 RPM 3.5" drive that I can install this weekend if the iMac will let me. My questions are these:

    1.) Is there a secondary bay w/ power and SATA connection available in my BTO SSD-only 27" iMac?
    2.) If there is, is that bay 3.5" or 2.5"?
    3.) Is there any reason to believe that this secondary drive addition will cause the high-speed fan issue that so many people have been freaking out about?
    4.) Would I be better served with a Firewire 800 external enclosure for Bootcamp purposes? Obviously SATA would be better, speed-wise... but would the external-enclosure's ease of installation justify the degraded performance?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    Bootcamp has restrictions on what types of drives Windows can boot from. Some of that stems from basic windows restrictions.

    ifixit.com and Other World Computing both have information on adding a HD to your iMac. And at least one of them sells the suction cups that help with installation.

    You could also ask at an Apple store how much it would cost. Probably too much, but it can't hurt to ask.

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