Apple tv SATA drive within enclosure

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by richyscot1, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. richyscot1 macrumors member

    Dec 8, 2008
    Derby, UK
    I am very new to Apple tv. In fact, I have only just purchased it. I have successfully carried out a standard 250Gb IDE drive insertion. However, my wife is complaining that Apple TV is a waste of time as we can't fit all of our media onto it.

    I have read an extremely enlightening thread containing a SATA mod, to which it contained lots of information about modifying Apple TV to enable an external SATA drive to be installed (Shown here

    However, I have also read the following thread on MAC NN

    Does anybody know whether the above thread genuinely works, as this looks like a fantastic solution to my problem, and would keep my Apple TV to it's intended proportions??......and my wife can stop shouting at me.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    I've seen that thread and it looks like an attractive solution for many. Things are pretty tight inside the ATV, but that guy seems to have managed to make it fit. I'm not sure if he ever said he could get the bottom back on. You need two different cables, the PATA to SATA adapter, and the hard drive. Seems a bit snug to me, but who knows?

    For me, that's not a solution since I already have about 680 gb on my 750 gb ATV drive. But if the notebook drives continue to increase in capacity it may be suitable for many people.
  3. rw3 macrumors 6502a


    May 13, 2008
    DFW, TX
    I have successfully done this. I'm working on the writeup. The adapter that is mentioned in the MacNN thread is $25. PM me with any further questions.
  4. richyscot1 thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 8, 2008
    Derby, UK
    Wow, thanks chaps. RW3, could you post the link when you've finished writing up?? Sorry to be a complete and utter pain!!

    One last thing, I thought I was a pretty good tinkerer until I read your thread Cave Man!! Very impressive!
  5. paolo.sereni macrumors newbie

    Sep 6, 2008
    500gb 2.5 sata upgrade enclosed in apple tv

    Hi Guys,

    I spent the last days trying to figure out if a 500gb 2.5 sata upgrade is possible to enclose in my new apple tv without any problem.

    If I got it right what I only need to upgrade my apple tv hd is:

    hd > I chose a 500gb 2.5 sata samsung spinpoint M6

    sata - pata adapter > problem: which adapter do I need if I want to switch from a 2.5 pata to 2.5 sata?

    I red that there may be voltage problems that can leave me with nothing else than a brick in my hand.

    Moreover I also red on the internet that there may be enclosing problems which I want to avoid as what I want is to have a device that contains all my favourite movies.

    Can you help with this? I'm afraid of throwing money away and end up with just a box.
  6. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    If you can hold on for about a week, I should be able to tell you. ;)
  7. paolo.sereni macrumors newbie

    Sep 6, 2008
    Definitely looking forward.

    Thanks Cave Man :)
  8. raymoreno macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2009
    Any update

    Hi Cave Man -

    Did you ever wind up doing this? I'd be curious to see your results. I've read dozens of posts in multiple forums. My preference would be to keep it all in the box so I'm curious as to whether you've had success trying this and exactly which parts you used..

    Alternatively, I wonder whether you could point me to a recent thread elsewhere with a working external sata solution.


  9. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    The SATA bridge I tested did not work. I'm still using the eSATA setup in my sig.
  10. richyscot1 thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 8, 2008
    Derby, UK
    Here is a link to a successfull 2.5 inch drive mod. There's two of us that have successfully carried out this mod........hope you have a grinding disc handy ;)
  11. ubergeek72, Apr 28, 2012
    Last edited: May 1, 2012

    ubergeek72 macrumors newbie

    Apr 28, 2012
    Zombie Thread, PCIe SATA Adapter

    Okay, so I know this thread is 4 years old, and most of you have probably long since given up on the old silver AppleTV, but if anyone's still following it, I have some questions.

    I've spent the last day and a half getting a miniPCIe SATA adapter working in my appleTV. The adapter is a BPlus PM362 (as shown here:

    I have the AppleTV (original silver) talking to the SATA adapter, after copying the 10.4.8 (must be this version) IOPCIFamily.kext, IOAHCIFamily.kext and AppleAHCIPort.kext extensions into /system/library/extensions, and I've sorted out having those extensions loaded automatically at boot time from /etc/rc.local. (I should note that my AppleTV has FireCore's package installed.)

    I finally got the new drive to mount reliably on /mnt/Scratch/Volumes (I didn't chose the mountpoint), and the first thing my AppleTV did was reach out over my home network to my desktop mac and begin syncing itself and pretending in all ways that it's a brand new first generation appletv. And sure enough, the media was getting dumped into the test drive.

    My questions are:
    1. Is this normal behavior? Has anyone else encountered this having more than one drive mounted to the ATV?

    2. Is this behavior reliable? It's pretty much what I had in mind, because the hacking I have planned for the ATV include a bigger case, ATX power supply, and 3-4 TB drive hung on the SATA bus.If I can depend on the ATV to do this and not fall off the rails arbitrarily, I'm a lot further ahead in my hack than I thought.

    3. What happens if there are /two/ extra drives? (My SATA bus has two ports).

    4. Has anyone ever gotten an ATV to boot from a mini PCIe SATA interface? If so, how? Getting rid of the PATA drive would be nice.

    1. If I wanted any hope of closing the ATV in its original case, I'd need right-angle SATA cables. I would also need to hack a connection to the internal power supply to power the SATA drive, probably from the PATA interface connector. I'm planning a power supply upgrade and at least 1 3.5 inch drive, so this does not really apply to me.

    2. Wipe the SATA drive you test with. I used an old drive out of my laptop that I'd not gotten around to erasing yet. It took me hours to figure out why the ATV Finder wouldn't start with the drive mounted.

    3. You can get all the kexts you need from the 10.4.8 combo updater. Not 10.4.7, not 10.4.9, it must be 10.4.8 or the kexts will fail dependency checks at load time.

    Addendum: The AppleTV's 802.11n airport card is now happily pulling down the internets in my '06 mac mini. It's a standard airport card. So if your first gen AppleTV dies, be sure to harvest the wifi card out of it before sending it to the recycler.
  12. kokekaffe macrumors newbie

    Feb 2, 2012
    Boot from mini-PCIe?

    Hi, I just love you guys! ;)

    I am now playing around with an old ATV1. It is working well with the Broadcom adapter but it is time to upgrade the drive space. The PATA-SATA adapter card mod is one way to go, but you will not get any speed gain from adding a SSD on the PATA bus.

    I want to use an Mini PCIe splitter to have two ports, enabling me to keep the Broadcom adapter, while adding a SSD through the extra mini-PCIe port*-*INSIDE the box. The crucial part is: Is it possible to boot from? Did you find any answer to this?

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