Best way to switch to SSD boot drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by gusmahler, Mar 1, 2012.

  1. gusmahler macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2011
    I have a late 2010 Mac Pro and am currently using Snow Leopard 10.6.8. My current drive setup is a 1 TB drive with OS/apps/data and a 2 TB drive with photos/video. I would like to switch to an SSD for OS/apps, and get a new 2 TB drive for my data (using my old 1 TB drive as a backup for as long as I can.)

    What's the best way to move the OS/apps to a new drive? OWC recommends a clean install:

    So it looks like I would boot from the DVD, then use migration assistant to move the apps from the 1 TB drive to the SSD.

    Is that the best way? Is there a way to use Carbon Copy Cloner to make the SSD bootable or would that just move too much excess junk to the new SSD?
  2. Loa macrumors 68000


    May 5, 2003

    Treat the operation just as you would treat a boot drive replacement. You can pretty much ignore the fact that it's a SSD unless your SSD is too small and you need to split the Users folder.

    Otherwise, use the same precautions: back-up your things, copy it and reboot with the new drive.

    As for clean install, I wouldn't bother unless you have issues with your current one.

  3. gusmahler thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2011

    But the SSD is much smaller than the hard drive it will be replacing. What directories do I need to copy via Carbon Copy Cloner to make it bootable? I won't be moving the data to the SSD.
  4. xgman macrumors 601


    Aug 6, 2007
    I simply boot to a 3rd drive or even the DVD with Disk Util and then restore the larger to the smaller without any issue right from there. Done countless times with no problems. Then just re-set startup drive in System Preferences.
  5. wonderspark macrumors 68040


    Feb 4, 2010
    I can tell you how my experience went, installing a 256GB Crucial M4 to replace my 640GB HDD boot drive.

    I wanted to be sure to have plenty of space beyond just the 10% space buffer, so I ensured my boot backup was up to date with ALL data, and then removed everything from the 640GB but the Applications, Developer, Library, System and Users folders, which total 106GB. My iTunes folder (in Users) was too big, so I also deleted that. I then cloned this smaller set to the new SSD, and set it as the startup disk. Works perfectly.

    All the extra data (such as iTunes songs and whatnot) are stored on a second internal drive. Been a month or two, and no problems. I still have plenty of space on my SSD (149GB) to dump files on my desktop when transferring files from here to there or whatever.

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