Changing SSDs on a MBA.

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by warragul, Nov 10, 2016.

  1. warragul macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #1
    I installed a new SSD into my 2011 MBA. Thanks to ifixit.com it was a trivial job.
    However, the new SSD doesn't show up in Disk Utility.
    It's a Samsung NGFF plugged into a NGFF-to-Apple adaptor.
    Do I have to reset the PRAM, CUDA, power thingy?
     
  2. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #2
    I shall be doing similar with my 2010 MBA when my adapter comes. All I know is not all M.2 disks are compatible with Apple's firmware. There were warnings about Sanforce controllers, which tend not to work with Apple, although Samsung uses its own controller and Apple does use Samsung drives in its notebooks.
     
  3. eddjedi macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2011
    #3
    Sadly you're probably out of luck, even though many SSDs and adapters physically fit the connector, very few third party drives will work. You are better off buying a "genuine" one from eBay or similar.
     
  4. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #4
    Samsung has three different drives with the M.2 connector - a Legacy SATA with AHCI, a PCie with AHCI and an NVMe drive. The last one definitely won't work as Apple has no drivers for NVMe drives, the first one probably won't either as it is slightly different from the adapters I have seen - it has an extra notch in it and although it will fit in the adapter is probably not meant for it. I don't know if the PCIe AHCI drive will work. I shall see when my adapter arrives. I think my ADATA M.2 drive is an PCIe AHCI type as it only has one notch but I am banking on its not working.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M.2
     
  5. warragul thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #6
    Got it fixed under warranty. Not really satisfactory, though. Had to travel for an hour and a half to take my laptop down to the shop, then prove the SSD was bad and then install the new one. The old one was 256Gig, the new one is 240Gig.
    From comments above it may be a simple mis-match of SSD and adaptor/Mac. But surely this would have been tested. Just bad luck, I suppose.
    Thanks to those who took the trouble to read and/or help out. Seasoned Greenthings to you all.
     
  6. kiwipeso1 Suspended

    kiwipeso1

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2001
    Location:
    Wellington, New Zealand
    #7
    @tubeexperience is correct. Transcend have the best for the job, as they usually provide an USB enclosure for the old drive to run as a spare drive.
    You will find that the 11" MBA 2011 will take up to 480GB, the 13" will take a 960GB SSD.

    I would suggest that you call or email the store first to arrange the upgrade items first if your traffic is worse than Auckland is. :)
     
  7. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #8
    I did the upgrade for mine - a 2010 model, which takes the same SATA drives as the 2011 MBAs. The adapter arrived. I got sent 5 instead of the one I ordered.

    My MBA is the 11.6" version, so requires a single sided blade. The ADATA blade has chips on both sides so is not going to fit. For the hell of it, I decided to try with the base plate off to see if the drive would be recognised.

    The adapter stands proud of the space for the MBA blade. Adding the ADATA drive adds to the bulk but the retaing screw goes in without bending anything. So I try to replace the base plate and it goes in without much force. This is a tight fit but it does fit. I fire up the MBA and success. The drive is recognised. Straightforward update.
     
  8. warragul thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #9
    Everything is OK now. The new drive is an Intel 240Gig where the "faulty" one was a Samsung 256Gig. Didn't get any price reduction for the missing 15Gigs.
    My MBA is the 13" where my partner's is the 11". I moved my old 128Gig into her MBA and now I have her 64Gig Apple-specific SSD as a spare.

    kiwipeso1: Don't know about the traffic in Auckland; my trip took me 25 miles or so as the crow flies across Melbourne's inner suburbs from north to south. All the freeways are radial, of course. And I wasn't travelling by crow.

    weckart: Nice feeling when it all works, eh? Especially when it's not altogether "standard". What are your plans for the extra 4 adaptors :)?
    --- Post Merged, Dec 2, 2016 ---
    Don't know how this jibes with your "no drivers" note above but my MBA lists NVME

    Screen Shot 2016-12-03 at 12.52.20 pm.png
     
  9. leekil macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    #10

    Can you give more specifics, like the model numbers, of the drives that work and don't work? Can you post a photo of the System Profile entry for the Intel drive?
     
  10. Synchromesh macrumors 6502a

    Synchromesh

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Location:
    SF
    #11
    The biggest problem with aftermarket SSDs I ran into was that the computer doesn't sleep well. More to the point it doesn't wake up properly. Sometimes not at all, sometimes it'll wake up but no mouse and keyboard are detected (internal ones) and you're stuck at the login screen. Hence I'd use original Apple SSDs. They'll definitely work right.
     
  11. warragul thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #12
    leekil: The Samsung was a MZNLN265HCHP-0000
    The Intel is SSDSCKKW240H6
    I don't know why the Samsung didn't work. The seller seemed to think it was a dud. Apparently he'd sold a few others that had worked OK, but I don't know that for sure. I was tired and annoyed and fed up; I wanted to get back home ASAP.
    I'll post the pic tomorrow, after a night's sleep.

    Synchromesh: I haven't had problems with the MBA sleeping. It behaves as expected.
     
  12. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #13
    I don't have any plans for them and am happy to give them away to anyone who needs them in the UK. Having said that, it wouldn't be any more expensive for anyone to get them from source considering postage in the UK. I think these are a tad too thick to go as letter post so may attract parcel mail.

    As for the NVMe in SysProf, I think these must refer to the chips in the latest MacBook Pros, which seem to run at NVMe speed, except that Apple never adheres to standards, so even if Sierra supports them, you would probably need a firmware patch or additional drivers to get a standard NVMe to run but even then, probably only as a data drive. The numbers of PC motherboards that support booting from NVMe is very low, too.

    This long thread may explain things better and there is also another thread which has MacVideoCards' homebrew driver for NVMe drives.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/sata-express-meets-the-09-mac-pro-bootable-ngff-pcie-ssd.1685821

    http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/nvme-for-mac-pro-5-1.1919972
     
  13. leekil macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    #14
    Which adapter did you use? I was just researching this topic couple days ago and then noticed your post.

    How fast is the drive in your machine now (assuming you did speed tests)?
     
  14. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #15
    I just installed a Samsung EVO 850 1TB into my 2012 Macbook Air using the adapter.
     
  15. SlCKB0Y macrumors 68040

    SlCKB0Y

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #18
    How does the latest MacBook Pro work then?
     
  16. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #19
    Apple has a proprietary NVMe implementation. Standard NMVe drives won't work without a driver.
     
  17. asoksevil macrumors 6502

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    Jun 7, 2010
    Location:
    Taipei, Taiwan
  18. SlCKB0Y macrumors 68040

    SlCKB0Y

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #21
  19. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #22
    I would imagine it would still work since the 2011 were still SATA based. That should be the correct adapter then too if it'll support 2280 m.2 drives(which says it does.) guess there's only one way to find out :p
     

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