Do I need to clone my hard drive?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by thickofit, Jun 5, 2016.

  1. thickofit macrumors newbie

    May 30, 2016
    I have the MacBook Pro, MD101B/A, Intel Core i5, 500GB, 4GB RAM, 13.3". I plan on taking out the hard drive and installing a 1TB SSD. There are no files on the laptop that I want to keep. Can I just erase the hard drive and put in my SSD? Or do I still need to clone my hard drive?

  2. JTToft macrumors 68040

    Apr 27, 2010
    Aarhus, Denmark
    You don't need to clone it.

    My suggestion: Download El Capitan off the App Store, create an installation USB drive using Disk Maker X, and then use that to install OS X on your newly installed SSD.
  3. thickofit thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 30, 2016
    Cheers! I'll give it a go.
  4. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    Or install the ssd, format it and run the Internet recovery.
  5. thickofit thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 30, 2016
    How do I format the SSD? Would I need to buy a hard drive enclosure?
  6. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    Nope. You can do it on the Mac once it's installed.

    Cmd option r on boot then select disk utility from the top menu, partition and format the drive then away you go with the Internet recovery.
  7. JTToft macrumors 68040

    Apr 27, 2010
    Aarhus, Denmark
    - The issue with that is that you would then need to update from whichever OS X Internet Recovery gives you to the version you want.

    - No. You simply take out your existing hard drive and put in the new SSD.
    If you then follow my USB drive procedure, you can format and install on the new SSD right from there. The same applies for Internet Recovery except that will give you an older version of OS X from which you would need to update.
  8. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Here's what you need and how I recommend that you proceed:

    First, get the new SSD.
    ALSO, get an external USB3 2.5" enclosure. Something like this should do fine:

    Next, put the SSD into the enclosure, and connect it to the MacBook.

    Next, initialize it with Disk Utility.

    NOW, install a clean copy of the OS onto the SSD.

    When the installation is done (since you aren't keeping ANY files from the old drive), create a NEW user account and get it set up to your liking.

    Next, DO A TEST BOOT with the SSD still in the external enclosure. Reboot and immediately hold down the option key until the startup manager appears.
    You should see icons for both the internal drive and the external.
    Select the external with the pointer and hit return.
    Do you get "a good boot" ??

    If you do, now's the time to power everything down and "do the drive swap".

    When done, put the old drive into the enclosure, re-initialize it, and either use it for a backup or for whatever storage you wish.

    I -STRONGLY SUGGEST- that you consider using CarbonCopyCloner to clone the contents of the SSD (once inside) to the old drive. You'll now have a fully-bootable cloned backup drive for those "I can't boot!!!" moments.

    Final thought:
    It's best to set up the SSD and get it running -externally-, before you put it inside the MacBook.
    If you do it this way, and encounter any difficulties, you'll STILL HAVE A WORKING MACBOOK with which to go forward and correct the problems.
    Much easier!
  9. Spudlicious macrumors 6502


    Nov 21, 2015
    Bedfordshire, England
    Do you really have nothing you want keep? No MS Office? Such things can be a tedious pain to download again.

    If you like the idea of a minty-fresh OS install then the USB route looks good, but cloning what you know to be a good installation should not be dismissed out of hand.

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