External Firewire boot faster than internal

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by bogart, Aug 28, 2008.

  1. bogart macrumors member

    Mar 31, 2008
    I have external lacie 250 G firewire 800.

    I was a little worried that some software had done something not nice and it was taking ages to boot, so I did a comparison of boot speed between the external lacie and the internal drive. Haven't backed up for about a week (the lacie is my only backup and don'r want to overwrite it yet). Disturbed to find these timings - measured from the startup screen which allows boot drive selection

    Internal drive 36 secs
    External drive 28 secs.

    Same results on several repeats. Machine is MBP 2.5 Ghz about 3 months old - with the 250G disk in.

    Is this normal ? Is firewire 800 faster than the internal drive ? (that would surprise me). Is this fragmentation ? What could I do to fix it if it is ?

  2. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    Did you clone your internal to the external, or did you do a clean install on the external?
  3. bogart thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 31, 2008
    External boots faster

    The external was cloned with SuperDuper - but since then used every few days for SuperDuper's incremental-update-cloning.
    I would presume the incremental-update cloning would introduce fragmentation anyway. Were it a straight clone at the file-copy level I could understand it being faster.

    I'm about to buy another lacie to I can alternate them for backup and won't know the direct comparison of identical file content until then (not backing up till then for obvious reasons).

    I'm amazed - I expected the firewire to be far slower than the internal.

  4. Benjamindaines macrumors 68030


    Mar 24, 2005
    A religiously oppressed state
    If I remember correctly the 250GB drive you have in your MacBook runs at either 5400 or 4200 RPM (my 200GB runs at 4200). The external drive most likely runs at 7200 RPM. The faster speed of the external drive is what's making it boot faster than your internal drive, there's nothing you can do to speed up your internal drive.
  5. agentphish macrumors 65816


    Sep 7, 2004
    +1 to 7200 RPM.

    Also remember your external more than likely has more cache...and FW800 is nice and speedy to begin with.

    and Firewire's overall SUSTAINED transfer rates are better than USB by a lot.

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