Fastest solution

Discussion in 'iMac' started by jay72, May 4, 2015.

  1. jay72 macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2015
    Hi guys

    Can someone help,

    I am currently trying to give my iMac a new lease of life and upto now its working well but i suspect it could be even better.

    I have the following bits of kit and cannot possibly invest in anymore,(these have been bought over time)

    1x Samsung evo 500gb ssd.
    2x Samsung evo 250gb ssds.
    1x Seagate Thunderbolt adapter which will accept all ssd named above (STAE128) ONLY ONE THUNDERBOLT CONNECTOR.
    1X Startech Thunderbolt Dual ssd (2 ssd slots)enclosure (2 thunderbolt connectors) which again will take all above ssds.
    1x 1TB Thunderbolt hd for Time machine and would like to keep it that way (ONLY ONE THUNDERBOLT CONNECTOR)

    can someone give me the setup/solution to give me:-

    1. The very fastest bootup time.
    2. Fastest read and write to whichever disk/disks are not being used for bootup.

    I am not sure what raid i should be using for boot or storage or the config which will give me the very best results

    thanks for any input guys
  2. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Fastest boot time? Stick the 500GB 850 Evo into the internal SATA slot. If you have an optical drive, you can install another 250GB 850 Evo there and then fuse the 500GB+250GB into an RAID 0 array - that'll give you the best speeds.

    For boot, it's not advisable to use RAID.

    RAID 0 will give you the best performance but no redundancy. RAID 10 has the performance of RAID 0, but will only have half the capacity available. Read this:
  3. jay72 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2015
    thanks for your reply

    i really didn't want to take the iMac apart. You sound like your very knowledgeable can you recommend the best setup using the available kit i have.
    thanks again
  4. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Well...just take it apart. That's going to give you the best performance.

    First, what iMac is it? Mid-2011, late-2012, late-2013 or what?
  5. jay72 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2015
    thanks for the reply

    its a mid 2011 27" yjchua95
  6. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Alright. USB is out of the question since it only has USB 2.0.

    Take apart the iMac, stick the 500GB 850 Evo into the main SATA slot (look up the temperature sensor issue regarding this model) and also a 250GB 850 Evo into the SuperDrive slot.

    Stick another 250GB 850 Evo into an external Thunderbolt enclosure and connect over Thunderbolt.

    Also, remember to have a large backup drive available and perform Time Machine backups regularly (daily if possible). This doesn't have to be an SSD.
  7. martinm0 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2010
    I believe that yjchua95 is correct in the assessment that an internal SSD will yield the fastest boot times. However, I still feel like your 500GB SSD through one of the external Thunderbolt connections will be perfectly fast. I have run an SSD from the Seagate STAE128 and find its performance just fine. I do think there is a cap on speeds through that setup as I have only ever been able to get a max read/write in the ~350 realm. That may seem quite a bit slower compared to the new 2015 rMBP 13" that maxes out in the ~1350 area, but I personally haven't found that speed to indicate 4x the performance in my limited use.

    If you want the absolute fastest boot up times, try raiding the two 250GB SSDs together in the Startech enclosure and see how that performs. I agree that RAID is really not helpful outside of scratch disks, but the speed gains speak for themselves. This assumes no bottlenecks with the Startech case in a RAID 0 config (I still believe the Seagate sled doesn't allow full throughput), but this setup will be wildly faster than anything you can do with the internal HDD in the iMac already.
  8. jay72 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2015
    Thanks for the reply

    I've never heard of the term scratch disks,

    Just to let you know using Black Magic speed test on the Seagate 128 using:-
    Samsung evo 250gb ssd
    (5gb file) gets:- WRITE 350, READ 384

    in what order should i do the raid 0 config / boot up config
    I am guessing i raid 0 the 2 disks first, then set them up to be boot disk second.
    (I have tried to find the answer online but nothing seems to crop up)

    thanks for any help

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