How do I delete everything on an OWC Mercury Exreme Pro SSD for use in a 2011 MBP?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Zoowatch, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Zoowatch macrumors 6502

    Joined:
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    Sheffield, UK
    #1
    Sorry if this is posted in the wrong forum.

    I have a 240GB OWC Mercury Exreme Pro Solid State Drive that was previously used in a Mac Pro as a startup drive (Snow Leopard system files + applications; about 45GB used in total). It was in good working order when it was removed from the Mac Pro and I would like to have this installed in a 15-inch 2011 MacBook Pro as the main startup drive.

    The SSD currently does NOT have TRIM support enabled. I have read around and found out that this particular model of SSD has built-in Garbage Collection and so TRIM support is not necessary. I also understand that I should not format the SSD via the usual formatting methods because Disk Utility would simply write zeros onto all cells of the SSD and this would be detrimental to the speed of the SSD. I have also read somewhere that I could simply delete the existing HFS+ partition on the SSD, and then format it again, but I am not 100% certain if this would work.

    Basically, I would like to ‘empty’ or ‘blank’ this SSD, install it into a 2011 MBP, format it as a single HFS+ (Journaled) partition, then install Snow Leopard on it. I would like to achieve all of this without significantly undermining the speed of this SSD. Is there a way to do that? Currently, there is nothing on the SSD that I need to back up or save. I also have a 2009 Mac Pro at my disposal.

    Secondly, I understand that the MBP has such a thing called “sudden-motion sensor (SMS)”. If I were to replace the stock hard disk drive with this SSD, will I break or inadvertently disable the SMS? Is there anything else I should know before I attempt to install the SSD in the MBP? To replace the stock HDD with my own SSD, is it simply a matter of removing those screws at the bottom case of the MBP, or is the HDD more difficult to replace than adding / removing RAMs (i.e. is it less accessible)?

    I have zero experience with taking a Mac notebook apart, and I wouldn’t want to attempt anything that is too risky.

    Your advice is really appreciated here.
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

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    located
    #2
  3. Zoowatch thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Thanks for your reply, simsaladimbamba. This sounds like formatting a magnetic hard disk drive. Don't we have to worry about TRIM, emptying each and every cells on SSD, etc.? If I do this, the SSD won't see any significant performance hit right?
     
  4. Krevnik macrumors 68040

    Krevnik

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2003
    #4
    A simple reformat should be okay. If you are worried about perf, the big problem is the older drives not using Sandforce like the OWC drives do.

    If you write zeros to the whole drive, the firmware should be able to pick up that the drive is 'clean' as well. So if you are paranoid, that's an option.
     
  5. Battlefield Fan macrumors 65816

    Battlefield Fan

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    Mar 9, 2008
    #5
    I believe you're confusing deframentation with the secure wipe (writing zeros). Writing zeros will only take away 1 of your 125 million writes or whatever your drive is rated for. After that amount the NAND chips will more than likely fail. TRIM is also only supported for apple bought SSD's. Whether or not you should use the third party tool to enable TRIM is something I cannot answer since your drive devotes 7% of it's capacity to GC.
     
  6. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #6
    There are a couple of approaches you can take:

    If you want to restore the drive to it's factory condition by having all NAND reset, you can do what's called a secure erase. This should not be confused with other secure wipe formatting techniques that overwrite all bits with zero's or one's... the one I'm referring to here is an ATA command that the SSD controller recognizes that instructs it to reset all the NAND to an unused state. It effectively wipes the drive and makes all NAND writeable again. I've articulated the process in detail here...
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=841182

    It's not difficult but you will need a USB cradle/enclosure for your SSD. Then you simply need to burn a Linux startup DVD, boot to it, and issue a few commands.

    Alternatively, you can just install the drive as-is into your MBP, reformat it and install OSX. If you want max performance back, you can then enable the trim command temporarily until the OS has a chance to trim the drive, and then either turn it off again, or leave it active...
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1125400
     
  7. bpeeps macrumors 68020

    bpeeps

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    May 6, 2011
    #7
    I could be wrong, but aren't Mac Pro drives 3.5" and MBP drives 2.5" making your swap incompatible?
     
  8. simsaladimbamba

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    #8
    You are not wrong with the assumption, that the Mac Pro uses 3.5" drives and the MB/Ps use 2.5" drives, but the OWC Mercury Exreme Pro is a 2.5" drive.
     
  9. bpeeps macrumors 68020

    bpeeps

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    #9
    Oh good call. As we were!
     
  10. Zoowatch thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    Hi everyone. Thank you for advice. I have tried the ATA command method but my 27-inch Apple Display just went dark after I selected GParted Live from the menu. Anyway, I decided to run disk utility from Snow Leopard DVD and do a 1-partition format instead.
     
  11. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Location:
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    #11
    Yeah, as mentioned in the secure erase guide, if you have a wide screen display you need to avoid the GUI and go direct to command line. Anyway, I'm sure you'll be fine with a simple reformat.
     

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