How to make my 2012 iMac snappier

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Canadia69, Apr 5, 2017.

  1. Canadia69 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2016
    #1
    my 2012 21.5 inch iMac is pretty slow...when I want to open pages it takes about 30seconds.....I'm thinking of adding an external ssd, but will this actually make a difference?

    Any other tips?
     
  2. DeltaMac macrumors G3

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #2
    External USB 3.0 SSD...?
    Yes, if you now have only the original 1TB 5400-rpm hard drive, booting from a USB 3 SSD will make a dramatic difference.
     
  3. Canadia69 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2016
    #3
    "Booting from" does that mean that I have to install macOS on the ssd?
     
  4. DeltaMac macrumors G3

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #4
    Yes.
    It's easy to do that. Just boot to your recovery system. Choose reinstall OS X. Select your external drive as the destination for the install.
    When that completes, you will have a clean install of your macOS system. It will ask if you want to migrate apps, files and settings from your other drive.
    Do that.
    When complete, your SSD will have exactly the same setup as your internal.

    NOTE : Before you begin this process, how much space is used on your present system drive?
    You would have a 1TB hard drive, but if you have only used a small part of that, then you might use that amount to decide how much space you need on an SSD. For example, I have a mini with 1TB drive, but only about 80GB is actually used (really!). I think that I could get by with only 256GB for an SSD, but might get 512GB.
    You may be able to do the same, unless the price of 1TB doesn't make a difference for you.
     
  5. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 65816

    nambuccaheadsau

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #5
    And then go into System Preferences > Startup Disk and choose the SSD.

    One thing. When you get Software Updates, it will insist on updating the internal drive first, and on reboot will update th SSD.
     
  6. Canadia69 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2016
    #6
    Also, I kind need to work on windows and Linux (sometimes) for coding (school..) is there a way to install windows and /or Linux on the HDD and macOS on the external ssd? ...that way the OS i use more is on the faster drive while the 2 others are on the slower hdd?
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G5

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    The "answer", as others have stated above, is an external SSD which you can set up to be your "external booter".

    This is easy and trivial to do.
    Most users on this forum don't really understand that the Mac doesn't care from which drive it's booted.
    It will run as happily -- and in your case, MUCH FASTER -- from an external drive, than from the internal.

    I can't answer the Windows/Linux questions -- don't use them.
    I'm going to -guess- that Windows wants to go onto an internal drive.
    There -are- tweaks to get it installed on an external USB drive, but you'll have to find them.

    But again, if you want "speed" -- you need an external SSD booter.
     
  8. Canadia69 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2016
    #8
    Ended up buying this
     

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  9. fastlanephil macrumors 65816

    fastlanephil

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2007
    #9
    You can't boot into Windows on an external HD using Apple's Bootcamp. You can look into other solutions such as virtualization software or possibably installing Windows on an external drive not using Bootcamp. Bootcamp isn't absolutely required to boot a Mac into Windows, it's just a utility.
     
  10. Canadia69 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2016
    #10
    Is there an external solution that works with boot camp?
     
  11. DeltaMac macrumors G3

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #11
    Boot Camp does not support an external boot solution.
    Recall that Boot Camp is a utility that Apple provides which provides a way to install Windows on an internal drive. It won't allow installing Windows on an external drive, as it's main purpose is to make and prepare a separate partition for installing Windows. It is NOT the only process for setting up Windows on a Mac.
    And, as fastlanephil suggests, booting to Windows on an external USB does not need the Boot Camp assistant at all.

    Here's an article that may help you.
    There may be simpler solutions. Just search for "install Windows on external USB"
    That should show you other possible methods.
     
  12. Fishrrman macrumors G5

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #12
    If you really need BootCamp or a Windows installation, consider partitioning the internal drive.

    Then, you can boot from an external SSD "on the Mac side", but still have a "Windows solution" when needed.

    I'd recommend a virtual machine installation of Windows instead, IF you can run the software you need to on it.
     
  13. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #13
    Have you considered replacing the internal HDD? Its not terribly difficult on a 2012 iMac and it will open up some options for you as far as bootcamp and windows goes.

    For Linux I would just use a Virtual Machine on the SSD regardless of internal or external since you'll be able to find a light weight version to suit your needs fairly easily. However I would consider upgrading the RAM depending on how much you have and how much you'll need for whatever it is you need to do in Linux.
     

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