How to manage smaller SSD's

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by CJ31, Jul 29, 2019.

  1. CJ31 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    #1
    Finally just upgraded my 2012 MBP and bought a new 15" MBP with a 500gb ssd. Sorry if this is a stupid question or has been discussed before but what is the best way to manage these smaller ssd's?

    I had a 750gb on my old MBP which I found too small and had to have a separate hard drive to manage even that. Was going to go for the 1TB drive on the 15" but couldn't justify the ridiculous cost. I of course plan to use the separate HD like I did before, but given that it is even smaller I'm concerned that I will run out of space more quickly.

    I download all my iphone pics and videos to my MBP via the Photos app which I assume takes upon a bunch of space. Where are those stored and can I easily move them to my separate HD? Other tips to manage the space? I'm not planning to pay for extra monthly cloud storage from apple.

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. ruslan120 macrumors 6502

    ruslan120

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
    #2
    You can move your Home Folder to a different directory (which can live on an external drive).

    Instructions

    It might not be the best solution for a laptop, however, since vital files live in the home directory and if you unplug the external drive all heck breaks loose.

    In this case I recommend only moving certain home directories to an external drive, and symlinking them to your home directory (so only Movies, Pictures, other non vital directories are external).

    Instructions
     
  3. Howard2k macrumors 68020

    Howard2k

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #3
    I use a Synology NAS (Network Attached Storage) and 256GB of local storage. Most of my data is stored on the NAS and I keep files locally while working on them. While actively recording music I'd keep those files local, but then move to them to the NAS when done. Or after I take some photos I download them to the local storage and when I've finished with my edits I move them to the NAS. Movies just live on the NAS, there's no need to keep the locally.
     
  4. aircanman macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    This is the reason I won't upgrade my Mid 2012 MBP, I currently have a 1TB SSD and a 1TB standard drive in it and they are full, I don't like NAS as they can be unreliable, external drives are slow.
     
  5. jerryk macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #5
    A NAS is likely much more reliable than the SSD, and definitely more reliable than the rotational drive, you have in your computer. By design a property configured NAS array of drives can tolerate drive failures and a new drives hot-swapped in if a failure did occur.
     
  6. Howard2k macrumors 68020

    Howard2k

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #6

    Totally agree, but I suspect s/he might be talking about issues such as re-connecting drives after sleep or being away from home etc. I could be wrong. Certainly using a NAS is not idiot proof.
     
  7. jerryk macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #7
    Not idiot proof, but darn simple. When I connect my Mac to my network it automatically recognizes the NAS and shows up as a drive in finder. Also, I have a Time Machine server on the NAS so it automatically backs up. And it does this automatically when it wakes up from a sleep or if I used the notebook off site and connect to the local network.
     
  8. ruslan120 macrumors 6502

    ruslan120

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
    #8
    Is a NAS cheap relative to a portable SSD?
    Will it have the same read and write speeds?
    Will the data be (safely and reliably) accessible if OP takes his laptop to a cafe?
     
  9. Howard2k, Jul 29, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2019

    Howard2k macrumors 68020

    Howard2k

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #9

    4TB NAS (mirrored) might be around US$500. 4TB SSD might be the same ballpark. As you go upwards in capacity from there, NAS gets cheaper and cheaper. And just for laughs - Apple's upgrade from 256GB to 4TB - $1,600.

    Same speeds as SSD? You could build a NAS using SSD but I use HDDs. The limiting factor is the network. You can use Gigabit or wifi, but both are slower than the native SSD speed. Gigabit is pretty close to the throughput of most HDDs but still slower. But some NAS boxes will support SSD drives with 10Gb/s Ethernet, there is some scalability there if you need it.

    Safely and reliably accessible from a cafe? I use a VPN to get back to my home network. Is that safer than an unencrypted drive in your bag? I'd say so.

    There are also other options too. USB/Thunderbolt external arrays. Storage Area Networks.
     
  10. ruslan120 macrumors 6502

    ruslan120

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
    #10
    I think you make a lot of assumptions here.

    OP is settled on a smaller internal SSD. You can get a 2TB SSD + enclosure for around $210-$225. The difference becomes greater if you only need 512GB of SSD ($70).

    If you want a reliable NAS without RAID it's around $100, with RAID 1 that's $150-$300 minimum for the box alone, and then you need to worry about buying NAS-grade hard disks so they don't burn out from running all the time.

    If you'd like a better NAS, that actually has RAID 5 support (uses your disks more efficiently than RAID 1 and still offers redundancy), you're looking at $300-$600 for the box alone and more for the disks.

    You're correct. Internal speed in the NAS doesn't matter. Even over Gigabit ethernet your theoretical max is 125MB/s. SATA over USB 3 is around 500MB/s.


    Why assume it's unencrypted? It's a straightforward (and recommended) process to encrypt any external storage you carry around with you, and it's easy in macOS.

    VPNs are still imperfect, as are cafe wifi networks. With a direct connection (USB -> disk) there's no question. It's just the computer -> your data.


    I own and love using a NAS, but if you're going to buy one I recommend doing it right with at least 4 bays and better RAID solutions (+hotswapping in case of drive failure).
     
  11. Howard2k macrumors 68020

    Howard2k

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #11

    Nope, I'm not making assumptions. You asked questions, I provided answers. You're entitled to have your own opinion too.
     
  12. ruslan120 macrumors 6502

    ruslan120

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
  13. Howard2k macrumors 68020

    Howard2k

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #13
    Yep, I use both too (external and NAS). Each has a purpose, but for me the accessibility of NAS is far more useful than a tethered external drive.
     

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12 July 29, 2019