I really want it all to squeeze onto 64GB

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Vortexmac, Oct 30, 2010.

  1. Vortexmac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2010
    #1
    Hi everyone

    Apologies as I know folk have tried to answer this already but I'm looking for a really accurate assessment from you guys. Want to get a MBA 11" for wife's 50th and on a budget. Being a university lecturer she will be entitled to the education discount I hope.... so looking to buy the 64GB model with 4GB RAM and avoid the expensive upgrade to 128GB ~ ie total of £929 minus the 14% discount ?

    It will need to fit OSX and iLife (just iPhoto if necessary and possible to remove the others), Office 2008, Google Chrome and other small stuff and then on Bootcamp... Windows 7 (or preferably XP if I can get one of those decomissioned discs off eBay to work), Office 2007, Google Chrome, a VPN client, smart card authenication and other lowish volume software (<1GB).

    Stored files and photos etc will be minimal if any and mostly accessed from USB drive, home network and Mobileme storage.

    Wife's current notebook has just 64GB and only using 16GB at present with XP, Office etc etc.

    So... will it shoehorn in or am I being silly. Otherwise may have to be a netbook as wanting the smallest form.... but love love love the instant on, screen, trackpad, zippiness and opportunity to complete our/her conversion to OSX, which I love - she may then abandon Windows altogether.

    Thanks :)
     
  2. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    #2
    Your current needs probably use between 30-35GB, leaving you with about 30GB of extra space. From what I understand, a full Win7 install is about 14GB, Office uses less than 4GB, I think you will be fine.
     
  3. iMJustAGuy macrumors 68020

    iMJustAGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2007
    Location:
    Beach, FL
  4. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #4
    Try to get Windows XP, it only requires 1.5GB while Windows 7 needs at least 16GB according to MS. MBA with 64GB SSD has around 49GB of free space when nothing extra is installed. That should be fine for what you need. However, don't fill it too much or it will slow down.
     
  5. vraxtus macrumors 65816

    vraxtus

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #5
    I disagree, with the drive formatted and base OS X install, my 128 GB 13" had only about 102 GB free space remaining, so roughly 26 GB eaten by both.

    If you plan to have a bootcamped Win7, bear in mind that's another 15 GB or so (41) total. With the remainder of your installs you'll probably end up with maybe 20 GB free or less, and I'd save at least 6 GB (10% of your HD space) for page file swaps, leaving maybe 14 at most.

    64 GB was a huge deterrent for me which was why I bought the stock 13". I could live on the edge with 120 GB in my old MBP, so I just looked at my uses it made sense.
     
  6. Vortexmac thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2010
    #6
    Wow... that was fast. Great forum and thanks guys.

    Mostly reassuring. Vraxtus - do your calculations allow for the different base 2 an 10 stuff I've read elsewhere, ie is the 102GB is actually more than it seems.

    I really want XP as well so going to try it on my Macbook Pro before final decision if I can get a copy. I have read elsewhere that the MBAs may not have the drivers. If not can we get them elsewhere.

    Thanks.
     
  7. quickbrownfox macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #7
    I wouldn't rely on being able to obtain XP drivers for the Air. Apple have made it clear that they won't be supplying XP compatible drivers for the new Air hardware.

    All in all, I think the difference between 128GB and 64GB is very significant nowadays and I suspect you will find the smaller drive a PITA.
     
  8. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #8
    That base 2 and 10 shouldn't matter, Snow Leopard uses base 10 so 1GB = 1000MB (on Leopard it was 1024MB). I think 128GB has bigger over provisioning (same % as 64GB):

    64GB SSD with OS X has 49GB of free space. Snow Leopard takes 5GB so there is 59GB left so OP takes 10GB. That is 17%.
    128GB SSD with OS X has 102GB of free space. SL takes again 5GB so that is 123GB and 21GB left for OP. That is, again, 17%.

    MBA uses pretty much the same hardware as 13" MBP so I can't see why it wouldn't work.
     
  9. quickbrownfox macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #9
    You'd think so but the new stuff like 'instant on' and the 'custom' SSD might require different drivers.

    According to Apple "Windows XP and Vista drivers are not supplied for these computers and are not supported." See KB article here.
     
  10. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #10
    It should still work. Maybe not perfectly (well, no Windows works perfectly :D) but sufficiently. There are some Macs that do not officially support Windows 7 but they run it just fine.

    Someone has to try it before we know though
     
  11. nfl46 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    #11
    I had the 64GB, it was a deal breaker for me and I had to return it. I was already down to 20GB after one day of adding stuff to it.
     
  12. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    #12
    By the way, the 64GB Flash Storage is actually on a removable card, and 3rd party vendors right now have upgrade solutions in the works to upgrade your MacBook Air with a NAND Flash storage card with capacity up to 256GB. So the 64GB MacBook Air internal flash storage card can actually be replaced at a later time with an installable 256GB upgrade, it is a card and slides into an SATA slot in the computer. The tricky part is the security Torx screws Apple uses to get into the unit.
     
  13. M87 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    #13
    I'm not sure if it's kosher to discuss here, but some people "shrink" windows installations to be really tiny. Could be useful with such limited space.
     
  14. Vortexmac thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2010
    #14
    OK... looking like XP might be no go in Bootcamp and Windows 7 may be bulky. How about XP in Parallels.... would that be smaller than Win 7 in bootcamp... overall ?
     
  15. HLdan macrumors 603

    HLdan

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    #15
    You'd be doing yourself a huge favor if you just spent the extra $200 and got the 128GB. You're trying to "squeeze" everything you need into a small amount of storage. 64GB is good if you were going to use the Air as an "on the go" business notebook with one or two programs installed on it and everything else will be on an external but you're trying to install another full OS long with the existing OS, plus any softwares that you need to install for Windows such as Parallels, you'll end up regretting the 64GB, and you can't upgrade later.
     
  16. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #16
    Actually, you can. Photofast released SSDs that work in MBAs, up to 256GB. The hardest part is to find the right screwdriver.
     
  17. HLdan macrumors 603

    HLdan

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    #17
    Ah, actually I have heard of that, but it has not proven to be a simple installation or proven to work perfectly with the Air so until then, that's a dealbreaker.
     
  18. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #18
    The installation is very simple, as long as you have the correct screwdriver. The actual SSD is held by one screw so replacing it may be even easier than replacing the hard drive in other Macs.

    The Photofast SSD is designed only for MBA and uses SandForce controller (same as OWC and OCZ use for example) so there should be no reason to believe that it won't work, unless Photofast doesn't know how to make SSDs. Hard drives and SSDs are very universal, all you have to do is to use correct format.

    http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBook-Air-11-Inch-Model-A1370-Teardown/3745/1
    http://www.photofast.tw/products/GM2_SFV1_Air.html

    Of course a user based review is still needed to finish the deal but it looks very promising.
     
  19. h00ligan macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2003
    Location:
    A hot desert
  20. Dragynfyre macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    #20
    You can fit all that into 64GB no problem without any work at all. If you really need to squeeze out more space then reduce the size of system restore, Pagefile (you won't be needing it if you get the 4GB model but it's always good to keep it at least 512MB for compatibility reasons), and you can disable hibernate as well (remember to save your work though because if you run out of battery in Sleep mode you'll lose all your unsaved work without hibernate). This should all free up a good 6-8GB of space. Honestly a lot of people tend to underestimate how much you can do with 64GB.
     
  21. gw1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2007
    #21
    64 GB is surprisingly roomy

    Completely agree. I have the base config 11" with 64 GB. Out of the box it has about 49 GB free. Since then I have put in about 4 GB of applications (including iLife '11, iWork '08 and Office '11), 9 GB of films and 14 GB of music, as well as about 1 GB of files and 1 GB of pictures. If I needed to I could really slim all that down, particularly the films and music, but I don't need to as I still have 15 GB free.

    Depending on how much you need for the your windows environment, I suspect the cheaper base config will be just fine.
     
  22. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2008
    Location:
    U.S.A.
    #22
  23. silverblack macrumors 68030

    silverblack

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2007
    #23
    I also debated myself quite a bit between the 64 vs 128 GB FS, and at one point, I was really happy to see that Photofast is preparing to release a FS upgrade. Then I asked myself, would I need 256 GB? My answer is no, and if I only need 128 GB at most, then what's the advantage(s) of getting it from Photofast? Cheaper price (who knows?), the option of using the existing 64GB as a spare. But I risk voiding the warranty. At the end, it seemed much more sensible to just get the 128 GB from Apple now. I did, and have been happy ever since... also no regret what so ever from not waiting for the 4GB RAM BTO.

    By the way, an advantage of using VM vs Bootcamp is you don't have to preallocate the FS space to the "partition" when using VM. You do however using Bootcamp because you actually need to partition the drive. Hence, you 'waste' more space that way.
     
  24. JimmyPop macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2010
    #24
    Same predicament

    I'm in the same predicament - very keen to get the MacBook Air base 11" model however the 64GB is slightly putting me off. It will be a secondary computer as I have an iMac at home and will purely be used for web browsing and Microsoft Office. I know the base model is enough for what I will be using it for but I'm still wishing I had more space. I'm not particularly keen to pay much more for what is essentially a luxury rather than a necessity.
     
  25. JCT macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2004
    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    #25
    FWIW, I'm an academic as well (university professor) and I've been using a Rev A MBA since they came out, originally had an 80GB HDD then switched to a 64GB Runcore. I currently have 26GB free.

    I use my MBA for work and giving lectures and it has been perfectly fine. I make a concerted effort to not store superfluous files on it (e.g. work only) and haven't run into any problems with space. I make good use of networked and cloud storage (dropbox) as well.

    While YMMV, it is possible to live within the 64GB with a little forethought.
     

Share This Page