iMac 27" SSD Upgrade - Important Tip!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by NATO, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. showtime, Oct 13, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2012

    showtime macrumors 6502

    May 10, 2007
    Just added a 256GB Crucial M4 to my 2010 iMac using OEM parts. No issues at all. Not too difficult of a process if you take your time. I also found that taking pictures as you go helps you put everything back together like new.

    I highly recommend following this guide:

    I also referred to the official service manual. The instructions and diagrams are very good: Service Manuals/imac/iMac27_Mid2010.pdf

    These are the 3 parts you need. Got all 3 on eBay for ~$53 shipped.
    Power Cable: 922-9531
    Mounting Kit: 922-9485
    SATA Cable: 922-9538

    You will also need 4 screws to mount the SSD to the bracket. If you follow the guide above, he doesn't mention you need this until after you've already ripped apart your iMac so make sure you have some handy before starting. :) I did the same thing he did which was remove them from a old hard drive. I believe what you want are (4) T8, 3mm x 0.5mm x 3.0mm screws (#922-9927 if you must buy "apple" screws) and it just so happens that the screws on an old hard drive was exactly that.

    Here's some pictures:

    Started with this

    To this

    Just to add this

    and back to this

    If you only want to replace the HDD with a SSD, no need to completely take apart your iMac. You only need to remove the screen and you have direct access to the HDD. Make sure you short the HDD temp sensor (apple part #922-9628) or your HD fans will spin up to max.

    For the folks purchased their iMacs with the SSD+HDD config, what does Apple name the HDD (e.g. Machintosh HD)?
  2. mactmaster macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2010
    Thanks I wasn't sure on that.
  3. rpg51 macrumors 6502


    Jul 4, 2012
    Suggestions re installation of SSD by professional

    I have a 2011 MBA and I am 100% sold on SSDs. I can't imagine going back to an HHD as a boot disk. I am about to purchase an iMac 21.5 inch refurb with a HDD and I am considering options to have SSD installed leaving HDD in place. I am not comfortable doing work my self. One option is to drop ship the new refurb iMac to OWC and have them sell me an SSD and also install the SSD and then ship the computer to me. The whole thing seems to make sense to me - price is reasonable etc. Does anyone have any experience with OWC service work? Is it reliable?
  4. Tigerman82 macrumors regular

    Jul 27, 2010
    I've heard that there's an even better solution: using the optical drive's temp sensor (just have to buy one online) instead of the HDD temp sensor. Does this work? Does the ODD sensor fit where the HDD sensor is attached?
  5. showtime macrumors 6502

    May 10, 2007
    Yes, that should work although I don't know if I'd consider it a "better solution". A CTO iMac with a SSD only option will come with the jumper. I guess Apple believes a SSD will never get hot enough to the point where it requires extra cooling.

    The ODD sensor is an external temp sensor you would stick the SSD. I guess if it really doesn't get that warm, fans would never spin up and the end product is really the same.
  6. rummyd macrumors newbie

    Oct 29, 2012
    Hi All,

    I have a late-2009 27" C2D iMac and plan to replace my ODD with an SSD. I've read this entire thread and just have a quick question:

    Any idea if this bracket will work for me?

    Also, just to verify, because I'm not adding a drive (just replacing), I won't have to take the logic board out to add the extra SATA cable; just a straight swap, right?

  7. dborja macrumors 6502a

    Sep 13, 2007
    Northern California
    No, that won't work. You need a 3.5" adapter that would fit in a PC bay.

    As soon as you remove the display, the hard drive is right there. No need to take out the logic board; just swap in the SSD. As far as the temp sensor, I left it hanging and bought HDFANCONTROL for $30. It uses the SMART to read the temp and controls the fan accordingly.

    Hope that helps
  8. rummyd macrumors newbie

    Oct 29, 2012
    Hi Dborja,

    Thanks for the reply, but I might not have been clear enough. I'm not replacing the current hard drive, I want to take out the SuperDrive (or Optical Disk Drive -- ODD) and put the SSD in there.

    I'm going to leave my 1TB HDD drive as-is.

    With that in mind, anyone have any thoughts on that particular bracket?
  9. Tigerman82 macrumors regular

    Jul 27, 2010
    It is interesting that these "Apple-brand sensor cable" solutions aren't talked about that much. I was about to order the aforementioned optical drive temp sensor cable when I stumbled upon HDD Temp Sensor Jumper Cable in this thread. Apparently this is what Apple would have used, had I ordered my iMac with an SSD (or so I understood). I went ahead and ordered this cable as I found a pretty good deal on Ebay. I plan to use this cable with my mid-2010 21.5" iMac and Samsung 830 SSD.

    I do realize that this jumper cable may be just an expensive alternative to sticking a piece of wire to the existing HDD Temp Sensor in order to "short-circuit it". However, I don't mind spending on this cable if I can get the 'official' fix to the fan problem.

    I know Apple makes it difficult for us consumers to upgrade the HDDs of our iMacs. On the other hand, us consumers don't make things a lot easier as there seems to be only a few mentions of this Apple Jumper Cable or Part # 922-9628 even though it seems to be the 'official' solution to the fan issue when upgrading HDDs to SSDs.
  10. Tigerman82 macrumors regular

    Jul 27, 2010
    A few hours ago I did the HDD Replacement process to my Mid-2010 21.5" iMac. I used Icy Dock MB982SP-1S as my 2.5"->3.5" adapter (for Samsung 830) and Apple HDD Temp Sensor Jumper Cable (922-9628) to solve the fan problem (which works for both OS X and Windows).

    Everything else was really easy about the installation but the four cables you need to disconnect were a pain in the butt. I spend half an hour trying to pull the vertical sync cable out of its socket using my nails, fingers and pliers. It's really tight! The LED backlight power cable was almost as hard even after I had cleared the locking mechanism. And the display data cable... Well it came off all by itself. Apparently my unit had been put together carelessly as a part of the display data cable was bent on top of itself which must have lead to its coming off so easily. Fortunately the socket was okey! The LCD temp sensor was stiff but the easiest of the four to disconnect. As I was putting the iMac back together, I must admit I was afraid that I hadn't connected the display data cable securely enough as I could not straighten it from where it had bent and I could not fold the flap like it should be once the cable is connected. Fortunately my display works (if that's what the cable does).

    Well what can I say... It was scary but it paid off. Everything, even at Sata II, is blazing fast from Word opening immediately to Boot Camp and Windows 8 Pro installing lightning fast. The back of the iMac feels much more cooler than before and, as before, I cannot hear any noises from the iMac. IStat Pro is stating that right now my HDD fan speed is 1099rpm which I guess tells me that the jumper cable was compatible and does its job. On a side note, I enabled TRIM in ML and I guess it's automatically enabled in Windows.

    I recommend fully doing this. :apple: It feels quite something when someone like me who hasn't done any PC installations apart from installing RAM and SSD to one Mac Mini and installing RAM and dusting a few laptops (basically just screwing open the bottom hatch).
  11. bikemd macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2012
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    Thoughts about Fusion Drive set up on older iMacs?


    My older 27" iMac (OS 10.8.2) is currently running with a internal 2TB HDD as well as a 256GB SSD (in the optical drive bay). I have used this forum to help me set it up some months ago. I have put the OS as well as apps on the SSD (to keep the computer running fast) and I have used symlinks to put all of my user folder/files on the HDD (to take advantage of the large storage capacity of the HDD).

    Of course, Apple has now come out with Fusion Drives on their newer computers. I have seen people setting out tutorials to show how to "fuse" their SSD/HDD as a "do it yourself" Fusion Drive on older computers.

    Seems to me that it would be much easier to set up my computer with a "do it yourself" Fusion Drive and have the computer sort out "what files to put where". Rather than mess around with symlinks, etc. Has anyone been doing this? And does anyone have any tips about doing this?
  12. Insilin1i macrumors regular

    Dec 30, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    I actually just set this up yesterday after installing a 256GB SSD in the optical drive. It was pretty painless though it does require both drives to be completely wiped to join them together.

    Simple restore from backup solves everything.

    Oh to set it up you have to boot from a USB drive or DVD. As long as it's not the drives you are merging together. Also launch the terminal within that USB/DVD and set up the drives there then restore.
  13. tsak4, Dec 8, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2012

    tsak4 macrumors newbie


    Nov 14, 2007
    ODD speed 3gbps or 1.5gbps?


    My brother has an iMac late 2009 and he want to put ssd in ODD.
    In system profiler the ODD has 3gbps link speed but 1.5gbps negotiated link speed.
    My question is why there is a difference between the link speed and negotiated link speed?
    If he install ssd in odd what speed will he see?

    ( sorry for my bad english )
  14. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    The interface in that iMac is SATA-II at 3GB/s, and the optical drive is only rated at 1.5GB/s. If you put a modern SSD in place of the optical drive, it should link at the SATA-II speed of 3GB/s (even if the SSD is a higher speed SATA-III 6G drive).
  15. tsak4 macrumors newbie


    Nov 14, 2007
    Now its clear.. the odd made the speed down to 1.5 gbps..

    Thanks for the information !!!
    Now all i need is a caddy and ssd..
  16. mactmaster, Dec 12, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2012

    mactmaster macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2010
    I finally got around to upgrading my late-2009 27" iMac. I was eligible for the hard drive replacement program so I had that done before making any changes myself. Once I got the iMac back from Apple I swapped out the SuperDrive for a 256GB Samsung 830 using this Caddy. I was already using an external optical drive so I'll be discarding the internal SuperDrive.

    I also took this opportunity to clean out all the dust on the fans and the casing. While I was at it I reapplied new thermal compound to the CPU and GPU since I had begun noticing high temperatures even at idle.

    Once everything was closed back up I followed this Guide to setup a Fusion drive. I installed OS X and am now up and running. I also enabled TRIM using TRIM Enabler after reading the AnandTech review of the Samsung 830.

    The iMac has a new lease on life and the hang-ups & crashes that had become common are now a thing of the past. Hopefully this will keep my iMac alive for a few more years. :D:apple:
  17. fiddler59 macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2009
    2009 20" iMac 9,1

    I have been reading this thread with great interest. I am looking at replacing my SuperDrive with a ssd. I currently have a WD Black 1TB hdd and plan on keeping for my home folder and other big files....iTunes and things like that. My question is is at what speed will the ssd drive operate at in place of the SuperDrive...??
    Will it revert to SATA 1 or will it run at SATA 2 ?? Any help would be much appreciated.

    David Blackmon

    2009 20" iMac 9,1
    2.66 C2D
    4gb Ram
    WD Black 1TB HDD
  18. bikemd macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2012
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    Remote Disc function not found after SSD installed


    I have an SSD installed in place of the Superdrive of my 2009 iMac. In fact, I have gone all the way and made a Fusion Drive with the SSD and the internal hard drive in this iMac.

    Everything is working fine except that I don't see a "Remote Disc" icon on the sidebar of my Finder window. I have a Superdrive on my Macbook Pro that I would like to access when I need to. This Superdrive on my MBP appears as a Remote Disc to my Macbook Air but NOT to my 2009 iMac.

    I was curious if other people who have removed the Superdrive on their 2009 iMacs see the Remote Disc option in their "Devices"? Remote Disc does not appear on mine and I can't seem to make this feature available.
  19. sascha h-k macrumors 6502

    sascha h-k

    Apr 26, 2004
    vienna / austria

    thank you very much for the apple-manual-link !!! ;)
  20. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    I believe you have to have CD/DVD disk sharing enabled in your System Preferences/Sharing. Also check your Finder/Preferences/Sidebar selections.

    Here is a support page on how to use Remote Disk:

  21. bikemd macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2012
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    Thanks Howard.

    The MBP's Superdrive that I am trying to access has the MBP's Sharing preferences to share the DVD. (Currently this allows my MBA to access the MBP's Superdrive using Remote Disc and to me since the MBA can access this remote disc, confirms for me that the settings are correct on the MBP's end) On the iMac that I am trying to use to access the same MBA Superdrive, I have the Finder preference set to display (ie. checked off) CDs, DVDs, iPods as well as external drives.

    Remote Disc still does not show up on my Finder sidebar.

    Can anyone else who has taken the Superdrive out of their iMacs confirm if they can access Remote Disc? I am wondering since these iMacs were built with an internal Superdrive, maybe something built into the hardware/software set-up percludes one from using "Remote Disc" since there should be no reason normally to have to access "Remote Disc" with an iMac that came with a Superdrive. In other words, maybe this is a function that is disabled in these iMacs?
  22. mjkout macrumors newbie

    May 19, 2013
    Hi Howard,

    i have the same model and was thinking of adding a SSD drive by replacing the Superdrive when i saw your post i thought i'd keep it.
    could you tell me what parts you used and forward the links on how to install

    Many thanks
  23. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    That was so long ago, I no longer recall the links, but the teardown is on iFixit which should answer most of the installation issues. I purchased the Apple SSD "compression mount" which mounts into the frame of the iMac, but it is not necessary and actually added to the teardown in order to get to the SSD mounting screws. When I replaced the SSD with a larger one, I just used velcro to mount the replacement for ease of next replacement. I wish I had done that originally rather than totally removing the motherboard. :D

    The cables are pretty standard and can be had from Amazon or eBay.

    Good luck with your upgrade! :)

  24. bardel macrumors newbie

    Mar 11, 2010
    Late 2009 27" Adding SSD


    I see for 2010 models iFixIt sell a kit to install a 2nd drive (SSD) with sticky tabs behind the ODD keeping the original HDD and ODD in place.

    Is this possible on the 2009 model? Will the 2010 kit on iFixIt work? I sent them a mail to ask, but they replied with the hardware model that the kit is intended for and didn't really answer my question!

    I put an SSD in my MBP which I rarely used because it was slow compared to the iMac and now I can't stand my iMac's sluggish disk (but can't work on a laptop all day)!

    If it comes to it, I can ditch the ODD and put the SSD there, but if at all possible I'd like to keep the ODD as well as the current 1TB HDD as well.


  25. Qwerty11 macrumors regular

    Sep 1, 2010
    Why is it that some people, when replacing the optical drive with a SSD, remove the logic board, while others take out the optical drive without touching the logic board?

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