iMac...Spinning Wheel

dlp600

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 2, 2019
9
0
Chatsworth, CA
My iMac Model 18,3 has never seemed to perform that well. I set it up in January 2018. I get the spinning wheel too frequently in my opinion. The performance has underwhelmed me since the start. I work in Illustrator and Photoshop mostly. Will upgrading the ram make a difference? Thanks in advance.
 

dlp600

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 2, 2019
9
0
Chatsworth, CA
APPLE HDD ST1000DM003:

Capacity: 1 TB (1,000,204,886,016 bytes)
Model: APPLE HDD ST1000DM003
Revision: AQ04
Serial Number: Z4YFDB39
Native Command Queuing: Yes
Queue Depth: 32
Removable Media: No
Detachable Drive: No
BSD Name: disk0
Rotational Rate: 7200
Medium Type: Rotational
Partition Map Type: GPT (GUID Partition Table)
S.M.A.R.T. status: Verified
Volumes:
EFI:
Capacity: 209.7 MB (209,715,200 bytes)
File System: MS-DOS FAT32
BSD Name: disk0s1
Content: EFI
Volume UUID: 0E239BC6-F960-3107-89CF-1C97F78BB46B
disk0s2:
Capacity: 1 TB (999,995,129,856 bytes)
BSD Name: disk0s2
Content: Apple_APFS
 

nambuccaheadsau

macrumors 68000
Oct 19, 2007
1,849
435
Nambucca Heads Australia
As this says 'Rotational' it may be a 1TB Fusion Drive model with the miserable 32GB PCI-e Blade Drive. This causes the 1TB platter drive to be used, and they are as slow as a wet week. If this is the case the only cure would be either cracking it open and replacing the Blade Drive with a 256 or 512GB drive, or using an SSD it an external USB3 caddy as the boot drive.
 
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DeltaMac

macrumors G4
Jul 30, 2003
10,574
2,830
Delaware
Sounds like your boss misled you. :cool:
The 1TB fusion drive is the stock config, and not a good fit for Photoshop, etc.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
20,168
7,103
A RAM upgrade may help a little with Adobe products, but that's not the real "cause for the slowdown".

The problem is you have a platter-based hard drive inside.
With any of the more recent versions of the Mac OS, that equates to = SLOW.

You have two choices to fix the problem:
1. Open it up and put an SSD inside. This can be a risky job unless you have the skill and confidence to do it.
or
2. Buy an EXTERNAL USB3 SSD, plug it in, and set it up to be the boot drive. This will yield about 85% of the speed the same drive would give you if it was installed internally. That's very good, and "going external" is a fast and easy way to get A LOT MORE speed out of the iMac.

Something like this would do the job and do it right:
https://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-1TB-...keywords=sandisk+extreme+usb+3+portable+drive
Either a 1tb or 512gb would be fine, depending on your budget.

If you get a 1tb SSD, you could use CarbonCopyCloner to just "clone over" your internal OS install to the external SSD. CCC is FREE to download and use for the first 30 days, so this won't cost you. (but CCC is the best backup app there is, bar none, worth registering).
 
Last edited:

drgrafix

macrumors regular
Feb 9, 2008
169
24
New England
Pardon me for jumping in with a question, but I'm curious about that external SSD solution or alternate ones. I have a really old late 2007 24" iMac that is in mint condition, but I occasionally see the spinning ball and sometimes I get freeze-ups requiring a reboot. I have a 500 GB HDD and about 130 GB free. Adding an external SSD as my boot drive sounds like maybe it'd make this puppy run a little better... would it?

Wondering if there's a way to clone a SSD drive from my current root HDD? If I eliminated a ton of pictures and other stuff I might be able to get everything on a 250GB SSD... maybe. Or do I start from scratch and reload all my old software?
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
20,168
7,103
drgrafix wrote:
"I have a really old late 2007 24" iMac that is in mint condition, but I occasionally see the spinning ball and sometimes I get freeze-ups requiring a reboot. I have a 500 GB HDD and about 130 GB free. Adding an external SSD as my boot drive sounds like maybe it'd make this puppy run a little better... would it?"

NO. It won't really help you, because you don't have any way to connect a USB3 external drive that would give you anywhere near the speed that an SSD can deliver.

What you really need is a newer, faster Mac.
There's really no way around that.
 

dlp600

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 2, 2019
9
0
Chatsworth, CA
A RAM upgrade may help a little with Adobe products, but that's not the real "cause for the slowdown".

The problem is you have a platter-based hard drive inside.
With any of the more recent versions of the Mac OS, that equates to = SLOW.

You have two choices to fix the problem:
1. Open it up and put an SSD inside. This can be a risky job unless you have the skill and confidence to do it.
or
2. Buy an EXTERNAL USB3 SSD, plug it in, and set it up to be the boot drive. This will yield about 85% of the speed the same drive would give you if it was installed internally. That's very good, and "going external" is a fast and easy way to get A LOT MORE speed out of the iMac.

Something like this would do the job and do it right:
https://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-1TB-...keywords=sandisk+extreme+usb+3+portable+drive
Either a 1tb or 512gb would be fine, depending on your budget.

If you get a 1tb SSD, you could use CarbonCopyCloner to just "clone over" your internal OS install to the external SSD. CCC is FREE to download and use for the first 30 days, so this won't cost you. (but CCC is the best backup app there is, bar none, worth registering).

Thanks I will get an external USB.
 

dlp600

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 2, 2019
9
0
Chatsworth, CA
Thanks I will get an external USB.
I got the SanDisk Extreme and used CarbonCopyCloner to duplicate startup disk. It crashed about every 5 minutes until I rebooted with OG drove. Returned the drive and ordered a Samsung...Hope that fixes it. The speed was noticeably faster.
 

xgman

macrumors 603
Aug 6, 2007
5,117
879
An external bootable USB3 SSD isn't a bad solution at this point.
 
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