Install OS X onto new SSD

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Akack, Aug 17, 2013.

  1. Akack macrumors 6502a

    Mar 5, 2011
    Have a base 2012 mac mini on 10.8.4 and planning on REPLACING the stock 500 GB with a Samsung 840 SSD. The swap of the hard drives look straight forward but have a question concerning how to install OS ML onto the new SSD.

    Do I need to make an external Recovery HD as seen here , or do I just hold command + option + R on startup and it starts OS X Recovery directly from Apple Servers over wifi??

    Thanks in advance.
  2. sarcosis macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2006
    These United States
    You can do an Internet recovery straight from Apples servers. That's what I did since I didn't want to bother making an image. Just remember this, format your drive using the disk utility before starting the install. I thought it would do that automatically, but when I went to do the install, it didn't see the drive. After the format, it found it right away.
  3. Akack thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 5, 2011
    ^^ ok thanks, sounds straight forward enough as long as I don't botch the SSD install :)
  4. opinio macrumors 65816

    Mar 23, 2013
    You can boot from your Time Machine drive and format, recover etc from there. The Time Machine drive (except for Time Capsule) has a boot system similar to the recovery drive. If there is no OS or recovery partition installed (i.e. fresh drive) and the TM drive is attached the Mac should boot from it anyway after a minute or so.
  5. blanka macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012
    Get the new 840 EVO. The old 840 is a lousy performer. The new EVO is as fast as the PRO, but with 840 pricing.
  6. Giuly, Aug 18, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013

    Giuly macrumors 68040


    If you have the software for Samsung Rapid (RAM caching) on Windows then yes, but it doesn't exist on a Mac. However, Mavericks has the exact same feature (RAM caching) enabled on all SSDs and even hard drives.

    Did I mention that Mavericks > Snow Leopard, yet? Yes, it's that good.
  7. Fishrrman macrumors Pentium


    Feb 20, 2009
    It might help to do it this way:

    - Leave the internal HDD in place for the moment, and
    - Initialize and do OS installation on the new SSD _externally_

    I've seen a number of posts here on MR from people who do the drive swap first, then have problems getting the new SSD working. Best to get it "tested and working" BEFORE you start pulling the Mini apart.

    There's a "cheap-n-easy" device that can do this for you:
    A USB3/SATA docking station.
    You can find these for $25 or less. It will become one of the most useful peripherals you ever buy.

    To see what's available, go to and enter "usb3 sata dock" in the search box. You'll get MANY choices.
    I happen to use and recommend products by (no financial interest).

    If you pick up a dock, easiest way to get the new drive going is to:
    - Put in dock, initialize with Disk Utility
    - Use CarbonCopyCloner to clone the contents of your (old) HDD to the SSD
    - Do a "test boot" to be sure things are as you want them on the SSD
    - Then "do the swap", and finally
    - If you take the old drive out, put it into the dock and use it as your backup.

    Final thought:
    The new USB3 docks that support UASP (USB Attached SCSI Protocol) will yield speeds that are all-but the equal of an internally-installed drive.
  8. Akack thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 5, 2011

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