Installing Two 1TB SSD into 2012 Mac mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Mavi, Nov 1, 2014.

  1. Mavi macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2011
    #1
    Hello!

    First I want to thank the many contributors to this wonderful site! I am hoping someone can help with an SSD installation I would like to do into my 2012 Mac Mini.

    1. I have a 2012 Mac mini 2.6Ghz i7 Quad Core with 16GB ram and originally with a Fusion Drive. I recently removed the 1TB HDD from the mini using the guide on iFixIt.com. I then installed a Samsung 840 EVO 1TB SSD and booted in recovery mode. Disk utility sensed the missing 1TB HDD and offered to "repair" the 2 drives in the machine (the Apple 128GB SSD and the new Samsung 1TB SSD). That was completed and now I have 2 separate drives in Finder (they were not combined as a Fusion Drive). I installed the OS X on the new 1TB SSD and made it my boot drive. GREAT! So far so good!

    2. I am thinking now that this is working well, down the road, I may want to get rid of the Apple 128GB SSD and replace it with another Samsung 840 EVO (currently $399 on Amazon) or 850 Pro (when the prices down a bit - it's currently $599 on Amazon). In fact, I'm kind of tempted to do it immediately.

    I am wondering if I can just remove the 128GB SSD and then just put in another Samsung 1TB SSD and have disk utility recognize this and "repair" it without losing data on my original Samsung 840 EVO 1TB SSD.

    The other concern I have is whether the 128GB SSD uses a different connector than the Samsung. I heard that Apple uses a "blade" connector but because there was a piece of black tape covering the Apple SSD I didn't want to tamper with it. In hindsight I should have checked it while I had the machine open.

    Thank you for any insight anyone can provide!
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #2
    The Apple SSD in that model Mini uses a standard SATA connector.
     
  3. Mavi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2011
    #3
    That's great news! That's what it appeared to be when I inspected it, despite being "covered".

    I'm actually thinking to just go ahead with the 2nd 1TB SSD immediately now. I am confident I can install it without a hitch now that the connectors are verified to be the same. The main concern now becomes whether OS X will be able to recognize the 2nd drive, format it, and recognize it without me having to format or alter the first Samsung 1TB SSD.
     
  4. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #4
    You'll be able to configure the new drive without having to alter the current drive.
     
  5. VTECaddict macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2008
    #5
    Formatting the second drive has nothing to do with the first one, unless you were using them in a software RAID or something. If your current 1TB and Apple SSD are operating completely independent of one another, you should have no issues.

    You might consider making it a RAID 0 setup with your 2x1TB SSD to make it even faster. You would have to backup and restore the 1TB to the new RAID array though.
     
  6. Mavi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2011
    #6
    So then it appears the problems only arise when detaching and forming Fusion Drives. From what I read, it appears that when you dismantle a fusion drive and make it 2 drives using command lines from Terminal, both volumes essentially have to be formatted and you start from scratch. However, now that I have separated the original Fusion drive and have 2 separate volumes (the Apple 128GB SSD and the Samsung 1TB SSD which replaced the Apple (Toshiba made) 1TB HDD), it appears that I can now just insert and remove drives at will and the system should recognize each separately unless I purposely make them into a Fusion drive (which I don't plan on doing, at least intentionally!).

    ----------

    Also, with the older SATA connector, it would appear any speed advantage of the 850 pro would be negated by the older connector. In which case - I am heavily leaning towards another 840 EVO. Am I correct in my assumption?
     

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