Resolved Is the Western Digital Red NAS 8TB drive 100% compatible with the Mac Pro 4,1?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Diamond Dave, Aug 17, 2017.

  1. Diamond Dave macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
    #1
    I'm on the verge of buying this hard drive:

    https://www.wdc.com/en-gb/products/internal-storage/wd-red.html#WD80EFZX

    to use to clone my boot drive to as a backup. (I'm aware that they can be had for far less money via places other than from WD themselves).

    As it's a much more modern drive compared to the Mac, I'm wondering if there are any compatibility issues I should be aware of (apart from the need for some sort of bracket as apparently the screw holes in modern drives don't match those in the drive sleds of Macs like mine).

    I'll want to format the drive in Mac OS Extended (Journaled) format as a single partition, and be able to use Disk Utility 11.5.2 (the version that ships with the OS I'm currently using - Snow Leopard 10.6.8) to do so.

    [For anyone reeling in horror at my use of an OS from 2009, once I'm satisfied that the new drive contains a successful clone of the boot drive, I'll be upgrading the boot drive to Mavericks 10.9.5 and then testing that my Adobe CS6 installation is working satisfactorily (as well as updating various other software). Once I've done this, and have then cloned the boot drive running 10.9.5 to the new drive (& tested the clone), I'll repeat the process by upgrading the boot drive to El Capitan 10.11.6, and testing the CS6 installation again. I'm aware that El Capitan can cause problems with CS6. If I find issues I can't work around, I can clone the new drive back over the top of the boot drive, meaning I'll be back to running Mavericks. If El Capitan proves to be ok, I can clone the boot drive over the top of the new drive, meaning the new drive will be an up to date clone of the El Capitan system.]

    From my research I can't see any reason why all the above won't work, but there may be things I've overlooked. If anyone has any experience of using Western Digital Red NAS drives as standard Mac OS Extended (Journaled) formatted drives within a 4,1 / 5,1 Mac Pro I'd be grateful to hear about it.

    My second question is about the boot drive. At the moment it's a WD Caviar Black 1TB drive (with a second virtually identical drive used as the cloned backup). Once the new 8TB drive is successfully up & running as a clone, I'd like to use Disk Utility to combine/merge the 2 Caviar Black drives into a single 2TB virtual volume (formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled)) via RAID 0, giving me a 2TB boot volume rather than the 1TB I currently have. (I'm in desperate need of more space, but I'm not prepared to do without a clone backup of everything).

    Although I'll only have 2TB of primary storage, buying an 8TB drive to clone to is sensible as it has the lowest cost per GB of the WD Red NAS drives, and allows me to upgrade my primary storage over time to anything up to 8TB and still have enough capacity to clone to.

    Many thanks in advance for any relevant, sensible input anyone has. (And by that, I mean comments such as "why don't you just buy a Creative Cloud subscription?", "you should buy an SSD - they're WAAAAAY faster!", and so on will be treated with the contempt that they deserve. I know my Mac onions. I've been using Macs professionally since 1994. I've just no experience with WD Red NAS drives or RAID.)
     
  2. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #2
    I am using the WD 8TB Red on my 4,1 (flashed to 5,1) internally now. The only incompatibility is the mounting point. Both 4TB and 6TB Red still come with the standard mount points, but the 8TB is not. You can still mount only 2 points and place the HDD in bay 1 (lie it on the PCIe fan with some soft material in between), but for bay 2-4, you will need a compatible HDD tray to install the HDD properly (or use your own way to fix the HDD on the stock tray).

    As long as you figure out how to install it properly, it's plug and play.
     
  3. Diamond Dave thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
    #3
    Thanks very much for your (reassuring) information. I'm planning to use the new drive in bay 2, so I'll need to buy the appropriate adaptor or replacement drive sled.

    Can I ask if your drive is formatted in Mac OS Extended (Journaled) format? Is it formatted as a single partition? What software did you use to format it, and what version of the OS are you using?

    Also, can anyone point me to a UK source (Amazon, eBay, or similar) for the correct adaptor or replacement drive sled?

    Many thanks.
     
  4. h9826790, Aug 18, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2017

    h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #4
    I am sure the UK members here can help you to get the cheapest UK stuff. I usually buy my parts from China.

    OWC also sell the sled that can fit any 3.5" HDD.

    Yes, my 8TB HDD is formatted with HFS+, single partition, running under MacOS 10.12.6 now. You don't need any special tool, disk utility can do the job properly.
     
  5. Squuiid macrumors 6502a

    Squuiid

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2006
    #5
    Scan.co.uk if you're after Sonnet hardware, otherwise Amazon.co.uk for everything else.
    Last resort, eBay.co.uk
     
  6. Diamond Dave thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
    #6
    That's great - many thanks. All very reassuring. I've found the OWC sled:

    https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/MPRODBKTLG6

    and the cheapest I've found it online from a UK supplier is here:

    https://www.megamac.com/products/owc-hard-drive-bracket-for-mac-pro

    so I'll probably order one from there when I order the drive.

    Good to know that a drive that large & modern can be set as a single HFS+ partition using Disk Utility. I just hope that the Snow Leopard version of Disk Utility is capable of creating an 8TB partition. I'll soon find out when I try!

    Thanks again for all your input.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 18, 2017 ---
    Thanks for mentioning scan.co.uk - I'd not heard of them before. I've had a look for the OWC drive sled on there, but I can't find it in any of the obvious places, like here:

    https://www.scan.co.uk/shop/computer-hardware/hard-drives-internal/hdd-and-ssd-accessories

    or here:

    https://www.scan.co.uk/shop/computer-hardware/hard-drives-internal/bay-adaptors-brackets

    so I think I'll just order it from megamac.com using the link I mentioned above.

    Thanks for your help.
     
  7. Mr_Brightside_@ macrumors 68020

    Mr_Brightside_@

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2005
    Location:
    The 6ix
    #7
    Not sure if this is totally helpful, but I've started to have 3.5" - 2.5" adaptors for iMacs 3d printed and they work great. There may well be ones for the cMP too.
     
  8. Diamond Dave thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
    #8
    3D printed drive sleds! Wow! Amazing stuff. It's actually a 3.5" cMP drive sled with extra screw holes to accommodate large, modern drives that I need, as opposed to a 3.5" -> 2.5" adaptor, but thanks anyway.
     
  9. Mr_Brightside_@ macrumors 68020

    Mr_Brightside_@

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2005
    Location:
    The 6ix

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