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MacBook Pro 16 inch - Personal / Work

cwo

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 15, 2013
24
7
Ontario
Hi everyone,

I have a question - I've been working from home like everyone else here hopefully!

My work has me split into office / home at times.

Is it possible for me to make a bootable SSD (Using Samsung's T7 SSD drive) with macOS Catalina, apps, files and use that to boot into from my MacBook Pro 16 inch? I have this laptop as my personal computer but don't want to have to partition the drive into two separate files or create another user account as I only have 512 gb size.

I have an iMac at the office that is 2018 which has USB-C / Thunderbolt - so trying to get a portable office that I can carry back and forth from home instead of dragging my iMac home every time....

I work as a graphic designer so the programs are largely the core Adobe Creative Suite, MS Office, MS Teams, Sugarsync and files.

Thank you for any responses!

Cheers,
cwo
 

ascender

macrumors 68040
Dec 8, 2005
3,655
1,558
Can you not just install the apps you need on each machine and then have your user files in a cloud service like iCloud or Dropbox meaning you have those on both?

Or is the issue that you don’t want to run Catalina on both?
 
Comment

cwo

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 15, 2013
24
7
Ontario
Thanks everyone and appreciate it! I'll try that approach Rich and see if that works out.
I have thought about cloud drives but as I work in design, sometimes the fie sizes get big.... downloading 2-3 gb files to work on them gets pretty tired fast... lol

cWo
 
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DanMan619

macrumors regular
Dec 30, 2012
212
157
Los Angeles, CA
If it were me, i'd also consider just having two separate logins/accounts on your 16" MBP. That way, user interface wise, your Work and Personal is separated but storage wise you aren't having to split or partition your 512 GB internal drive. If you definitely need it on an external though, i second Rich's suggestion.
 
Comment

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
11,994
6,883
Is it possible for me to make a bootable SSD (Using Samsung's T7 SSD drive) with macOS Catalina, apps, files and use that to boot into from my MacBook Pro 16 inch? I have this laptop as my personal computer but don't want to have to partition the drive into two separate files or create another user account as I only have 512 gb size.

It is possible, but I would advise against it. Externally booted OS installations are perfectly functional, but you will suffer from performance and reliability issues.
 
Comment

cwo

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 15, 2013
24
7
Ontario
Thank you, I've ordered the SSD as it is on sale and will try an approach just porting files back and forth on the HD and then split user accounts on the MacBook Pro 16. I can always delete the "work" account when done.

Thanks,
cWo
 
Comment

ght56

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2020
456
307
I know it isnt exactly what you were asking, but I have a 16 I use for work and personal and I do two separate user accounts on the same local hard drive and it works spectacular as it is such a great computer and it does this so well. In most cases, the licenses for software are then shared across the two accounts as well, and I use the Sharing feature to segment what files each account does have access to (several shared folders). Everything works so, so well in this configuration that it saves me a lot of time and lets me avoid using my chunky 15 inch dual core work laptop. My work account is also configured to access our networked drive and this works flawlessly.
 
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Yebubbleman

macrumors 68040
May 20, 2010
3,625
789
Los Angeles, CA
You need to be able to go into the Startup Security Utility and change settings to allow you to boot external media. That and I'd make sure that you at least had an SSD (DO NOT USE A HARD DRIVE) that used USB 3.0 speeds (though any drive that uses some form of USB or Thunderbolt that gets you 10Gbps or better transfer speeds is more preferable). But yeah, it's totally possible if what you want is to have an OS that has YOUR stuff and nothing from your work. As others have said, making your own user account on that machine is easier, but most IT departments won't be happy with that (and likely will disable your ability to do that), making using a bootable SSD for YOUR stuff a preferable option.
 
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