Macbook5,1 - most effective upgrades?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Calipso, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. Calipso macrumors member

    Jul 30, 2006
    My wife has 2008 intel core 2 duo macbook unibody. It only has 2gb RAM and 150gb drive and is running 10.5. She has loads of photos and videos from her iPhone over the years and now her drive is running out of space. I have tried to clean up her hard drive of "junk" etc but the iphoto library is huge lol.

    Her machine is really slow at the moment.

    So three things;

    Firstly - best option to back up all her valuable data. I was thinking some type of external hard drive, ie USB drive. What's most cost effective but reliable with the ability to store more stuff on it? (was thinking 500gb or so)

    Secondly, I def want to upgrade the RAM and the OS to 10.6.8. Is 4gb enough? She doesn't do any gaming or anything crazy, its just for browsing net / email / iphoto etc.. I see on Crucial you can get 4gb for £32.

    Thirdly - Contemplating upgrading the internal hard drive to SSD. Not really sure how to go about this or if it is at all possible. Also not sure if it will be worth it?

    Im in UK, so if you have any links to hardware etc, would appreciate UK pricing!

  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    Use Activity Monitor to determine if it is a RAM or CPU issue.

    Get an external USB 3.0 HDD, 2.5" requires no extra power, 3.5" offers more capacity, USB 3.0 offers future compatibility in case your wife updates to a new Mac.
    Either us Time Machine to back up or use CarbonCopyCloner (version 3.4.7 is still free and available for download here and works with Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, Mac OS X 10.7 Lion and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion) or SuperDuper! to clone the internal HDD to the external HDD.
    CCC and SD make bootable clones, thus you can easier restore from them, but Time Machine has the addition of making hourly backups in the background.

    That machine has two 1 GB modules to get to 2 GB RAM, thus for 4 GB you need two 2 GB modules and for 8 GB you need two 4 GB modules.
    That MacBook can support 8 GB with a BootRom update, look at the following guide for more information:
    But 4 GB RAM might be more than enough, therefore open Activity Monitor and go to the System Memory* tab and look for Page Outs and Swap used and report back.

    Get an SSD, it makes the machine feel new again, and even though the MacBook only supports S-ATA 3.0 Gbps (S-ATA II), get an S-ATA 6.0 Gbps (S-ATA III) SSD like the Crucial M4 or Samsung 840, for future compatibility.
    256 GB of SSD glory can be had for around 150 €, 128 GB might suffice for smaller needs, but still costs above 100 € sometimes.

    Look here for a more detailed guide:

    MacBook, MacBook Pro: Replacing the Hard Disk Drive, transferring data to the new HDD

    the guide includes:
    • 0. Identify your MacBook or MacBook Pro
    • 1. Getting a new HDD
    • 2. Guides to replace the internal HDD with a newer one
    • 3. Transferring data from the old HDD to the new HDD
    • 4. Using the optical disk drive (ODD) slot for placing an SSD or HDD inside the MB/P (OPTIBAY)

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