MacPro: Boot SSD - user folder on another volume question

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by eightball8, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. eightball8 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    #1
    Okay, so I've searched a bunch but if I've missed this elsewhere please forgive.

    Here's my question. I've got an SSD set up in my optical bay for my boot drive. I want to put my user folder on a separate volume (hdd#1). One small question and one big question:

    1. Is it enough to simply choose advanced options under system preferences - accounts and select the other volume and Folder? Anything else I need to do?

    Bigger Question: So let's say the second volume (hdd#1) is my current boot drive. (i.e. this hdd is the drive I've been using as a boot/users drive before the upgrade to ssd.)

    2. Can I still boot to this second volume (hdd#1) and use the same users folder? Will it create any issues to use this users folder with two separate boot drives? So I would primarily boot from SSD and use the users folder on HDD#1 but if the ssd crashed, etc. I would boot from HDD#1 and still have access to the same users folder. Will that work?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated,

    Anthony
     
  2. gglockner macrumors 6502

    gglockner

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Bellevue, WA
    #2
    1. Yes, that's about it. The only issue is that you probably should create a second admin account on the computer whose home folder resides on the SSD. That way, you can get into the system if something happens to your hard drive.

    2. Theoretically, you can do what you're proposing, but there could be issues in terms of the two volumes becoming out-of-sync. For instance, what will you do when Apple releases a new OS? One idea might be to keep imaging back to the hard drive. I'm not doing this myself, but it's an interesting idea.
     
  3. dbhopkins macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2011
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    Anthony, a few weeks ago I added a SSD to my own Mac Pro for the boot/app drive, and in the process I was contemplating what you want to do.

    After googling around and doing quite a bit of research, I decided not to do it because there seemed to be too much dissonance and ambiguity on the the wisdom and even the various techniques of doing this.

    In the end, I just made sure that my iTunes library and iPhoto library, Mail folders and iMovie folders were on the non-boot drive. I had to create symlinks for Mail and iMovie.

    I found this link on the topic helpful and insightful:

    http://macperformanceguide.com/SettingUp-Relocating-HomeDir.html

    This guy advises against moving home directories for a number of reasons, one of which is: "If the Boot drive is a fast SSD, moving the home directory can be self-defeating for performance". In the end, that resonated with me. Maybe there's some value to having your users in the SSD drive.

    You could argue that Apple shouldn't have mingled the OS and the users so tightly, but they did, and they engineered their OS to work that way. Therefore I have to question the wisdom of trying to separate them when Apple makes it so hard to do it.
     
  4. diazj3 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #4
    First time I hear that moving the home folder elsewhere is a bad idea.... either for speed or practical reasons.... not too sure about this.

    This is great advice, in case you run into any problem as dbhopkins suggests.

    Also, a good backup plan is - as always - mandatory
     
  5. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
    #5

    How about arguing that ssd's need to be bigger and cheaper.
    I just wish intel would build a 600gb , 1200gb 3.5 inch ssd at about 60 to 80 cents a gig. These problems would end for a lot of us.

    I don't fault apple as much for making the linkage of the users file handcuffed to osx. Remember tiny ssds for osx with big hdds for files did not exist when cheetah or puma was around. Well not in the publics hands.
     
  6. gglockner macrumors 6502

    gglockner

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Bellevue, WA
    #6
    You've posted this before. We get the point.

    The problem is that SSDs that large are too expensive for most users today. Hopefully that will change in the future. In the meantime, the issue is how to live within the confines of the affordable SSDs.

    On my MacBook Air, everything fits onto the SSD because I use the machine for travel only, and I keep my media collection and particularly large documents on my Mac Pro. On my Mac Pro, all my files are there; even if I kept my media files and virtual machines off the SSD, I would have space limitations. Sure, I could have bought a larger SSD, but that was not in the budget at this time. Nor is it for most of the others who are asking these questions.
     
  7. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
    #7

    Yeah I know Sometimes I can be a broken record on pet peeves.. I did find a link for a 160gb intel series 320 on ebay. 299 lowest I have seen.

    they have a lot in stock more then 50 of them at 299 that is a little better

    http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-Intel-SSDSA...e_Internal&hash=item5d2e3d871f#ht_2845wt_1250


    this is the 300gb for 549

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...94924&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT#ht_2829wt_1250

    most people (in usa) can get 5% off ebay with e bucks and e bates so that makes the 160gb at 285 and the

    300gb at 523
     
  8. gglockner macrumors 6502

    gglockner

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Bellevue, WA
    #8
    For my main machine, I would need at least 250GB for boot and home folder, even after putting my media files and virtual machines on another drive. I am not willing to pay for a high quality SSD of that size, and I'm sure there are others in similar situations. Which is why I finally got a 115GB OWC SSD, and I kept my home folder on my RAID-0 hard drives. That's still fast enough for my needs.
     
  9. ragu, Nov 26, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012

    ragu macrumors member

    ragu

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    #9
    Moving User files

    I have a 240g SSD for just OSX and apps and user files are on 3Tb and also Itunes has it's own 3tb drive, and a 2tb drive for bootcamp works fine:)
     

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