Question about HDD and SSD compatibility

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by crisimikiwiki, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. crisimikiwiki macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    Hello! I have been a Mac user for only a couple of years or so. I bought myself a second hand late-2008 unibody macbook, that was at first pretty decent. I loaded it up with 8GB of RAM and all was going fine.

    Here are my specs.

    13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008
    OSC Version 10.8.2
    Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    Memory: 8GB 1067 MHz DDR3
    Graphics NVIDIA GeForce 9400M 256 MB
    Startup Disk: Macintosh HD

    My machine has been on a slow decline for the past 6 months or so, i realise it is getting old now, but I am in absolutely no position at this stage to upgrade. It has been getting extreeeemely hot. According to smc fancontrol, up to 107 degrees! So many months ago I purchased a decent usb cooling pad (by Targa i believe) but also wondered if a large heat-sink would help. I went to ebay and purchased an Aluminium Heatsink 290mm long 112mm wide 110 high, and a 202mm x 202mm x 3mm Silicone Thermal Pad to 'sandwich' between the heatsink and the bottom of my macbook. I then put the cooling pad beneath all of this, so that the fans are always cooling the heatsink which then in turn, cools the macbook. I noticed a pretty drastic improvement in temp drop from this. I opened it up a few days ago and gave it a good clean, which it really needed. I pulled out a good deal of built up dust and grime (and a few flies!) from the fan, and ever since it has been keeping much cooler. I also purchased some thermal paste to re-apply to the CPU, I haven't done that yet and am beginning to wonder if that stage is necessary at all really. I am a pretty intensive user, with my main focus on Video work, 3D programs, Photoshop etc. So obviously, that puts the heat up.

    I have had a couple of extremely frustrating 'data fails' in the past couple of weeks. First of all a 32GB SD card corrupted on me on Christmas eve, this was loaded with some specific video promo work for some friends Music act which I shot out in Spain. Then 4 days later my 500GB external HDD went dead on me. I realised I was also running drastically low on space on my Macbook internal HDD as well, so decided to upgrade my internal storage solution. I used to be relatively tech-savvy, but i have been 'out of the loop' for a few years now, and have only in recent months learnt about Solid-state drives. I went ahead and purchased one on Amazon. This one:

    Crucial 128GB M4 SATA 6Gb/s 2.5 inch Internal Solid State Drive

    I am intending to use this as my OS drive, i have also bought a drive caddy, and removed my optical drive in preparation for it.

    I also bought another hard drive for increased internal storage, as my current 160GB 5400rpm HDD really isn't cutting it. I went for this one:

    Western Digital 2.5 inch Scorpio Black 750GB 7200rpm SATA 16MB Internal Hard Drive

    Thing is...I don't actually know if these are compatible with my model of Macbook. From the research I have done i think they are, but to be honest I feel so out of the loop these days that I've got myself quite confused, so thought i'd come here!

    I understand in terms of the SSD, my Macbook will only be able to utilise 3 out of the 6GB/s, but also believe that will still be somewhat of a vast improvement for me.

    So, after all of this rambling, my ultimate questions are, will my new HDD and SSD be compatible with my Macbook. I know I should have researched more thoroughly, i'm just stupid, and panicked!

    A big Happy New Year to all of you! I would much appreciate any feedback anyone has for me - many thanks!

  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
  3. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
  4. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    Ok so I have now installed the 750GB HDD into the caddy and put that into my Macbook. On powering up, I got a message to say 'The drive you installed is not readable by this computer' or something like that. It shows up in Disk Utility. Do i need to format/partition it?

    At the moment I have my standard factory 160GB HDD where it has always been, my 750 in the caddy where the optical drive once was. My eventual set-up will be to copy everything from the 160GB to the 750GB and then to replace the 160GB entirely with the SSD.

    Thanks again.

    Please excuse the n00bness. This is really making me feel older than 27.

  5. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    Problem solved. Formatted to Mac OS extended (journaled).
  6. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    While you have it open - give the fans and under the MLB a blow out with some compressed air. After 4 years it'll have gathered quite a bit of dust :)
  7. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    Yes I did that already thanks, and it obviously made quite a huge difference!

    My next question (hopefully my last!) is....

    I'm currently backing up via time machine my 160GB standard Macbook HD drive to my new 750GB Western Digital one. Will I be able to then replace my 160GB Macbook HD with the SSD and install Mountain Lion onto the SSD that way?


    Once backed up, will it be best to then take out the 750GB Western Digital drive, put the SSD in there, install ML onto that via my 160GB Macbook HD...

    I downloaded ML from the app store, so can I just re-download and install onto a new drive?

    Thanks again!

  8. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    So my new 750GB WD now holds a backup of my original 160GB Macbook HD.

    I couldn't find any replies on here so I tried looking for info elsewhere. I just replaced my Macbook HD with my new SSD but got a flashing question mark folder thing on startup - so that's obviously not the right thing to do. So I have taken out the SSD and replaced the Macbook HD for now.

    Basically all I want to do now is to get Mountain Lion onto my SSD, preferably as it was, but failing that, as a fresh install.

    Any help will as always, be much appreciated. Thank you.
  9. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    Look at post #2 and the linked guide. In it is a section called "3. Transferring data from the old HDD to the new HDD". It can be applied for SSDs too.
  10. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    Thanks - i'm sure i'm making this more confusing than it needs to be but i'm getting somewhere.
  11. crisimikiwiki thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2013
    Success! So i put my new SSD in an external usb dock, re-downloaded OSX from the App store, installed it to there, then have now replaced the original Macbook HDD with the new SSD. All seems fine. Many thanks again for your help.

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