Questions about running an external bootable SSD

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by pandeas, May 16, 2019.

  1. pandeas macrumors newbie

    May 16, 2019
    I have looked through the threads in detail and can't find an answer to a query I have, which is in two parts:

    1) Work have given me a new MacBook pro and rather than me carry two MacBooks everywhere, I thought that I would run a bootable SSD with my personal stuff on it as I am not allowed to use the work MacBook for personal stuff like email account, video editing and spotify etc. I have run an external SSD in the past as a bootable drive, but I want to know if using this by holding the Alt key down at start-up will create a complete separate 'system' outside of the spy-ware that work will use, or will they know that I am running my own system on the hardware?

    2) What do people recommend at the fastest external SSD? I can see that the new macbook pro uses USB-C and I was looking at the SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD, will this be fast enough, or will I have to go for a Thunderbolt drive?


  2. chscag macrumors 68030


    Feb 17, 2008
    Fort Worth, Texas
    I can't answer your first question because I have no idea how your work management has configured the machine they gave you for work related stuff.

    Your second question is easier to answer: I would go with a Thunderbolt/USB-C external SSD such as the Samsung T5. The T5 drives are very fast. Nothing you use externally is going to be as fast as your internal PCIe drive but the T5 will give you acceptable performance.
  3. richpjr macrumors 68040


    May 9, 2006
  4. pandeas thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 16, 2019
    Thanks for the drive advice, this is really appreciated.

    For the first question, I was assuming that if I boot from another drive, then is there a way that work can see that I am using it as the Mac will be running an entirely different OSX?

    I don't know how it is set up, but it was box fresh and when I logged-in to the network, it downloaded everything that I needed in terms of software.

    Cheers. P.
  5. chscag macrumors 68030


    Feb 17, 2008
    Fort Worth, Texas
    It would probably be a good idea to find out first how your work IT sets up machines for employees to use for work related things before you decide to boot from an external drive. Also I would review their rules about use of the machine.

    Keep in mind that the machine is the property of your company. You do not want to violate any company rules that could put your position with them in jeopardy.
  6. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    Good luck on that.
    There's another thread similar to yours, where the professor paid for his own MacBook Pro, to use at work. The IT folks at the school loaded their own standard software, including a means to prevent updating to newest macOS, unless they (IT) allowed it. The newest models apparently can have a profile loaded into firmware by companies or schools, that can block other boot systems, should they so choose.
    Yours may not go that far, so you could experiment with an external drive. You would likely find out pretty quickly if you are affected by a lockout.
  7. pandeas thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 16, 2019
    Thanks, I have a bootable drive, but it is USB2, so I will grad a dongle over the weekend and give it a go. If it works, I assume that there will be no trace on the work hard drive or any of works spy-ware?
  8. mikzn macrumors 65816


    Sep 2, 2013
    My understanding is there are several ways this could get complicated.

    1 - T2 Chip may need permission to boot from external by "Admin"
    2 - Firmware Password can restrict external from booting
    3 - encrypted drive might be an issue?

    As mentioned by chscag your friendly IT folks may have thier own rules and limitations on use of the MBP

    That said if you have a spare drive - you could always try installing Mojave on it from the new work mac? If it installs my guess is you are good to go.

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7 May 16, 2019