RAID 0 on i5 2.5G Mac Mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Vampire18, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. Vampire18 macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2007
    Can I setup Raid 0 on non-server Mac Mini after install dual-drive kit?

    I believe the chipset on non-server Mini is Intel HM65, it seems HM65 does not support RAID. :confused:

    I don't know whether 2011 Mini Server is HM67. If so, HM67 supports RAID no doubt.
  2. mdgm macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    I don't know. I've successfully setup software RAID 0 on my Mini Server. I can't see why you couldn't give it a try.

    Here's what I'd do:

    1. Connect the new mini via firewire or Thunderbolt (if you have another Thunderbolt equipped Mac) to another Mac and put the new Mini in Target Disk Mode (press T when you turn it on) on first boot. Clone the internal hard drive to an image e.g. using SuperDuper.
    2. Setup the Mac.
    3. Download the Lion Recovery Assistant ( and run it to create a USB key. You'll need this.
    4. Put the Mac back into Target Disk Mode.
    5. Format the two drives and create a RAID-0 set. Note that you can't have the recovery partition on a disk in a RAID-0 set.
    6. Restore the image you made of your Mac's hard drive from backup.
    7. Turn off the Mac.
    8. Make sure your Lion recovery usb key you created in step 3 is connected
    9. Turn on the Mac, pressing the option key.
    10. Select the Recovery partition on the USB key
    11. Quit. You should be prompted to select a startup disk. Select your RAID-0 volume.

    If it doesn't work, you can wipe the disks again and restore the image of your hard drive from backup and have your computer back how it was before.
  3. KScottMyers, Aug 31, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2011

    KScottMyers macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    Yes it works fine. I'm running two internal SSDs, RAID 0 on a Dual 2.7 mini now.

    Easiest way to install would be to clone existing boot volume to an external firewire or usb drive, boot from that drive to setup RAID, clone back to RAID. Done.

    Lion does not allow disk encryption with RAID and you will have to run repair permissions and disk check from the command line. RAID also doesn't allow the Recovery partition to be created - but you can always boot from Internet Recovery mode or use the usb drive for emergencies when necessary.

    Works great and is fast. I'm getting 500MB/s read and write speeds.
  4. mdgm macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    Do note that the Lion recovery USB key must be made by your new Mac Mini. You can then create an image of this USB key using Disk Utility if you don't want to dedicate the USB key to being a Lion Recovery USB key for your Mac.

    I found when I used Target Disk mode, the Mac wouldn't boot after I restored. I don't know if the same applies with KScottMyers' method. I would recommend having the USB key handy in case the Mac refuses to boot and you need to use the USB key to set the Mac to boot from the RAID volume.
  5. KScottMyers macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    Keep in mind, you don't need a usb key to boot into Internet Recovery Mode on the 2011 mini. Just hold down Command+Option+R. This also lets you select a startup disk.

    Very cool.
  6. michelg1970 macrumors regular


    Jul 26, 2011
    Gouda - The Netherlands
    Scott, do mention that you need a fast internet connection. On my server I did the dame trick and was lucky that I have 50 Mb/s connection....
  7. KScottMyers macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    Yes - this is true. I have a 12Mb/s connection and it takes about 5 min to boot.

    I should also mention that the Apple Recovery Tool does not allow you to make a recovery partition on RAIDed volumes - as RAID does not allow multiply partitions.

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