Real Danger Having Stock HD in the Optical Bay?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by fouramphonecall, Mar 30, 2011.

  1. fouramphonecall macrumors member

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    Apr 17, 2010
    #1
    I’ve seen many people on here debating the actual real-world danger of having a stock Apple hard drive (one without built-in drop protection) in the optical bay of a MacBook Pro. Obviously there is a theoretical danger that sudden movement could jerk the disk while it’s in motion and cause damage. But I’d like to see if anyone with significant real-world tech experience actually considers this a major issue. What are the necessary conditions for a scenario where the drive could get damaged? How severe does the movement need to be? Is there only a danger when the drive is spinning or all the time?

    Right now I have my SSD in my optical bay and my HD in the HD bay, but I would like to switch that around if it’s really not a significant concern. But, as a college student, I move my computer around quite a bit every day, so I need to take that into account.
     
  2. mulo macrumors 68020

    mulo

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    #2
    I read somewhere that the new MBP's have SMS in the optibay.
     
  3. BeachChair macrumors 6502a

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    Copenhagen, Denmark
    #3
    Good questions.

    I'm no expert, but it's my impression there is a real risk. I've destroyed an external hard drive by yanking it while in operation and crashed my Xbox once adjusting it's position while it was doing something on the HDD.
     
  4. fouramphonecall thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 17, 2010
    #4

    Do you have a source on that?
     
  5. mulo macrumors 68020

    mulo

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    #5
    look at the bottom two posts in this thread, thats a bit of extra info to consider.
    I myself have a seagate drive, so i have it in the optibay.
     
  6. fouramphonecall thread starter macrumors member

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    #6
    By "this thread" do you actually mean THIS thread, or did you mean to link to an external thread?
     
  7. mac8867 macrumors 6502

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    #7
    I have ** Real World ** experience here... it is a BIG deal.

    I am a consultant and am constantly picking up my laptop and moving into meeting rooms etc etc.

    My first OptiBay hard drive, without SMS, failed after a few months. (Western Digital Blue 500 GB)

    I put a WD Black model with SMS in the optibay a year ago, and absolutely no issues.
     
  8. altecXP macrumors 65816

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    Aug 3, 2009
    #8
    That could also be a coincidence.
     
  9. mac8867 macrumors 6502

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    #9
    LOL --- sure, sure... but I am not going to go out and buy a non-SMS drive, install it, and risk my data, to prove it either way...
     
  10. fouramphonecall thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 17, 2010
    #10
    That's an interesting personal account, even if the cause and effect aren't necessarily certain.

    Anyone else have a similar experience with a non sms drive?
     
  11. VTMac macrumors 6502

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    Jun 9, 2008
    #11
    For a good decade or so every laptop made did NOT have sms because it didn't exist. None of this had failures from everyday movement while the hard drive was running. For the OP it was no doubt completely coincidental. SMS adds a additional small margin for error, primarily related to non-normal movement - for example dropping your machine. Even with SMS, if I drop my machine from by backpack to a sidewalk, it's still a crapshoot. (My buddy did this last month with his 2009 MBP with sms drive and drive was trashed.)

    So while there is a bit more risk in using a non-sms drive, that risk is really only comes into play if you drop the thing. Not during normal use.
     
  12. fouramphonecall thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 17, 2010
    #12
    Wow, yeah. I can't believe I hadn't thought about that.
     

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