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jvlfilms

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 11, 2007
265
225
Staten Island, NY
Hello guys!

I've recently acquired a 2009 Mac Pro and have been making some upgrades to the machine.

My current setup is:
  • PCIe SSD with El Capitan
  • SATA SSD with Windows 10
  • 1TB internal SATA spinning drive
  • USB 3.0 card
  • Two optical media drives - Superdrive, and a Blu-ray drive

I've been having a problem that when I hold down option when I hear the chime, I'm presented with a grey screen for 15-20 seconds. Then the list of bootable drives shows up. When I boot straight into the OS X PCIe drive, it works fine. It's only when I hold down option to go into Windows that I experience a hindrance.

Could it be the optical drives causing an issue? Is it okay to remove the optical tray, disconnect them and leave them out?
 

h9826790

macrumors P6
Apr 3, 2014
15,663
7,864
Hong Kong
One is PCIe and the Windows one is native SATA 2

Sorry I am a bit confused, you actually have 2 SATA SSD, but one connected via a PCIe SATA 3 card?

Or

One is PCIe SSD (nothing to do with SATA), and the other one is SATA SSD?

I asked this is because a PCIe SATA 3 card may slow down the boot manager.
 

jvlfilms

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 11, 2007
265
225
Staten Island, NY
I'm sorry:

I have one SATA 2 SSD that's mounted on one of the removable trays.
I also have a PCIe card that connects to a SSD with a SATA 3 connection (it's called the OWC Accelsior S) that I use for my main Mac OS X drive.

When it boots to OS X, it loads instantly with no issues. It's only when I go to the boot manager that it takes 15-20 seconds before I see the two OS's
 

h9826790

macrumors P6
Apr 3, 2014
15,663
7,864
Hong Kong
For testing purpose, you may move that OSX SSD into any of the native SATA 2 bay and remove the OWC Accelsior S. And then check if it make the difference.
 

grahamperrin

macrumors 601
Jun 8, 2007
4,942
644
A loose comparison … MacBookPro8,2 with a single boot medium (original hard disk drive, probably 5,400 RPM) and a single OS (pre-release PC-BSD 11.0-CURRENTMAY2016).

If I use Apple Startup Manager, the interface appears around eight seconds after the chime.

If I skip Apple Startup Manager, there's a white screen for forty seconds then the FreeBSD boot loader appears.

YMMV depending on operating system versions and, I guess, on firmware. And other variables.

… 15-20 seconds before I see the two …

Do both appear at once after that period? Or does one of the two appear sooner?

What's the memory configuration?
 

jvlfilms

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 11, 2007
265
225
Staten Island, NY
For testing purpose, you may move that OSX SSD into any of the native SATA 2 bay and remove the OWC Accelsior S. And then check if it make the difference.

I'm going to try this today and see what's going on.

A loose comparison … MacBookPro8,2 with a single boot medium (original hard disk drive, probably 5,400 RPM) and a single OS (pre-release PC-BSD 11.0-CURRENTMAY2016).

If I use Apple Startup Manager, the interface appears around eight seconds after the chime.

If I skip Apple Startup Manager, there's a white screen for forty seconds then the FreeBSD boot loader appears.

YMMV depending on operating system versions and, I guess, on firmware. And other variables.



Do both appear at once after that period? Or does one of the two appear sooner?

What's the memory configuration?

So the way I have it set up, it starts into OS X by default. I get the chime and then two seconds after, the Apple logo appears and boots into OS X on my PCIe SSD.

If I hold down option after the chime, I'm presented with a grey screen for around 20 seconds. Then I see my drives in the system - OS X, Windows and the System Reserved for Windows. From there, once I choose Win10/OSX, it immediately loads the OS.

I have 16GB of RAM in my config.

Something to note: this particular PCIe SSD treats the drive as a removable drive, not internal - could this be causing the issues? If so, it's not a huge deal to have to wait 20secs so I could have better performance out of my drives.
 
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ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,610
6,895
If your intended boot drive exists, the Mac can boot straight to it. But if you hold down ALT/OPTION it takes longer because the Mac is polling the hardware for all possible boot methods. So isn't this totally normal? It happens to me, too.

This is why it is preferable to use BootChamp or Startup Disk in OS X to select Windows, then reboot. Or from Windows, use BootCamp Utility to select OS X, then reboot. Much faster than holding down ALT/OPTION.
 
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jvlfilms

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 11, 2007
265
225
Staten Island, NY
If your intended boot drive exists, the Mac can boot straight to it. But if you hold down ALT/OPTION it takes longer because the Mac is polling the hardware for all possible boot methods. So isn't this totally normal? It happens to me, too.

This is why it is preferable to use BootChamp or Startup Disk in OS X to select Windows, then reboot. Or from Windows, use BootCamp Utility to select OS X, then reboot. Much faster than holding down ALT/OPTION.

That's what I thought as well but I also own a Late 2013 rMBP and when I hold option, it nearly instantly presents me with the two options - but that could very well be because it's a newer system. Those are also partitions on the same physical drive while these are on two separate drives.

Unfortunately on El Capitan, something like BootChamp doesn't work but if you know of any alternatives I am eager to test them out!

@ActionableMango I find it peculiar that there's a twenty-second wait before the OS X startup volume appears alongside the other item(s) in Startup Manager.

So you're saying that the OS X volume should appear after holding ALT/OPTION right away and then take around 20secs for the Win10 drive to show up?

On my laptop, it shows both partitions at the same time when holding ALT/OPTION.




For anyone wondering, I haven't gotten around to taking apart the PCIe SSD yet so it very well could be the culprit. If that is the case, I don't mind waiting 20 secs so I can have better performance out of my main OSX drive.
 

grahamperrin

macrumors 601
Jun 8, 2007
4,942
644
If I have, for example, a bootable DVD in an external drive then Startup Manager will typically show the OS X startup volume (on an internal disk) very quickly, then take some time before any DVD option appears.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,610
6,895
@ActionableMango I find it peculiar that there's a twenty-second wait before the OS X startup volume appears alongside the other item(s) in Startup Manager.

I don't see D4rkShaDoWz saying that OS X specifically appears later than all of the other items in Startup Manager. Unless I am misreading things, he's saying that there's a long delay, and then all of the items show up.

In my experience, this delay is normal and expected on the Mac Pro due to all of the additional polling that occurs.

Unfortunately on El Capitan, something like BootChamp doesn't work but if you know of any alternatives I am eager to test them out!

I think rEFInd is quite wonderful, and much much faster than holding down ALT/OPTION. Because you are running ElCap, you will have to temporarily disable SIP in order to install it.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,610
6,895
That's what I thought as well but I also own a Late 2013 rMBP and when I hold option, it nearly instantly presents me with the two options - but that could very well be because it's a newer system. Those are also partitions on the same physical drive while these are on two separate drives.

Unfortunately on El Capitan, something like BootChamp doesn't work but if you know of any alternatives I am eager to test them out!

I just did a test with a stopwatch from "Apple chime" to presenting the boot menu. Boot holding down ALT/OPTION took my system 36 seconds. Not as long as yours, but still awkwardly long.

Booting with rEFInd, about 3 seconds to boot options. And it's actually finding more bootable options.

So if you haven't tried rEFInd yet, I cannot recommend it enough.
 
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