SSD – setting up for best performance

borisiii

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 4, 2010
358
0
I have been on the fence about an SSD for a while, but last week I found a good deal on a 120GB OCZ Agility 3 and took the plunge.

I plan to use my windows work laptop to upgrade it to the latest firmware, then use Disk Utility to format it Mac OS X extended (journaled). I won't be setting it up for a couple of days, but I have a couple of questions for when I do...

1. CCC or clean install with time machine?
My plan is just to use CCC with an enclosure, but I might reinstall if there was any major advantage to be gained. Will CCC retain Lion's recovery partition?

2. Spin down time and sudden motion sensor:
Neither of these technologies are relevant to an SSD, but could potentially affect operation if the MBP tried to use them in some way – will OS X detect the SSD and automatically disable them? Is there anything I need to do manually in that regard? Also would you recommend enabling TRIM – does it actually make any difference, and are there any downsides, e.g. stability, to enabling it?

Any input on either of the above, or any other advice you have would be very much appreciated. Thanks!
 

David N

macrumors member
Jan 22, 2008
98
0
The Land of Milk & Honey
What I can contribute:

OS X doesn't need TRIM, you won't really notice much difference with it on vs. off. If you're running Windows on it, TRIM would probably be a good idea.

I wouldn't worry about the motion sensor, if you drop your laptop you'll probably have bigger problems ;)


CCC should be ok, I used it for the first time yesterday and was quite pleased, but I still opted to do a fresh install "just because."
 

prisstratton

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2011
533
118
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
CCC will not retain Lion's Recovery HD partition unless you perform a block level copy. You cannot perform a block level copy unless both drives are the same size.

You do not need the sudden motion sensor with a SSD, here is how to turn it off:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1934

As far as trim is concerned, you will find people coming down on both sides of the fence. But, seeing as Apple enabled trim on my system I think it might be necessary and will always plan to use it myself, unless I hear strong evidence to the contrary. Here is how to enable it on third party drives:

http://digitaldj.net/2011/07/21/trim-enabler-for-lion/
 

bdodds1985

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2011
867
0
Tartarus
CCC will not retain Lion's Recovery HD partition unless you perform a block level copy. You cannot perform a block level copy unless both drives are the same size.

You do not need the sudden motion sensor with a SSD, here is how to turn it off:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1934

As far as trim is concerned, you will find people coming down on both sides of the fence. But, seeing as Apple enabled trim on my system I think it might be necessary and will always plan to use it myself, unless I hear strong evidence to the contrary. Here is how to enable it on third party drives:

http://digitaldj.net/2011/07/21/trim-enabler-for-lion/
So if I transfer from my ssd in the opti bay (which my os is currently on) to the normal apple ssd my mbp came with (lion) using CCC it will erase the recovery partition installed on the drive?

I am asking because i have the lion thumb drive and would like to erase that partition of the apple ssd.
 

prisstratton

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2011
533
118
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
So if I transfer from my ssd in the opti bay (which my os is currently on) to the normal apple ssd my mbp came with (lion) using CCC it will erase the recovery partition installed on the drive?

I am asking because i have the lion thumb drive and would like to erase that partition of the apple ssd.
It does not erase it, it just does not copy it if you use file mode in CCC. If you use block copy then the Recovery HD will be retained (given the caveat I mentioned previous regarding drive size).
 

borisiii

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 4, 2010
358
0
What I can contribute:

OS X doesn't need TRIM, you won't really notice much difference with it on vs. off. If you're running Windows on it, TRIM would probably be a good idea.

I wouldn't worry about the motion sensor, if you drop your laptop you'll probably have bigger problems ;)


CCC should be ok, I used it for the first time yesterday and was quite pleased, but I still opted to do a fresh install "just because."
I think I'll do the sudden motion sensor, since it often triggered when I used it on the train.

Install Lion fresh on the SSD. Don't bother with CCC.
From what I'm hearing that seems best. I want the Lion recovery partition, and it may well run even faster because of reset caches etc.

CCC will not retain Lion's Recovery HD partition unless you perform a block level copy. You cannot perform a block level copy unless both drives are the same size.

You do not need the sudden motion sensor with a SSD, here is how to turn it off:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1934

As far as trim is concerned, you will find people coming down on both sides of the fence. But, seeing as Apple enabled trim on my system I think it might be necessary and will always plan to use it myself, unless I hear strong evidence to the contrary. Here is how to enable it on third party drives:

http://digitaldj.net/2011/07/21/trim-enabler-for-lion/
Thanks, I'm downsizing to the SSD so I'll reinstall. I'll do the sudden motion sensor as well.

Is spinning a hard drive down to save power something that the OS or drive firmware does? Will OS X assume the SSD is a hard drive and turn it off to save power, causing hangs when it suddenly has to read data? Or will that not be a problem because only a hard drive's firmware would do that, and therefore the SSD won't?

Having looked at TRIM, it still feels a bit like a bit of a 'hack'. I think I'll hold off on it for now, in case something goes wrong, but thanks anyway for the info.




If anyone has any other tips or experiences, that would be great!
 

prisstratton

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2011
533
118
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Thanks, I'm downsizing to the SSD so I'll reinstall. I'll do the sudden motion sensor as well.

Is spinning a hard drive down to save power something that the OS or drive firmware does? Will OS X assume the SSD is a hard drive and turn it off to save power, causing hangs when it suddenly has to read data? Or will that not be a problem because only a hard drive's firmware would do that, and therefore the SSD won't?
I have just noticed that there is a new version of CCC coming out with options to deal with cloning the Recovery HD. But, I like the idea of a fresh install myself and I plan to do the same when I switch my SSD to SATA3.

The OS will put the drive to sleep, I do not know if that means turning it completely off. I have not noticed any hangs with my SSD. You will wonder how you lived without it after you have been using it for a while, most definitely a very worth while upgrade. :)
 

FuNGi

macrumors 65816
Feb 26, 2010
1,112
28
California
Since many people are "downsizing" their OS and apps to a SSD there needs to be clear instructions regarding file management across the two drives. I know there are threads on various things, often involving bootcamp partitions, TRIM, SMS, or annoying spinning HDD's, but I thought I'd try to help with the file management solution.

Once solution I've been thinking of using to "move" to the SSD is to dump the really big chunks (iTunes library, archival photos, etc.) over to an external drive. This can be accomplished many ways but the easiest may be to delete them from your optibay HDD (e.g. your original HDD) then use Migration Assistant* from your fresh Lion install on the SSD to move over everything else (e.g. Apps, Library, Downloads) from the optibay HDD to the SSD.

Then you can reformat the optibay HDD and replace the large files you moved off (e.g. your gynormous vintage porn files). Of course you will then need to redirect iTunes and your photo editing programs to the optibay HDD etc.

*CCC has options to clone only some folders and could be used instead of Migration Assistant as well but heh.

Please let me know if this method sounds reasonable to others that went to the dual drive setup as I am planning on doing this method next week :eek:.