SSD with high Sierra not showing in startup disc

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Kyle N, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. Kyle N macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2012
    Ok, here is the build. 2009 4,1 that I converted to 5,1 with a 3.33Ghz X5690. Thats been great. I added a GTX 970 (non-flashed so I swap to the OEM GPU occasionally as needed) with the Nvidia drivers, thats also great. I have Yosemite and Windows 10 50/50 on a 1Tb HDD. I recently got a 500Gb SSD and figured this computer has seemed to be unusually sluggish in Mac for quite a while, no idea why, and decided to try out High Sierra on the SSD and see if it runs better than Yosemite has. On the plus side, it runs a ton better, like hands down. Maybe its the SSD, maybe High Sierra is just smoother, maybe both. I guess the HDD may not be able to keep up with modern OS's.

    Anyhow, here is the problem. Because I'm running a unflashed 970, I lose the hold option on restart to choose which startup disc, so I need to go to setting and select it prior to restart. Annoying, but hey, saved me 200 bucks. Now that I have HS on the SSD that runs 20x better than Yosemite, I naturally want to swap between that and windows 10.

    •When I am in HS, I can see all 3 startup discs.
    •When I am in Yosemite I see only Yosemite and Windows 10.
    •When in Windows I see only Windows and Yosemite.
    •With the OEM GPU, holding option on startup, the EFI screen has all 3 startup discs.

    So as it sits I can basically only go to the SSD if I swap in the old GPU which is extremely annoying and completely defeats the purpose of even buying a SSD. Yeah, I know I can install windows 10 on the SSD and partition it but that means reinstalling games, downloading drivers, calling MS to get a new serial (maybe needed...) etc.

    Cliffnotes: I cannot get Yosemite or Windows to show the SSD as a restart option. The only way I can access HS is to swap GPU's and do it on the EFI screen.

    What I have tried:

    Yosemite: Current apple updates. Current Nvidia drivers. Ran disc utility to verify/repair permissions.
    Windows: All apple updates. Current Nvidia drivers.
    HS: All apple updates. 100% fresh install, nothing done on it. Nvidia up to date.

    Does anyone have any pointers? I read I can throw some terminal lines to force booting in the other disc, thats also a little tedious though. Though less so than swapping GPU's. Lol
  2. StuAff macrumors regular


    Aug 6, 2007
    Portsmouth, UK
    The High Sierra installer would have converted the SSD to APFS. None of your other OS options can see discs in that format. If you can, clone your HS install, erase the SSD in HFS+, restore the HS install, then it should be visible again in the Boot Camp & Yosemite installs.
    Been there, done that myself. Quickly reverted my HS install on SSD back to HFS & will stick with it until Boot Camp works with APFS- if it ever does.
  3. ActionableMango macrumors G3


    Sep 21, 2010
    Can you select "blindly"? I.E. holding Option/ALT, waiting an appropriate amount of time, then selecting the OS blindly via arrow keys and Enter?

    Some people report that this works and others say it does not. I've never understood the discrepancy.
  4. h9826790 macrumors G5


    Apr 3, 2014
    Hong Kong
    With just 2 OS (e.g. HS and Windows), the solution is simple.

    Keep SIP disabled and use BootChamp to switch between OS.

    Since you are running a unflashed Maxwell card. Reset PRAM and select OS inside recovery partition is not an option for you. But these 2 methods can also switch between OS (PRAM reset can only bring you back to MacOS).

    Anyway, your Mac run smoother is because of the SSD. If you install Yosemite onto the SSD, you will release it's a different world.

    Even though BootChamp only allow you to boot to Windows once. But if you pull out the MacOS drives after shutdown (BootChamp default will perform a restart for you, but you can still do a shutdown after boot to Windows. Of course you can force shutdown the Mac after MacOS logout, but that doesn't sounds like a good habit, and not recommended), you Mac will keep reboot back to Windows. But once you put the MacOS drive back in. It will automatically boot to MacOS on the next boot.

    This is how I manage to switch between HS and Windows 10 on my 5,1 with an unflashed card.

    Of course, you can go to get a cheap GT120 (or even flash a GT120 by yourself), keep it installed in the Mac to get the boot screen when you need it. But that's not quite required in general. Occupy one more slot and draw more power for just that few seconds doesn't sounds like a good option to me.
  5. Kyle N thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2012

    This wound up being my problem. Thankyou for the information, and everyone else who added input. I wound up wiping the SSD and going to 10.12.6 Sierra and the problem is fixed. Unfortunately it doesnt really seem to be a way around the APFS format since it is brand new, though I imagine Apple will do a bootcamp update so it can recognize it at some point. HS forces the APFS format on SSD's, although what StuAFF advised may be a way around it. I am going to be building a dreaded Windows PC as soon as the 8700K chip comes in, if it ever does, lol. May try and Hackintosh it at that point.
  6. haralds macrumors 6502a


    Jan 3, 2014
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Another option would be to install Sierra on a small partition. The latest versions show High Sierra APFS disks.
  7. Mac Hammer Fan macrumors 6502a

    Mac Hammer Fan

    Jul 13, 2004
    Perhaps you can install HS on a HD and use Carbon Copy Cloner to copy the partition to an SSD?

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6 November 3, 2017