Storing Trash on HDD rather than SSD?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by oneinten, Apr 17, 2013.

  1. oneinten macrumors member

    Mar 16, 2013

    I currerntly keep my Music/Movies/Pictures on an external HDD to keep it off my boot drive (SSD)

    What else can I move off the SSD to save space/write cycles? I want to store the trash folder on the HDD too, can this be done?

  2. gr8tfly macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2006
    ~119W 34N
    Not easily. Each Mac volume has its own hidden .Trashes folder. You could probably link it to another volume, but it could cause more trouble than it's worth - especially modifying your startup drive.

    Besides, .Trashes, sort of by definition, is for temporary files - at best. By habit, I only keep stuff in there until the next time I can open its folder, stare at the files knowingly, then hit the empty button.

    Unless you have a daily high workload, you should just use it and not worry about it. (for example, the Crucial M4 512 GB drive endurance is spec'ed at 72TB, or 40GB per day for 5 years - and I believe that's just to the point of a S.M.A.R.T warning, not failure. My understanding it's based on wear leveling stats, so it's not just "40GB" per day written - it's more a factor of how many blocks are erased when needing space to write 40GB.)

    One thing you can do is keep your working video/photos on the SSD while they're actively being used, then move then to the HDD. (keeping the SSD as your main startup drive with applications, user accounts, etc. - you can also tell iTunes to use an external HDD for its library, or leave the library and just move large movie files to the HDD.

    Otherwise, leave the SSD be and just forget about it. You'll probably get antsy in a few years to upgrade it anyway… :)
  3. benwiggy macrumors 68020

    Jun 15, 2012
    Every volume has its own trash folder. When you delete a file, its filepath simply gets renamed to the trash folder. If you delete something from the HDD, it doesn't get moved to the SSD.

    The Trash icon in the Finder is a collection of lots of different real folders.

    In short: leave it alone. Don't worry about using up your precious SSD writes.

    Of course, you could make a Fusion drive and save yourself any worry about where things go!
  4. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Like the other poster's mentioned, don't worry about SSD lifespan. See the below chart from this review on Anandtech.


    You computer will be dead long before the NAND cells on the SSD start to deteriorate.
  5. oneinten, Apr 18, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2013

    oneinten thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 16, 2013
    Okay thank yopu! I have enabled TRIM and I'm sotring all Music/Pictures/Video on an external drive in a bid to keep this drive as fast as possible.

    Should I expect to see a slight decrease in performance as the drive gets loaded with more apps?

    I just ran a speed test and I'm getting the full 130 mb/s write but only 450-470mb/s read speed, the advertised speeds are 130mb/s write and 530mb/s read, is this a normal read speed?
  6. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Sounds like you are in good shape. You will see some variations in speeds depending on what tool is used to measure.

    You won't notice any impact on speed until the drive gets close to completely full.
  7. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    I have a suspicion that trying to move the trash folder would break things. Right now all OS X does when you delete stuff is move a file pointer from the folder it was in to the trash folder. This is a real quick operation. If by chance moving the trash folder to another disk worked then it would have to copy the file over to the other disk. Then if you decided remove it from the trash, it would have to copy it back. So moving the trash folder would actually hurt the SSD lifespan.

    Also has someone else mentioned, each disk has its own trash folder. And that's needed because of the way trash works.
  8. paul-n macrumors regular

    Jul 12, 2012
    Trash shouldn't cause much writing, because the files are already on that device, so moving it would cause much more time consuming operations. Worst case would be the recover feature where all stuff would be moved again to the SSD. But normal SSDs even TLC should work long enough to outlast your machine.

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