Unibody macbook harddrive upgrade - Sata(s)?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by sleepingfaster, Mar 4, 2009.

  1. sleepingfaster macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2009
    #1
    Just pulled the trigger on a 2.4 unibody macbook with 4gb of RAM to replace a G5 iMac with a blown power supply.

    I had assumed that the HDD was a apple only install, but the store clerk assured me otherwise stating he had installed a 7200 drive himself.

    The one thing I'm not really sure on is what the difference between SATA, SATA II, SATA III and SATA 300 are.

    More specifically I'm not sure how these will affect compatibility with the new macbook?

    Lastly, is it ok to slap in the new drive clean and reinstall with the OSX installation CDs, or would I have to clone the drive?

    Thanks.
     
  2. GfulDedFan macrumors 65816

    GfulDedFan

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    Oct 17, 2007
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    Indiana
    #2
    The MacBook uses SATA I but you can use the II or II because it's backwards compatible. Once the new drive is installed and prepped (formatted/partitioned), you can use the Restore Disks to install the OS and all of the software that's included.
     
  3. fibrizo macrumors 6502

    fibrizo

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    Jan 23, 2009
    #3
    I ended up cloning my drive as I had already installed windows and software, but I put a 320GB 7200 in. Took about 30 seconds.
     
  4. acfusion29 macrumors 68040

    acfusion29

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    Toronto
    #4
    I find it hard to believe that it took 30 seconds to clone a drive... Even if it was just the OS on it, it's still a couple GB.
     
  5. sickmacdoc macrumors 68020

    sickmacdoc

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    Jun 14, 2008
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    New Hampshire
    #5
    Just remember that you will need to prepare the new drive with the Disk Utilities on the OSX Installer disk before proceeding with the OSX installation (since the new drive will have a PC format and the wrong type of partition table map- MBR).

    Be sure you format as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) with a GUID partition table map or the installer will not see it as a valid destination to install OSX on.
     
  6. fibrizo macrumors 6502

    fibrizo

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    Jan 23, 2009
    #6
    You're right. I meant the actual swapping/installation of the drive when I was read.
     
  7. sleepingfaster thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 4, 2009
    #7
    Thanks sickmacdoc.

    Is that just achieved by mounting the drive (e.g. in a USB enclosure) and then formatting with OSX?

    This doesn't affect the warrantee does it?

    Is it worth partitioning the drive at this point? I'm intending to get either a 500gb 7200 or a 320, then run a bootcamp partition for windows.
     
  8. sickmacdoc macrumors 68020

    sickmacdoc

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    #8
    Though you certainly can do it by mounting it in an enclosure to format it, there is really no need to do so. Just mounting the new drive in your Mac and then booting from the OSX installer disk will work fine too.

    After the installer disk boots and asks for a language for the install, Disk Utility is available from the menus at the top (the "Utilities" menu item I believe). Using that you can prepare the disk that has already been installed.

    Just make sure that you prepare it correctly by doing the following things (in this order):

    • Click the new drive in the left column of Disk Utility, then click the "Partition" tab at the top.
    • Change the "Volume Scheme:" selection from "Current" to the desired number of partitions, even if it only reads "1 partition"
    • Click the "Options" button at the bottom
    • Select GUID in the window that appears, then click "OK" to dismiss the window
    • Click each partition (or the only one) and give it or them a name in the "Volume Information:" section. Choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled) for each
    • Click "Apply", then "OK" in the following window
    • Wait about 20 seconds or so and your preparation will be complete

    You can then proceed on with the installation of OSX on the drive.

    And no, installing a replacement drive does not void your warranty. If you intend to use Boot Camp as you mentioned, do not partition the drive BTW- the Boot Camp Assistant that you will run while booted to your new hard drive will only work on a drive with a single partition!
     
  9. acfusion29 macrumors 68040

    acfusion29

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    #9
    Ok that makes more sense now :p
     
  10. sleepingfaster thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 4, 2009
  11. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
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    NYC
    #11
    Don't know what MacBook you have, but the new unibody MacBook notebooks have SATA II aka SATA 300.

    And yes SATA II (3.0Gbps) will work on SATA I, but it will only run at SATA I (1.5Gbps) speeds; put a SATA I drive on SATA II, it will still only run at 1.5Gbps.
     
  12. sleepingfaster thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 4, 2009
    #12
    Thanks again Sickmacdoc.

    My drive finally arrived so I'm installing it now.

    I'd have come a little unstuck if you hadn't advised as to the disk utils part of the process.
     
  13. sickmacdoc macrumors 68020

    sickmacdoc

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    #13
    No problem- hope it all goes smooth for you.:)
     
  14. sleepingfaster thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 4, 2009
    #14
    So far so good.

    OS X went back on fine.

    Ran into a little snag with the 32GB limit of the FAT32 partition for Bootcamp but just reformatting to NTFS
     
  15. MBHockey macrumors 68040

    MBHockey

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    Oct 4, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #15
    Alphaod, thanks for this post. I was pretty sure the Unibody MB's had SATA II but I kept reading on here that it was SATA I. But you sound like you know what you're talking about :)
     
  16. aznguyen316 macrumors 68020

    aznguyen316

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    Oct 1, 2008
    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    #16
    didn't realize there were different SATA's either way got a seagate installed no problems. 7200rpm ftw!
     
  17. mrrippey macrumors regular

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    Apr 7, 2009
    #17
    Ho much faster is your MacBook with the new drive?
     

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