Upgraded Mac mini 2010 to SSD ...

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by GameGuru38, Feb 22, 2017.

  1. GameGuru38 macrumors regular

    GameGuru38

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    Location:
    Ohio
    #1
    Ok my wife's 2010 Mac mini was still running on an HDD so I ordered an SSD for it. I have watched lots of videos on installing it so I am good there but I was wondering if I could save a step here. Now whenever I do a new hard drive in a system I always do fresh install of the OS. This being my wife's machine though she has everything setup how she likes it and I was wondering about just cloning it to her new SSD. I do have an external 2.5" enclosure with a 1TB HDD I use for backup but I have an idea. Can I put the SSD in it and clone her current system over to it and THEN install it in her machine and have it boot up like it was always there? Is so how can I do this, I have never done it before?
     
  2. admwright macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2008
    Location:
    Scotland
    #2
    Assuming you can put the SSD in the enclosure (check the internal connector) then all you need is some software like Carbon Copy Cloner or Super Duper to clone the internal HHD to the SSD. Both of those programs can do a direct bootable clone. You should also be able to do this with Disk Utility.
     
  3. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #3
    OP wrote:
    "Can I put the SSD in it and clone her current system over to it and THEN install it in her machine and have it boot up like it was always there? Is so how can I do this, I have never done it before?"

    Yes.
    This is the way YOU SHOULD do it.
    The idea is to "prep and test" the SSD BEFORE you open up the Mini, so you know the SSD is bootable and set up properly.

    I HIGHLY recommend CarbonCopyCloner for this job.
    You can download it FREE and use it FREE for the first 30 days.
    CCC will also "clone over" the recovery partition.

    Use CCC and the new SSD will look EXACTLY as did the old HDD when you cloned it.

    Also, test the SSD (while still in the external enclosure) by:
    - rebooting
    - IMMEDIATELY hold down the option key until the startup manager appears
    - select the SSD with the pointer and hit return
    If it's a "good clone", the Mini will boot and run from the external SSD.
    Take a good look around, to see that everything is "as it should be".

    Then -- shut down and "do the drive swap".

    Actually, if you aren't sure about opening up the Mini, you could just keep booting from the external SSD that way. The speed difference will be negligible.
    I've been booting and running my own 2012 Mini for 4 years this way, nary a problem, still runs great.
     
  4. GameGuru38 thread starter macrumors regular

    GameGuru38

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    Location:
    Ohio
    #4
    Interesting. I believe it is just USB 2, is that as fast as SATA 2?
     
  5. now i see it macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2002
    #5
    Booting from USB will be very slow. USB is pokey slow.
     
  6. antz359 macrumors newbie

    antz359

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #6
    Hi,
    I have the same MM I started with a SSD in a FW800 enclosure(from OWC)(quicker than USB2), worked well much quicker than the internal HDD but not SATA2 speeds. I now have the SSD inside now even faster again along with 16Gb RAM well worth the upgrades.
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    OK, I see the OP's Mini is a 2010.
    In this case, you have only USB2.
    Internal installation will yield the fastest speeds.
     
  8. now i see it macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2002
    #8
    I just ran a speed test on my 2010 Mac Mini which currently still has the original mechanical 5400 rpm HD in it. The disk just got wiped and a fresh install of the OS was done on two partitions. Drive partitioned in half. No files on it but the OSes. There are two OSes on the drive, each partition: Snow Leopard and El Capitan.

    The first partition, which is the outer area of the platter and the fastest gets peak HD speeds of about 75MB/sec. The 2nd inner partition only gets about 54 MB/sec max.

    The FireWire 800 interface has a throughput of about 100MB/sec, so it will be just as fast for an external mechanical HD as the internal drive.

    USB2 has a theoretical speed of about 60MB/s, but you'll be lucky to get 40 MB/sec.

    A SSD is much faster than the internal SATA 2 interface of the 2010 Mac Mini so the limiting factor on either an internal or external installation will be the connection. SATA 2 has a theoretical throughput of about 300MB/sec and you might see 250MB/s or more in real world use with a SSD.
     

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