Upgrading 2013/2014 Macbook Pro SSD to M.2 NVMe

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by maxthackray, Mar 1, 2017.

  1. theitsage macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    #51
    In the Mac Pro 5,1 it's not possible to boot from a NVMe drive. I've tried recently with High Sierra beta through a full clone and clean install. The latest firmware does not change this situation either. NVMe can be used as a scratch volume in the Mac Pro tower. The max speed is roughly 1,500 MB/s.
     
  2. dlwg macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2016
    #52
    Yup, this is a real pain and AHCI drives are so expensive because of this! I still have a tiny hope though for the final release of High Sierra though.
     
  3. justaviet macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    #53
    Well here's a small status update...

    Was finally able to get an Late-2013 A1502 MBPr to boot and install windows 10 on a NVMe Drive.

    This was done via the sintech Apple SSD Adapter and a Toshiba drive.

    Haven't gotten Sierra to be to install/boot from the drive yet, but this at least a small step forward.

    IMG_0909.JPG IMG_0910.JPG nvme.png
     
  4. Brochardt macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2017
    #54
    This is exactly what I need to do. Could you explain (step-by-step) how did you install windows 10 and be able to boot to it on MacBook Pro late 2013 or mid 2014 ?
    --- Post Merged, Sep 6, 2017 ---
    This is exactly what I need to do. Could you explain (step-by-step) how did you install windows 10 and be able to boot to it on MacBook Pro late 2013 or mid 2014 ?
     
  5. dlwg macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2016
    #55
    @justaviet This is absolutely fantastic news!!! This means that in theory same can be done with macOS, which will open up various new possibilities.
     
  6. theitsage macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    #56
    That's great to see in action! Use High Sierra rather than Sierra. I tried a Samsung EVO 960 NVMe via a Thunderbolt enclosure and High Sierra was bootable. This was confirmed on a late-2013 Mac Pro, late-2016 15" MacBook Pro, and mid-2017 iMac. Most likely it will work with 10.13.

    Can you share the part number and link of that Sintech adapter?
     
  7. dlwg, Sep 6, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017

    dlwg macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2016
    #57
    It doesn't need to be Sintech, as I understand. There are cheaper and better adapters from China. I tried this one with AHCI drives: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B073FRCBSP/

    It might be that old Macs see it as a Thunderbolt device and not necessarily as a NVMexpress and it boots properly from there. As if it was just a an external drive of some sort.
     
  8. iModFrenzy macrumors 6502a

    iModFrenzy

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    Jan 15, 2015
    Location:
    501st Legion
    #58
    Thanks to all that tested these drives out! I am gonna try grabbing a Samsung EVO 960 1TB for my MacBook Air 2015, the only thing that may delay me is the post that said anything could change in High Sierra(forget which as I read this earlier). Hopefully Apple doesn't disable third party NVME SSDs in the GM version.
     
  9. theitsage macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    #59
    I tried a Samsung 960 EVO M.2 drive tonight with a 2015 11" MacBook Air. You'll need to run newer if not the latest Boot ROM in order to use these NVMe M.2 drives. It's fully bootable and functions just like the Apple proprietary PCIe drive.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  10. dlwg macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2016
    #60
    This has been tested and verified in this thread already, so this doesn't come as a surprise. These laptops were equipped with Apple NVMe blades from the factory. High Sierra just helped to accommodate non-Apple NMVe drives.
     
  11. Marx55 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2005
    #61
    That is 1,470 MB/sec Read & 1,380 MB/sec Write for Samsung 960 Pro inside MacBook Air, yet such drive have official specifications of 3,500 MB/sec Read & 2,100 MB/sec Write.

    That is a HUGE difference. Why?
     
  12. liudayu macrumors newbie

    liudayu

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2014
    #62
    PCIe 2.0x4 vs PCIe 3.0x4
     
  13. jerryk macrumors 68020

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    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #63
    Not Pro, Evo. But still less than full rate because of channel bottleneck.
     
  14. Marx55, Sep 9, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2017

    Marx55 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2005
    #64
    1,470 MB/sec Read & 1,380 MB/sec Write is for Samsung 960 Pro. See screen capture above, on page 2; here it is:
    https://forums.macrumors.com/attachments/mba-2015-960-pro-png.707689/
    --- Post Merged, Sep 9, 2017 ---
    Do you mean that such MacBook Air uses PCIe 2.0x4, whereas Samsung 960 Pro has PCIe 3.0x4?
     
  15. liudayu macrumors newbie

    liudayu

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2014
    #65

    "Those adapters are not designed to handle PCIe 3.0 speeds I guess.
    They add a connector and complexity to the signal path, so they lower the RF integrity and compatibility with the higher speed of the PCIe 3.0 signals (8Ghz vs 5Ghz for PCIe 2.0).

    The MBA (even 2017) and MacMini 2014 being stuck to PCIe 2.0 due to their Broadwell 5xxx CPU, they don't have this problem..."
     
  16. Brochardt macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2017
    #66
    IMG_9880.PNG IMG_9879.JPG IMG_9881.PNG

    Ok Team:

    I'm happy to report that I have finally been able to upgrade my MBPr mid 2014 A1398 EMC 2876 with the Samsung 960 Evo NVME PCIE M.2 SSD + High Sierra + third party adapter board.

    I live in Silicon Valley and I am an automation engineer (not a software developer). I cannot stand the site of the Apple young engineers, whose mission in live is to put up road blocks to keep Apple products artificially high cost - instead of competing on the high quality and innovative products...

    The bottomline is the Samsung Evo NVME drive is upgradeable on the MBPr mid 2014 + Bootcamp..after about two weeks of messing around with the apple's road blocks, it finally works !

    Some keys take away:

    - Be patient
    - The overheat problem will go away if you keep the power supply plugged in all the time ( I have a theory why - but I could be wrong...)
    - Backup your Mac and Windows 10 partitions on an external SSD drive using Carbon Copy Clone to backup/restore the Mac partition - and backup/ restore your Windows partition using AOEMI partition assistant and AOEMI back upper.
    - Do not use Apple's BootCamp assistant because it will lock your drive up with some messy EFI (GUID) schemes that will forever curse your life (anytime you want to change/ resize the partition or upgrade your MBPr).
    - Winclones is essentially useless - accept for one last step: "make the disk (partition) EFI Bootable"

    - Once again you'd need to create a bootable external SSD drive ( for both Mac and Windows) and clone/ restore the Mac and Windows partitions.

    Good luck and PM me if you have any question - I just don't want to reveal the work around because the little Apple Wizels will try to put up more roadblocks...

    Best,
    D
     
  17. Brochardt, Sep 10, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2017

    Brochardt macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2017
    #67
    Since there are several requests for help of the installation. Here are some basic steps to help me work around the problem:

    Problem:

    1). When try to install the Samsung 960 Evo drive - connected internally or externally, the MBPr 15" 2014 would not see the drive at all.

    2). Even after I managed to format and cloned the drive, I still could not boot from this drive - (it showed an empty folder icon)

    For most people, whose only use MBPr 2014, you may face less issue than what I've seen - simply because I also use Bootcamp and all my folders and data are tranferred from a MBPr 2012. This just made things more complicated for me.

    What I did:

    1) Upgraded my original Mac partition from El Capitan to high Sierra.

    2). Backup both Mac and Windows 10 partition to a large external SSD drive ( I used 1 TB SanDisk Utra II but you could use anything)

    3). Create a bootable USB High Sierra disk - I used another external SSD only for a bootable ( cheap USB thumb drive may not work effectively)

    4). Now physically install the Sumsung 960 drive inside the MBPr 2014. Boot up your Mac to the bootable drive (from step 3)

    5). Disable SIP (System Integrity Protect) using the Disk Utility on the bootable drive. Command: csrutil disable.

    6). Continue using Disk Utility (from the boot drive) to erased and format the new Samsung 960

    7). Install a fresh High Sierra on the the new 960 drive.

    Right around this time when I get the problem of the drive sometimes disappeared on me. This is the period when I believe by keep trying to install High Sierra overnights - it had become stable. I don't know for sure because I haven't spent enough time to investigate the problem - but I think by leaving the power charger plugged in with the machine running overnight, the power cycle has been regulated by the software. Once again I do not know this for certain - I'm only guessing...

    8). Once the basic High Sierra works stable, I started to restore the Sierra partition ( with full data), which I had backup previously (using Carbon Copy Clones).


    Hope this help,
    D
     
  18. Wouark macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2017
    #68

    Hello and thank you for your feedback.

    May i ask you a question ?

    I'm with the same setup as you (exception i'm using a 256 Go Toshiba NVMe SSD) but i have an issue, i can't figure why it is only recognized as a 2 lanes PCIE 2.0...

    By the way, i only have 400Mb/s at writing and 778Mb/s at reading

    Specs :

    MbP Retina 13inches (2015) running HS beta 9 (APFS)

    Q.
     
  19. Brochardt macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2017
    #69
    Hello:

    I have no idea what's wrong with your Toshiba drive, as I have never used or seen it before.

    The only thing I can add on - is make sure you have a good adapter board. As some one indicated on the above thread - the third party adapter board could be tricky because they don't really have the exact specification from Apple. I bought two myself just in case.

    Another thing is to be sure that you have a proper configuration - double check the Bios ( both mac and and Windows if you use bootcamp) , etc... I must confess I'm not an expert on this subject. You would have to google the information.

    Good luck !
     
  20. _Kiki_ macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2017
    #70
    I'm not sure if it worth a hassle, you can get around 1200MB/s read/write on MacBook Pro Late 2013/Mid 2014 on standard proprietary Samsung SSUBX 2015 or newer
     
  21. gilles_polysoft macrumors newbie

    gilles_polysoft

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2017
    Location:
    Tours (France)
    #71
    Hi,
    this is really interesting.

    It resonates with an article I've read this morning : http://tidbits.com/article/17451

    To me, you have the luck of being able to boot on a NVMe SSD on your MacBook Pro retina 2014 because of one thing :
    when you did installed MacOs High Sierra on your internal Apple SSD, the macOS installer did upgrade your firmware (over internet) and, this internet upgrade of your firmware (or BootRom) may have enabled boot the ability to boot on NVMe drives... (in addition to boot on AFPS formated drives...)

    So if you follow me, this would be a super-good news... I may be wrong, but if i'm right, the only fact of installing MacOS High Sierra on an internal drive would upgrade the bootrom (in order to ensure the AFPS compatibility) and then would enable compatibility with NVMe drives...

    This needs to be confirmed of course...
     
  22. Wouark, Sep 12, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2017

    Wouark macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2017
    #72
    [​IMG]

    Hi,

    You're right and there is no longer any doubt that firmware of my MbP 2015 has been updated with High Sierra Beta 9.

    I tried with an anterior beta version of HS and I was not able to boot on my NVMe disk... Until the beta 9.

    I can assure you that NVMe is now bootable on this machine.

    However, please remember that it can be removed on the GM release...

    @_Kiki_

    You're right but all of this is a matter of price... More that 350$ for 256Gb with SSUBX Samsung where it is so easy to grab a Samsung 960 EVO 256Gb for more than half the price.

    Plus, it is a HUGE improvements for 2013/2014/2015 MbP/MbA users to be able to replace SSD by the new NVMe standard.


    @Brochardt

    I'm waiting the delivery of a CHENYANG adapter to see if it's the Sintech's one which is faulty

    I'll keep you all in touch.

    Q.
     
  23. theitsage macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    #73
    @gilles_polysoft I can confirm the newer Boot ROMs that come with High Sierra enable boot support for third party NVMe. Without a compatible Boot ROM, the Mac may not be able to start up when you install an NVMe drive such as the 960 EVO.
     
  24. gilles_polysoft macrumors newbie

    gilles_polysoft

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2017
    Location:
    Tours (France)
    #74
    @theitsage : wow thanks a lot for your update... we need to confirm now which machine will have their BootRom upgraded (back to the cMP 5.1 ?) but it's a real good news !
     
  25. theitsage macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    #75
    The 5,1 has a firmware upgrade in High Sierra too (in nearly 7 years). Unfortunately the new firmware does not enable boot support for this model. The Mac Pro 6,1 can boot NVMe.
     

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