Using an SSD externally to boot my Mini; is it worth it?!

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by danb1979, Aug 10, 2015.

  1. danb1979 macrumors member

    danb1979

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Preston, Lancs - UK
    #1
    The above question really?

    My old MBP had a 256GB SSD installed and using it was sublime, everything was lightening quick!

    However I'm running my 2012 i7 Mini via it's internal 1TB HDD and wondered if a) it'll make very noticeable difference booting it from a 128GB SSD and b) if it's worth it for what I use my Mini for (general day to day running of my business - MS Outlook, Word and Excel for Mac, Adobe PDF's, lots of internet searching and also the full management of my iTunes account etc)?

    If it IS worth it; is it best to use a USB 3.0 external HDD or spend more and get a Lightening capable SSD?

    And, what's the best way of going about it (ie. how do I move the bootable drive/packages I use across to the SSD, but leave all my docs and iTunes items on the 1TB HDD on the Mini)?

    Thanks :)
     
  2. SpinalTap macrumors regular

    SpinalTap

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Location:
    Bournville, UK
    #2
    Sure. Get hold of this IcyBox UASP enclosure for your chosen SSD from Amazon - http://tinyurl.com/ogfbgo7

    Typical read/write speeds will then dramatically increase - as will start-up time.

    Leave all of your documents and applications on your existing HDD's - then format your new SSD via DiskUtility. Now, restart your Mac holding-down the 'alt' key. Choose your new SSD, and follow the instructions to download OS X onto it.

    When finished, nominate your external SSD as the start-up volume - and restart. Done.
     
  3. danb1979 thread starter macrumors member

    danb1979

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Preston, Lancs - UK
    #3
    Thanks for that

    I was looking at this for the enclosure: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00KCEY3...TF8&colid=3DTRR9QJAYDDQ&coliid=I25OER33ZCRII2

    and this for the SSD: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00RQA6T...lid=3DTRR9QJAYDDQ&coliid=I10KTTD8XNWZZ2&psc=1

    Connecting it via USB 3.0 etc...

    How do I go about getting a fresh copy of Yosemite; do I just download it from the App Store?

    What should I format the SSD to (just standard Journaled) and when I select that as the start-up volume, is that it done or should I move the likes of MS Office for Mac 2011 to there as well etc?

    Thanks (I'm new to this kind of upgrading so excuse the questions)!
     
  4. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #4
    Don't get that case - unless it specifically says that it supports UASP protocol. Here's one:
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OFJ1UK6?psc=1

    Download Yosemite from the App Store.
    Don't install from that download, but use it to create a bootable USB flash drive. And you can keep that so you don't need to download all of the installer the next time you need it...
     
  5. danb1979 thread starter macrumors member

    danb1979

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Preston, Lancs - UK
    #5
    Thanks

    I've found that case on Amazon UK so saved it to my wish list etc...

    How do I install Yosemite to the SSD then sorry?
     
  6. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #6
    I suggested that you make a bootable flash drive. You would download the Yosemite installer app, but don't install it. It will automatically open after downloading from the App Store, so just quit it. Use one of the methods to create a bootable USB installer, just google for those.
    I like to use the great DiskMakerX utility. It is simple to use, without having to go through the terminal to finish making the bootable installer.
    And, when you have the SSD, either installed in your mini, or attached through an external case - boot to the installer flash drive that you made. You'll need to erase the SSD with the Disk Utility before continuing with the install, so that the install sees the SSD. Choose the SSD as the destination - and - wait. 30 minutes, 1 hour tops, and it will be all ready for whatever you want to do with Yosemite.
     
  7. SpinalTap macrumors regular

    SpinalTap

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Location:
    Bournville, UK
    #7
    As originally stated: go for the UASP enclosure - which will ensure maximum data throughput compared to non-uasp enclosures.

    As for SSD: choose between this Samsung or Crucial drive - http://tinyurl.com/pavtfr8 - http://tinyurl.com/qjp7e5h

    I run a Samsung in my Mac Mini, while my daughter runs a Crucial SSD in her MBP.
     
  8. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #8
    danb wrote above:
    "I was looking at this for the enclosure: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00KCEY3...TF8&colid=3DTRR9QJAYDDQ&coliid=I25OER33ZCRII2"

    The problem with this enclosure is that there is NO UASP support stated in the specification.

    Prediction:
    You WILL NOT get the "full speed" of which USB3 and your SSD are capable with this enclosure.

    I posted this to you once before, and I'll post it again:
    DO NOT buy ANY USB3 enclosure UNLESS it specifically mentions "UASP" in the product description !!!!

    Sometimes you will actually see -two versions- of [what looks to be] the same enclosure -- one version supports UASP, the other doesn't.

    Keep looking!
     
  9. danb1979 thread starter macrumors member

    danb1979

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Preston, Lancs - UK
    #9
    Thanks; I know I need to get an enclosure that that supports USAP and that's what I'll get :)
     
  10. Cherrysoda macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2014
    #10
    The anker enclosure does support USAP. I bought one last October.

    If you've got enough space it'd be easier to clone your current hdd to the ssd.
     
  11. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #11
    Anker may very well support _UASP_, but they sure keep that information quiet.
    It would only take a couple of words at their website, or in the device user manual, to point out that they provide support for the UASP protocol.
    I prefer to point folks to devices that want to brag about what they support, and actually advertise that fact.
     
  12. Cherrysoda macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2014
    #12
    That's fine, just pointing out the facts to the OP. Anker have excellent customer support and I've bought many of their products (including several different enclosures), don't have a bad word to say about them tbh.
     
  13. danb1979 thread starter macrumors member

    danb1979

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Preston, Lancs - UK

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