Welcome to the MacNN Forums.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Installing Mac OS X on an SSD - A Few Questions

Installing Mac OS X on an SSD - A Few Questions
Thread Tools
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Jun 2009
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jun 29, 2009, 01:13 AM
 
I'm new to the Mac so please bear with my questions. I just bought a new 13" Macbook Pro that will be here tomorrow along with a Corsair P256 SSD. I had a few questions about installing the SSD and Mac OS X.

1. Is it possible to just remove the hard drive that comes with the computer BEFORE ever turning it on and just put in the SSD and do a clean install of Mac OS X and any programs from the media or should I boot from the original drive first...in other words is there anything installed on it that will NOT be installed from the media???

2. Is there any special partitioning or formatting needed for the SSD before installing OS X from the media?

3. Is there anything I need to turn off or turn on in Mac OS X for use with an SSD, for example I've heard that it's not necessary or good to defrag SSDs...I don't know if Mac OS X has something like this running or not...???

Any information would be really appreciated...Thanks in advance!
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jun 29, 2009, 02:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by jmphillips View Post
1. Is it possible to just remove the hard drive that comes with the computer BEFORE ever turning it on and just put in the SSD and do a clean install of Mac OS X and any programs from the media or should I boot from the original drive first...in other words is there anything installed on it that will NOT be installed from the media???
You can swap drives right away.

Get a cheap SATA dock to use your stock HDD. That way you can also check to see you didn't miss anything when you did a clean install on the SSD.

2. Is there any special partitioning or formatting needed for the SSD before installing OS X from the media?
You'll want HFS+ Extended/Journaled. It's the default FS for OS X. Once you have the SSD installed, boot from the install DVD and launch Disk Utility from the Utilities menu. That will let you format your SSD.

3. Is there anything I need to turn off or turn on in Mac OS X for use with an SSD, for example I've heard that it's not necessary or good to defrag SSDs...I don't know if Mac OS X has something like this running or not...???
Forget about defragmenting on OS X. The defragmenting that's needed will be done by the OS when it becomes necessary. The OS also caches important stuff and gathers it on the FS for best performance. No user intervention required. Hey, this is a Mac after all.
     
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Palm Springs, CA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 8, 2009, 02:54 AM
 
Actually for any INTEL Mac it's critical you PARTITION the drive in Apple's Disk Utility with a GUID Partition Table so that its bootable. There really aren't any tweaks you can - or need to do for an SSD on a Mac. OSX's default drive block sizes align well with SSD's so there's none of the tweaky-geeky things Windows XP users have to go through.

OSX 'optimizes clusters' automatically in the background to make the file system more efficient - but it's nothing like true defragging. You are gonna LOVE the smoothness and speed of your drive! Even a low end SSD will run circles around the stock drive that came with your MacBook

Dr. MacGizmoGuy
Apple Mac OSX SSD Solid State Flash Memory Upgrade Drives
     
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Jun 2009
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 8, 2009, 09:34 AM
 
Thanks for the info guys...I installed it (Corsair P256) with minimal effort and it is working great. It is amazingly fast...boot up to desktop takes about 17 sec...shutdown takes about 3 sec...it's sick...

Thanks again for the info...
     
Senior User
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Minnesota
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 8, 2009, 11:08 AM
 
Suggest you boot off of hard disk to ensure your mac is working properly. Then hook up the ssd externally, format, then clone using ccc or super duper. Boot off the ssd as an external to ensure it boots correctly. Once everything is working, swap them and use the hard drive as a backup source. Been seriouly considering doing this myself so if you wouldn't mind, let us know how it went.
( Last edited by bearcatrp; Jul 8, 2009 at 11:09 AM. Reason: fixed a word)
2010 Mac Mini, 32GB iPod Touch, 2 Apple TV (1)
Home built 12 core 2.93 Westmere PC (almost half the cost of MP) Win7 64.
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 8, 2009, 05:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by bearcatrp View Post
Then hook up the ssd externally, format, then clone using ccc or super duper.
That advice is all fine, but don't use those third-party apps to do something as simple as a clone. One is commercial, the other has caused a lot of issues in the past.

Instead I suggest you use OS X's built-in cloning tool. It's rock solid, it's very fast and it's of course free. You'll find it on every OS X installer DVD and on every OS X installation.

/Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility > Restore.

Select erase destination to get a bootable clone in block-copy mode (fast!).
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Dec 2000
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 8, 2009, 08:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by DocMacPS View Post
Actually for any INTEL Mac it's critical you PARTITION the drive in Apple's Disk Utility with a GUID Partition Table so that its bootable.
Actually, that's not true. An Intel Mac will boot just fine from a disk with an APM partition map. The only problem is that the installer will refuse to install on it. If you clone from somewhere else, it works fine.

The corollary of this, of course, is that if the installer works, then you've got a GUID partition table. If you don't, the installer will ask you to reformat, and when you do, you'll have a GUID partition table. And if you use some other method to get OS X on there without a GUID partition table, it'll still work fine. The upshot of this is that there's no need for non-technical users to worry about whether they've got a GUID partition table or not.

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 9, 2009, 02:23 AM
 
Originally Posted by CharlesS View Post
The upshot of this is that there's no need for non-technical users to worry about whether they've got a GUID partition table or not.
That is absolutely correct.

To make things even easier Apple has also made sure Intel Macs default to formatting with GPT. So if you get a new disk (SSD or HDD for that matter) and you format it in your Intel Mac it will end up with the 'right' partition table/map anyway. You'd actually have to manually modify settings to get it to format and apply APM to a disk in an Intel Mac.
     
Senior User
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Minnesota
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 9, 2009, 11:16 AM
 
What issues are you referring to? Both are free as far as I know. I do prefer super duper though. Never let me down yet.

Originally Posted by Simon View Post
That advice is all fine, but don't use those third-party apps to do something as simple as a clone. One is commercial, the other has caused a lot of issues in the past.

Instead I suggest you use OS X's built-in cloning tool. It's rock solid, it's very fast and it's of course free. You'll find it on every OS X installer DVD and on every OS X installation.

/Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility > Restore.

Select erase destination to get a bootable clone in block-copy mode (fast!).
2010 Mac Mini, 32GB iPod Touch, 2 Apple TV (1)
Home built 12 core 2.93 Westmere PC (almost half the cost of MP) Win7 64.
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 9, 2009, 05:19 PM
 
SD costs if you want it to do more than Disk Utility. CCC is "donationware". Disk Utility comes for free with every OS X installation.

Google for issues with both and you'll find plenty. I remember discussing botched CCC/SD 'backups' on this board.

When it comes to crucial stuff like clones and backing up I say leave third-party hacks out of the game and use the stable and fast tools Apple built into every OS X installation. No hassle. More fun. My 2¢.
     
Forum Regular
Join Date: Dec 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 11, 2009, 05:58 PM
 
I too was pleasantly surprised how easy it was to swap hard drives (5.4K -> SSD) in my 1 day old 13.3" MBP, comparing to previous generation 17". Apple even went on printing instructions in the accompanying laptop brochure! I guess it's no longer voiding their warranty which is simply fantastic.

On a side note, does anybody know if it's possible to install 2 memory modules of different capacity, e.g. 2GB + 4GB? Or single 4GB stick? thanks.
     
Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Polwaristan
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 11, 2009, 06:04 PM
 
It's fine.
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 12, 2009, 02:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by NeverTriedApple View Post
On a side note, does anybody know if it's possible to install 2 memory modules of different capacity, e.g. 2GB + 4GB? Or single 4GB stick? thanks.
It will work. However, in terms of bandwidth 2x2GB is better than 1x4GB. And most likely cheaper too.
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Dec 2000
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 12, 2009, 03:03 AM
 
It's better than 1x4GB, but almost certainly not going to be better than 1x4GB + 1x2GB. The extra RAM will give you a speed boost that will make up for the slight speed hit due to not being paired.

2x4GB, of course, is best of all, but since those 4 GB modules are ridiculously priced, I doubt you'll want to go this route unless you have a lot of disposable income.

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Jul 2009
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 23, 2009, 12:55 PM
 
Hi all
I was interested in this thread as I am having heaps of trouble getting a RunCore Pro IV SATA II 128GB SSD working with my MacBook Pro 15" Unibody running 10.5.7.

I have followed most of the recommended installation instructions above and tried 2 different SATA docks - the one provided with the drive and a separate external SATA HDD docking station from Unitek. Alas the result is always the same, a dialog saying: "Device Removal. The device you removed was not put away properly. etc."

The most recent attempt almost worked: I re-partitioned as Apple Partition Map and used SuperDuper to copy data, but it failed after about 50GB. Now it won't even mount on the Desktop!

Any ideas please?
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Jul 23, 2009, 02:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by ponderingmac View Post
I re-partitioned as Apple Partition Map and used SuperDuper to copy data, but it failed after about 50GB.
Forget about SuperDuper. There's no need for a commercial tool when Apple has built cloning right into OS X. It's rock solid, it's very fast and it's of course free. You'll find it on every OS X installer DVD and on every OS X installation.

/Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility > Restore.

Select erase destination to get a bootable clone in block-copy mode (fast!).
     
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Aug 2009
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 03:47 PM
 
Hi everybody, I'm new on this forum and my english is not so good,
I write here because I had big troubles with my Samsung SSD 256GB.
After installin operating sistem (Leopard) the ssd worked properly for few hours, after then I wasn't able to install an update then I decided to reinstall everithing from the beginning. Here appeared the troubles! The SSD results to be UNFORMATTABLE in fact on Utility Disk the SSD is showned in red an on the right ther is a message like "utility disk reported unsolvable issues on the drive, swap it immediately with a new one (or something like this)"

After that I had a great idea isaid to my self I'll try to check the ssd with Windows.
Idiot me i cancelled the guid partition so that now the SSD is not recognized by Mac and Utility disk doesn' t let me to format it again becouse of the previous problem so what can I do????

Thanks

ANdrea
     
Forum Regular
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Pensacola, FL
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 04:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by NeverTriedApple View Post
I too was pleasantly surprised how easy it was to swap hard drives (5.4K -> SSD) in my 1 day old 13.3" MBP, comparing to previous generation 17". Apple even went on printing instructions in the accompanying laptop brochure! I guess it's no longer voiding their warranty which is simply fantastic.

On a side note, does anybody know if it's possible to install 2 memory modules of different capacity, e.g. 2GB + 4GB? Or single 4GB stick? thanks.
Do we know that it actually doesn't void the warranty?
Bla Bla Bla
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 05:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by andrea_pisa View Post
Hi everybody, I'm new on this forum and my english is not so good,
I write here because I had big troubles with my Samsung SSD 256GB.
After installin operating sistem (Leopard) the ssd worked properly for few hours, after then I wasn't able to install an update then I decided to reinstall everithing from the beginning. Here appeared the troubles! The SSD results to be UNFORMATTABLE in fact on Utility Disk the SSD is showned in red an on the right ther is a message like "utility disk reported unsolvable issues on the drive, swap it immediately with a new one (or something like this)"

After that I had a great idea isaid to my self I'll try to check the ssd with Windows.
Idiot me i cancelled the guid partition so that now the SSD is not recognized by Mac and Utility disk doesn' t let me to format it again becouse of the previous problem so what can I do????

Thanks

ANdrea
Boot from your Mac's install DVD and select Disk Utility form the Utilities menu. See if you can format the SSD. If not it's likely a lemon. Remove it and have it replaced under warranty.
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 05:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by sogbrightlight View Post
Do we know that it actually doesn't void the warranty?
Yes, we do. On all new MBPs the disk and RAM are user-replaceable items. The battery isn't. But installation by an authorized tech is included in the cost of the replacement battery.
     
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Aug 2009
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 05:22 PM
 
I tried to use utility disk from install dvd.... but doesn't work!
So r u sure there is no solution to my problem?
Thanks
     
Forum Regular
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Pensacola, FL
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 06:41 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Yes, we do. On all new MBPs the disk and RAM are user-replaceable items. The battery isn't. But installation by an authorized tech is included in the cost of the replacement battery.
Thanks for the info. I have been contemplating whether I should get the discounted applecare for the Macbook Pro that I'm getting tomorrow. I'm leaning towards not getting it since I've read threads that seem to make me think it isn't worth it for a laptop.
Bla Bla Bla
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Dec 2000
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 27, 2009, 07:12 PM
 
It's worth it. Laptops get a lot more wear and tear than desktop computers, and you'll appreciate having the warranty if something decides to go south.

I've already had to use the warranty for my MBP several times, and it's only been about a year and a half.

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 28, 2009, 03:34 AM
 
Originally Posted by andrea_pisa View Post
I tried to use utility disk from install dvd.... but doesn't work!
So r u sure there is no solution to my problem?
Thanks
What doesn't work? Running Disk Utility from the installer DVD? Or formating your SSD? If it's the latter your SSD is probably bad. If it's the former it looks like it's your Mac.
     
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: in front of my Mac
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Aug 28, 2009, 03:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by sogbrightlight View Post
Thanks for the info. I have been contemplating whether I should get the discounted applecare for the Macbook Pro that I'm getting tomorrow. I'm leaning towards not getting it since I've read threads that seem to make me think it isn't worth it for a laptop.
I'm with Charles. Sleek notebooks have fragile component and yet these computers see lots of wear and tear. I think on a portable it's a good idea to have AC.

I've seen people buy it on eBay for as little as $125. That's less than ten percent of the cost of the MBP and it's a whole lot less than any serious repair work (or a replacement for that matter) would cost.

You don't need to buy it when you get your MBP. As long as you buy it before your regular 12 month warranty runs out you're fine. Buy a new Mac, enjoy it, and let your savings recover. Then, consider buying AC again before that first year is up.

Personally, for that price I'd always end up getting it. And if only for peace of mind.
( Last edited by Simon; Aug 28, 2009 at 03:51 AM. )
     
   
Thread Tools
Forum Links
Forum Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On
Top
Privacy Policy
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:45 AM.
All contents of these forums © 1995-2015 MacNN. All rights reserved.
Branding + Design: www.gesamtbild.com
vBulletin v.3.8.8 © 2000-2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.3.2