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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Installing new SSD for mid 2010 Macbook Pro Questions

Installing new SSD for mid 2010 Macbook Pro Questions
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Sep 5, 2012, 01:57 AM
 
Hi Everyone,

Im new to using forums so i would first like that thank you for reading my question

Im going to buy new Ram and a new OCZ SSD for my macbook pro mid 2010 and i was wondering if it is possible to just put in the new SSD and boot my mac into recovery and re-download mac os x Mountain Lion, becuase my recovery disk comes with an old mac operating system (not the latest one i recently downloaded)

I also wouldnt like to use timemachine since i dont want my old files, i just want a clean install for my mac to run fast.

Can anymone help please?
     
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Sep 5, 2012, 05:46 AM
 
Yes, you can do that: an SSD looks like just another (very, very, very fast) hard drive to your Mac. Although I'd suggest you get an Intel 330-series SSD instead.
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Sep 5, 2012, 05:50 AM
 
Definitely do not buy a OCZ SSD. They have a terrible track record. Based on reputation, might I suggest a Crucial M4, Intel 520 (on sale now) or 330, or Samsung 830.
     
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Sep 5, 2012, 05:54 AM
 
Wow thank god I asked on this forum then becuase I was just about to go buy the OCZ ! Thank you so much for the info
     
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Sep 5, 2012, 06:20 AM
 
I was wondering, do you know anything about the 128GB Samsung MZ-7PC128B because i live in a small istland called Malta and we dont have much choice of SSD's here so its either OCZ, Samsung (and not all models) or Corsair MLC force 3?
     
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Sep 5, 2012, 06:45 AM
 
Samsung makes good SSDs, too, they're a good choice.
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Sep 5, 2012, 06:52 AM
 
Originally Posted by Isaac Sciberras View Post
128GB Samsung MZ-7PC128B
AFAIK, that's the Samsung 830.

New MacBook Pros will get Samsung’s fast 830 series SSD too

In January, following a meeting with Samsung Storage solutions at CES 2012, we told you that Apple’s next-gen MacBook Air would likely make the switch to the speedier 830 series SSDs from Samsung alongside an update to Ivy Bridge. This was of course before we revealed some major changes coming to Apple’s new MacBook and iMac lineups. In addition to Retina displays for almost the entire new lineup, the new ultra-thin 15-inch MacBook Pro will be getting a complete redesign, losing the optical drive, and bringing it closer to to the thin design of current Airs. Like the new MacBook Airs, we have been told that at least some of Apple’s prototype MacBook Pros have used Samsung’s 830 series SSDs…

Specifically, a 256GB Samsung 830 SSD was in use in prototype MacBook Pro we’ve been told, but we can only assume that Apple will use these SSDs across the line in various sizes. They are available in retail packaging from 64GB to 512GB configurations.


P.S. I found this particularly amusing, as it's the final two sentences in a review of the OCZ Vertex 4:

If you're buying an SSD today, our standarding recommendation (particularly for Mac users) is Samsung's SSD 830. If you have a workload that demands better write and/or random read performance, let's see how this and other soon-to-be-announced drives behave over time before jumping the gun.
     
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Sep 5, 2012, 06:24 PM
 
I've had a Crucial C300 (predecessor to the M4) for a little over two years now, and it's been great so far.

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Sep 7, 2012, 11:23 AM
 
I have read the reviews about the OCZ and most of them are based on older firmware. I bought a 512GB Vertex 4 from Newegg for $399 last week and installed in a Early 2011 17 inch Macbook Pro. It came with the latest firmware (1.5) and I have had absolutely no issues. I cloned my old drive using Disk Utility. I then tweaked some of the OS settings to be more SSD friendly. I went from roughly 70MBps read/write speeds to 420MBps Read/write speeds. Granted I have only had it for a week but it has been great. I almost went with the M4 at the same price but gambled on the extra speed of the Vertex at the same price figuring I could swap Newegg if it didn't work.
     
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Sep 7, 2012, 05:14 PM
 
Originally Posted by mflender View Post
I then tweaked some of the OS settings to be more SSD friendly.
What tweaks did you do?
     
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Sep 8, 2012, 01:50 AM
 
"What tweaks did you do?"

I was just going to ask the same question...

P.S. Is it just me or is the HTML for quoting previous posts on this forum messed up?
     
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Sep 8, 2012, 03:16 AM
 
The HTML is working fine for me. There is a bracket missing in the post above yours.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Sep 8, 2012, 08:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
The HTML is working fine for me. There is a bracket missing in the post above yours.
Sorry about that.

Originally Posted by mflender View Post
I then tweaked some of the OS settings to be more SSD friendly.
What tweaks did you do?
     
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Sep 8, 2012, 08:22 AM
 
BTW, I put a 480GB OWC 3G SSD in my mid-2010 MacBook Pro and am blown away with the speed. Pressing power button to full startup (including 8 login items) is 33 seconds. Opening Word is 3-4 seconds.
     
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Sep 8, 2012, 08:31 AM
 
I followed some of the ideas on this page. http://blog.alutam.com/2012/04/01/optimizing-macos-x-lion-for-ssd/#trim-enabler
I ran benchmarks using Blackmagic Disk Speed Test even though it recommend not to. I didn't enable Trim since there was a lack of consensus on if it hurts or helps based on the Vertex's built in garbage collection. I turned off local Time Machine Snapshots.Turned off Hibernation. I haven't changed noatime. Didn't move home directories. Didn't do the Ram Disk. I did turn off Sudden Motion Sensor. Turned off hard drive sleep. Hope this helps.
     
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Sep 8, 2012, 09:48 PM
 
I'm running an OCZ Agility 3 240GB SSD as my primary drive in my 2010 i5 MBP 15". Runs great, no problems. I did some research, and most the issues people had were with the older firmware version.
     
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Sep 10, 2012, 01:03 AM
 
The OCZ thing is an old discussion that I've mostly stopped bothering with. Eug thinks that OCZ is the worst ever, while I think they're more or less all equally bad, with the exception of Intel and recently (since Apple uses them) the newer Samsung models. It's all history anyway.

Back when SSDs were new, the speed was unreliable, with long pauses when the drives had to do garbage collection. Manufacturers needed a defense, and decided that TRIM - and lack of support for it in either drive firmwares or the OS - was the perfect scapegoat. This built the idea that TRIM was a savior, and even required for good performance.

Around the time that TRIM started working as it should, and anyone could see that it didn't really do a lot in regular workloads, the first drives with controllers from Sandforce arrived. Sandforce was the first one to really get reliable speeds out of SSDs, and did so without bothering with TRIM. Eventually TRIM support was added because it became a bulletpoint thing, but it was never required. This made Sandforce-powered drives excellent for Macs, as Apple didn't bother adding TRIM support until quite late. OWC started selling them especially for Mac users, and it eventually dawned on people that OCZ was selling more or less the same thing except cheaper. This put a lot of OCZ drives in Macs. OCZ didn't court Mac users, however, and their firmware updater required Windows (and at one point even Windows 7, leaving XP users in the cold) which made firmware updates tricky to arrange. Reliability in this era was bad for everyone - even Intel had issues that caused bluescreens on Windows - and firmware updates were more or less a required operation. Since most Mac users hadn't bothered with the firmware updates on OCZ, they were hit harder than most. OWC also did their best to fan the flames, as OCZ was becoming a big competitor.

Then came two separate things. First the second generation Sandforce drives arrived, initially exclusive to OCZ. These were fast, but had a significant bug that caused bluescreens to develop on Windows, and likely the same sort of crashes on Macs even if I never saw that reported as much. The bug was very hard for Sandforce to identify, and it was fixed only after months of issues for unlucky users. This hit everyone with Sandforce 2 controllers, but as OCZ had a timed exclusivity on these drives, the failing drives were mostly OCZ. Second, OCZ decided to keep selling the old Sandforce drives with cheaper 25nm flash as a sort of low-end model. For reasons of implementation, this made the accessible flash area drop by 4 GB on certain drive sizes as more drive was used as online spare area. After some uproar, OCZ agreed to replace the drives of anyone who bought a 25nm drive, and many did so. This caused the reported return rate for OCZ drives to spike - a factoid that was also used against them.

Since then, OCZ has bought Indilinx - a competitor of Sandforce in the controller business - and LSI has bought Sandforce, which means that neither the upsides (speed without TRIM) nor the downsides (reliability) of Sandforce apply to OCZ any more. Samsung is now a player on aftermarket drives in its own right, and since it's the one Apple uses and has tested using TRIM, I would feel more comfortable hacking to enable it. Meanwhile Intel has brought out their own Sandforce 2-powered drives after putting them through their own more rigorous testing and fixing what bugs they found (said bugs are now fixed in the mainline Sandforce firmware as well), and the price premium they used to command has dropped. In my opinion, this puts the two of them ahead of OCZ for a Mac user - with the caveat that the Samsung requires hacking a kernel extension, while the Intel model does not - but it doesn't mean that I wouldn't buy OCZ for another installation. That bad rap is not entirely deserved.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Sep 10, 2012, 01:59 AM
 
I have an OCZ Octane 4 128GB in my 2008 Unibody Pro. After experiencing a raft of problems with it and updating the firmware (there is a Linux boot image to do this on Macs now), I was advised to try it in the optibay instead of the main drive bay and that allowed me to actually install an OS on it. Since then its fast and it works for the most part but has a couple of odd issues:

Booting is unreliable. For a few weeks it did a trick where it would only boot in verbose mode. In normal boot it would get stuck. Once or twice it got stuck in verbose but another reboot would fix it. Last night it refused to boot at all. I ran disk repair from DU and it said there was nothing wrong, I ran fsck in single user mode and it said it could not be repaired while booted. A few of each of those and a permissions repair eventually persuaded it to boot in verbose mode again. I don't like restarting it in case it won't come back up again.

Safari crashes rather a lot. Its not been so bad since 10.8.1 but its still very annoying when it does it. It even does it when you aren't using Safari, just have a few tabs open in the background.

Worst of all it seems to wake and/or crash during sleep. A few times I have closed the lid, put it in its neoprene slip case and put it in my bag. When I get home its running hot and its battery is flat. More recently it has run so hot that I believe it triggered the CPU heat cut-out and switched itself off. I am genuinely concerned it could fry its own logic board doing this. I could really do without that happening.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Sep 10, 2012, 03:48 AM
 
Octane 4 uses one of the new controllers, an Indilinx firmware on a Marvell chip. I have no experience with them, but what you are describing is unacceptable.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Sep 11, 2012, 08:28 AM
 
You're telling me...
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Sep 15, 2012, 09:00 AM
 
Thank you all for your feedback, i really appreciate it loads! I just was wondering out of curiosity, is the VERBATIM Internal 2.5" SATA II SSD - 128 GB any good? Im asking as they seem to be really cheap so was wondering if it is worth getting?
     
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Sep 15, 2012, 10:38 AM
 
Verbatim has been known for good-quality removable media (i.e. DVD-R, CD-R, floppies) since time immemorial. I have no idea about their SSDs, though. I'd probably go with Crucial, which is a known quantity in the SSD arena and which seems to be even cheaper than Verbatim on Newegg.

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Sep 19, 2012, 09:08 AM
 
Using a Crucial M4 128 gig in this macbook: MacBook Pro C2D 2.4gHz and even with the age and bus speed (SATA 2 I think?) it really sped it up. Apps open before they bounce twice in the dock and it boots so fast! Only had it for a week, so yet to try it on photoshop as a scratch disk.....
     
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Sep 20, 2012, 08:40 AM
 
Well, just thought I would report back that so far with three weeks of use of the Vertex 4 have been problem free.
     
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Sep 21, 2012, 08:14 AM
 
I was forced to reinstall Mountain Lion (over the top) the other day. Haven't had any of the crazy issues I was having before since. Not yet anyway.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Dec 29, 2012, 03:41 PM
 
We have the same MBPro and I'd upgrade it to a Samsung 840 (not Pro).
     
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Jan 6, 2013, 04:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by Pao|o View Post
We have the same MBPro and I'd upgrade it to a Samsung 840 (not Pro).
Make sure to keep it backed up. The 840 uses the new TLC flash, which is still untested.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
   
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