User Tag List

  1. xhendrixz's Avatar
    I recently just got interested in upgrading my 2011 Macbook Pro with an Crucial 256GB SSD. I currently have 200GB taken up and everything seems kind of groggy on my current stock MBP Hitachi 320 GB HDD. I did a lot of research and many people say it is more than worth upgrading to the SSD. The only thing is, I want to be sure that everything will be exactly the same, but faster.

    I have MS Word and all of my applications downloaded with their keys and do not want to go back in and redo each and every single application. Because I have Time Machine set up with my Mac and backed up regularly, once I restore to my back up, will everything be the same?

    And also, if anyone knows how to -- what are the steps after installing the SSD? I hear you have to petition the SSD or something like that. I still have the Mac OS X boot up disc that originally came with the MBP. I also have Mountain Lion installed on my current OS. How would I go about getting it reinstalled on my new SSD? Would it already come equipped with the Time Machine back up or do I have to reinstall it? People on YouTube were talking about putting Mountain Lion onto a flash drive but I have no idea how to do that.

    I've also heard about Carbon Copy Cloner, would that be better to use than Time Machine?

    Please help. I do not want to take the chance of doing it by myself and screwing up.. I'd be devastated!

    Thanks in advance,
    2012-08-13 03:36 AM
  2. Scoops98's Avatar
    An SSD will make a huge difference to your system's startup/shutdown and loading times. My MacBook Pro starts in about 15 seconds.

    Are you just replacing your standard HDD with an SSD, or do you plan on removing your DVD drive and installing both drives? I used an OWC data doubler kit to install both my SSD (120 GB) and HHD (750 GB). I have my data (music, photos, big applications and whatever else) on my HHD and my system and primary applications on my SSD. I wouldn't get a Crucial SSD. They're too expensive and their speeds aren't great. I'd go with an OCZ. I have a Vertex 3. Maybe look at their Vertex 4s. Super fast read/write speeds!

    OWC is the only brand I know of that has Mac based firmware updating utilities. Their drives are expensive. OCZ requires Windows or Linux. Some SSDs wipe your data when you update the firmware. I was able to update my Vertex 3 safely without losing data (connected my SSD to a PC). Keeping your SSD's firmware updated is important. Also, Apple doesn't enable TRIM support on third party SSDs, so I used Chameleon SSD Optimizer to do so.

    I've done the exact steps below when installing new drives for clients. This is super easy, but you may need to do some good research so you have the right tools, know how to install your hard drive(s) and how to use the software required for cloning/restoring.

    What I would do is this:
    1. Install your SSD.
    2. Use a USB drive adapter kit or external 2.5'' enclosure for your Hitachi HHD.
    3. Start your MacBook Pro in target mode by powering on while holding the "T" key.
    4. Connect your MacBook Pro and Hitachi HHD to another Mac via FireWire. You can use Thunderbolt form Mac to Mac.
    5. On the second Mac, use Disk Utility to restore your Hitachi drive to your SSD. That will do a block for block copy.

    Restoring via TM would work (assuming your backups are good). You have to first reinstall ML on your SSD after you've installed it, and then use the Migration Assistant to restore your data. You could also use Carbon Copy Cloner to clone your HHD to SSD (wile booted on your HHD), but you still need a USB drive adapter kit or external 2.5'' enclosure for your SSD.

    Another way: After installing your SSD, if you had an external drive with at least Snow Leopard on it, you could start your MacBook Pro on the external. Then, with your Hitachi in an USB drive adapter kit or external 2.5'' enclosure, you can use the Disk Utility restore (HHD > SSD).

    You can get a USB drive adapter kit for about $20 and a cheap USB 2.5'' enclosure for about $10-15.

    Once you have your SSD, regular backups are super important. SSDs fail at the same rate as HHDs and are completely unrecoverable. So, if your SSD fails and you haven't backed up recently, tough luck. You're SOL.
    Until the next time… And if I help you out, give me a "Thanks!" Thanks!
    2012-08-13 05:02 AM
  3. xhendrixz's Avatar
    Hey Scoops, really appreciate you giving some insight. I'm pretty much sold on upgrading to the SSD but waiting for a good deal to pop up on one because I'm not in any hurry. I just want to be fully prepared whenever I do pull the trigger.

    I plan on taking out my current HDD and replacing it with an SSD as I will still need to use my CD drive. I've heard some pretty good things about OCZ but you mentioned they are only compatible with Windows and Linux? I don't plan on petitioning my SSD because it's just unneccessary for me.

    If at all possible, I'm trying to use my TM backups to replace my new SSD. Like you said, it's risky to see if they will work correctly. Is there anyway to find out if the backups will properly coincide with the new SSD? I've used it to restore from before and it worked fine but I know there's always a chance it may not.

    From what I read and understood from your post, am I supposed to replace the HDD with the SSD, boot it from the start up disc. And then reinstall Mountain Lion? Sorry, I'm pretty new to this stuff, the most I've done is just replace the RAM in my MBP.

    Hope to hear more insight.

    2012-08-13 05:15 AM
  4. Scoops98's Avatar
    OCZ SSDs are 100% Mac friendly, just updating their firmware requires Windows or Linux. There really is no need to partition your drive. Just locks your storage into smaller blocks!

    If you hold the "Option" key down and click the Time Machine icon in the menu bar, you can verify your backups. Still not guaranteed though. TM requires your boot drive to have an OS on it to restore.

    The thing with Lion and ML that you don't have an install disc. You're supposed to start of the recovery partition and use it to reinstall your OS. You can then download the installer from Apple. But, you can't start the recovery partition on a new drive that doesn't have ML on it in the first place.

    That's where the ML on the USB thumb drive can be used. You have to download ML again from the App Store, do a few extra steps and use Disk Utility to restore it to your USB drive. You can then start off of that to install ML on your SSD and then use TM to restore the data.

    You might as well ML it on an external hard drive and boot off that. It's much easier and faster to either use another Mac, or an external drive. It only takes the time for cloning and not the OS reinstall and then data restore from TM.
    Until the next time… And if I help you out, give me a "Thanks!" Thanks!
    2012-08-13 05:52 AM