Upgrade your MAC to a Solid State Drive (SSD)

May 23, 2016 by Lore Marketing Team

Apple’s Mac computers are powerful machines but they aren’t immune to all problems. One of the most popular complaints is how slow they can feel after a few years of use. But with just a few minor hardware upgrades and software tweaks we can get your older Mac back up to speed. One fix is to upgrade to an SSD.

If you’re still using a hard disk, upgrading to an SSD is the best way to speed up your Mac. Traditional spinning drives are much slower than SSDs and make your Mac feel slow by comparison when launching apps, opening files, or moving lots of data around. SSDs are up to 10 times faster and more durable because they don’t have any moving parts. Tools and software you’ll need:

  • SSD
  • mSATA enclosure – to connect the SSD to your Mac before installation
  • Small Phillips screwdriver and bowl
  • Torx T6 screwdriver
  • Anti-static mat and wrist cuff

Clone your drive:

The steps below assume your Mac is running OS 10.8 (Mountain Lion) or higher.

  1. Back up your data using Time Machine. Keep your back up drive connected to your Mac.
  2. Connect your new SSD to an mSATA enclosure or adapter and plug it into your Mac.
  3. Open Disk Utility, select the SSD and go to the Erase tab and make sure the format Mac OS Extended (Journaled).
  4. Click Erase to remove everything on the disk and prepare it for installing OS X.

  5. Next, go to the Partition tab.
  6. Leave the name Macintosh HD and format Mac OS Extended (Journaled).
  7. And click apply.

  8. Restart your computer with both the new SSD and your Time Machine backup disk attached and hold down the option key immediately after you hear the start up chime
  9. Select the Recovery disk and hit the enter key

  10. Follow the instructions to Install OS X on your SSD and when asked choose restore from the Time Machine backup you just took of your internal hard drive.

Installing the SSD

  1. Put on the anti-static wrist cuff and set your MacBook lid down on the ant-static mat
  2. Use the Phillips screwdriver to remove the 10 screws on the bottom of your Mac and put them in the bowl so you don’t loose them.
  3. Lift the bottom off your Mac. It should come off easily. If it doesn’t, don’t force it. Take a moment to make sure you’ve removed all the screws.
  4. Remove the plastic piece holding the hard drive in place with the Phillips screwdriver and discount the mSATA cable. Use the Torx T6 screwdriver to remove the 4 metal posts on the sides of the hard drive. Then screw these into the SSD
  5. Connect the SSD to the mSATA cable and place it in the space your hard drive used to be. Replace the plastic piece and screw it in place.
  6. Turn on your Mac and launch System Presences. Choose startup disk and select the SSD your just installed and restart your computer.

Since 1995, Lore Systems has been providing network engineering virtual CIO services, and full IT support, including desktop support. To learn more, contact us today.