boomsound

Installing an SSD in Mac Mini.

12 posts in this topic

I have a Mini 2011 that I want to update to an SSD. My first concern is, how easy is it to install an operating system to the new drive? This was recommended before migrating content from the old drive. Second, which have you used or would recommend, Crucial or OWC SSD?

Thanks in advance!

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Don't do it.   Unless you have alot of experience.  Many things weakly soldered.     I found out hard way.  I was very careful but still broke stuff.

 

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OWC has great documentation on how to do upgrades. Use Carbon Copy Cloner to copy your existing drive to the SSD before you tear into it, unless you want to clean install and start from scratch.

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Yep to Stacy's advice above. It can be done, but it requires time and patience. It does help to prep the new SSD drive prior to installation, and Apple makes you jump through hoops in order to download the OS but not install it. It's a little kludgy. We did it with two recent Mac Minis and it makes a big difference in boot time. 

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Ok- if you proceed, beware of the fan connector-  mine removed it self from the motherboard with just a nudge...   Good luck!   My local mac service place had pity on me and took care of it... thankfully...   

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Thanks for the responses. I'm not so concerned about the physical installation (but I will heed your advice), it was more about getting the OS onto the new drive. OWC suggests doing a clean OS install before adding saved data from the old drive. 

Marc, which SSD drive did you buy?

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To a Google search for creating a USB install drive.  The short description is, you download the iOS you want, copy it to a USB drive. You can then boot from the USB drive and do a clean install on any mac computer, or any Drive  Works great.

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the easy way is to clone things to the SSD through an SATA to USB3 adapter first, then swap drives, boot up and everything is exactly as it was before (only waaaaay faster).

the only reason for a clean install is if you have some software bugs you want to trouble shoot, but if your system runs fine now, then Carbon Copy Cloner is the way to go.

Good SSDs are the Samsung Series (850 EVO for budget or Pro for max performance) or Sandisk Extreme Pro.

 

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I just put a SSD in my 2011 Mac Mini a few months ago and it's great. I got a kit from Other World Computing.
I did a clean install because I have been using migration assistant or something else for years and years and years and probably had some stuff going back to the classic macOS.
I also thought I may have had some stuff on the old computer that was bogging down my new one, but I think it was actually the hard drive starting to fail.
You can use Time Machine to restore it, or a lot of people swear by Super Duper. I did everything manually, and had stuff fairly organized into folders. Plus between Time Machine and stuff backed up in the cloud I am pretty protected.

http://www.shirt-pocket.com/SuperDuper/SuperDuperDescription.html

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Yeah the old Mac Mini's hold up pretty well if you throw in an SSD and max out the RAM.  My father has one from I believe 2009 which was getting very sluggish so I popped in 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD into it and I've got to say, it's rather damn quick for an 8 year old machine!  He's no power user by any means as he mostly just browses the web, but it's perfect for him and should last him several more years before he needs to upgrade to a newer machine (unless the unit fails).

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I got the OWC kit and installed dual SSD's in my Mini. 

I did a clean install of OSX 10.9.5 and went from there. To do that, I downloaded the OSX installer on the old drive, and made a bootable install "disk" out of a USB flash drive. Then when I had the SSD's installed it was a simple matter to boot the computer from the flash drive and install OSX onto the SSD. 

Works great!

-Mike

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