Installing MacBook Pro 15" Unibody 2.53 GHz Mid 2009 Dual Hard Drive

Featured Guide

Featured Guide

This guide has been found to be exceptionally cool by the iFixit staff.

Use this guide to install a second hard drive in place of the optical drive.

There are many benefits to adding a second hard drive to your laptop such as improved speeds, greater storage space, and less heartache when installing new software. Use this guide to install one using our optical bay hard drive enclosure.

Relevant Parts
Image #1

Edit Step 1 Lower Case  ¶ 

  • Remove the following ten screws securing the lower case to the upper case:

    • Seven 3 mm Phillips screws.

    • Three 13.5 mm Phillips screws.

Image #1

Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • Using both hands, lift the lower case near the vent to pop it off two clips securing it to the upper case.

  • Remove the lower case and set it aside.

Image #1

Edit Step 3 Battery  ¶ 

  • Three Pentalobe screws secure the battery to the upper case. They can be removed with this special driver.

  • If you don't have a Pentalobe driver, a 1.5 mm flathead screwdriver can be used in a pinch. Be sure the head of your flathead screwdriver fits snugly across two of the five "points" of the screw head before trying to break the screw free, as a loose fit will easily strip the screw head. If the head of your screwdriver fits too loosely, find a bigger bit and file it down until it fits snugly before proceeding.

  • You do not necessarily have to follow steps 3-7 to remove the battery in order to replace the hard drive. However, it is recommended to remove all power sources from electronics before working on them.

Image #1

Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • Remove the two exposed five-point Pentalobe screws along the top edge of the battery.

Image #1

Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Use the tip of a spudger to bend back the finger of the "Warning: Do not remove the battery" sticker while you remove the five-point Pentalobe screw hidden underneath.

Image #1

Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • Lift the battery by its plastic pull tab and slide it away from the long edge of the upper case.

  • Do not try to completely remove the battery just yet.

Image #1

Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Tilt the battery back enough to access the battery cable connector.

  • Pull the battery cable connector away from its socket on the logic board and remove the battery from the upper case.

Image #1

Edit Step 8 Optical Drive  ¶ 

  • Apple sticks a small strip of clear plastic with adhesive applied to one side to the logic board behind the camera cable connector to keep it in its socket. When moving it out of the way, be sure not to break any surface-mount components off the logic board.

  • Hold the end of the cable retainer down with one finger while you use the tip of a spudger to slightly lift the other end and rotate it away from the camera cable connector.

Image #1

Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the camera cable by pulling the male end straight away from its socket.

  • Pull the connector parallel to the face of the logic board, not straight up.

Image #1

Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • Peel the camera cable off the adhesive securing it to the optical drive.

Image #1

Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • This step is only required if you have an anti-glare display. If you have a glossy display, skip this step.

  • Disconnect the Bluetooth cable by pulling the male end straight away from its socket.

  • Pull the connector parallel to the face of the logic board, not straight up.

  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the Bluetooth antenna cable from its socket on the board.

Image #1

Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • This step is only required if you have an anti-glare display.

  • Remove the two 8 mm Phillips screws securing the Bluetooth/camera cable retainer to the upper case.

  • One of the screws may remain captive in the Bluetooth/camera cable ground loop. If replacing the display, be sure to transfer this screw to the new unit.

  • Lift the Bluetooth board/cable retainer assembly out of the upper case.

Image #1

Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Use a spudger to pry the optical drive connector straight up off the logic board.

Image #1

Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Remove three 3.5 mm Phillips screws securing the optical drive to the upper case.

Image #1

Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • Lift the optical drive from its left edge and pull it out of the computer.

Image #1

Edit Step 16 Optical Drive  ¶ 

  • Remove the optical drive cable by pulling it straight away from the optical drive.

  • If you have a CD or any other object jammed in your optical drive, we have an optical drive repair guide.

Image #1

Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Remove the two black Phillips #0 screws securing the small metal mounting bracket. Transfer this bracket to your new optical drive or hard drive enclosure.

Image #1

Edit Step 18 Dual Hard Drive  ¶ 

  • Remove the plastic spacer from the optical bay hard drive enclosure by pressing in on one of the clips on either side and lifting it up and out of the enclosure.

Image #1

Edit Step 19  ¶ 

  • Make sure that the hard drive connectors are facing down before placing it into the enclosure.

  • Gently place the hard drive into the enclosure's hard drive slot.

  • While firmly holding the enclosure in place with one hand, use your other hard to press the hard drive into the enclosure connectors.

Image #1

Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • Once the hard drive is snug, reinsert the plastic spacer while holding the hard drive against the bottom of the enclosure.

Image #1

Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • Use two Phillips #1 screws to secure the drive to its enclosure.

Image #1

Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Attach the optical drive bracket to the new enclosure with two Phillips #0 screws.

  • Reconnect any cables you have removed from the original optical drive onto the optical bay enclosure.

Image #1

Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Don't ditch that drive! You can still use your optical drive externally with the help of our SATA Optical Drive USB Cable.

  • Align the cable's SATA connector with the drive's port and plug in securely.

  • Plug the USB connector into your laptop and your optical drive is ready for use.

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

For more information, check out the MacBook Pro 15" Unibody 2.53 GHz Mid 2009 device page.

Required Tools

Spudger

$2.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Related Products

1 TB SSD Hybrid 2.5" Hard Drive

$139.95 · 3 In stock

1 TB SSD Hybrid 2.5" Hard Drive

$159.95 · 18 In stock

Recommended Tools

Universal Drive Adapter

$29.95 · 50+ In stock

iFixit Lock Pick Set

$29.95 · 50+ In stock

Inspection Scope

$39.95 · 50+ In stock

Frictionless Ratchet

$24.95 · 50+ In stock

Portable Anti-Static Mat

$34.95 · 42 In stock

Comments Comments are onturn off

It really depends on how thick the 1.5 mm flathead screwdriver is. I tried a low-cost tool and almost destroyed the screw. So be carefull

Paul, · Reply

Unfortunately, when I added a second hard drive via these instructions, all went well but Bluetooth is now MIA. Can anyone help?

Peter Payne, · Reply

I agree...

I have bought a used MacBook Pro, when problems arise, opening Corps was trying to turn the screw, but with poor quality could not turn a screwdriver, only to ruin the screw. Try to buy ifixit Screwdriver set. Good luck to all and thank you ifixit team for such assistance as ifixit.com. Thank you.

remjok, · Reply

I found This guide has been found to be exceptionally cool.

My Mid-2009 MacBook Pro, the charge capacity has gotten lower in the past few months, I had gone through 600+ cycles. I also got a "replace now" warning on my battery icon in OS X. So, I figured it was about time to replace.

My Fix

Easiest time I've every had replacing an internal component. Just take out the access panel screws. 3 screws to take out the battery, unplug it, plug in the new one, 3 screws back in, and back goes the access panel. Clean and easy!

My Advice

Apple says the MacBook Pro 15" Unibody (Mid 2009) Battery on my model of MacBook Pro it not user replaceable. So, if you replace the battery yourself while your MacBook Pro is in warranty you may void it.

you can drop off your old battery at any Apple Store and they will recycle it for free!

diggtwitter, · Reply

The screws holding my battery were all worn out since an earlier removal. So instead of ruining them even more I put some saran wrap on the tip of my pentalobe driver and gently unscrewed them.

magnus, · Reply

The bay and dvd drive cable at iFixit is $40.00 (http://www.ifixit.com/Apple-Parts/9-5-mm...)

But for $10 more you can get an external casing that will protect your super drive form MCE (http://store.mcetech.com/Merchant2/merch...) A total of $50 dollars. It is what I used and works great and looks pretty and is guaranteed to protect your superdrive. MCE also gives you a disk with software to patch the DVD Player to work with external dvd drives. So For an extra $10 dollars you get better software functionality and a case for your super drive. It works great.

Robert Wacker, · Reply

It is not a good idea to put fast SSDs into the optibay. System tries to negotiate at 6 Gbit, but it fails; disk is recognized but it couldn't even be formatted. I've waisted a lot of time to find a reason. After swapping SSD with original mac's HD both work properly, one at 6, another at 3 Gbit

nicholas, · Reply

No problems here with a Samsung EVO in the optical bay. Only downside that is not really fast (80-90 mb/s) but amazing performances on booting time, shut off and opening programs.

Mike, · Reply

I have to withdraw my comment. It is NOT a good idea to put a SATAIII SSD in the optical bay. It gives random freezes. Swapping it with a HD is indeed better. Better read/writes too. Only downside is that SMS won't work on the optical bay so treat your baby with care. Also Sleep issues might occur when placing a HD in the optical bay (a total freezing system). I already wasted a HD that was in the optical bay.

Mike, · Reply

I've replaced the optibay with a samsung 840 pro but can't format it nor copy files (a few files work) to it. Do you suggest putting the HDD in the optibay instead? Did you clone the HDD to the SSD before swapping them? Will my Mac boot from the HDD the first time I boot even though it's in the optibay? I would really appreciate an answer, I've spent too many hours trying to figure it out!

Carl, · Reply

Also had this same problem. Tried and failed a Samsung firmware upgrade. Ended up send drive back to Amazon.

Andrew,

Okay it seems like some models of MacBook Pro have issues with a fast (6Gbit/s) SSD in the optical bay. Even though my Mac says it offers 6Gbit on both bays it simply didn't work in the optical bay. So I switched places between the two drives and everything seems to work. My Mac booted from the old HDD in optical bay automatically and then I cloned it afterwards and changed the startup disk to the new one. As said before, don't put a fast SSD in the optical bay!

Carl, · Reply

Make sure you have removed the 2 screws at the end of your super driver unit and move it to your NewHD bay with the metal piece eye loop.

Kamiiyu, · Reply

Normally with the HD enclosure there come a set of screws. use these to screw down the HD in the enclosure since you need to flip it up side down to reinstall it into the MBP

Bart, · Reply

Here they picture Crucial as their choice, you can also find some great options at Samsung (it is what I installed and it works just as good if not better than the crucial I installed in my wife's iMac. here is their site http://www.samsung.com/us/computer/solid...

Its just another great option. Also when installing SSDs make sure to enable TRIM support (crashes can and probably will occur if you don't) TRIM enabler is available free and the pro version is $10 http://www.cindori.org/software/trimenab... It is the easiest solution for this issue.

Robert Wacker, · Reply

With the particular drive bay adaptor I used, these attachment screws were already fitted to the adaptor but were found at the sides, not underneath. Indeed, the adaptor had no screw holes on the underside.

jjsanderson, · Reply

At first I couldn't get my machine to even turn on - thought it was the battery connector, but in the end I just had to reset the SMC. (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht3964 - see "Resetting the SMC on portables with a battery you should not remove on your own").

talksrealfast, · Reply

I have the drive installed with this bay, but the drive does not appear in the Disk Utility. I see a 'Nvidia MCP79 AHCI' in the system information, but no drive listed with it. Is there some special driver needed to get the MCP to see the drive?

toddfletcher, · Reply

Replaced the optical with hdd, as well as replaced the hard drive with an ssd. Now I get the circle with a line through it. But, when I hold the option key down, it gives me both hard drives, PLUS, the thumb drive I have in the USB port with a Mountain Lion installer. It even shows the recovery disks, but gives me the circle with the line when I choose one. Any help is appreciated.

claude, · Reply

View Statistics:

Today: 7

This Week: 83

This Month: 278

All Time: 7,768