13" aluminum unibody, 2.0 or 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo processor.

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SSD for late 2008 Unibody MacBook

I have a late 2008 Unibody MacBook 13"

2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor & 5 GB memory

I want to upgrade memory slot as well as put in a SSD as it is being slow despite multiple interventions.

Any SSD that would not be comptatible with my mac? Anyone have success with a SSD that is currently on the market with this laptop?

Thanks!

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Deck the Halls
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First you should make sure the systems firmware is upto date. Follow this Apple T/N: EFI and SMC firmware updates for Intel-based Macs.

As to the system RAM your system can support upto 8 GB (two 4 GB modules) Not sure how you have 5 GB (one 1 GB and one 4 GB) If that is the correct, you'll still want to replace the older 4 GB module with a matched set of two 4 GB modules as this system doesn't like mixed RAS/CAS from two different modules of the same size.

As to pushing the systems storage:

Remember most of the problems people encounter is too full a drive and/or the drive has become fragmented. I would recommend you try using a good defrag app like Drive Genius. It's my goto tool for slow HD's first, you may find it fixes things!

OK, thats not going to do it. Then think about going with a SSHD hybrid drive like Seagate SSHD (9.5 mm height) instead it offers the zip of a SSD on booting up, yet still offers the deep storage of a transitional HD. This is our current direction on upgrading our laptops. Yes, I'm sure we'll be moving over to SSD's next year but for now this is the most economical solution for us.

Going with a SSD is still workable but the OS-X version you are using or planning on using could be a factor. TRIM enabler won't work with Yosemite without turning off driver signing which could put your system at risk. The older OS's don't offer signing so it will work with them. Some drives have housecleaning onboard so the need for TRIM is lessened. I would look at what OWC offers for SSD's. Also, don't forget the cheaper SSD's are smaller (240 GB). You'll need to leave about 1/4 to 1/3 of the drive space free. Where does that leave you given what you currently have on your HD today? The investment of a larger SSD may not be worth it here given the age of your system. Apple now uses M.2 blade SSD's so your SSD won't fit internally on the newer MacBook Pro's.

Just do the math out before you leap: How long you expect to hang on to your system and how much space do I really need.

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Thanks for your helpful reply. I have kept my drive 30%- 40% free since the fall and did defrag this fall. I also disabled some things on web browsers to help it run faster. I felt like this was way faster for awhile but its still a bit slow. I usually clean up all my power point drafts etc about twice a year and clean up quite a bit. So will likely clean it up a bit this month.

I would like about 1.5 more years out of it so I could buy a new one after I'm done with my medical training and will be getting quite a bit more money for a new mac.

Currently I'm using it for browsing, keynote and pages for work projects. Do you think if I upgraded to either a hybrid or ssd I would be able to get a slightly speedier computer to do these things. I won't be trying to video editing or anything really ever. With my 30% free currently and having defraged (although on a cheaper program than you suggested) do you think the problem could still be too loaded of a drive at all. I'm going to change my RAM- I know the 1 and 4 is odd and probably not ideal- I did that during intern year when I had no money and didn't know better.

thanks so much for your help. Currently I just don't have 2k for a computer.

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Fully understand the limits of ones pocketbook. You may want to run Disk Utility on the drive from an external boot up drive (USB Thumb drive). That way it can fix any structure issues and permissions. Do make a backup of your drive beforehand just in case. Lastly, I would recommend running a housecleaning app that clears the temp & cache files that tend to build up. They can slow a system down as well. Going with a matched set of RAM modules is a good start, the biggest performance gain is defrag & housecleaning of your current drive. Then, upgrading to a SSHD hybrid drive or going full bore with a SSD. Given the age of the system I would stick with the SSHD as the next step Vs the SSD. Yes, I love them too but the bean counter part of my head tells me it's not worth it on these older systems as the risk here is other parts are likely to go before your investment has payed off.

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