Challenges with installing OS X onto new SSD

My family owns a late 2009 edition of the iMac, and just recently the hard drive failed. I have an SSD that I want to install in place of the failed hard drive. I know that I will need to install OS X onto the computer some how, the only issue is that the superdrive is also broken, so I am unable to use the OS X install disc that Apple included when we bought the computer.

I looked into using the internet recovery mode available to most modern macs, but the 2009 iMac isn't included on Apple's list of compatible computers located here:

So my question is what is the best way to install OS X onto the iMac once I've installed the new SSD? I am planning to replace the superdrive eventually, but want to hold off for a few months, so I would prefer a method that would work without using a disc. (I do have a USB-connectable optical drive, but am unsure if that would work for this sort of thing).

Thanks in advance for any help and advice, I really appreciate it!

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

Is this a good question?

Score 0
Add a comment
Spread Fixmas Cheer
Get $12 off your purchase of $50 or more with code FIXMAS12
Spread Fixmas Cheer
Get $12 off your purchase of $50 or more with code FIXMAS12

1 Answer

Chosen Solution

You'll need to find a friend with a Mac that can help you here. You'll need to get a USB thumb drive and a good bottle of wine (or some beer) for pay back ;-}

Basically you'll use this other Mac to prep up the thumb drive so its bootable using the OS installer he has on his system (or gotten from the App Store). Once its setup you'll use it to boot up your Mac and run Disk Utility to prep up your systems new drive and using a copy of the OS installer you placed on your USB thumb drive to install the OS onto your replacement drive.

Now the other shoe drops here...

Depending on the SSD drive you have it may not work in your system. Your system has a SATA II (3.0 Gb/s) HD interface. So you will need to review the spec sheet of your drive to make sure its compatible. You'll also need a 2.5" to 3.5" adapter frame to support your SSD.

You may want to look at a SSHD hybrid drive as your replacement drive. In these older systems I find they are both faster and more economical than putting in a SSD that has the needed space most people want. Here is what I would put in: Seagate SSHD. I'm sure the smaller 1 TB drive will meet your needs you'll note in the spec sheet this drive has auto sense technology to match up with your systems SATA port.

Lastly, you should also make sure your systems firmware is up to date. Review this Apple T/N: About EFI and SMC firmware updates for Intel-based Mac computers. Make sure you're at this level or newer.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 4



The help and advice is much appreciated. The drive I have is SATA III but is compatible with SATA II, so things should work fine there. And an adapter bracket is on it's way.

I'm hopeful that everything will work with the SSD, but will definitely look into getting an SSHD drive in the future if this installation doesn't work or if I am ever in need of another replacement.

Thanks for all the help!



Add a comment

Add your answer

natebenfell will be eternally grateful.
View Statistics:

Past 24 Hours: 0

Past 7 Days: 1

Past 30 Days: 24

All Time: 971