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Rplacing optic drive with SSD (for Dan)

OK we're on a pretty steep learning curve here, Dan.

I just need to check a few things with you before I go further. I didn't look at the Dual Drive instructions initially as I thought that referred to the Hybrid drive mentioned in an earlier post. I've now read it and am happy to continue.

I've checked the Hard drive enclosure at step 22 and intend to order part EU107081 in EU ifixit store or IF107-081-1 in US store (at half EU price!) (I'm in UK).

The Samsung 850 EVO 250Mb 2.5" SSD is available in UK at about £80. It says however that connectivity is at SATAIII 6.0Gb/s, but compatible with SATAII. Is that OK? If you are happy with these choices I shall go ahead and order together with specialist tools listed in guide?

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Deck the Halls
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Your Samsung 850 EVO drive is an AUTO drive so it will work across the different SATA based systems. So you're good here.

If you go with a different drive review the spec sheet to see if it lists SATA II (3.0 Gb/s), if it does then it too will work! If it only lists SATA III (6.0 Gb/s) then it's a FIXED speed drive and won't work in your system.

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Thanks Dan, I'll go with the Samsung 250 EVO as you recommended. Can you tell me, will the iMac know to boot from the new SSD? If not do I need to configure it to do so?

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As you still have your HD in place you'll need to first install the OS onto your SSD using the OS installer from it. Then you'll need to alter the startup disk setting within the system preferences to the OS thats on the SSD and your done!

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Thanks again. I know we are a way off that stage yet but I'd like to feel confident as to what to do and I'm anxious to use your expertise. So after I install the SSD, I restart the iMac and it will boot from the old HD. I think you are saying that I have an OS installer on my current HD. Are there pretty easy directions as to how to install the OS from the old HD to the new SSD? I'm feeling a bit nervous abour this step!

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Here's one of the better guides: How to clean install macOS. Skip over setting up the USB drive as you'll be using your HD instead. Look in your application folder for the OS installer, or go to the App Store and re-download it (El Capitan 10.11.x) from the 'Purchased' listing.

One thing you'll likely need to do here is to manually back wind your date to Feb 2016 as the OS installer might give you an error telling you its corrupted (it's not) "This copy of the Install OS X El Capitan application can't be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading" Apple was sneaky! They put in a date window into the installer if the date is to old or to new it won''t install.

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You shouldn't have a problem connecting a SATA III SSD to a SATA II connection since SATA is backwards compatible.

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Thanks Jack. The other question I have is; once I have replaced the optical drive with the SSD, (assuming I have the correct parts as identified above) Does the iMac 'know' to boot from the new SSD rather than the old HD, or do I need to configure it somehow?

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I can't get into too much detail since I'm not too familiar with Macs as I'm with PC's but will give you this link to instructions on what I believe needs to be done.

https://9to5mac.com/2017/09/29/how-to-ad...

Hope that helps and keep us posted.

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Jack its not that simple! Compatibility is not how you think.

There are two kinds of SATA drives FIXED & AUTO. A FIXED speed drive will only work in a system which has the same SATA I/O speed. So as an example a SATA III (6.0 Gb/s) drive will only work in a SATA III system.

Now an AUTO speed drive will list in the spec sheet multiple SATA speeds which could be all three (SATA I, II & III) or just the newer two (SATA II & SATA III). These drives will work in either based system.

So whats important here to read the drives spec sheet to see what it says.

Now lets talk about what the SATA standard allows for FIXED speed drive compatibility, the standard does permit it but in the reverse! The reason was at the time HD's where expensive so the thought was someone would want to install an older drive into a newer system. So a FIXIED SATA I (1.5 Gb/s) drive can run in a SATA II or SATA III system! And likewise a FIXIED SATA II (3.0 Gb/s) drive will work in a SATA III system but not in a SATA I system!

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You're talking about older SATA drives being FIXED. I don't know of any in my recent memory of them being FIXED so I knew the OP didn't have to worry about that.

Thanks for the breakdown btw.

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Many of the HD's sold today are fixed. The HD companies are dropping auto drives. Even SSD's are slowly moving to fixed as the market for older SATA I & SATA II upgrades are dropping off. To be price competitive every unnecessary function is being pulled to lower the costs.

As an example Seagate offered an Auto 2.5" SSHD now the newest version is fixed SATA III. We didn't expect it, as the 3.5" model is auto!

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