My 4 Years Old iMac is Now SSD Enabled

Date:  Mar 9, 2015

Few months ago, I found my iMac very slow.  A lot of time, you will see the hour glass comes out and a lot of applications seems like forever not responsive.

I have done a clean install, and the performance is still the same.  I could not figure out what went wrong?  So, I blame it on the iMac processor & Yosemite OS.

On February 24, the unthinkable has happened.  My 2TB Hitachi Hard Disk (comes with the iMac) turned RED.

And I found out that S.M.A.R.T reported error “Please do a backup as soon as possible” kind of message.

That is when I knew my iMac has come to the end of life. 

After 4 years…. I bought it since 2011.  It has served me well.

Then, my colleague advise me to look into the option of changing the hard disk to Fusion Drive or SSD.

Fusion Drive is a technology that has a hybrid of SSD and Hard Disk, and Apple OS and other applications will be installed onto the SSD to run faster.

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After checking with IDT @ Simlim.  It was found that, my mid-2011 iMac cannot support the Fusion Drive.  

However, there is an alternative to make it a “Fusion Drive” effect.  In order to do that, you will need to take out the 3.5” hard disk and replace it with a SSD.  And then, you take out the CDROM, and install a bracket to mount a 2.5” hard disk.  The performance will somewhat be slower than a 3.5” hard disk.

As I might need the CDRom from time to time, I decided to go with 1TB of SSD instead of the Fusion Drive alternative.

The technician at IDT @ SimLim used a sucker to suck the monitor screen out.  And then, he carefully unscrew all the screws.  Over at the left hand side, there is a tiny wire connection needed to be disconnect first.

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And walaaaaaa… This is the hard of the iMac after removing the 3.5” hard disk.

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So, they mount a bracket there to fit the Samsung SSD drive on it.

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After that, they installed the Yosemite onto the SSD by mirror copy it from another hard disk.  All these are done within 1 hour.  Very fast.

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Once I brought my iMac home, I run the migration assistant software that comes with the Mac.  It takes a couple of hours to restore my files and settings from the Time Machine.  So the next day when I wake up, the machine is FASTER because of the SSD.  Because it is faster, the CPU is not always waiting for some applications to do the writings.  So, the whole systems seems faster too.

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I managed to clean up a lot of junks and movies.  

Since I only have 1TB SSD hard disk so, I will try to clean up my iPhoto.  As you can see, my photos for all these years have reached 368GB.  That is when I backup and move away all the Videos files to my Sinology backup drive.

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So, I think my iMac can probably last me for another 4 years.  And it is totally worth it.

It is very fast just like my laptop (MBA) like that.

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