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I am about to install an Intel X25-M SSD in my MacBook. What should I know beforehand?

I understand that you do not need to defrag the drive as it does not increase performance and decreases drive life.

Is it correct that Mac OS X does not support TRIM? Does this mean I will need to reformat the drive every few months to keep maximum performance? Can I just use Disk Utility? Can anyone with a SSD in a Mac comment on this?

Anything else I should be aware of?

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Great question. Hope you get some feedback – Dave M Dec 22 '09 at 21:18
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Well the best I can do is point you to articles (short of re-writing and summarizing the content) that I have seen on the subject, initially it seems that MacOsx isn't the best at dealing with SSD's yet...


Hope that helps...

However, you should expect faster R/W over your standard HDD, but Apple is not yet on the TRIM waggon (as it is not yet a standard to my knowledge).

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One thing to be aware of is that SSDs tend to perform better the more free space that is on the drive. So, get the largest capacity drive you can afford, and be aware that filling it close to its capacity may hinder performance (especially if TRIM is not supported).

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As far as Garbage Collection on SSDs (of which TRIM is an API for OS's to implement), I read that Sandforce-based drives seem to do very well, claim to have native GC as well as decent overprovisioning to prevent degradation over time.

All other drives would need TRIM or their own GC implementation, and more recent drives do have TRIM support.

TRIM is only working on Windows 7 and the latest Linux kernels, IIRC, so no Mac love for now (though it might have it soon).

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I have an Intel X25-M 80GB in my Mac Pro since March this year, and it is working remarkably well since then. I didn't notice any slowdown whatsoever yet. The SSD is used for system files and apps only (development projects are hosted on a Raptor for now...). My SSD is half used right now (~40GB used out of the 80 available). The drive is silent, and is as fast as when I got it I'd say.

I never defragment my drives anyway (OK, I do it once a year or so but on Windows machines only so far, and only when I notice a slowdown that I suspect may be due to very bad defragmentation - Windows has however never reported more than 25% fragmentation in my cases so far...). Defragmentation is a moot point I think today... Vista and Windows 7 now have a scheduled job that does just that in the background for you every now and then.... I've never seen any fragmentation issues on OS X yet.

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