1 Reply Latest reply: Dec 21, 2011 9:26 PM by Kappy
ScuseMe Level 2 Level 2 (215 points)



I'm waiting for delivery of a new late 2011 27" iMac with 2 TB HD and 256 GB SSD. I'm trying to be proactive and develop a sufficient backup strategy. In doing that I need to know in advance where and how much of Lion does Apple put on the SSD. If it's everything, then I'll need a way to have my large folders (Apps, Downloads, Library, etc.) stored out to the 2 TB drive (hard links maybe?).


I'm sure someone, somewhere has already developed an adequate use for SATA + SSD and backups, so if possible, I'd like to have some info to read from Apple and 3rd parties. If you could point out these sources or add your recommendations here I would be greatly appreciative.




p.s. - I'll be using part of Promise's 8TB Thunderbolt RAID for backup duty.

iMac, Mac OS X (10.7.2), 24" C2D 3.06 GHz;1 TB HD; 8 GB RAM
  • 1. Re: Which Lion files/folders are stored on the SSD in a factory late 2011 27" iMac?
    Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (226,815 points)

    Everything is installed on the SSD. The HDD is essentially empty. The proper way to handle backups is to have a separate backup for the SSD and a separate backup for the HDD. The backups should be made to separate backup volumes or partitions.


    If you use Time Machine then TM will automatically make a separate backup of each but TM does not make a bootable backup.


    Basic Backup


    Get an external drive at least equal in size to the internal hard drive and make (and maintain) a bootable clone/backup. You can make a bootable clone using the Restore option of Disk Utility. You can also make and maintain clones with good backup software. My personal recommendations are (order is not significant):


    Carbon Copy Cloner

    Data Backup

    Deja Vu


    Synk Pro



    Visit The XLab FAQs and read the FAQ on backup and restore.  Also read How to Back Up and Restore Your Files.


    Although you can buy a complete external drive system, you can also put one together if you are so inclined.  It's relatively easy and only requires a Phillips head screwdriver (typically.)  You can purchase hard drives separately.  This gives you an opportunity to shop for the best prices on a hard drive of your choice.  Reliable brands include Seagate, Hitachi, Western Digital, Toshiba, and Fujitsu.  You can find reviews and benchmarks on many drives at Storage Review.


    Enclosures for FireWire and USB are readily available.  You can find only FireWire enclosures, only USB enclosures, and enclosures that feature multiple ports.  I would stress getting enclosures that use the Oxford chipsets especially for Firewire drives (911, 921, 922, for example.)  You can find enclosures at places such as;


    Cool Drives



    Firewire Direct

    California Drives



    All you need do is remove a case cover, mount the hard drive in the enclosure and connect the cables, then re-attach the case cover.  Usually the only tool required is a small or medium Phillips screwdriver.