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  1. #1
    Upgrading MBP mid-2012
    I have decided to upgrade my Macbook Pro (13" non-retina) mid-2012, as I am happy with the computer, but is getting a little slow. I am upgrading the RAM from 8 GB to 16 GB and changing the HDD to an SSD.

    However, I am left with at least three different ways of handling the HDD-changing/backup process, as I am using Time Machine as my standard backup, but I will need a bootable drive besides that, I guess.

    Here comes the problem: I am using El Capitan, and I have been advised to keep doing so, not updating to Mojave. So my three choices seem to me to be:

    1) Create a bootable disk on a USB memory stick - I just don't know how to do this for El Capitan!

    2) Clone my current HDD onto an external HDD and use this as a bootable disk.

    3) Update to Mojave - maybe it is not so bad on my old machine?

    To me, number 2 seems to be the easiest way to go, but I feel a bit insecure, so I thought I would ask some more competent people before making too much of a mess of my computer.

  2. #2
    Upgrading MBP mid-2012
    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Sep 30, 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by kristianrt View Post
    I have decided to upgrade my Macbook Pro (13" non-retina) mid-2012, as I am happy with the computer, but is getting a little slow. I am upgrading the RAM from 8 GB to 16 GB and changing the HDD to an SSD.

    However, I am left with at least three different ways of handling the HDD-changing/backup process, as I am using Time Machine as my standard backup, but I will need a bootable drive besides that, I guess.

    Here comes the problem: I am using El Capitan, and I have been advised to keep doing so, not updating to Mojave. So my three choices seem to me to be:

    1) Create a bootable disk on a USB memory stick - I just don't know how to do this for El Capitan!

    2) Clone my current HDD onto an external HDD and use this as a bootable disk.

    3) Update to Mojave - maybe it is not so bad on my old machine?

    To me, number 2 seems to be the easiest way to go, but I feel a bit insecure, so I thought I would ask some more competent people before making too much of a mess of my computer.
    What was the rationale for not upgrading to Mojave? It's fantastic and runs well on my 2012 MacBook Air, so it certainly should be fine on a 2012 MacBook Pro.

    The best way to handle transitioning to a new drive is to use cloning software (i.e. option #2). Most of us recommend Carbon Copy Cloner and it does have a free 30 day trial. SuperDuper is also very good and can be used free indefinitely with limitations, last I recall anyway. What you'll do is make an exact copy of your internal drive to the new drive, then swap them out. You can always consider upgrading to Mojave after the swap-out is done. If it doesn't work out for you, just re-clone the contents of the old drive back to the new one. Before doing so, be sure you don't have anything new files/data on the internal drive that need to be preserved.

    Alternatively, after making a clone of the old drive and swapping them out, you can boot off the old drive and install Mojave clean to the new internal drive. Once done, boot back off the internal drive and use Migration Assistant to copy your data off te external drive.

    These methods all require putting the drive into an external enclosure so you can connect them to one of the external ports. Make sure the enclosure you use is at least USB 3.0 compliant, though Firewire 800 or Thunderbolt may have faster transfer speeds.

    Post back if you have any questions. We can give you more detailed advice and product recommendations if you need them.

    Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
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    Lifeisabeach - Mac-Forums Member of the Month June 2009, Feb 2012, and March 2013.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Lifeisabeach View Post
    What was the rationale for not upgrading to Mojave? It's fantastic and runs well on my 2012 MacBook Air, so it certainly should be fine on a 2012 MacBook Pro.
    I was told just the opposite by those I have asked: That El Capitan was the last OS that would work really good on my computer. However, your suggestion is great! I will try to install Mojave as soon as I have made the transition, so I can go back to El Capitan from the old bootable disk if I'm not happy.

    And my thought originally was to use an external HDD to clone to and from - but your idea with the external enclosure is obviously much better!! Thanks a lot for the advice.

  4. #4
    Upgrading MBP mid-2012
    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Sep 30, 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by kristianrt View Post
    I was told just the opposite by those I have asked: That El Capitan was the last OS that would work really good on my computer. However, your suggestion is great! I will try to install Mojave as soon as I have made the transition, so I can go back to El Capitan from the old bootable disk if I'm not happy.

    And my thought originally was to use an external HDD to clone to and from - but your idea with the external enclosure is obviously much better!! Thanks a lot for the advice.
    No problem. I can't account for the experience of what the others had to say, but my MBA only has 4 GB of RAM. That's half what I would prefer as a minimum, but having an SSD really helps compensate for that shortage, especially for my light usage needs. If I had an HDD in lieu of the SSD, I absolutely would be hating life on this and may be the scenario of those who advised against using Mojave. In your case, with 16 GB RAM and an upgrade to an SSD, you will see a SIGNIFICANT boost in usability from your current baseline.

    Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
    ------
    Links: Onyx | EasyFind | Apple Hardware Test | How to test your hard drive | The Safe Mac Adware Removal Guide | Uninstall MacKeeper
    ------
    Lifeisabeach - Mac-Forums Member of the Month June 2009, Feb 2012, and March 2013.

  5. #5
    Upgrading MBP mid-2012
    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
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    Keller, Texas
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    58,235
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    2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, Numerous iPods, Mojave
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    @kristianrt:

    In addition to the great advice from member "Lifeisabeach", I strongly recommend while replacing the HDD with a SSD that you also replace the SATA cable. The cable attaches the drive to the Logic Board and is easy to replace and is not expensive. You can purchase the cable from iFixit: The Free Repair Manual or Apple Mac Upgrades - RAM, SSD Flash, External Drives and More or anywhere else that sells them.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by chscag View Post
    @kristianrt:

    In addition to the great advice from member "Lifeisabeach", I strongly recommend while replacing the HDD with a SSD that you also replace the SATA cable. The cable attaches the drive to the Logic Board and is easy to replace and is not expensive. You can purchase the cable from iFixit: The Free Repair Manual or Apple Mac Upgrades - RAM, SSD Flash, External Drives and More or anywhere else that sells them.
    Thanks for the advice - but why does that cable need to be replaced?

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by chscag View Post
    @kristianrt:

    In addition to the great advice from member "Lifeisabeach", I strongly recommend while replacing the HDD with a SSD that you also replace the SATA cable. The cable attaches the drive to the Logic Board and is easy to replace and is not expensive. You can purchase the cable from iFixit: The Free Repair Manual or Apple Mac Upgrades - RAM, SSD Flash, External Drives and More or anywhere else that sells them.
    Thanks for the advice - but why should I replace this cable? Because of wear?

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