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  1. #1
    Performance enhancements from external SSD

    I'm using a MacBook Air (4GB RAM), and its performance is fair for browsing, but drags on intensive tasks like some of the number crunching in Photoshop. I don't want to buy a new computer, so I've been looking for ways to make the MBA work at acceptable levels. It already has an SSD as its primary drive.

    I purchased an external Thunderbolt-connected 512 GB SSD. By just setting up the external drive as the scratch storage for Photoshop, I've noticed a marked improvement, probably 40-50%.

    The external drive is maybe 30% faster than the internal drive. WTH? I'd presume that's due to faster SSD, from 2011 to now.

    What more is left to do? Probably no advantage to using it as the boot drive, since I wasn't using a spinner. The means to set it up for OS virtual memory storage seem convoluted and risky; I don't want to break the system.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks in advance,


  2. #2
    Performance enhancements from external SSD
    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Your Mac's Specs
    2011 17" MBP 2.2ghz, 16gig ram, OS 10.11.6
    Rep Power
    The biggest issues with this 2011 MBA is the 4gig of RAM and 6 year old graphics hardware. I recently upgraded my wife's 2011 MBA to a 2015 MBA (8gig RAM and the newest MBA graphics hardware available)...and it is so much faster!!!

    Bought 2015 MBA for $600. Sold 2011 MBA for $350. Net cost of 2015 MBA =$250. Well worth the $250!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
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