I have a mid 2010 13" MBP.

I have an SSD, its not big enough so I am upgrading from 128GB to 256GB.

How can I take everything from the current SSD and then upload it to the new SSD - effectively giving me the same machine without installing OSX all over again?

Presumably I will need some new tech to read the SSD, copy it and then copy everything back once I have changed the SSD into the MBP?


How can I take everything from the current SSD and then upload it to the new SSD - effectively giving me the same machine without installing OSX all over again?

I upgraded my SSD some time ago in a similar configuration (128 GB->256 GB, MacBook Pro 15-inch early 2011).

Below is the procedure that worked for me, but note that for this to work your Mac must support OS X Internet Recovery. According to KB article "OS X: About OS X Recovery" (http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4718):

Mac models introduced after public availability of OS X Lion include the ability to start up directly from an Internet-based version of the OS X Recovery system.

which means that models manufactured before July 20, 2011 need a firmware update.

In your case you must have MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2010) EFI Firmware Update 2.5 or later installed, and that's probably the case, because most firmware updates are available as regular updates in Software Update/App Store.

To find out whether it is installed: Go to Apple menu > About This Mac, press System Report...:

enter image description here

and check if Boot ROM/SMC Version Information is MB71.0039.B0E or greater. If that's the case, you're good to go. Otherwise install it.

These are the steps:

  1. Back up old SSD with Time Machine by selecting "Back Up Now" in menu bar:

    enter image description here

  2. Shut down Mac and replace SSD.

  3. Start Mac while holding down -R and choose "Restore From Time Machine Backup":

    enter image description here

  4. Choose new SSD drive as target, wait until restore is completed and reboot.

This will let you keep everything.

  • 2
    This is correct but it needs instructions on how to create the installation media via USB (or DVD if available) and boot from it. – Archimedes Trajano Feb 3 '14 at 17:37
  • 2
    @ArchimedesTrajano Not necessary — providing the computer is up-to-date with firmware updates, Internet Recovery will take place automatically. – grg Feb 4 '14 at 7:15
  • @JakeN Please note that you'll need EFI Firmware Update 2.5 installed on your Mac, as commented by grgarside. I'm pretty sure you do, but check it as explained in the (edited) answer. – jaume Feb 4 '14 at 12:45
  • @JakeN To run the OS X Internet Recovery, which will download the boot image from Apple servers, your Mac must have Internet access. If you can, use an Ethernet cable. If you use WiFi make sure you write down your wireless password, you will probably need it. – jaume Feb 4 '14 at 14:33
  • I have Wifi, although if its backed up to an ext HDD I shouldn't need Wifi? Or do I need Wifi initially to install OSX so it knows what to do with my backed up data? – Jake N Feb 4 '14 at 14:35

One option is to get an external drive enclosure and plug the new SSD into it. Use a tool like SuperDuper or Carbon Copy Cloner to image the old SSD onto the new one. Then switch the drives around, keeping the old one as a backup drive.

  • 1
    If you are running with an SSD, it is a good idea to be doing backups with a disk cloning program (the one mentioned above). SSDs can just stop working. It is also a good idea to be using Time Machine and an on-line backup service (backblaze, crashplan, carbonite, etc) which works well for you. So get backups in place at the same time as upgrading your hard drive. I do SuperDuper clone to a HD, TimeMachine backup to NAS, and backblaze. – chrish Feb 5 '14 at 18:45

Best practice IMO:

  • Get an external HDD mount(or SDD mount - they are the same), and put your current SSD in it leaving it at it is right now.
  • Put your new SSD in the Macbook and install a clean version of OSX.
  • You can now copy everything you think you need from the one SSD to the other, leaving you with a clean install without possible installed rubbish and overhead files you do not need. (This will always leave you with more empty space than doing a full copy of your current SSD)

Since it's at maximum 128GB we're talking about, this is the best way without getting corrupt data or files.


Here is how I did it. @jaume solution should be fine but in my case ⌘-R did not work (endless loadscreen). And with installer USB Stick it failed. You don't need Time Machine for my solution.

You need an USB SATA adapter or external case. Mount either your old HDD or your new SSD via USB.

Boot from an USB Stick with e.g. Snow Leopard or what have you (Hold ALT / Option key while booting). Alternatively I think it's the same as ⌘-R (if you don't have installer stick and don't end up in endless load screen). Select Language and instead of going through the wizard click on Utilities in top menu and select Disc Manager. Click on the restore tab and drag&drop your old HDD as source and your new SSD as destination and press start.

I was very surprised that this hard drive clone feature comes with MacOS installer (since Snow Leopard).

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .