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My uncle has the following MacBook Pro, it according with About This Mac

  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011)
  • Processor 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5
  • Memory 4 GB 1333 MHz DDR3
  • Graphics Intel HD Graphics 3000 384 MB
  • HD - 320GB - based on HDD

Furthermore, in the back of the laptop appears Model No:A1278. So far, it works in peace but is very slow. In this point is not possible do an upgrade of the macOS itself. Currently it has OS X Yosemite.

Anyway - he is looking for to upgrade the hardware to try upgrade the OS itself (first, about the RAM,it is going to be upgraded from 4GB to 16GB).

About the HD, I suggested to buy a new HD of 1TB but being SSD.

What is the correct model for this Mac? I want buy one based of WD (Western Digital) - I want from that company because for other laptop I bought:

  • WD Blue SA510 SATA SSD
  • 1TB of capacity
  • WDS100T3B0A-00AXR0 (shown in back of the box package)

So far it is fast as expected. It is:

But because this laptop is old, I am sure not sure about what is the correct model for this Mac.

Please confirm if this model is valid, if not, please share an URL of the recommended product. My uncle should buy this HD in USA.

Thanks for your understanding.

Extra Question

  • If this MacOS is upgraded to 16GB and 1TB SSD, until what version would be upgraded the OS itself?

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The hard drive can be upgraded to any 2.5" SATA SSD you wish, as they are standard. Since the SSD will be far faster than any spinning hard drive, there is no need to purchase a premium, very fast SSD. My personal experience with this exact laptop suggests that the improvement is immediately noticeable and extends the usability of the laptop immediately.

The laptop itself can only run High Sierra 10.13.6 as the 'latest' MacOS, as later MacOS are not supported on this laptop. (newer Macs are moving to MacOS 14 at time of writing)

I will suggest that this model is well outside of the supported hardware, and it is beginning to have challenges with digital certificates, websites and even wifi, due to newer standards.

Many websites that use HTTPS rely on current digital certificates that are part of the browser. When these expire, often an update to the browser is sent to provide the new certificates. But without updates, these certificates no longer function and you will find websites that will no longer work, as they no longer allow HTTP, only HTTPS.

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    What is MacOS 17? I thought macOS 14 (Sonoma) was the latest? Sep 19, 2023 at 19:39
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    There are web browsers whose current releases are compatible with High Sierra. For example, there is Edge and Opera. However, I imagine soon those two will join Firefox, Brave and Chrome, which require at least Catalina. Sep 19, 2023 at 19:52
  • Thanks for the feedback, about the web browsers, in other MacBook Pro with El Capitan Opera does not open many pages due something about https or ssl .... and of course it can't be upgraded anymore ... but this laptop is going to work with Linux with a new SSD... Now my uncle must decide the OS problem/situation. Sep 19, 2023 at 23:29
  • thanks @DavidAnderson have iOS on the brain. corrected to MacOS 14
    – cmason
    Sep 20, 2023 at 0:25

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