I installed an Intel 330 SSD (120GB) in my MacBook (4,1) a few weeks ago. I reinstalled a fresh Mac OS X Lion (10.7.4) to make sure there are no issues with the new drive.

However, since then I encounter random and pretty frequent freezes (~10, daily). The entire OS freezes for 10-30 seconds, the cursor (the infamous beach ball) still moves but no application responds to input.

I don't know whether the drive is malfunctioning or the problem is with the OS. I see other people having this issue and I'm wondering if anyone has any clues as to where to start investigating. If I am to return the drive, I need some proof that it's malfunctioning. Or, if the OS has incompatibility issues with Intel drives/SandForce controllers, I might buy a second different drive.

At the moment I'm trying to use fs_usage (as I'm writing this message), hoping to find a clue about what's causing the freezes.

As suggested by various blogs/tips, I disabled the power-saving feature for disk drives. I even tried the Trim Enabled utility, but it only seemed to make the freezes happen more often, so at the moment it's disabled.

Any input on this issue would be appreciated.

  • Sounds like the drive is not correctly supported by OS X. To avoid dataloss consider a supported drive instead. Aug 8, 2012 at 7:49
  • I contacted Intel support and I was suggested to test the drive using another operating system. I was also suggested to contact Apple regarding this issue: "we strongly recommend to contact Apple first to see if the SSD is fully compatible and validated for your system and its firmware, it is possible then Apple can provide advise on solving the issue without having to cross test the SSD or to re-partition the drive".
    – chitza
    Aug 8, 2012 at 12:20

2 Answers 2


Turning off the FileVault seems to be fixing the problem with me. I also have TRIM enabled with Trim Enabler and "Put hard disk(s) to sleep when possible" in the Energy Saver setting unchecked.


I have the same problem with my MacBook 3,1 and an OWC Mercury. I think an SSD with a white MacBook is fairly uncommon so you are going to have to experiment with a non-SF drive to get any answers. OWC told me they don't have any other reports of the issue. One clue I'll add is that I saw somewhat similar behavior with when I had previously upgraded to a new hard disk before going SSD. It was somewhat different with more frequent but short pauses. I've sort of resigned myself to living with it until I get a new MBP at some point.

I also tried TRIM Enabler without any improvement. One thing that did help was upgrading to 6GB RAM and restarting my browser when free memory gets low. This minimizes paging and, while paging shouldn't be an issue, it does help quite a bit. When I get the beach ball, it's almost always when there's no free memory.

  • That's a clue to keep in mind: low memory. One thing I noticed while using fs_usage was that Chrome was doing massive read/writes when the freezes occurred. I've read somewhere else about memory paging causing freezes, I'll try to monitor those occurrences too.
    – chitza
    Jun 21, 2012 at 8:42

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