It is just a week since I got my new 240GB LaCie Thunderbolt SSD hooked up to my 2011 iMac and set it as the boot drive. I continue to be blown away by the amazingly fast access speeds in comparison with the 1TB 7,200 rpm mechanical drive in the Mac. While the drive is often overlooked and more emphasis is placed on processor speed and RAM, there is no doubt in my mind that the LaCie has transformed the user experience. Previously I had been very disappointed with the iMac, despite its 3.4GHz i7 processor and 8GB of RAM; now it surpasses my expectations.
The SSD drive has performed perfectly in the past week and there have been absolutely no issues, except the noise of the fans. This is one noisy little beast, even though I’ve placed it as far away from the computer as the Thunderbolt cable will allow.
Several friends have been in touch to warn me that using an external disk as the primary boot drive is not a good idea. Before trying this Thunderbolt SSD I would have agreed with them. But the Thunderbolt connection allows the iMac to make the very best of the solid-state speed.
And to those who ask what happens if the drive fails, there is a simple answer. What happens if any drive fails? Provided I have a backup, I can argue that I am in a better position if the LaCie fails than if the internal disk fails. All I need do is boot from the internal disk, restore my backup and I’m away again.
So far, despite the doom mongers, I can think of no valid argument against this set up. Of course, it is better to have the SSD inside the iMac if you have the foresight to order it from new. I didn’t.