How to replace your macbook’s hard disk

Replacing the macbook unibody hard disk is increadibly easy. I have just replaced mine, so I will show you the steps to do it.

Don’t forget to do a Time Machine backup (or copy your files in an external hard drive) in case of something happens.

0. What do you need?

The first step consists on buying a new hard disk and all the tools needed for the replacement:

  • a SATA hdd 2.5”. You have to take in consider capacity (120GB to 1TB), speed (5200 or 7200rpm) and cache (8MB or 16MB). I bought Seagate Momentus 500GB, 16MB of cache and 7200rpm.
  • an external case for 2.5” hard drives.
  • a star screwdriver 75mm.

1. Format your new hard disk

Connect the new hard drive to the macbook using the external case and open Disk Utility (Aplications -> Utilities -> Disc Utility).

Select your external hard drive (PAY ATTENTION on selecting the external hdd, otherwise could format another hdd or pendrive and lose the information) and go to Erase tag. Choose MacOS with register, type a name and click on Erase.

2. Clone your new hard disk

A lot of software has been developed to clone the hard drive. SuperDuper is one of the best free options to create an exact copy of your hard drive.

Download and install the free version of SuperDuper from this link. After that, open the application and choose the locations of your origin (internal hard drive) and destination (external hard drive). The default option of  Backup -all files will automatically create a boot-able backup.

Once the copy is completed, you will have a full boot-able backup.

To test the full boot-able backup, restart your macbook. While it starts, hold the Option (Alt) key until a display appears. This asks you to choose a hard disk to boot from, so you will know that you have successfully booted to your backup if the backup appears.

3. Install your new hard drive

The basic procedure to replace the hard disk consists on turning off the notebook, disconnecting all the cables and leting it cool. After that, flip it over and push down the latch to release the access door.

Now you can unscrew the drive bracket, disconnect the SATA connector, install the new drive and reassemble the computer.

At this point the replacement of the hard disk is done. Turn on your macbook and enjoy it!


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