I recently received a 13″ MacBook Pro with an internal 512GB SSD. I support a lot of different products and need to virtualize many different environments to do so. Naturally, 512GB fills up pretty fast when creating a bunch of virtual machines so I started shopping for decent external SSDs. It seems silly to waste my money on SSDs based on USB 3.x interfaces as they generally top out between 500MB/s to 1050MB/s when we now have Thunderbolt 3 which is 4 times faster at 40Gbps.

The Sticker shock of these new TB3 SSDs is a bit much as at the time I’m writing this, the Samsung X5 2TB SSD is a whopping $699.99. I just couldn’t justify this purchase and started doing a bit of research. Turns out you can buy the enclosure and an M.2 2280 SSD and save yourself over $300. I just booked the order at Amazon and will update this when the parts arrive and I’ve put it together and tested.

Here are the parts for reference and calculated savings:

ineo Thunderbolt 3 SSD Enclosure, PCIe Thunderbolt 3 (40Gbps) to NVMe M.2 SSD Case – (SSD not Included) [C2604]129.99
Sabrent Rocket Q 2TB NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD High Performance Solid State Drive R/W 3200/2900MB/s (SB-RKTQ-2TB)249.99
m.2 Thermal pad, 70x20x1mm for M.2 2280 SSD NVMe Heatsinks (4PCS Pack)8.99
Amazon Coupon (Not sure why but I’ll take it)-13.00
Roll Your Own Grand Total375.97
SAMSUNG X5 Portable SSD 2TB – Up to 2800MB/s -Thunderbolt 3 NVMe External Solid State Drive, Gray/Red (MU-PB2T0B/AM)699.99
Roll Your Own Savings324.02

Update: Mar 11 19:56:26 EST 2021

I’ve been using this little speed demon for some time now and I must say I’m impressed.

I’d buy this one again as the prices for the Samsung X5 2TB are still $599 @ Amazon.

I recently decided to try out the OpenZFS implementation of ZFS on my mac desktop and so far, I’m impressed. In this post, I’ll cover some of the issues encountered along the way. Let me start by describing my configuration. My desktop is a hack(intosh) with Mavericks installed on two internal 1TB drives. The primary boot drive is partitioned into one big slice and I use CarbonCopy to clone this disk to the second disk. My goal is to migrate my home directories, /Users, to a ZFS mirror and keep OSX on it’s own partition. This is pretty simple with two disks but I thought I would cover the steps here and hopefully help others down the ZFS path.Continue reading

My desktop system is a Mac and I use VMware Fusion to test operating systems and cluster configurations.  Oracle sometimes delivers the Oracle Solaris Cluster software in a tarball so here’s how to burn it to an ISO image which can then be mounted inside the virtual machine:

hdiutil makehybrid -iso -udf -joliet -o solaris-cluster-3_3u1-ga-x86.iso solaris-cluster-3_3u1-ga-x86