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Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
joemikeb #57548 01/12/21 12:23 AM
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Originally Posted by joemikeb
... I am confident in my conclusion "...it is not difficult to create a bootable external drive for M1 macs given the right combination of connecting media, drive media, and installer", or perhaps I should have been more emphatic in expressing my caveat. 🤷‍♂️
Perhaps that statement is more apropos than I thought at the time I wrote it. Since then I have found booting from the drives I previously created was a sometimes thing. Sometimes they worked and sometimes they didn't. And I was still trying to figure out the problem with the Samsung SSD. My configuration since the beginning has been the Samsung drive connected to an OWC Thunderbolt 4 hub which in turn is connected to one of the Thunderbolt 4 ports on the M1 Mac mini.

Purely on a hunch, I disconnected the OWC Thunderbolt 4 hub and connected the Samsung directly to the Thunderbolt 4 port on the Mac mini and 💥SUCCESS! 🎉 I was easily able to create a bootable image on the Samsung drive, and reliably reboot from it multiple times. Even better, it is within a hairs breadth of being as fast as the internal drive. I reiterate, "...it is not difficult easy to create a bootable external drive SSD for M1 macs given the right combination of connecting media, drive media, and installer"

I am planning a long chat with OWC Tech Support tomorrow.



"Sacred cows make the best hamburger"

- Mark Twain
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
joemikeb #57549 01/12/21 12:34 AM
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Good news!

Considering the configuration of hardware and software (including, simultaneously, all/most available betas) you're running, I've often wondered how you're able to ever figure out what's what when something goes wrong.

GOOD SHOW!


The new Great Equalizer is the SEND button.

In Memory of Harv: Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. ~Voltaire
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
artie505 #57553 01/12/21 08:19 PM
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Jon

macOS 11.6.1, iMac Retina 5K 27-inch, late 2014, 3.5 GHz Intel Core i5, 1 TB fusion drive, 16 GB RAM, Epson SureColor P600, Photoshop CC, Lightroom CC, MS Office 365
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
jchuzi #57554 01/12/21 09:51 PM
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My bluetooth connectivity issues no longer exist. On the other hand, I have yet to successfully connect to my SoftRAID array and reliably bootable external drives can be iffy.



"Sacred cows make the best hamburger"

- Mark Twain
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
joemikeb #57568 01/14/21 08:13 PM
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M1 MAC EXTERNAL BOOT DRIVE DISCOVERIES
  1. From what I have experience and read elsewhere creating a bootable external drive on an M1 Mac is tricky. Even a different model SSD from the same manufacturer can make a difference. The combination I know that works is a Samsung X5 512GB Thunderbolt 3 SSD, directly connected to either of the Thunderbolt 4 ports on an M1 Mac, and using a bootable flash drive installer. (Instructions for creating a bootable installer here.
  2. No other combination of connecting ports, drives, etc. I tried either completed the installation process or subsequently failed to boot with an error 104. 🤬
  3. If you have stored your data, Documents, Desktop, etc. on iCloud recovery is a piece of cake 🎂, simply log into your iCloud account in System Preferences and have a network connection.
  4. Recovery from TM or another System drive is a total PITA 🥵 because all of the various security settings have to be reset, drivers and some apps must be reinstalled, etc. (did I mention all the 🤬 security settings have to be reset.) NOTE: Migration Assistant will not migrate data from a newer OS version like macOS 11.2 to an older macOS installation like macOS 11.1. (If only Apple would get the ASR utility to work on M1 Macs so they could be cloned. I am becoming a convert to cloning. 🥺)
  5. Speaking of cloning, I have yet to get Mike Bombich's suggestion of how to create a bootable clone to work, but I am still trying. I suspect that like creating a bootable external drive on M1 Macs it is a matter of figuring out the right configuration, devices, and holding your mouth right and resetting all the 🤬 security settings.


MACOS 11 TIME MACHINE DISCOVERY

During all of the installs, reinstalls, recoveries, etc. I noticed a new to me feature in Time Machine. Previously if you wanted to encrypt Time Machine backups that was done by backing up to a previously encrypted drive. I don't know when this changed, but in Big Sur the option has been added to the Time Machine pane in System Preferences "Encrypt backup" which does exactly that, it encrypts your Time Machine backup(s). The downside is that it must erase the drive in order to setup encrypted backups. The upside is it works rapidly and seamlessly using a very secure encryption algorithm.

Last edited by joemikeb; 01/14/21 08:41 PM. Reason: Add link to bootable installer instructions


"Sacred cows make the best hamburger"

- Mark Twain
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
joemikeb #57612 01/18/21 08:06 PM
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Jon

macOS 11.6.1, iMac Retina 5K 27-inch, late 2014, 3.5 GHz Intel Core i5, 1 TB fusion drive, 16 GB RAM, Epson SureColor P600, Photoshop CC, Lightroom CC, MS Office 365
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
jchuzi #58476 04/03/21 10:03 PM
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BACKGROUND:

I started this thread months ago to report what I encountered in the process of moving to an M1 Mac mini. Along the way there were more than a few surprises, issues, and changes that had to be dealt with by Apple, by third party developers, and/or by me.

WHO WAS/IS/WILL BE AFFECTED WHEN THEY CONVERT:
  1. At the average user level the only thing most will notice are changes in the visual look and feel of macOS 11 (Big Sur) and noticeably faster performance of Apple silicon.
  2. At the Power user and troubleshooting level Big Sur has a ton of different features and under the hood organizational changes mostly related to enhanced security concerns and where and how this is managed can be significantly different between systems on Intel and Apple silicon.
  3. For the vast majority of developers moving to Apple silicon native code has been easy and straight forward.
  4. For a few developers, implementing their functional features on Apple silicon and Big Sur has presented significant challenges.


MAJOR ISSUES I ENCOUNTERED:
  1. BOOTABLE EXTERNAL DRIVES At this point in time, as far as I know, the ONLY bootable external drives are high quality Thunderbolt 3 SSDs connected directly to either of the two Thunderbolt 4 ports on an M1 Mac.
  2. BOOTABLE CLONES Given macOS 11.3 beta 5 or later (Apple fixed their ASR utility) on an M1 Mac, Carbon Copy Cloner Version 5.1.26-b4 (or later?) can make a bootable clone subject to the restrictions on all bootable external drives. (See this post for remaining questions and/or issues.)
  3. KERNEL EXTENSIONS Big Sur has made a concerted effort to move all kernel extensions out of the "system area" and into the "user area" which has presented significant challenges to some software developers. Most developers, like Rogue Amoeba, appear to have moved their extension functionality to a LaunchDaemon. For performance reasons SoftRAID has chosen to stick with Kernel Extensions. Installation of kernel extensions is a multi step process, typically requiring at least two reboots on M1 Macs. In some cases, mine included, installing those kernel extensions and updating evolved into an extended process requiring the use of the uninstalling utility in SoftRAID, deleting files via Finder, flushing caches with Terminal commands and numerous reboots. For others it has been a smooth and relatively simple process. In the final analysis my SoftRAID works and performs beautifully, but the SoftRAID 6.0.1 app cannot access or manage it because the drives in the array are formatted APFS (fix promised in SoftRAID 6.0.2) and the array cannot be encrypted (awaiting a "fix" in a future update of Big Sur).


CONCLUSIONS:
  • My last stopper (SoftRAID) was resolved this morning! (See item 3 preceding)
  • Would I recommend a Mac with Apple Silicon?: You better believe I would. The startup has been a little shaky but everyone, including Apple, is on a learning curve with this OS and hardware platform. Considering the magnitude of the project, It has IMHO been surprisingly smooth.
  • Would I change anything?; There has been some criticism about the number of ports on the M1 Mac and to be candid, it has taken me several reconfigurations of my system (including upgrading two cables from Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 4) to get everything running the way I want, but the existing configuration and ports have proven to be very flexible and capable of supporting anything from a very minimal laptop configuration to a complex system such as mine with up to 17 external devices including four external SSDs, a four drive RAID array, three external HDs, two monitors, and assorted other low speed USB 3.0 printers/scanners/scales, and multiple bluetooth keyboards, trackpads, mice, headphones, speakers, etc.. I wondered if 16GB of memory would be enough, but I have never found "memory pressure" to be out of the green range. Similarly I questioned whether a 500GB internal drive would be big enough, but at the moment I have 192GB of free and purgeable space on the internal drive. So all things considered the answer is PROBABLY NOT.



"Sacred cows make the best hamburger"

- Mark Twain
Re: M1 Surprises 🤹🏼
joemikeb #58477 04/04/21 02:09 AM
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Joe, Thank you for the detailed and timely M-1 System on a Chip Apple Silicon updates. The details you've provided are extremely helpful in advising my friends on their newest Mac purchase....and choosing the M-1 Mac over the Intel Mac is undoubtedly going to be the solution that I will recommend.


Freedom is never free....thank a Service member today.
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