While this video illustrates how to install a hard drive into the main drive bay, the procedure for installing a Solid State Drive (SSD) is exactly the same.
Should you wish to add a second hard drive or SSD to your MacBook or MacBook Pro by replacing the factory optical drive, you can do so with the OWC Data Doubler.
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How to Upgrade/Replace the Hard Drive in a 15" MacBook Pro (2011-2012)
OWC Video Transcript
Download as PDF (size here)
Time to Complete
Approximately 20 Minutes
Tools You'll Need
Small Phillips Screwdriver
Torx T6 Screwdriver
Nylon Pry Tool
Make sure you have an up-to-date backup of your data.
Perform upgrade using proper anti-static precautions
Discharge static electricity before beginning
Work on a static free surface
Part One: Removing the Original Drive
The first step is to close the MacBook Pro and flip it over.
To access the inside of the MacBook Pro there are 10 Phillips screws to remove from the bottom cover.
Start by removing the 3 screws in the upper right which are longer then the other screws.
Then, remove the remaining 7 shorter Phillips screws.
a. The bottom cover can now be removed. Starting near the hinge edge, simply lift up on the bottom cover and set it aside.
b. The hard drive is located in the lower left corner.
First, carefully detach the battery connector using a nylon pry tool.
a. To remove the drive, loosen the 2 Phillips screws holding the retainer bar in place.
b. Then lift the retainer bar free and set it aside.
a. Next, pull the drive out of the bay by lifting up on the pull tab.
b. You can then unplug the SATA connector from the drive and remove the drive from the system.
Using a Torx T6 screwdriver, remove and set aside the 4 mounting pins from the original drive. There are 2 pins on either side.
Next, carefully peel off the pull tab from the drive, then set the tab and drive aside.
Part Two: Installing the New Hard Drive
The new drive can now be prepped for installation. First, attach the pull tab to the new hard drive in roughly the same spot as on the original drive.
NOTE: There should be enough residual adhesive to allow the pull tab to stick.
Next, use a Torx T6 screwdriver to attach the 4 mounting pins to the new drive in the same spots as the original drive.
a. The new drive can now be installed. Start by connecting the SATA cable.
b. Then slide the drive into place making sure that it lays flat within the drive bay.
Next, replace the retainer bar and tighten the 2 Phillips screws that hold it in place.
Finally, reconnect the battery by gently pushing its connector back into its socket.
Replace the bottom cover and gently push down on the center to engage the internal clips.
Using a Phillips screwdriver, secure the bottom cover starting with the 3 longest screws in the upper right.
Then, replace the remaining 7 Phillips screws.
With the bottom cover secure, the MacBook Pro can be flipped over and powered on.
The installation is now complete!
Now you can begin formatting the new drive, along with transferring your data and OS over. Please visit www.macsales.com/data-transfer for more details.
Thank you for choosing OWC as your upgrade provider. For additional assistance with
this upgrade, please contact our award-winning technical support team, available 24x7.