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  #1  
Old 01-12-2012, 03:33 PM
wildthing wildthing is offline
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USB 3.0 drive won't boot

In the past I've regularly used SuperDuper! to clone my system drive to an external USB drive, of course formatted with "GUID Partition Scheme", and then successfully tested my backups by booting from it.

However I recently bought a new drive and despite "GUID"-formatting it prior to running SuperDuper!, it fails to boot - I get the broken folder icon and it boots from the primary drive instead.

The drive that fails to boot is a LaCie Rugged Mini 1.5 TB as shown here:
http://www.lacie.com/uk/products/product.htm?id=10564

It's advertised as supporting USB 3.0 and USB 2.0, but it actually only has a USB 3.0 port, and comes with a USB 2.0 -> 3.0 adaptor cable. In theory, this should not matter since USB 3.0 is said to be backwards-compatible with USB 2.0.

The drives I've successfully used in the past were similar Lacie portable drives typically with USB 2.0 only.

The only obvious differences I can see with the newer LaCie Rugged Mini drive is the ports (USB 3.0 instead of USB 2.0), and the larger capacity (1.5 TB instead of 500 or 250 GB previously).

Any ideas why the new drive won't boot, or how I could diagnose why it isn't booting?

Has anyone else reported their experience with USB 3.0 drives, either positive or negative?

I'm running SuperDuper! version 2.6.4 (v89) on Snow Leopard 10.6.8.

Note that I can't currently upgrade to Lion because my Intel iMac is too old - it's a 2006-era 32-bit Core Duo, and the Lion minimum requirement is the Core 2 Duos that came out shortly after :-(
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  #2  
Old 01-12-2012, 03:53 PM
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dnanian dnanian is offline
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Have you tried getting to the Option+power on boot choice screen, THEN attaching the drive, selecting it and trying to start up from it?
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:55 PM
wildthing wildthing is offline
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If I hold option while booting, then I momentarily see a folder with a question-mark icon for a fraction of a second followed by the normal apple icon and then booting into the primary drive. I do not see Startup Manager or any kind of prompt to select a drive.

It doesn't make any difference whether no drive is connected, the USB 3.0 drive is connected, or even an older USB 2.0 drive (which is bootable) is connected. I tried all three combinations, and holding down Option behaves as described above regardless.

However if I use System Preferences > Startup Disk I can still boot into the USB 2.0 drive (but not the USB 3.0 drive).
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Old 01-12-2012, 10:04 PM
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dnanian dnanian is offline
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I can only suggest that the drive is, at a hardware level, not compatible...
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:06 AM
wildthing wildthing is offline
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OK thanks Dave, I'll do a bit more digging and see if I can't find out why.

Another possibility that occurred to me is that maybe the functionality to boot over USB 3.0 has only been built into Lion, not Snow Leopard. Just a thought.
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:23 AM
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dnanian dnanian is offline
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Maybe...but USB 3 is supposed to be backward compatible, isn't it?
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