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My new SSD is not recognised in my MacBook Air when trying to set it u

I have purchased a MacBook Air early 2014.

the previous owner kept their hard drive for data safety so I bought a OWC 240gb SSD.

the MacBook Air doesn’t recognise the SSD. The box of the SSD and some searching on the net told me I need to update the firmware on the MacBook Air.

I have a 500gb 2.5” SSD from my old broken laptop and so I connected this with an external USB adaptor to the MacBook Air and it booted and worked fine when I booted up and pressed the option key. I could use the computer perfectly.

I then went to the App Store and downloaded OS X Big Sur which states it is compatible for my MacBook Air. It took a few hours to download and install but on the final reboot it stopped working.

ive tried to set up the new SSD but have the same problem as originally. Now the external SSD will not boot up and I can’t get it to show when I press the options button.

my data is not important. I want to set this up as a new MacBook Air. I have a separate time machine back up of my data.

I am happy to start this procedure again and give up the OS and data on my external SSD.

I can run disc utility etc by pressing COMMAND R

thank you in advance

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The solution i found was to purchase an apple original SSD (samsung) and that allowed me to get the product working.

I am returning the Aura SSD

thank you for all your help.

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try the command r key when powering on.

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Yes I can get in to disc utility but what do I do from there?


sorry im not an apple guy so idk.


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Let start things off with an older version of macOS as one of the problems I find is people jump to far up at once. Doing it in stages while a bit longer is more likely to get you going sooner!

So lets get to what the system had. Do you know (ask the seller) what it was running? I would then install that download the installer from here How to get old versions of macOS

As to getting it you really need to use a Mac system to setup the bootable OS installer USB thumb drive.

If you are able to get to the internet recovery (getting to disk utility) you should be able to first format your thumb drive with GUID and a journaled file system. Then you should be able to copy over the installer file to it following this guide to set it up How to create a bootable macOS Sierra installer drive you’ll find other guides listed if you are using something else.

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Thank you Dan

I have since formatted the external SSD and installed maverick from disc utility/recovery.

It now works fine. I tried to update to high Sierra but it says it needs firmware for that. So Does that mean I should small step up to high Sierra also?


@macps - Now you're on the way! Yes, you can go higher! I personally would stop at Mojave.

This gets into what you have for resources RAM & storage (SSD). If you have a 4GB system or you have a 8GB and limited storage with only 128 GB. I would stop at High Sierra.

You should be able to setup an external bootable drive now using your working system. Download as needed the macOS version and setup the installer USB drive as you'll need to run it from it to update the systems firmware which the installer will do for you. Do keep in mind anything higher than Sierra will upgrade your file system to APFS, but you do need the firmware update within High Sierra to get your OWC PCIe/NVMe drive to work properly as it needs the newer SSD driver it offers (Apple opened it up so 3rd party drive makers could use it)

So get to High Sierra using the external drive and then you should be able to upgrade directly from there by just running the OS installer directly on your drive walking it up version by version.


I have 4GB ram in this machine but am installing an OWC 240GB SSD.... i'm told that speeds it up substantially?

will big Sur be too much for this?


The newer OS's often have a bigger foot print both in needed storage but also RAM. Then adding a few apps to the mix you'll often find the system is running hard.

What I do agree a larger SSD will get you more performance, RAM is still better to address first.

The best way to think this is like a car with a stick shift you wouldn't run your car on a highway in low gear and likewise you wouldn't run it in high gear up a hill. Its knowing which gear is best for the environment otherwise you are either over rev'ing the engine or over stressing the gearbox.

So, as I stated I would stick with High Sierra given your CPU, RAM and Storage your system has.

Will Big Sur even work on your system. Yes it will! But do you want a workable system then don't push it.

Apple loves to make claims the older systems are still supported with the newer OS's. While in many cases its true! As an example I'm banging on an old 2012 15" MacBook Pro unibody top model 2.7 GHz Intel Core i7, 16MB of RAM & 1TB SSD. For working online here its more than powerful for the task, but I can't use it for the photography I do as its just not powerful enough. And I'm running Mojave on it. I also have a 13" model with only 8 GB and is running Big Sur, sadly its coughing ;-{


@danj great. thank you.

this is for my child's school work so apart from teams, it will just have simple use. they have a new iMac so i figured f i could get big sur on it all of their work will be on the cloud and will work seamlessly with the iMac.

but that's no good if all we will see is the spinning wheel.

so i have been going through the OS's to work up to High Sierra... Yosemite was fine, El Capitan no problem, but it does not seem to want to download Sierra.

From El Capitan i have tried to go straight to high sierra but it has the same 'Firmware missing' issue.

I am getting the OS's from here

When i click high sierra it is supposed to download a file to downloads. It was taking a long time so i left it over night but no movement....

cancelled and trying again.


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