Enable TRIM for Any SSD in OS X (Yosemite 10.10.4 or Later)

Ever since Apple first offered Macs with SSDs (solid-state drives), they’ve included support for TRIM, a method that helps the operating system free up space. It also helps prolong the drive’s life and promote efficient operation.

The information here applies to Mac OS X Lion (10.7) and later, as well as all versions of macOS up to the latest [currently, 10.15 (Catalina)].

The TRIM Command

The TRIM command helps the OS clean up data in storage blocks that are no longer needed. This optimizes the write performance of an SSD by keeping more blocks of data free to be written to. It also prevents the SSD from being so aggressive in cleaning up after itself that it causes wear on the memory chips. In this way, it prevents premature failure.

TRIM is supported in OS X Lion (10.7) and later for all drives, but it’s enabled by default only on Apple-supplied SSDs. It’s not clear why Apple limited TRIM support this way, but the conventional wisdom is that TRIM implementation is up to the SSD manufacturer, and each one uses a different TRIM methodology. As such, Apple chose to use TRIM only on SSDs that it has certified.

A few third-party utilities can enable TRIM for non-Apple-supplied SSDs, including TRIM Enabler. These utilities make use of Apple’s built-in TRIM support while removing the ability of the OS to check if the SSD is on Apple’s list of approved manufacturers.

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