This is the first of two links regarding the iMac Pro that I’ll be posting today.
Jason Snell, writing at Macworld:
I’ve spent the last week with Apple’s new iMac Pro, and in most ways it’s just a faster Mac. It’s the first pro Mac desktop in over three years and the fastest Mac yet made, granted, but still entirely familiar. And yet in many ways—some noticeable, some entirely invisible—this new Mac is completely different from all past Mac models.
As for the disk controller? There isn’t one—or more accurately, the disk controller is built into the T2 itself. This gives the T2 complete control over internal storage on the iMac Pro. This has some major benefits in terms of speed and security. Every bit of data stored on an iMac Pro’s SSD is encrypted on the fly by the T2, so that if a nefarious person tried to pull out the storage chips and read them later, they’d be out of luck.
By default, security is set to Full, which means that only the current operating system or another OS version signed and trusted by Apple—meaning it hasn’t been tampered with in any way—can be booted by the computer. This version requires a network connection when you attempt to install any OS software updates, because it needs to verify with Apple that the updates are legitimate.
I, of course, recommend all of Jason Snell’s article. As an Apple nerd, I have been following the release of the iMac Pro with great interest. If this were going to be Apple’s only modern pro desktop offering (which I believe it was going to be at one point in Apple’s planning), I would be fairly distressed. As it is, I can look at what they are doing with interest. There’s some things about the iMac Pro I wish were optional, like all the encryption of the flash storage via the T2 chip. But it’s not that big of a deal and I like what Apple is doing here because some people need that extra super-duper security.
And as long as I can tone down the security of the boot process I’m fine with all that too. If they can bring all this fun stuff to a more upgradeable and user-serviceable package with the forthcoming Mac Pro, I’ll be a lot happier with Apple.