16GB RAM, 2010 Mac Mini Snow Leopard

now i see it

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jan 2, 2002
5,370
10,882
OWC sells a 16GB (8x2) RAM kit for the 2010 Mac mini.

This is supposed to work with later OSes with a firmware update. Does anyone know if 16 GB of RAM will work with snow leopard in a 2010 mini?

Will not work at all?
Computer won't boot?
Will only see 8 of the 16?

Or if once the firmware is updated, will the Mac Mini still be able to run SL?

Thanks in advance
 

CoastalOR

macrumors 68030
Jan 19, 2015
2,701
991
Oregon, USA
According to everymac:
RAM Types & Actual Maximum RAM Capacities
The "Mid-2010" Mac mini models have two memory slots that support 1066 MHz PC3-8500 DDR3 SO-DIMMs. Originally, they both officially and unofficially supported a maximum of 8 GB of RAM with two 4 GB memory modules. However, as discovered more recently by site sponsor Other World Computing, if these systems are running OS X 10.7.5 or higher, have been updated to use the latest EFI, and are equipped with proper specification memory modules, they can support up to 16 GB of RAM with dual 8 GB memory modules.
I read that as you need to be running at least 10.7.5.
 

casperes1996

macrumors 603
Jan 26, 2014
5,075
2,960
Horsens, Denmark
I read that as you need to be running at least 10.7.5.
It does sound like that, yeah. I don't really see why though. If the firmware supports it, I don't see what kind of ***** the OS should give about it. I mean, obviously SL supports 16gigs of RAM on other devices, and if the firmware says it's got 16gigs to the OS, I don't see why it should arbitrarily decide to say "NO! You're a Mini. I don't allow that"
 

CoastalOR

macrumors 68030
Jan 19, 2015
2,701
991
Oregon, USA
It does sound like that, yeah. I don't really see why though. If the firmware supports it, I don't see what kind of ***** the OS should give about it. I mean, obviously SL supports 16gigs of RAM on other devices, and if the firmware says it's got 16gigs to the OS, I don't see why it should arbitrarily decide to say "NO! You're a Mini. I don't allow that"
OS upgrades can include firmware updates that modify support capabilities. My guess only.

See what OWC has to say:
http://blog.macsales.com/16302-some-2010-mac-owners-can-get-more-ram-than-they-thought
 

casperes1996

macrumors 603
Jan 26, 2014
5,075
2,960
Horsens, Denmark
OS upgrades can include firmware updates that modify support capabilities. My guess only.

See what OWC has to say:
Kinda depends how you define firmware. There can be driver updates and whatnot, which could potentially play a part in this, but the firmware printed onto hardware memory is independant from the OS and stays the same even if you wipe your entire disk.
 

curmudgeonette

macrumors 6502a
Jan 28, 2016
549
406
California
I have the neighbor's 2010 Mini working with 16GB and Snow Leopard.

However, this Mini did previously run Mavericks and then El Capitan. It was never right on Mavericks, and El Cap just plain didn't work. I got sick of the daily support calls of "the computer's not working" and went with the nuclear option of reverting to SL.
 

now i see it

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jan 2, 2002
5,370
10,882
Now that's interesting news. What ive since read about Firmware upgrades is that if you install a newer OS the updated firmware gets installed with the new OS. So if a Mac Mini tries El Capitan & then it's decided that snow leopard is a better option, the updated firmware stays. I have a SSD partitioned in two with SL on one partition & el cap on the other, and both run fine (SL fast, El cap so so) with 8 GB RAM. (Man El Capitan looks like crap ...illegible...on a 1680 x 1050 TN monitor).

I have since contacted OWC & was told by one rep (who may not know what she's talking about) that 16 GB RAM —won't — work on a 2010 Mac Mini running SL even after firmware update.

Now apparently it does. The $130 experiment.
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
42
Now that's interesting news. What ive since read about Firmware upgrades is that if you install a newer OS the updated firmware gets installed with the new OS. So if a Mac Mini tries El Capitan & then it's decided that snow leopard is a better option, the updated firmware stays. I have a SSD partitioned in two with SL on one partition & el cap on the other, and both run fine (SL fast, El cap so so) with 8 GB RAM. (Man El Capitan looks like crap ...illegible...on a 1680 x 1050 TN monitor).

I have since contacted OWC & was told by one rep (who may not know what she's talking about) that 16 GB RAM —won't — work on a 2010 Mac Mini running SL even after firmware update.

Now apparently it does. The $130 experiment.
I never had a problem running SL with 16gbs of ram on either the 2010 Mac Mini or the 2010 13" MacBook Pro (same basic logic board).

Ever.
 

curmudgeonette

macrumors 6502a
Jan 28, 2016
549
406
California
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