Advice on Mac mini server with SSD

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by C42D, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. C42D macrumors newbie

    Aug 24, 2010

    I own and manage a small 3 man shop that currently uses a 2010 Mac mini with twin 500 GB drives as the server. It works quite well and the response times are good enough for use to do the daily work without any problems.

    We do a lot of photoshop work with files in the range of 500MB- 1GB, so sometimes the server lag slows us down slightly.

    I have been eyeing the new OWC upgrades to the 2011 mac minis where you could drop in two 480 GB SSD drive with "out of this world" r/w performance.

    I have a fundamental question: would the faster SSD drives be noticeable at all due to the overall limitations of ethernet? Or would I suddenly be writing 500 MB files to the server in half a second? Does the speed of the drive even matter when you are writing over a network?

    Our network is real basic - essentially a Apple airport works as our hub and the server and 2 other machines are wired into it. All cables are Cat 5. I realize I probably need a new hub to add seats as the business grows.

    I am pretty well versed in the world of Mac (been doing it for 20 years) and I consider myself smart enough to set up almost anything, but I have no idea on this point. Any advice is appreciated.

    A few caveats - No I am not willing to set up a PC based server (yet) because I love macs and the business isn't big enough. And if I did I would probably bring in an outside IT firm. I am just looking to do a possible upgrade to give us even greater performance.
  2. MisterMe, Oct 20, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2011

    MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    This appears to be more of an issue of user expectations than hardware performance. Virtually any hard drive will be faster than virtually any network. Macs support and use 10/100/1000Base-T. You may spend your money on SSDs, but they will not make your network faster.
  3. NorCalLights macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2006
    The only thing that will improve your network performance is making sure all of your computers are connecting at gigabit speeds. You should be able to check that the link speed is 1000 in About This Mac > More Info...

    Switching to SSDs on your server will almost certainly have no noticeable effect on your performance.
  4. Darby67 macrumors 6502

    Jul 5, 2011
    the corner of Fire and Brimstone
    Agree with all above. The only thing the SSD may enhance tasks or operations on the server itself, but the network is probably saturated by just about any drive you put in it.

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