HDD hot swappable to newer model?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by olisones, Mar 28, 2016.

  1. olisones macrumors regular

    Aug 8, 2008
    Hi all,

    I have a mid 2007 Mac Mini which I am using as my current media server (Plex, sickbeard etc). I have been given a late 2009 Mac Mini that I'd like to start using as the server. As I'm running a 1tb hdd in the older machine, I'd ideally like to keep this and not purchase a new hdd. My question is, can I simply pull the HDD from the older Mini and install into the new one? I imagine there might be a few issues with this but I thought it was worth the ask...

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    Providing it has 10.5.6 or newer installed it'll pop in and work just fine.

    I will stress tho 10.5.6 is the oldest OS supported on the 2009 model but I would recommend installing all updates and the newest OS before moving the drive over then check for OS updates once it's over and more will be available.
  3. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    The only issues might be OS X version.
    Your 2007 can run with Lion.
    The newer Late 2009 came with Snow Leopard, and can run up to El Capitan, if you want.
    (Two mini models are called 2009. The Early 2009 came with Leopard, but your Late 2009 came with Snow Leopard)

    So, as long as you are booting with either Snow Leopard, or Lion, then a direct swap into the newer mini will work with no issues.
    AND - you will have the option to add significantly more memory -
    Your older mini was limited to 3GB maximum, and the Late 2009 can go up to 8GB.
    I would say that you have a good upgrade from the 2007 mini, if you both swap in that 1TB hard drive, and make sure about the RAM installed.
  4. olisones thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 8, 2008
    --- Post Merged, Mar 28, 2016 ---
    Thanks. The 2007 is currently running 10.7.5 and the newer model I believe has Mavericks. Will this still be ok?

    I plan to upgrade to 8gb of RAM.
  5. olisones thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 8, 2008
    The new machine is running El Capitan if that effects anything in swapping the drive over?
  6. ActionableMango macrumors G3


    Sep 21, 2010
    10.7.5 is fine on the 2009 Mini. So you can move your 2007 drive into the 2009.

    Your 10.11 (El Capitan) on the 2009 will not work on the 2007. So while you can move the 2009 drive into the 2007, you will need to reinstall an older version of OS X from the DVD.

    By the way "hot swapping" means swapping the drives while the computers are turned on and booted up. I don't think that's what you mean though. :D
  7. olisones thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 8, 2008
    Yes it was more the idea of swapping a drive in an older model to a newer one and just turning it on with no problems!

    That said, your explanation above is a little confusing - with 10.7.5 on my 2007 mini HDD and El Capitan on the 2009, can I put the 2007 HDD in the new model and boot up ok?
  8. ActionableMango macrumors G3


    Sep 21, 2010
    Yes, you can swap both drives.

    The 2007 drive with 10.7.5 will work fine inside the 2009 Mini.

    The 2009 drive with El Capitan will work fine as a drive in the 2007 Mini, however you will have to reinstall an older version of OS X from DVD because the 2007 Mini cannot run El Capitan.
  9. Jambalaya macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2013
    If you wish you can put the old drive into an external caddy and try and boot the 2009 Mini from it (startup mode with option key held down). That should prove it works before taking the 2009 Mini apart.
  10. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    "Hot swapping" means changing the part while the system is up and running.

    You can definitely not hotswapp an hdd inside a mac mini.
  11. roland.g macrumors 603


    Apr 11, 2005
    Why not leave the 2009 drive in the mini, throw the 2007 drive into an enclosure and just access the data?

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