Help: First Mac Pro . . Used, and . .

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Tricone, Nov 23, 2011.

  1. Tricone macrumors newbie

    Tricone

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    #1
    I'm thinking of purchasing my first Mac Pro, an Early-2009 8-core 2.66 GHz model with an internal 4TB RAID, to act as my main server at work. The price makes it very, very appealing. The only issue that I have is the fact that this MP is out-of-warranty. Correct me if I'm wrong, but having owned other Macs, I understand that once the AppleCare warranty expires, you can no longer purchase AppleCare again. This brings me to my questions:

    1. Given the "quality" of the Mac Pro, should I be worried about not having the warranty. If it were for home use, I wouldn't worry much, but this is more or less intended to be my mission-critical work server. (I'm not too worried about the hard drives; I'm expecting them to ultimately fail). I've had a RAID controller fail in a Dell server, which wasn't too fun.

    2. Is there an aftermarket warranty that can be purchased for a MP? If not, I'm assuming that Apple (or other certified Apple repair center) will repair, but at retail prices.

    Thanks for any input!
     
  2. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #2
    The 2008's are a good solid line. If it comes with a GeForce 8800, that is the most likely thing to fail, as the card is known to be bad. But you can replace with an ATI 5770 or 5870 from Apple.

    That said, when a machine gets to that age, there is always the possibility of freak failures. I couldn't recommend a machine out of warranty for mission critical work of any brand or vintage.

    AppleCare can only be purchased once, and it must be purchased a year from the machine's purchase. It will only go max 3 years from the machine's purchase date.
     
  3. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502

    lemonade-maker

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #3
    Op said 2009.

    I have had no problems with my early 2009 octo, bought new in march 2009. I've upgraded it to dual hex and flashed the efi. It's in use making money 8-12 hours a day and does an amazing job. It's earned it's cost many times over. I wouldn't worry about the warranty thing at all. If it breaks, fix it and move on. Probably won't break and last another ten years.
     
  4. Tricone thread starter macrumors newbie

    Tricone

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    #4
    Yes, it is the Early-2009 model. I should also mention that I will be needing to use a virtual Windows machine (via either Parallels or VMWare Fusion), as we are migrating from Windows-based software to the Mac. I'll have to run the Windows software for at least a year or so during the transition. I noticed that the EFI update for the Early-2009 MP: "Improves compatibility with virtualization products utilizing VT-d". Wondering if this relates to Fusion/Parallels, and if so, would the 2010 MPs perform even better?
     
  5. Neodym macrumors 65816

    Neodym

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2002
    #5
    If it's a business purchase and actually mission-critical, i would not even think of getting a second-hand machine (except from official sources like Apple's refurb store)!

    You can write it off, so go and buy a new one (or maybe refurbished) together with Apple Care!

    If you invest a couple of hours to find out whether a used machine would be suitable, you can as well purchase directly a new or refurb machine. And even if a failure seems to be a pretty theoretical thing here (in general a Mac Pro is considered a very reliable computer), the effort you'll have to get it running again if anything should happen is more expensive than the few bucks saved on purchase - unless your own working hours mean nothing to you...
     
  6. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502

    lemonade-maker

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #6
    Using multiple VMs simultaneously is the reason I bought the octo. It worked great for two years but I could run three Linux VMs at once (mimics a production env). After the firmware and CPU update, I am easily able to run a win7 VM also. Sometimes I run an xp VM also. It's an amazing machine for running VMs.
     
  7. Tricone thread starter macrumors newbie

    Tricone

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    #7
    Great point. It's very tempting because the "hardly used" MP that I have my eyes on would save me at least $2K over a similarly spec'd current model. I could use that $2K towards a 27" LED Cinema Display (and other upgrades).

    Was also considering an OWC SSD as the system drive, but understand that it cannot be used with the RAID card that is installed. A question for another thread, perhaps, but if I remove the RAID card and install a SSD sans-RAID card, will the system boot without a glitch?
     

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