Help for new Mac convert

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by jardys, Sep 25, 2014.

  1. jardys macrumors newbie

    Sep 25, 2014
    New Jersey
    Hi All,

    I am a lifelong PC user who has seen the light after borrowing my neighbor's Mac mini to evaluate. I agreed to buy it from him. I mainly want to use it consolidate 12 years of digital photos with the excellent tools that the Apple ecosystem provides.

    I would very much appreciate help with the following.

    1. Setup of the Mini:
    The Mac mini is the mid 2011 server model that he bought for a small business. it has 2 500GB HDD's - can I setup the OS on one and use the other as a backup?

    Any suggestions as to how I can do this? I have about 10hrs on OS X so any advice is very welcome.

    2.Photo and Video Albums
    iPhoto looks to be a great package - any suggestions for other photo editing software and album creation?

  2. iFitzgerald macrumors regular


    Jul 20, 2011
    Ponta Delgada, Azores, Portugal
    I can't say about number one, never had a server machine.

    As for number two. You have two more expensive options which are Aperture (Apple) and Lightroom (Adobe).

    In another category of software you have Photoshop and Pixelmator (these are a bit different).

    I know there are more, but can't remember any right now.
  3. hallux macrumors 68030


    Apr 25, 2012
    I wouldn't spend money on Aperture, it's soon to be discontinued (Spring I think).

    Yes, you can install the OS on one drive and use the other for storage. I believe this is how it was originally configured.
  4. octothorpe8 macrumors 6502

    Feb 27, 2014
    oops, a couple posts were made while I was composing this, but anyway:

    If the machine is running, it already has the OS set up on one of the drives I would imagine. For clarity, I recommend setting up the hard drives to be visible on the desktop (open Finder menu, go to Preferences and under General, check all four items under "Show these items on the desktop"). Both 500GB drives should then show up. Open each and see what's inside. If one is empty, you should be able to go into System Preferences > Time Machine and set that as the backup drive. You might find it a bit small if it's the same size drive as your startup though. I'd personally recommend grabbing a USB 1GB drive and using that. That way Time Machine has enough space to keep revisions and versions of files for a while.

    There's supposedly a more capable and iCloud-integrated Photos app coming. For now, I'd recommend just using iPhoto if it works for you and migrate to that Photos app when it comes out. Aperture (their "pro" photo app) is going to be discontinued so don't buy it. People also like Adobe Lightroom.

    Also re: the photos — whatever drive(s) you have them on now, keep them around. 12 years is a lot of photos. Don't put all your eggs in one basket, at least not until you've got your drives and backups sorted.

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