Home network server

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Loompy, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. Loompy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    #1
    Hello :)

    First timer here but I really want to get into the mac.
    I want to get a home server going and was looking at the Mini server, or refurb last-gen Mini server. It would mostly be for file server use.
    Can you network macs and PC's together these days? Which Mini models should I consider?
     
  2. Paulywauly macrumors 6502a

    Paulywauly

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #2
    Any Mac Mini model would be fine for this, even a refurb for the past few years would suffice as file sharing isn't resource intensive.

    File sharing isn't an issue between Windows and Mac nowadays, you just need to select SMB sharing in the Sharing Preferences.
     
  3. Loompy thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    #3
    "SMB sharing"...

    Is that a Windows or OS setting toggle?

    Do you not need OS Server version for the mac to act as a file server?
     
  4. Paulywauly macrumors 6502a

    Paulywauly

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #4
    Common misconception. Most OS's can perform basic server-like duties e.g. file/printer sharing etc Its usually quite easy to setup too.

    On your Mac open system Preferences, then Sharing, tick File Sharing, in the options on your right there should be a button for more advanced options. In there just enable SMB sharing. Any shares you create should then also be available to Windows pcs
     
  5. pacmania1982 macrumors 6502a

    pacmania1982

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2006
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    #5
    SMB is also known in the Sharing part of System Preferences as Windows file sharing.

    These days there is no problem sharing files from Windows to a Mac and vice versa. I do it all the time infact. I have a Mac mini in the bedroom that has all of my media on, and I can share files between the Windows machines in the house just as you would expect to do between Windows and Windows machines.

    For the price of the new Mac mini, I'd personally get one of those and upgrade the RAM to 4GB. As long as you're happy about not having an optical drive. Apple can supply you one for something like $69 but any external USB optical drive should do the job. Even playing back DVD's etc.

    Hope this helps

    pac
     
  6. tempusfugit macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago
    #6
    I wouldn't bother with the server edition of os x unless you really need stuff like VPN, mail server, push, etc.

    Standard intallations of os x have a lot of server features already. And filesharing has become a very basic part of modern OS's. A regular mini would do just fine.

    Of course, you could always just build a cheap Linux box if you were just going to use it as a fileserver and what not.
     
  7. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
  8. hardax macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    #8
    I'm a little nervous about statments like "These days there is no problem sharing files from Windows to a Mac and vice versa. "

    Apparently there seems to be some big issues with Windows accessing shared files on Macs running Lion right now.

    Just be careful and do your homework.
     
  9. Paulywauly macrumors 6502a

    Paulywauly

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #9
    Actually thats a very good point. Apple changed their implementation of SMB in Lion (heard it was due to licensing issues?) so anything depending on it may have problems e.g. sharing with Windows or other devices via SMB.

    If your running Snow Leopard though it shouldnt be an issue
     

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