Install snow leopard on 2011 mini & other questions

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Spielerin, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. Spielerin macrumors newbie

    May 29, 2010
    I bought a 2010 mini a month ago. I can still return it. I would like to get the 2011 mini but I'm not sure I'm ready for Lion. This is my first Mac. I'm still getting used to Snow Leopard. Considering the issues some people have been having using Lion would I be better off waiting or diving in? I'm fairly Windows savvy, but I respect Apple hardware. I just haven't been able to afford it until now.

    Historically I have bought low end systems and upgraded the ram and added an external HDD. I probably don't need the higher specs of the 2011 but it galls me to pay ~10 less for the 2010 vs. the 2011. I already have an external DL DVD drive I can use. (ugly but cheap) Since I would be buying the low end 2011 would I be better served to wait for the next upgrade to the mini, and then replace it?

    I am a fairly lightweight user. I use firefox, itunes, and handbrake. I have an iPad and an iPhone. Will Snow Leopard work with the cloud like Lion is advertised to?

    Sorry newbie Mac user / longtime lurker here. :eek: Lots of questions :D Still reading my way through Switching to the Mac. But planning to burn my bridges and switch fully to the Mac after I finish cleaning off the other computer's HDD.

    Thanks for any help
  2. peterski macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2011
    Los Angeles
    I hear the concerns... but I'm not sure if perhaps you're jumping the ship too quickly. Yes at times you'll find yourself with similar problems described by others... if the issue is widespread, however in my experience I simply can't replicate or experience issues described by others simply because I either don't use the same software/apps, or... because I don't have high hopes/expectations to begin with.

    My suggestion would be to quickly compose a list of software/apps you are using on a daily basis and see if those pose a problem with Lion... if the apps you write down don't have a native mac counterpart I'd see if it really means that much to me to stay behind on SL or move forward to Lion. Yes, some will argue that certain features of Lion are step(s) backwards... but the truth is, it's a new/next operating system and Apple will work out issues somehow. Keep in mind though that some SL features are missing in Lion... (spaces, etc.) For me it would be counterproductive to learning something that I might fall in love with, and in the end find out that it's no longer used or is somehow changed in Lion.

    I'd say if you've already taken a leap to jump on the Mac boat, you might as well start playing with Lion and save yourself some time. Besides Pixelmator (an app from the app store) I don't have any issues with Lion... well maybe the natural scrolling :rolleyes: but then again in the last few days I've come to use it, well... naturally

    Not related to Mac: If you're worried about basing your decision on experiences of others, let me just clue you in... I always liked a certain brand of "british made" SUVs, to me those cars just looked good... but they have/had a bad rep for breaking down and what not, if I listened to what others say I wouldn't have a nice SUV right now which for the past 2 years gave me very little cost as far as maintenance (only dealt with a blinker issue, normal break pad replacement and maintenance)
  3. Minicube macrumors regular

    Jun 5, 2011
    for installing Snow Leopard, see my thread below. It works, but there are some issues...

    In your case, I'd just learn Lion, not that big a deal.
  4. Mr.C macrumors 601

    Apr 3, 2011
    London, UK.
    I have to agree. If you're going to return the 2010 Mini and get the new 2011 Mini then I would suggest you just stick with Lion. It looks like Lion is the way forward as far as Apple is concerned. It might be better to get stuck into and use to Lion now rather then face it later.

    I've been using Macs for just over six years now. In that time I've gone through four revisions of Mac OS - Panther, Tiger, Leopard, and Snow Leopard. Granted Panther was only for a very short time as Tiger came out immediately after I bought my PowerBook with Panther installed. All four have been fairly similar at least in terms of user interface and basic functionality.

    I haven't used Lion yet and will start doing so when my new Mini arrives but from what I've been reading it's going to be a big jump. That said it seems to have gone more towards the iOS operating system and having owned iPhones and iPads it should be somewhat familiar. You might be better off due to the position you're in to just go direct to Lion.
  5. Spielerin thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 29, 2010
    So I guess the only question I still have: Is Lion more "stable" on systems where it comes preinstalled? Most if not all the complaints seem to be from people who installed upgrades. ;)

  6. johnhw macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2009
    Of course it will be better on a clean install. I did an upgrade with very few problems. These new Macs are designed for Lion, so they shouldn't have any problems at all.
  7. stevejolly macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2008
    Houston, TX
    Installing Snow Leopard on Mac Mini 2011

    The question is apparently answered: you can retro-install Snow Leopard on a Mac Mini 2011.

    Here's a link to a posting in Apple's "Discussions" community from user John Fair, who just made it happen successfully:

    Note that he's basing this on using a 2011 MacBook Pro or iMac as a bridge to install from onto the Mini, since the MacBook Pro & iMac originally shipped with Snow Leopard and have Sandy Bridge/Thunderbolt/AMD 6xxx GPU support.

    1) Put Mini in Target Disk Mode (Firewire only)
    2) Put SL retail install disk into Host Mac and install to the TDM drive
    3) When the reboot hangs power the machine down (or if you're fast hold down Option on that reboot) and restart holding Option.
    4) When the boot choice screen appears eject the Retail disk and input your Recovery disk.
    5) Boot to the Recovery disk and the install picks up automatically (don't worry, it's actually installing 10.6.0 even though you're booted into 10.6.3's recovery).
    6) Once you've gone through the new user introduction stuff (input username, etc) run Software Update
    7) Power down the Mini and restart it w/o TDM.

    There's more online, and growing every hour, as various folks try this out and then try to create a "universal install / boot disk image" for 2011 Minis that will allow them to boot from the image (or from another Mac booting from the image) and then install Snow Leopard.

    And, as I commented in the Disscussions:
    This makes the 2011 Mac Mini so very, very, very much more useful to me and to so many others! Just read the online whine in so many forums! As soon as I can confirm that we don't lose some drivers for the AMD Radeon GPU, I'm onboard with an immediate order...(for some 2011 Minis with AMD GPU and dual-core i7)! Happy face!

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