Just got a MacMini1,1 - Suggestions on what to do with it?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by neenja, Sep 27, 2011.

  1. neenja macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #1
    Buddy of mine just gave me his old MacMini 1,1 (1.83ghz)

    From what I saw on the system specs, he updated the ram to 1gb.

    Just wondering if you guys can suggest some things I can actually use this for? So far, I have it hooked up to a 20" dell, formated it and threw SnowLeopard on it. Also have my 1tb firewire external hooked up to it.

    I've browsed this forum and noticed a lot of people use it as a media server.

    Wondering if someone can suggest some things I can do with it to maximize its use. Thanks !
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #2
    If you're feeling tech-ish, you could upgrade its CPU to a Core 2 Duo for more power. Those old Mini's still have lots of life left in them. I use mine as an all purpose server and media centre. Works very well.
     
  3. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #3
    Most people buy computers to fit a need, not buy a computer and find a need.

    Anyways, you can use it to write emails, surf the web, play games, etc.
     
  4. neenja thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #4
    True, but if you read my original post, it was given to me :)
     
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #5
    D'oh

    Sorry about that, looks like I need to get my eyes examined ;)
     
  6. neenja thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #6
    I'm always feeling tech-ish! :D Figure the instructions on ripping it apart I can find on iFixtit, but any idea where and how much a new CPU runs? I was also planning to upgrade the ram to its max 2gb. Thinking, if I'm gonna rip it open, I may as well upgrade the hdd also.

    What software can you recommend to use it as an all purpose server and media centre?
     
  7. marzer macrumors 65816

    marzer

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #7
    If you don't need it as a primary computer, mini's make great headless servers. Things like file, printer sharing is built in already. For media serving iTunes works well, I use it on a headless mini to serve music and movies throughout the house.

    If iTunes isn't your thing there are other options like Plex, Firefly, Squeezebox.

    If you go headless just remember to activate screen sharing so you can VNC to the box.
     
  8. Adamantoise macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2011
    #8
    Lol, not necessarily true with Macs ... People buy them because they look good in the room/living room
     
  9. Mr.C macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2011
    Location:
    London, UK.
    #9
    A very naive and untrue comment if ever I read one. :eek:
     
  10. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #10
    The cheapest CPU is a 2.00GHz T7200 Intel Core 2 Duo at about $80 on eBay. Others are the 2.16GHz T7400 Intel Core 2 Duo and 2.33Ghz T7600 Intel Core 2 Duo. Make sure you get the kind with pins. Not the surface mount kind.

    Here's a good guide on how to upgrade the CPU: http://www.o0o.it/mini/
     
  11. Kasalic macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    #11
    I'd second the media/file server suggestion.

    Setup all your music and movies on the external hard drive and import into iTunes. You might also look at Plex and XMBC if you don't want to stick to apple home sharing.
     
  12. neenja thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #12
    Thanks for the replies everyone :)

    So say I decide to go with the media/file server. Are there any extra programs, other than itunes/plex, that I need to use it as a "server" ?

    I've actually never set up a media server before.. any help would greatly be appreciated. Thanks again everyone!
     
  13. Adamantoise macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2011
    #13
    I was just speaking for myself. I didn't have an explicit need for a MBP when I bought one. I just loved the way it looked.

    Same with the Mini, I don't need one at all ... But I guess I just have disposable income at the moment.

    Still exercising that discipline though, hopefully I prevail and put the money to better use.
     
  14. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

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    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
  15. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #15
    I've got a bunch of Macs in the house, including three minis. Two of the three are media centers running 99.9% Plex and the third is the file server (and a bunch of other services) that has 4 external drives hanging off of it.

    While they are recent white plastic models, the media centers are the entry level model with no additions or modifications. The server is a refurbished mini with Snow Leopard Server. But if all it did was to be a file server, an entry level mini would have done as well.
     
  16. Kasalic macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    #16
    You just need to decide what 'clients' (TV's, Speakers, other computers, iPad's etc) are going to access the media. Once you have this information you can decide on which 'Server' solution you are going to use. I stuck with an Apple only system, so I just set up iTunes and then switched on Home Sharing on the Mac Mini and the other Mac's/iPad's/iPhones in the house. Set the Mac Mini to run iTunes automatically on reboot and off you go. If you want to use Plex then you set up Plex Server on the Mac Mini and Plex on all the clients (apps for iPhone/iPad IIRC). Same principle if you are running XMBC. I seem to recall that Plex is better than XMBC for some things and vice versa, but I can't remember what exactly.
     
  17. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #17
    If you are feeling really adventurous, you can try updating the firmware to turn it into a Mac Mini 2,1. This will allow you to install more than 2GB of RAM, which is the most that the 1,1 will allow. Furthermore, this makes for a better experience under Lion, although you will still need to put the Mac Mini in FW target mode to install with the help of a compatible Mac.
     

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