Mac mini 2011 vs Xserve 2006 for file server / web server / bt box

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Amethyst, Aug 29, 2012.

  1. Amethyst macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2006
    1. Mini i5 2.3's price = Xserve 2006 quad 2.0
    2. I want more than 1TB of storage if i bought mini i will use it with external hdd (usb,firewire etc.)
    3. Concurrent user ~ 5-20. (except web server that i will move it's data to internal hdd)

    Which is better pick.
  2. Omnius macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2012
    You can fit up to 2TB inside the mini.
  3. BeamWalker macrumors 6502a


    Dec 18, 2009
    With the power consumption of the xserve it will be getting more expensive by the hour. You also need a lot more space and ideally a 19" Rack for it. Also they can be quite loud.

    If you look at the geekbench results the 2011 mini server is more than twice as fast, so if you need processing power at some point the xserve will reach it's limits way earlier. Even the new Dual Core base Mini should be faster than the xserve.

    As for the storage solution on the mini you could go with thunderbolt if you'll need it in the future and use firewire for now.
  4. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    For the purposes stated, cpu is an extremely unlikely bottleneck, and thunderbolt won't help much at all. The issues he describes are bandwidth intensive. Unless I'm missing something, I don't see how the thunderbolt port would improve the ability to serve data to 5-20 users given the storage --->mini----> users via switch or whatever. It's not enough information overall. I mean if we're talking about smaller documents of a few megs, it doesn't take much. In either case cpu is basically a non issue.
  5. Amethyst thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2006
    Yep all the issue that stop me to buy mini is hdd bandwidth.

    I plan to serve hd movies , time machine backup to whole family while downloading bittorrent files.

    My previous server is a pc running mac os x server with 4tb storage.
  6. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    I don't know the required bandwidth. An Xserve seems like a bit of an overkill solution, but I don't know the bandwidth requirements there. I thought you were dealing with something like an office and many users.
  7. saulinpa macrumors 6502a

    Jun 15, 2008
    I am guessing that Xserve is SATA II while mini is SATA III. This helps performance going to SSDs.

    Xserve 2006 is not supported by Apple. Mountain Lion is a no go.

    If you like tinkering the 2006 Xserve is for you. If you want to meet the needs you stated then a mini with external storage will do a better job.
  8. swordfish5736 macrumors 68000


    Jun 29, 2007
    i've got a 2011 mini server with 8tb of external storage via firewire 800 that houses all of my movies, tv shows and time machine backups. Never had any issues with serving content. That includes full 1080p content playing on the mini via plex with 720p content coming thru in the bedroom on an atv2 as well as downloads. It's currently got 1 500gb drive and an SSD and I download content to the internal drive so i can check and organize before i move them over to the external drives.
  9. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    If that's all you are going to do, then HDD bandwidth is not an issue. First off even with a decently fast internet connection you aren't going to download more than 4MBps (that's roughly a 30mbps). A Blu-Ray will only run you around 4.5MBps meaning that even a "slow" laptop drive pushing around 50MBps would be able to download torrents, push 4-5 Blu-Ray movies and do time machine backups with no issue (yes the Time machine backups would be slow). Of course this is theoretical, but really it shouldn't be a problem since my guess is your movies you are downloading aren't even close to Blu-Ray quality which would leave even more available bandwidth (the real bottleneck would disk i/O since the disk would be constantly seeking).
  10. Amethyst thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2006

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