Mac mini powerful enough for this?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by tran.man48, May 25, 2011.

  1. tran.man48 macrumors newbie

    May 25, 2011
    Hey everyone,
    I recently bought a 1.83 Core duo mac mini (late 2006) with 1gb ram from a friend. Loving it so far!

    I will be using this computer for internet, itunes, light duty stuff. The catch is, I am planning on running VMWare with windows XP in the background 24/7. The VM will be running a program for monitoring the security cams around my business through wifi. The program uses about 20-35mb within windows.

    I will be upgrading the ram to 2gb (max allowed), because the 1gb is struggling with just the basic VM right now. I also may consider boot camp, but that defeats the purpose of me getting a mac :)

    What I am wondering is if this particular mac mini can handle these tasks with relative ease (will I be able to have the VM running constantly while still enjoying my mac), or if I would be better off selling it and buying a newer core2duo.

    Thanks for all your help and input.
  2. DoghouseMike, May 25, 2011
    Last edited: May 25, 2011

    DoghouseMike macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2011
    If it's only for the one app (and there's no mac client, or other workaround), it could be worth looking into wine or crossover. They're a bit lighter on the resources, and you don't need an actual windows install (freeing up hard drive space), and wine is free! Crossover has a free trial period too, I think.
    But yea, max the RAM.
    It might be worth installing the VM on an external firewire drive too, just cos it'll spread the in/out activity around a bit
  3. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    I think a 2.0GHz c2d with 3gb ram the 2007/2008 model is a better choice for you.

    A 2009 2.0GHz with 4gb or even 6.0 gb would be even better but most likely more then you need.
  4. willieva macrumors 6502

    Mar 12, 2010
    My 2GHz mini with 2gig of ram was not really sufficient for running an xp vm. If nothing else on the mac was running it was fine, but when other apps were opened things slowed down. My older and slower imac with 3gig of ram is much better with an open vm.

    You might be able to make your vm small enough to fit in 2gig while still using the rest of your mac. If you can get a newer computer that can handle 4gig you'll probably be much happier. Not only will you have more memory, but the memory will be faster.
  5. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

    Sep 24, 2008
    Boon Docks USA
    If you don't mind stuttering, it will work. I tried it awhile back on an older mini with 2gb max. Just not enough ram. If you need this, get a 09 or 10 model so you can get 8gb of memory to use.
  6. tran.man48 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 25, 2011
    Hmm, good to know. I'll probably try selling this mac mini on ebay and picking up a newer one (07 or 09 model) and maxing out the ram. I just hate the whole hassle and dealing with ebay...oh well.

    Yeah, I'll look into Crossover... thanks for the suggestion.
  7. hsj2011 macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    as others have said really, if you're running a VM, you need as much ram as possible and personally, I don't think 2GB is enough to comfortably use OSX and an open VM.
  8. gwsat macrumors 68000


    Apr 12, 2008
    I had bad luck with VMware Fusion and Windows XP when I tried to run them on my Santa Rosa MBP with only 2GB of RAM. Upgrading to 6GB solved the problem, though. I would recommend against running Fusion and Windows with only 2GB of RAM.
  9. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    I wouldn't be surprised if the older mini would accept a 4GB RAM stick but only give you 3GB visible. That would be enough to run the VM. I did this on a C2D iMac that would only go to 3GB for 3 years until I got my new iMac.
  10. thogin macrumors member


    Mar 27, 2011
    I ran XP using Parallels on a 2GB Core Duo MBP. It's certainly doable. XP came out ten years ago, it can run in as little as 64MB. You can probably set it to use 256MB and be just fine.
  11. tran.man48 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 25, 2011
    So general consensus is 2gb won't be enough... Great, because I put the mini on ebay today. Hopefully I'll get a decent price out of it to put towards a newer mac mini. Thinking about a 07 or 09 model, depending on the pricing.

    I tried setting it to 128 and 256. The mac side was still super slow, and the decreased ram in the VM just made windows slower haha

    Nope, I have a Core duo. Apparently, the chipset on these are only 32-bit, so it can only address 2gb max...
  12. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey

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