Newest Mac Mini that will run Snow Leopard

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by now i see it, Feb 6, 2017.

  1. now i see it macrumors 65816

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    #1
    So my 2008 Mac Mini is on the verge of death. Freezing all the time.
    Its only a file server. I don't really care how fast it is. It has a SSD in it.

    Anyway... I'm not into computers anymore and don't care about them any longer. No longer an enthusiast and do everything now on iPhone.

    I need to replace the mini but want to stay with Snow leopard since all my apps are compatible with it.

    What is the most recent Mac Mini that can still run SL? Obviously I'll be buying a used older model. I read that the 2010 2.66 core2duo Mac Mini will run it. But will any more recent models run it too?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #2
    The newest is the 2010 Mac Mini. You will need the restore discs that came with it or a way to get an up to date version of Snow Leopard on it. The retain Snow Leopard discs will not work in a 2010 Mac Mini.
     
  3. now i see it thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #3
    If I buy a 2010 Mac mini with whatever original restore discs it came with can I install Snow Leopard from the SL retail DVD I purchased from an Apple Store in 2013?

    Or do I need to find a 2010 Mac mini that comes with Snow Leopard restore discs (if SL was even the OS for that model).

    Thanks
     
  4. chrfr macrumors 603

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    #4
    You'll need the discs that came with the Mini. The retail Snow Leopard DVD won't boot the Mini successfully.
     
  5. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #5
    No, you need the original restore discs if you want Snow Leopard or you have to find a way to put a 10.6.4 or later installation of Snow Leopard onto it. The Apple Store discs only ever shipped with 10.6.0 or 10.6.3 and will not work with a 2010 Mac Mini.
     
  6. now i see it thread starter macrumors 65816

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  7. CoastalOR macrumors 68000

    CoastalOR

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    #7
    OP: I apologize for interrupting your thread.

    Intell and/or chrfr; Please clarify for me: I always thought that you could use any OS that the Mac hardware originally supported (shipped with). I just would like to know for my own knowledge so I do not give bad advice.

    The current Apple retail Snow Leopard DVDs ship with OS 10.6.3.
    The Mac mini (Mid 2010) originally shipped OS 10.6.3 and later with 10.6.4. If a new Mac mini (Mid 2010) came with 10.6.4 does that mean the hardware can not support 10.6.3 even though earlier 2010 mini's shipped it.
     
  8. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #8
    Often times the first released OS, 10.6.3 in this case, has special drivers and stuff for that machine. This makes the retail 10.6.3 disc not compatible with it as it lacks those drivers. The drivers were later added in 10.6.4. The Mini did ship with 10.6.4, but it was no different than what you would download as an update from Apple.
     
  9. CoastalOR macrumors 68000

    CoastalOR

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    #9
    Thank you for clearing that up for me. :)
     
  10. chrfr macrumors 603

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    #10
    As mentioned in the post above mine, the mid 2010 Macs shipped with a custom build of 10.6.3. The retail disc doesn't include support for these mid-2010 Macs, unfortunately. This is pretty typical when new hardware is released.
    This document details which build numbers were released as retail: https://support.apple.com/HT201260
     
  11. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #11
    On top of chrfr's post about Mac OS X versions, here is a list of the versions of Mac OS X each machine originally shipped with. Basically it's minimum supported build: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204319
     
  12. CoastalOR macrumors 68000

    CoastalOR

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    #12
    Thank you for the quick reply and link. I had never seen that linked document before. I will definitely save that for future reference.

    Thank you.
     
  13. now i see it thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #13
    Ok,
    So believe it or not, I found a guy selling the 2010 SL Mac Mini install DVDs on eBay. I bought it. $19 including a HDMI-DVI adapter & box (no Mac mini). So that's out of the way.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/262800118530

    Now I'm looking for a 2010 mm to buy. There are many to choose from.

    Question:
    Can the normal restore DVDs (which I just purchased) that came with the regular 2010 mini be used to install the OS (SL) on a 2010 2.66 Mac Mini Server? Or does the mm server require its own special DVD?

    I'd rather get the server model since it's a 2.66 vs 2.4 ghz model.

    Thanks (again)
     
  14. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #14
    The discs you purchased will work on any 2010 Mac Mini.
     
  15. now i see it thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #15
    I guess I should have done my homework before asking that question. Apparently the Mac mini server doesn't have an optical drive (or slot).

    How is the OS installed on the Server model? Via a bootable external DVD drive? Hmmm

    image.jpeg
     
  16. Bart Kela macrumors 6502a

    Bart Kela

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    #16
    Naturally, the Mac mini server (mid 2010) model shipped with a pre-installed OS.

    If you want to use the original Snow Leopard restore discs that came with the system, you will need an external USB CD drive (about $20). If I recall correctly the Snow Leopard restore discs are actually CD-ROMs, not DVD-ROMs since there was more than one.

    If you want to install a more recent version of macOS, you can just make a bootable USB installer thumb drive.
     
  17. chrfr macrumors 603

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    #17
    Correct, the servers have 2 disks in them and no optical slot. You could either use an external DVD drive, or clone the DVDs to USB flash drives.
     
  18. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #18
    Actually, I don't think you can even get USB CD drives any more; but USB DVD drives cost about $20, and can handle CDs. :)
     
  19. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #19
    [QUOTE="Bart Kela, post: 24278719, member: 1052298"If I recall correctly the Snow Leopard restore discs are actually CD-ROMs, not DVD-ROMs since there was more than one.[/QUOTE]

    10.4-10.6 had installation DVDs. You could order a set of three CD of 10.4 from Apple, but 10.5-10.6 were only ever on DVDs. The second disc was to restore applications such as iLife.
     
  20. robotica macrumors 6502a

    robotica

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    #20
    You could install snow leopard on your old Mac mini, then update it, then swap the drives.

    Or you could do some basic problem solving on your current mini, it might be a ram issue or a failing ssd, would be cheaper and simpler to work with what you've got.
     
  21. now i see it thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #21
    Question:
    If I bought a 2010 Mac mini server, (2.66 ghz with dual internal hard drives) could I install Snow Leopard on one drive and Sierra on the other?

    That way I could have the old OS (SL) to run my old Adobe CS3 apps but boot into Sierra to be able to use the latest iTunes (for iPhone sync) & browsers.

    Thanks
     
  22. robotica macrumors 6502a

    robotica

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    #22
    Yeah you could even just partition one drive so it's seen as 2.

    Just make sure the Mac can run both SL and Sierra.
     
  23. now i see it thread starter macrumors 65816

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  24. Bart Kela macrumors 6502a

    Bart Kela

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    #24
    This is not an issue.

    The Mac mini server (mid 2010) can run both OSes. I have a backup external Snow Leopard boot drive for my 2010 Mac mini. The normal boot drive has Sierra.
     

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