Removing Wi-Fi wireless networking from Mac mini?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by JKK4, Mar 19, 2009.

  1. JKK4 macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2009
    #1
    I'm interested in buying a new Mac mini, however, I absolutely loath anything wireless. (I'm aware that that's a minority opinion.)

    I was therefore wondering if it's possible for my Apple dealer to remove the built-in Wi-Fi card (AKA Airport Extreme) from the mini, just like they'll upgrade the RAM to 2GB for me?
     
  2. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #2
    You would have to do it yourself. Why so paranoid?
     
  3. Richard8655 macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Just don't use it. You can turn it off within the OS. Why have something removed that won't be used anyway?
     
  4. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Well, if I could do it myself, why can't my dealer do it for me?
     
  5. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2009
    #5
    That's one way of looking at it. However, I wonder---why KEEP something that won't be used?
     
  6. Richard8655 macrumors 6502

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    #6
    I suppose so. But do we use every application that's included on our computers? Yet we're not asking Apple to remove them because we don't use them. A bit odd. Look at it this way - wireless adds value to your Mini should you ever decide to sell it in the future.

    Are you afraid the NSA is going to eavesdrop on you? Sorry, not meant to be sarcastic, but do you have security concerns?
     
  7. Nero Wolfe macrumors regular

    Nero Wolfe

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    #7
    Well, you might want to sell it or give it away one day and whomever gets it would surely like the option of WiFi...
     
  8. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2009
    #8
    Not security concerns, but health concerns---the long-term impact of exposure to electromagnetic radiation is unknown, no matter what people will tell you. (For that reason I don't own a cell phones either, for example.)

    That's why I'd rather get rid of the Wi-Fi support in the mini altogether. And therefore I was wondering if it was technically possibly, at all, to remove the Wi-Fi? Or is this part of the main logic board?
     
  9. drlunanerd macrumors 65816

    drlunanerd

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    #9
    EM radiation is passing through your house and body all the time - you can't escape it.

    Just turn off AirPort.
     
  10. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    #10
    Don't forget to get rid of the microwave and cordless phones.
    Old style televisions (CRT) have to go too.
     
  11. Richard8655 macrumors 6502

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    Chicago suburbs
    #11
    You have a valid point which makes sense. I'm concerned about radiation too. But your Mini and LCD display are themselves emitting radiation. The Swedish radiation standards were not long ago updated for LCD displays with the TCO'03 monitor standard, which some but not all LCD displays have passed (the display would show a TCO'03 label on the frame as mine does).

    But my point is any electronic device is going to emit electromagnetic radiation, and the Mini's wireless system, if turned off, will be zero.

    I agree on cell phones, and only use mine when absolutely necessary.
     
  12. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #12
    Say goodbye to ever going out in the sun again, then. :rolleyes:

    Wi-Fi is a pathetic source of radiation.
     
  13. brand macrumors 601

    brand

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    #13
    You could probably trade the AirPort card for a Tin Foil Hat. Or better yet keep the AirPort card and wear a Tin Foil Hat when using it.
     
  14. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2009
    #14
    Yeah, but it's the dose that makes the poison ...

    My view is that I should assume individual responsibility whenever possible, and that means if there is an unnecessary source of radiation, then I just remove it.
     
  15. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #15
    You're absolutely right about the cordless phones. I'm not sure about the microwave and the CRT TV, though. In any case I don't have any such product in my home anyway ...
     
  16. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2009
    #16
    Thank you, Richard. I'm not familiar with Mac OS, so exactly where would I turn off Wi-Fi, then?
     
  17. Whackintosh macrumors 6502

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    Mar 8, 2009
    #17
    I think that's a wise way to approach these kinds of things. Truth is, nobody has a clue of what the longterm effects of regular low-level radiation exposure is, and we live in a toxic world, so why not minimize these things in the few places we have control over? I have a cell phone but I use it sparingly, and I'll only use wi-fi in my home at the times I need it (as opposed to leaving it running 24/7).

    In regards to the wi-fi card in a mini, I think the advice you've gotten from the others here is good advice - just leave it turned off and you've got nothing to worry about. No reason to go through the expense and permanence of physically removing the card from your machine, just don't turn it on.
     
  18. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #18
    The amount of radiation being emitted from a wifi adapter turned ON is miniscule at best. The power cord to the Mini is going to emit a heckuva lot more radiation, as will all the wiring in your house. And every fluorescent light. And every motor (refrigerator compressor, air conditioning fan, hair dryer, condensing unit, ceiling fan) has some pretty good-sized magnets in it that emit a magnetic field whether the motor is energized or not.

    You're looking at the wrong source if you're trying to eliminate EM fields and radiation from your life. The wifi is nothing.

    You could always shack up in the Unabomber's old hideout, though.
     
  19. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #19
    If you are buying from a 3rd party retailer, and if its a small shop, then they might disconnect the Wifi antenna for you..... especially if they are adding RAM at the same time. I seriously doubt an Apple Store, or a big box retailer would... they just aren't set up to do this kind of work. This is a special request, and I would think is technically a hack.

    There is a website called ifixit... here is the new Mini's "First Look". I think it looks pretty simple to remove the antennas. There are 3.

    http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/First-Look/Mac-mini-A1283/659/1

    While I may not entirely agree that the EM radiation from a Mini is dangerous, I believe you have the right (in a civic way, if not constitutionally) to make that decision for yourself. I hope the link and the info above helps.

    UPDATE: Even if turned off, in some Apple products the antennas are still energized so that they can detect a "wake from sleep" signal. I don't know the details for the Mini, but the best solution is to disconnect the antennas. Keep them incase you need to send the system back for warranty repair, or want to sell it.
     
  20. RichardI macrumors 6502a

    RichardI

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    Southern Ontario, Canada
    #20
    I feel the same way as the OP although not quite as fearfull perhaps. I have an iMac which also has the wireless built in, so I simply have it turned off. There is no need to have it physically removed. BTW, you are aware that it also has BlueTooth wireless aren't you? :D

    Rich :cool:
     
  21. JKK4 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2009
    #21
    Thanks for the information. I guess if it's only a matter of disconnecting the antennas, then I may ask them to do it for me (all three antennas, for both Wi-Fi and BlueTooth, as RichardI pointed out).
     
  22. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    Portland, OR
    #22
    hahhahhahaha another one of these wifi is bad for you threads?
    Does the OP not realize that there are electromagnetic waves going through his body 24/7 that are stronger than the ones from his router just from the sun? let alone cell networks.
     
  23. kellen macrumors 68020

    kellen

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    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #23
    Thats what the tinfoil hat is for.

    Just turn it off. It is in the upper right of the screen.
     
  24. jw2002 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2008
    #24
    This is serious tinfoil hat territory stuff. The people who fear EM radiation don't seem to realize that earth's magnetic field is ***a lot*** stronger than what their computers can ever possibly emit.

    Also, the claims above that no long term studies on health effects have been performed is false. Just google Sverdlow for a pretty solid debunking. EM radiation can harm a living cell in only one of two ways: DNA mutations or heating. DNA mutations require extremely short wavelengths -- basically UVA (think sunburn), xray, gamma, etc. Wireless operates around 2-5 GHz which corresponds to 6-15 cm -- way too big to cause mutations. The other way for radiation to harm is through heating. Basically, the watts per square meter need to be larger than what a cell can dissipate through its built-in heat exchange processes. All the research shows that computer wireless is not even 1 one-millionth strong enough to cause any heating to a human.

    And to close, to all the EM radiation fearing people, consider these additional sources of EM radiation even after 802.11 and bluetooth are disconnected:


    • Remote controls (infrared is EM radiation)

    • CPU processor harmonics (2.0-2.26 GHz from mac mini)

    • LED indicators and display (visible light is EM radiation)

    • DVD (has a laser that emits EM radiation)
     
  25. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
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    NYC
    #25
    But to train yourself, you're suppose to take non-lethal dosages and over time your body becomes immune and you can take an otherwise legal dosage and not have to worry about possible death.
     

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