Speeding up a Mac mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by John Archer, Feb 7, 2008.

  1. John Archer macrumors newbie

    Feb 7, 2008
    I work in an office which is made up of a number of mac minis
    We have had problems with two of them running slower than the rest.
    I have tried maxing out the Ram on one but there was only a small speed increase. I have read that some minis have slower hard drives than the others and that it is possible to speed them up by using an external 3.5 hard drive in a firewire enclosure.
    Has anyone tried to do this and with what success? Can anyone recommend any equipment that may suit this purpose?
    Many thanks for reading
  2. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    When you run Activity Monitor are there any runaway tasks? What's the hardware (cpu and ram) in them?
  3. Jimmdean macrumors 6502

    Mar 21, 2007
    You can check the More Info of "About this Mac" to compare the hard drive models that each has. You can Google the part # to see if it is 4200 or 5400 RPM.

    Any external 7200-RPM USB2 or firewire drive will be faster than the internal drive of the mini. That is the quick and nasty solution.

    The neater solution is to crack it open and replace the internal drive with a modern 7200RPM laptop drive.
  4. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Perhaps the HD are full. They should have at least 10gb of free space.
  5. John Archer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 7, 2008
    What is a runaway task

    Hello there
    I have looked at the activity monitor
    There seems to be plenty of free memory and Ram
    I am not sure what a runaway task is so if someone could clarify would be grateful
    Basically the machine slows alarmingly whenever entourage or excel are opened and there are consistent spikes on the disk usage monitor.
    When this happened on another machine I maxed out the ram to 2Gb and only got a small increase in speed - making me think it was the hard drive
  6. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    How much RAM in the computer and what is its cpu? G4? Core Solo? Core Duo? Core 2 Duo?

    You'll see a runaway task when you sort your Activity Monitor by cpu usage. Generally, they'll fluctuate between 70% and 95%.

    Which versions of Excel and Entourage? Are they PPC compiles? If so, which version of Mac OS X are you running on this machine? It might be a Rosetta issue.

    It could be. Tell us how much RAM, what hard drive size and how much of that drive is free. What devices (e.g., USB, FW) do you have connected to this Mini?
  7. John Archer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 7, 2008
    two seperate tablets of 256Mb DDR SDRAM (512mb)
    The hard drive is a Seagate ST96812AS 60GB SATA/150 5400rpm
    The only connected devices are the normal keyboard mouse and monitor

    Hope all that helps - thanks for taking the time to read prev posts
  8. John Archer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 7, 2008

    Sorry on thing I missed
    The operating system is OSX 10.4.11
  9. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    I suspect this combination is your problem. Office 2004 runs under Rosetta, a known memory hog with leaks. You ought to consider putting in a couple of 1 gig sticks. I'm certain it'll boost the performance substantially.

Share This Page