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Mac Mini server model as a personal computer?

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:41 pm    Post subject: Mac Mini server model as a personal computer? Reply with quote


I have just bought a new Mac mini server model. I was actually in the market for a personal use computer but I found a vendor who would sell me this model brand new for cheaper than the minimum spec personal use version (which is much lower spec). I have a macbook air superdrive and figured I could get a pretty high spec machine cheap and simply not utilise the server functionality. I have got it running but before I go to town bringing all my data in and setting everything up, I wanted to get some information.

When I initially booted up, I went through the initial registration fine but upon updating the software and restarting, my operating system kind of crashed. I was on the phone to apple support for several hours going through some command line procedures to get it running again which eventually allowed me to re-install the OS from the disc using the superdrive directly to boot from. I was told by the support staff that the problem might have arose due to the Server OS not being compatible with various personal use applications (or some other, non-specified issue with the server OS). My initial thought was that I could install the normal OSX Snow Leopard on the machine to avoid these issues in future but the machine is refusing to recognize my copy of snow leopard (it is an unused, full version, not the upgrade).

Needless to say, I am getting slightly worried and finding it hard to deal with Apple support staff continuously telling me they don't know what's wrong (since "its a server, not a client" - quote of the day, that one). I was under the impression that this OS was more or less the same as the standard Snow Leopard but with a few tools to make server management more user friendly. I just want to use it as my personal desktop computer and I may smash a wall if I spend a week customising everything the way i want it, installing/importing all my data and then it crashes again.

So, what I am in fact asking is if anybody knows quite what a good solution would be? Either to successfully installing and running the non-server OS and going from there or continuing with the server OS but configuring it to avoid future problems. Or, if anybody has encountered issues like these themselves and subsequently solved them? Final possibility - could it simply be a freak occurrence and I should run with exactly what I have and not worry so much? I am not as tech savvy as I could be but am happy to hear any and all suggestions, jargonized or otherwise.
Sorry for rambling on, just wanted to be clear about everything. And thanks in advance - I appreciate the help.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are having issues out of the box, take it back and exchange or return it. No matter what anybody might say, it shouldn't be misbehaving. Saying that software you installed is incompatible with the server software is absolute bollocks, unless it is also incompatible with Snow Leopard.

The server software is not necessarily for the faint at heart, especially when you need to set up services such as Firewall. The system itself is pretty nice, but Snow Leopard client is certainly much more user friendly.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is you SL DVD newer than the mini? If it's older, it won't install. This goes with Apple hardware in general. You can't install an older OS on a newer Mac.


Also, there is no difference between the $30 DVD and the "full" version of SL DVD.

If it still doesn't work, send it back.

Grumpy old man of computing.

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