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Thread: Best OS for Mac mini & Mackbook Air

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
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    Beaufort & Chapel Hill, NC, USA
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    Default Best OS for Mac mini & Mackbook Air

    I recently bought a new old stock Mac mini (3.1) 2.0 MHz (early 2009) and would like to know the best OS to use on it. It came with 10.5.6 which is clearly not an option.
    I've upgraded the hard drive to a 360gb 7200rpm Hitachi HTS723232A7A364 and 2 sticks of 2gb ram, "4gb".
    Would 8gb make that much difference?
    If so could I use the full potential of 1600MHz over the standard 1066Mhz? (I have it in hand, not 1066).

    My other primary is a Macbook Air (5.2) 1.8GHz (mid 2012). It has the original 120gb ssd hard drive and 8gb ram. (I use a USB 3 external drive for storage).

    My options are OS 10.8.5, 10.9.5, or Yosemite.
    Obviously I will leave my Air at 10.9.5 or update to Yosemite??
    The mini is the one I would consider 10.8.5 on depending on others feedback??

    I'm still using 10.9.5 in my MBA as I haven't been comfortable to take the leap to Yosemite.. I cloned that OS and am currently using it comfortable in my mini.

    If you have experience with either Mac your thoughts would be very welcome!
    Thanks!

    Ken

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
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    on the landline, Mr. Smith
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    Default

    10.9 should be fine. And it will run OK even with 2GB, for light work. 4GB is enough for moderate work. FYI....10.9 is actually a bit lighter on RAM needs than 10.8, so nothing to gain by by going backwards.

    Just bumped my mini (similar model) from 10.6 with 2GB to 10.10 with 4GB. Running great as a home theater unit, mostly iTunes, or browser based stuff like Pandora or Amazon Prime or Hulu.

    More RAM is always better.....but only if you are out of RAM due to heavier/RAM intensive work loads. Depends on what you are doing. I would run it at 4 and see what you think first.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    on the landline, Mr. Smith
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    Default

    As for RAM performance, it runs at the speed of the memory bus....so no difference at all. Faster RAM is effectively "down clocked" to the bus spec. and runs at that (slower) speed.

    Use the RAM you have and don't look back (as long as it is stable and happy).
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Beaufort & Chapel Hill, NC, USA
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    Default

    Thanks for your reply,
    Glad to know there would be no advantage to going back to 10.8 on my mini. It took about 10hrs to get a fresh copy of 10.9 from Apple but compared to the cloned 10.9 from my MBA my mini is surprisingly fast now.

    I had thought about the bus speed but found in some of my older Macs the actual speed was higher than it was said to be. For the time being I'm going to leave it alone as it seems to be running just fine. If I find I need more ram I'll install the 2x4's I have even if they're clocked down.

    As for Mavericks to Yosemite
    I don't see anything in Yosemite that intrigues me at all so I believe I'll just stick with 10.9.5 for the time being. I am going to download it to a separate hd since I have several extras laying around and give it a run for fun
    I plan to put it on an 8gb stick so if and when the time comes I already have it ready for install.

    One question, I did a "restore" to an external drive from Apple on my MBA to download 10.9 and then a restore to install it on my mini. Now my mini is named "Ken's MBA" Is there a way to change that?
    Thanks!


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Grangeville, ID USA
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    Default

    Go to Preferences/Sharing and change the name at the top.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
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    Beaufort & Chapel Hill, NC, USA
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by ricks View Post
    Go to Preferences/Sharing and change the name at the top.

    Rick
    To simple!
    Thanks!

    Ken


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