Configuring a Mac Mini for my wife

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I'm considering replacing the almost five-year-old Dell desktop computer my wife is using with a Mac Mini. We replaced the monitor about a year ago with an HP ZR24W 24-inch, which is a nice monitor and should be good for a few more years. She only uses the computer for e-mail, web surfing, photo viewing, and light document editing. I do all the photo processing on my iMac. The Dell is running Windows XP, and is not upgradeable to Windows 7.

Why a Mac mini? I am hoping it will be easier to network with my iMac. All of our photos (she takes more than I do) are stored on an external drive attached to my iMac, and I would like for her to be able to access them transparently. I also like using Time Machine for backups, and we already have plenty of external drives for that.

My questions are the following:

1) Is it worth the extra $135 to get the 7200 rpm 750GB disk drive rather than the standard 5400 rpm 500GB drive? I think 500GB is plenty, but I am concerned about the slower speed. Would it be noticeable in her use?

2) The external optical drive is an additional $79. But of course I already have one on my iMac, so how inconvenient would it be not to buy one? I guess we can always decide to add it later.

3) I am assuming the Mini would support the 1920 x 1200 native resolution of the HP monitor we have.

I would appreciate the thoughts of you Apple gurus. :smile:
 
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Walter Rowe
  1. Don't waste the money. For her uses, she won't notice the difference in 7200 vs 5400 rpm.
  2. Don't waste the money. With Mac OS X being distributed over the internet, you don't need it anymore. She can use the one from the iMac when necessary.
  3. Mac OS X supports any resolution your monitor supports as long as it can determine what it is. You should be fine with the HP monitor.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
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  1. Don't waste the money. For her uses, she won't notice the difference in 7200 vs 5400 rpm.
  2. Don't waste the money. With Mac OS X being distributed over the internet, you don't need it anymore. She can use the one from the iMac when necessary.
  3. Mac OS X supports any resolution your monitor supports as long as it can determine what it is. You should be fine with the HP monitor.

Thanks, Walter. The CD/DVD drive would mainly be used for burning CDs of photographs that she likes to send to friends/family. I'm not concerned about OS upgrades.

all correct answers.

good luck with the mini.

Thanks for the comments.
 
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Not sure if it can, but can it burn to disc on the imac, similar to how MacAir's can use a localized mac to read and burn disks?
 
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Just an update.

The noisy power supply fan in the old Dell PC has gone quiet since I vacuumed the computer internals and removed quite a bit of dust. I thought it was in danger of imminent failure, but perhaps not.

Maybe the Mac Mini will have to wait for a while.
 
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Thanks for trying and reporting on this, Greg. My interest would be in burning data from the computer w/o an optical drive using the CD/DVD burner on the other. Would it be too much to ask if you could test this?

I can not get it to work.
I'll try installing toast on the Mac Air
 
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Jim,
I just burned a DVD from the MacBook Air to the Mac Pro SuperDrive using Toast Titanium. I can also burn to the Blu-Ray burner in the Mac Pro. If I knew your IP and you had Toast open and the drive shared, I could burn to your drive over the internet.
I'm doing this using WiFi in my house.
 
Joined
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Jim,
I just burned a DVD from the MacBook Air to the Mac Pro SuperDrive using Toast Titanium. I can also burn to the Blu-Ray burner in the Mac Pro. If I knew your IP and you had Toast open and the drive shared, I could burn to your drive over the internet.
I'm doing this using WiFi in my house.

Thanks, Greg. That's quite good news. But it can't be done with native Mac software, apparently.
 
Joined
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Thanks, Greg. That's quite good news. But it can't be done with native Mac software, apparently.

That is correct. According to Apple/Support/Communities discussion group, members say it's not possible to burn to a Remote Disc Optical Drive. You can read and install software. I've also played a DVD movie.
 

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