3 Replies Latest reply: Aug 25, 2012 7:55 PM by Jeff Kelleher
Brian Guam Engineer Level 1 (25 points)

We're running 10.6.8 server on a Mac Mini, Core 2 Duo (A1176).


The server would never successfully upgrade to Lion Server, despite hours on the phone with Enterprise Support.  We had no interest in having the whole shebang rebuilt.  Money at most small companies is tight.


We're beginning to become concerned about how we might recover if WHEN this Mac Mini fails.  We not only have rolling backups, but keep a "hot backup" ready that is a clone of the server using SuperDuper.  Will the "clone" disk run on any Mac that ran Snow Leopard?  Or is there some kind of "key" that keeps it tied to the same machine?

Mac mini, Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • iToaster Level 3 (735 points)

    My advice would be to test your recovery on the machines you intend to use if the Mac mini fails

    Regardless of any advice you receive here or else were


    In answer to you're question yes it shiould work providing the hardware is similar

    test your procedures for getting as close as you can to the working status the mini was before it's death

    Better to discover any holes now Rather than 2 in the morning in panic mode "cause the mini has died

    And your "rolling backup" restore procedure is not working


    Make sure the machine(s) that are viable candidates don't end up with some other mission critical software on them

    That you have to run along side your server

  • MrHoffman Level 6 (14,807 points)

    In no particular order...


    Export your boot disk to an external disk using Disk Utility booted from an installation DVD, and test-boot from that.   (Hold the option key during a power-up to get the chooser, and select the external disk.)  That's (usually) a viable recovery path, and worth testing.


    Your boot drive will likely run from a similar-enough Mac Mini or Mac Mini Server, but there are a variety of Mac Mini Server boxes that are too new to boot and run OS X Server 10.6.8.  Test any replacement.


    One of the common approaches for a reinstallation-style upgrade (if this hasn't already tried) is a clean install followed by a migration in from your existing disk; either directly (via Target Disk Mode) or from an external copy created via Disk Utility (as mentioned earlier).


    If your disk isn't upgrading successfully, then there is clearly already something a little wonky.  Or corrupt.  And if Apple couldn't sort it out short of an installation, you're potentially operating on borrowed time; these wonkies can have a wonderful habit of (re)appearing or mutating at the most inopportune moments, too.


    One alternative option involves cloud hosting or such, depending on exactly what you're using this server for; outsourcing the server and the hardware.  (This assumes various details of course, and might or might not be feasible in your particular case.)  Or yes, get the budget in place for a replacement (new or used) Mac Mini Server, and test with the migration path "mentioned" earlier.

  • Jeff Kelleher Level 4 (3,015 points)

    I'm with Mr. Hoffman. If you've spent time with Enterprise support without success, it may be time to cut bait. Throwing a backup onto new hardware, when you're not sure of the backup may be throwing good money (and time) after bad.