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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Desktops > about to buy mini -- question about RAM

about to buy mini -- question about RAM
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Feb 11, 2005, 01:27 PM
im about to do the infamous "switch"

ive never used the OSX and i am about to buy a 1.42 mini with BT, AE, SuperDrive, the works basically, but I dont plan on buying the warranty because I can't justify a $100 insurance on a $600 computer. However, I was wondering if I should just get the 512 when buying or if I buy a GB stick, will Apple be able to install this for me and the still be covered under the basic warranty?

also, does anyone have any good sites for software and mac beginner stuff? Does anyone know of a good Mac BitTorrent site?


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Feb 11, 2005, 01:51 PM
Originally posted by nashstradamus:
also, does anyone have any good sites for software and mac beginner stuff?

All you RAM question have been answered a couple of times.

Oh, and welcome to MacNN

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Feb 11, 2005, 01:55 PM
Any apple authorized service provider can install it for you. Also YOU can install it yourself without voiding the warranty as long as you don't break anything during the process. I'd seriously consider going the 1gb route if I were you ... save $75 off Apple's 512mb BTO option and then about $165 for a 1gb stick from a 3rd party (plus you'd still have the 256mb built-in stick to sell or use as a backup if you ever had probs with the 3rd party ram.... hmmm, I wonder if a service provider would take the 256mb "on trade" for installing the 1gb stick for you).. OS X runs fine with 512mb ... it will run better with 1gb. OS X really is quite a good multi-tasking OS and the windowing behavior is different than Windows™ (e.g. in document based apps such as word processors or web browsers, closing the last window does not automatically quit the program). So, you often find yourself with many apps running at the same time even if you have no active windows for them open.

For software go to versiontracker or macupdate. You can find a slew of software in almost any category there. My usual process:
1) I need something that will do X
2) Go to versiontracker and search for software that does X
3) Narrow it down to freeware
4) Pick the freeware apps with the best star ratings
5) Try them out until I find the best one. (This is how I found TacoEdit .. which is a true gem for hand coding HTML)

I paid $79 for iWork and $30 for QT Pro. Virtually all of the other software on this machine is free stuff that either came with the computer (iLife, Developer Tools, AppleWorks), came bundled with something I bought (Toast Lite that I got years ago with a drive I bough), or that I got from versiontracker (too many to list .. hundreds of titles). I really have a sh!tload of software on this machine that I have collected over the years and almost none of it cost me anything. (I give special thanks to the people who have ported over so many of the great free UNIX apps and made them work on OS X with friendly GUIs). If you have questions about a piece of software that does a particular thing ... the Applications forum here at MacNN is the place to find answers.
( Last edited by Krusty; Feb 11, 2005 at 02:11 PM. )
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Feb 11, 2005, 02:24 PM
Besides Macupdate and Versiontracker, you can try <http://osx.hyperjeff.net/Apps/>. And if you want to dig into OSX innards a little bit more, using Terminal, for example, go to <http://www.macosxhints.com/>.

Good luck and Welcome aboard.
X0X0X from Calli
1800 DP/1024MB/180GB
nashstradamus  (op)
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Feb 11, 2005, 03:31 PM
thanks everyone for great responses! im typing this from my friends 1ghz powerbook with 512 mb ram... so if im thinking correctly the mini will be quicker than this computer and this functions just fine for me (pb has 512) i really like the osx im really suprised i did not switch earlier. thanks for the help i think im going to enjoy being a mac user

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Feb 11, 2005, 04:04 PM
I own several machines (pc's) and all my other machines, except for my super mini laptop has at least 1 gig of memory. But they do tons of things.

Obviously, it never hurts to get a bigger memory. 512meg did make a nice jump in performance when running more then 2 apps. Unless you are power hungry, I would think carefully what you will be doing with your new mac. Though the $75 for 512meg is fair for upgrade and install. If you have spare pc's that could use the memory, that's wonderful. If not, just ignore the memory.

As for quitting the apps, I would suggest getting used to using apple-q keystroke. I'm from the old school mentality where 1 drooled over 1 meg machines... Memory is precious. YES, My Precious...

So, think really carefully as to what you will use the new mac for. On the other hand, I installed the memory on my own, and it's a bit scary shoving the drywall knife between the plastic. For 1 gig, I think it's worth it. For 512, I don't think so. (Well, unless you just like cracking things open like me...)

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Feb 11, 2005, 04:51 PM
I've got a 867 Mhz PowerBook with 640 megs of ram and a 1.42 Ghz mini with 1 gig of ram. The mini is quite a bit faster. Obviously the processor speed has something to do with that. I think the extra ram goes a long way too.

I've also got a Dell with 2 gigs of ram. The more the merrier I always say.
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Feb 12, 2005, 10:24 AM
I'd second the 'max the RAM' thought.
I have a Rev.A 12" PowerBook that's gone from 128MB to 640MB to 1.12GB and each step has kicked life back into the old girl.
IMHO the worst thing about the Mac Mini, and the only thing Apple has really missed out on, is the RAM capacity. Wire firewire HDD capacity isn't too much of an issue but RAM is going to be the bottleneck....
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