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Released on October 23, 2012. Core i5 or Core i7 Processor. Apple Fusion Drive.

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How to use hardware wisely? can I use a mini and iMac 2008 screen

too many apples! My iMac is nice to look at when it isn’t running… if I upgrade my mac mini could I connect them and use the iMac 2008 as a monitor?

Has anyone done this?

Also a different and mostly unrelated question:

regarding upgrading mac mini with dual storage could I use bootcamp on one drive and mac os on a new ssd? I stopped using my old laptop that I have bootcamp online because I didn’t want to go online with old programs that I can’t give up. In other words: to stay safe I have bootcamp with old excel etc on and never go online with it. whew

I have heard that having windows / bootcamp even if you aren’t using it, opens you up to viri!!! I haven’t been right since microsoft xl! miss it so!!

I go online on a mac running only mac os. (like I said… too many apples)

By “dual” I am wondering if that really means the systems are separate enough for different (ancient) operating system that would never be vulnerable or accessible to the outside world.

OK stop Laughing!!!

UPDATE RE: USING old iMac as a monitor: why didn’t I think of that…. looking on the apple website. Dan pointed me in the right direction and I found these specifics.

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I'm confused here are you using a new M1 Mac Mini? If you have a 2012 Mac Mini and you have a older 2008 iMac none of this applies.

Your iMac system can connect via mini Display port to your Mac Mini's Thunderbolt port using Target Disk Mode as long as you stick with High Sierra or older.

I use Remote Desktop between my systems without any issues running Mojave. What a lot of people get confused is Apple had offered it as a separate package and then intergraded it into the base macOS (nothing is needed to use it) other than having an Ethernet or WiFi connection between the two (wired is better).


Hi Dan, Not using an M1. I am trying to avoid it. My mac mini is 2012.

From all that I found my iMac 2008 20" is not able to do the job.

I am working to upgrading to at least Catalina while for this short time my focus is on this project. (I mistakenly said sierra before) (Also said xl instead of XP!)

I did go to the apple website- I will look again.

Were you able to see the stats on the attachment I posted? Am I not reading it correctly.

Is that what you mean by "none of this applies" ? In other words, it isn't possible?

I could use clarification on that.


@nan_c - Don't force Catalina on your system it really can run it and be useful.

Keep in mind your system can only support 6GB of RAM you really need 8GB or more just to the basics 16GB for anything heavy. Stick with OS-X Leopard (10.5.4)

Give this a read The Ins And Outs Of Your IMac’s Target Display Mode

Sadly your system is too old to leverage it thats why I aimed you to remote desktop. Here you are remoting into your other system but you need to be using High Sierra for that without using additional software.

Give this a read Tutorial: Screen Sharing in Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5): How it works and how it doesn't see if you can leverage it.


Let me see if I understand: using target display mode will not work because my iMac is pre 2009.

But it will work in screen sharing? Will read all that when I get inspired again, for now I will just use a monitor (old tv) with my mac mini, as when I asked the question I thought it would be a simple mechanical connection and a click or two.

Just installed 16gb RAM and all is well. SSD is on the way.

From what I understand it is the graphics card that is holding back running catalina.

(I am not planning on upgrading iMac 08... just the mac mini 2012)


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Wow a long list here!

Can I use my iMac as a screen to my Mac Mini? There are a few possible ways to do this

Using BootCamp on a different drive (dual drives in my Mac Mini) NO! But your second drive could be setup as a NTFS or FAT32 volume to hold your … cough! Windows stuff Apps and Data. Think of it this way your Dell Windows system has a small boot drive, you added a huge second drive and you use it to hold everything. This is no different.

Virus’s and other infections! If Windows environment gets infected its no different than the Dell system! In some ways its worse! Depending on the infection your boot drives master blocks can be messed up which will also mess up your Mac environment too! Basically you want a good antivirus in both spaces.

I would stick with macOS as its just a safer space, even today! While there are more risks than we had ten years ago its still much smaller than that other OS … Windows! The only true way not to get infected is to fully air gap your systems from the internet. Which we know is getting harder to do! Some folks use a wet and dry approach. That is a system which is used for the internet and then using an external drive (NAS) use it to host their stuff and then use the second system to access the NAS only. Others use iCloud or other web based storage solution while not fully isolated its still safer for stuff.

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Thanks again Dan!

I have been running bootcamp only on a MacBook that is not online... thinking I was overdoing it. You have validated the sanity of my method.

I can't live without windows based quicken and excel. I don't have my offline mac book networked - (don't go on the network) and I have the wifi & bluetooth turned off. However, I do print from it with USB. I am not sure if I am absolutely protected as sometimes it seems to wake up - I think it has something to do with excel.

Yes I do stick with OS to go online. I take it further and have, for the most part, apple apps.

What is NAS? Also, what do you mean by host stuff? Will you explain that further?

I do use an external crucial x8 for data and am in the process of figuring out external bootable drives with different OS x on them, as I have had some compatibility problems switching back and forth. I will post another question on file system questions! Thanks again!


RE: using monitor of iMac with mac mini.

Looks like my iMac 2008 is not on the "supported" list to use in target display mode. too old

Remote Desktop idea: It won't support the newer os ... I think it has 10.6 on it! So if the remote desktop requires a supported OS, I am way out of date.

I had hoped I could just plug iMac 2008 and mac mini 2012 together.... looks way more involved if not impossible. Darn.


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