This is a discussion on 2006 Mac Mini as an external drive within the Mac Mini forums, part of the Mac Forum category; Thinking I could use an old Mac Mini as an external drive for my new Mac Mini, I erased the contents of the old one, ...
Thinking I could use an old Mac Mini as an external drive for my new Mac Mini, I erased the contents of the old one, including the OS 10.4 Tiger. I tried connecting it with ethernet wire, USB wire and Firewire 400/800 wire. The icon of the old Mac Mini doesn't show up on the new Mav Mini desktop, and so I can't copy anything into it.
When I inserted the 10.4 Tiger CD into it, the message I get on the screen is to the effect that I "can't install it on this hard drive". I had better luck with 10.5, but after what seems a full installation, it still won't boot on its own. Help!
Without an operating system, your old Mac Mini is next to useless. Unfortunately you just can't use it in the way you are hoping. Even NAS drives have an operating system, with most running a stripped down version of Linux. Once you have OSX running again you will however be able to use the old mini on your network and use it for Time Machine backups for example.
Now, as to getting OSX running again, that's a different issue, and we would require a bit more info as to exactly what is happening when you try and boot the mini.
JezzerP and Col.bris,
Thank you for responding. My perseverance to get the Mac Mini going again is more a matter of principle than finding a practical solution. If you are willing to help, then I am happy to send you this additional information. I have attached some screenshots to show you what is happening. Here is what happens when I boot the computer:
1) With no disc in the Mini, it starts up with the Install screen asking which language I wish to install.
2) I press English and continue. The screen shows a message that it is installing, quickly followed by a rectangle with the message (Yellow exclamation point and in bold letters: "Mac OS X cannot be installed on this computer". Under it: "This software cannot be installed on this computer." Choices are: OK and RESTART
3) Pressing OK allows me to use the Utilities menu.
4) Choosing Disk Utility... , I then get what you see in the attachments.
The failure upon verifying suggests that there might be bad sectors on the drive. Does that mean it's doomed? Is there not a way of isolating bad sectors and continuing to use the rest of the drive?
If I omitted any essential info, please let me know.
The fact that Disk Repair failed would suggest to me that the drive has failed or is about to fail. Even if you got this working, would you really want to commit potentially valuable files to a suspect drive? Replacing the hard drive in a Mac Mini is supposed to be fairly easy, and a 1TB drive would set you back £70-80 here in the UK.