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 Post subject: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:09 am 
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https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2018/10 ... -mac-mini/

Naturally the SSD is still soldered in place, but it's still a step forward from the POS 2014 Mac Mini.

- Anonymous


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:15 am 
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I'm sure it is only because high-density DDR4 is mindbogglingly expensive and 16GB would be insufficient for the "Pro" positioning they're going for.

I'm relieved it exists, our aging fleet of 2011 and 2012 Mac minis at work causes me great anxiety, I'm also glad they stuck with the 1U friendly form-factor.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:41 am 
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Hmmmm, twice as big a fan, methinks it must create at least 3 times as much heat.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:35 am 
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It is supposed to be several times as fast as the 2014 model...which shouldn't be too hard to do since the 2012 model was faster than the 2014 model. :roll:

I think these look good. The price is a bit higher than I'd like, but generally the system seems OK. The GPU (Intel HD 630) is unexciting. I'd be willing to recommend one of these to a friend, unlike the previous model. I might even consider buying one myself to replace my aging Mac Pro, in contrast to any other non-portable Mac right now.

The soldered SSD does suck, even if it's blazingly fast (which I'm sure it is), but the expandable 64 GB RAM limit is excellent, even if it will be awkward to perform the upgrade. The 10Gb Ethernet on board option is intriguing. I know people who will be happy to have that. I'd be happy to have it at work if only a bunch of other systems also had it. Four USB-C Thunderbolt ports offer lots of possibilities, but it was thoughtful of Apple to leave a pair of conventional USB ports as well. There's a mini headphone jack, but no analog audio in, which could occasionally be mildly inconvenient.

Pros:
+ SO-DIMMS
+ 64 GB max RAM
+ Affordable 10 Gb Ethernet option
+ Modernish processor options
+ Lots of ports
+ Still 1U

Cons:
- Expensive
- Soldered SSD
- Seemingly awkward SO-DIMM location

Meh:
- Intel Graphics

I'd give it a B or maybe even a B+. That's pretty good for a contemporary Mac!

- Anonymous


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:55 am 
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Did I read the speed tests wrong? I thought that many tests of the 6 core vs. the old 2 core was only 30%+ faster.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 12:28 pm 
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I'd expect about 30% difference for the processor alone in single-threaded applications, but for highly parallel workloads I'd expect the new processor to be linearly faster with the number of cores, or about 3x...but just a guess.

- Anonymous


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 2:08 pm 
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WTF, base model 128GB SSD. That was the limit of my G3 iMac early 2001! Are they assuming that people will use the thunderbolt ports for larger external drives, the way the silly garbage can cylinder Mac Pro is meant to be used? Faster or not, seems rididiculous at any price point, especially since it can't be upgraded. My base model late '09 iMac came with a 500GB drive!


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 2:26 pm 
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Well, I was wrong on the speed, most were 300%+, but you need a $600 graphic card to get real speed...


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 5:09 pm 
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I think Apple is assuming that everyone will upgrade to the 256 GB drive, which is small by historical standards, but also probably adequate for most people. That upgrade needs to be considered in the price. 128 GB is too small in general, but probably appropriate for institutional buyers.

I might get a 128 GB base model to boot from, with all the real storage on an external array. Thunderbolt is, anecdotally speaking, seeming much more common in the PC world, never mind on Macs, and I expect over the next year that Thunderbolt 3 peripherals, such as very fast drive enclosures, will become more common and maybe come down in price a bit. Expensive: yes. Tolerably so: depends. Fast: pretty spritely. In general I think Thunderbolt NVMe enclosures are the future of fast low-capacity (less than dozens of TB) desktop storage outside of 19" racks, and it will be glorious. Just to be clear, NVMe will also be the future of fast low and medium-capacity storage in 19" racks, but the enclosures will be shaped differently.

Thunderbolt 3 is awesome because it's basically a (slightly slowish -- only 32 Gb/s) PCIe slot on a cable, and you can plug in regular old USB C peripheral to it if you don't need the PCIe-ness of it. Oh, and on Macs it supports target disk mode.

- Anonymous


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:23 pm 
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For graphics, one can get an eGPU setup to increase speed for that. Obviously that will come at the cost of bandwidth for at least one of the remaining USB-C/TB3 ports unless Apple has one controller per port (not likely in a micro-ITX form factor). So halfway decent graphics performance will come at a significant peripheral connectivity cost.

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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 5:29 pm 
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I don’t know why they’re still bothering with the Mac Mini. Even Intel got it right with the NUC thing—at a competitive price point—and I have read of Hackintosh macOS installs onto them.

-he who stacks pork

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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:14 am 
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Seen a couple of posts on ASC complaining about graphics, such as somebody trying to run two monitors.

Question: If SSD fails at some stage and replacement isn't possible will it just be like a regular drive going bad and you can still boot externally? With the fast ports and USB-C of Thunderbolt would there really be a drop in speed if you were to use a SSD on a docking station? I know this adds to desk clutter but frankly I think new computers are designed so you have fast, local storage and anything needing serious space you're going to have to do external storage. Plus the mini isn't a notebook and by the time I plug in my optical drive and a TB storage drive what's another thing on the desk?

Trying to get a feeling for these 2018 Minis. Been thinking about 2012 Mini for a while now but they are still pretty costly (somebody locally seems to be buying up the ones in the area then re-selling them on Craigslist at a price that makes me wonder if I shouldn't just look at OWC for the peace of mind factor vs. "cash and meet in coffeehouse") and it wouldn't surprise me if Apple dropped them next round of system upgrades. Not that I am all that keen on the new OSX versions and jumping Mavericks --> Mojave might see a lot of software casualties but I guess it is unavoidable until the day I think my computer might outlast me (demographics suggest I am not in that cohort yet). I am guessing the next Apple OSX might dump a lot of older software so if I want to buy one of these I am better off doing it in the next 10 months or so before I am forced to use whatever that next OS is. At least the memory upgrade option is nice and I don't knoow if it is worth holding out for a GPU or a replaceable SSD.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 9:05 am 
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I think for that amount of money I'd be tempted for a 2012 iMac...

https://www.macofalltrades.com/shop/app ... &Year=2012


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 9:21 am 
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BDAqua wrote:
I think for that amount of money I'd be tempted for a 2012 iMac...

https://www.macofalltrades.com/shop/app ... &Year=2012


I would skip the 2012 macs. They're going to be the first ones phased out of metal when apple decides to finally force Metal_Family_v2 lockouts. That could happen as early as 10.15.

2012 max GPUs are woefully underpowered anyway

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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:21 am 
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Replacing the SSD in an integrated Mini/Macbook means replacing the motherboard. Its an open question whether a failed component on the motherboard will take down the rest of the motherboard or just let it trundle along. Sometimes if your thunderbolt ports fry you have to desolder all the parts related to thunderbolt in order to make it get past POST again.

The new Macs are wonderful for Apple's service department (anything goes wrong = motherboard replacement, ka-ching) and forcing an arbitrary forced upgrade cycle onto customers. For actual owners? Not too many upsides. I guess you get a new Mac for however long Apple lets you use it?

I just don't see why they think customers are going to go through all these hoops and all this pain just to own a PC with an Apple logo on it. Because at the end of the day that's all we have.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:30 pm 
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Good point, we'v e now got all the problems we used to knock Windows for, & few of the advantages.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:53 pm 
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MonkeyBoy wrote:
Replacing the SSD in an integrated Mini/Macbook means replacing the motherboard. Its an open question whether a failed component on the motherboard will take down the rest of the motherboard or just let it trundle along. Sometimes if your thunderbolt ports fry you have to desolder all the parts related to thunderbolt in order to make it get past POST again.

The new Macs are wonderful for Apple's service department (anything goes wrong = motherboard replacement, ka-ching) and forcing an arbitrary forced upgrade cycle onto customers. For actual owners? Not too many upsides. I guess you get a new Mac for however long Apple lets you use it?

I just don't see why they think customers are going to go through all these hoops and all this pain just to own a PC with an Apple logo on it. Because at the end of the day that's all we have.


I'll just leave this here: https://www.apple.com/support/13-inch-m ... e-program/

Take from that what you will...

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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:33 pm 
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Quote:
Prior to service, it's important to do a full back up of your data because your drive will be erased as part of the service process.
A technician will run a utility to update your drive firmware which will take approximately one hour or less.
Your 13-inch MacBook Pro will be returned to you with macOS re-installed.
After service, you will need to restore your data from a backup.
I'd say it's far more likely they're replacing motherboards. They can update the motherboard serial number & MAC addresses to match the original motherboard and the OS can be preinstalled as part of the refurbishment process that's used to generate the parts. This would line up with an hour-long process that completely nukes everything related to the original system. Then they can ship the old board off for refurbishment to whatever firms they consign that process to which gives them boards for future customers.

This is part of why any system that has an SSD as an integrated motherboard component MUST use whole-disk encryption, otherwise whoever they ship your board off to will have full access to your data once they resolve whatever the original fault was. Which they will. Just because Apple Stores are incapable of staffing people to perform component level repairs doesn't mean the companies they outsource their refurbishment process to are similarly limited.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:43 am 
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Whole disk encryption only works if you can wipe the cipher key via instant secure erase (ISE). Without that command being supported, you would have to drill holes in the NAND to prevent them from getting at the data or at least fragments of the data. ISE wipes the cipher from the drive's controller and the next time the drive has to perform any duties it creates a brand new cipher. My current data/OS backup drive has such a feature. One command and I never need to erase a damn thing.

So without ISE, you could have whole drive encryption on the controller, and still be vulnerable. And yes, there are drives that do use encryption but do not support ISE. You typically only see ISE on enterprise drives, not consumer ones.

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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2018 11:52 am 
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So with a new desktop model (where you're resigned to having peripherals) with a fixed SSD but Thunderbolt ports does it now make sense to just boot from an external flash drive and use the internal SSD for non secure storage?

Frankly, 99% of what I do on a computer is not what I consider demanding security from the perspective we are discussing here. If somebody looks at my holiday snaps, well I hope they enjoy them and I hope they like Swiss folk music as much as I do. :D I have one encrypted sparse image where I keep things like passwords.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:44 pm 
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What would you be concerned about some random criminal organization on the other side of the world having access to? Your holiday photos? Probably not. Your banking details, including cached data of recent login attempts from web browsers in that OS? Probably would be. Your name, address, other personally identifiable information? Probably would be. The latter gets shoveled around like crazy. That's why facebook gets hacked so often, everyone gives their PII to facebook or puts it on facebook.

Apple needs to have a long hard talk with security professionals about its priorities. Making something .00015" thinner is not worth compromising your customer's security.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:09 am 
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Given that I was one of those who received a letter from whichever credit info company it was that was breached a year or so ago, I strongly suspect my name, address, telephone number at least are all out there (plus already being on several public databases such as the property owner database for the city). From several data breaches where companies involved have my personal information it is quite possibly somebody also has my SS# but unfortunately there isn't any way to get the feds to issue you with a new one so it basically dumps it all back on the individual to deal with it.

Frankly I am kind of resigned to the fact that a lot of my personal information is out there and is almost impossible to avoid these days unless you lead a hermetic existence. If I buy a frozen pizza with my credit card I am sure some computer somewhere is making note that Limnos has purchased brand X pizza and also did so last month. I guess as long as nothing personally injurious can be done with it then that's the way things are. Either that or try to exist with cash only and refuse to do anything which requires you to provide a name or identity.

Right now I use a computer where I do boot to an external drive which was why I was asking if it would make sense when I do finally move to a SSD it would make sense to boot to an external drive too. With my present computer it is a pain doing so over USB2 but with USB-C it might not be, plus then should the computer fail you simply take the drive with your information elsewhere.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 11:14 am 
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Yeah, I'd think that info was already out there... recently let my youngest look at gmail webmail on my computer, bit later I noticed the bottom of every google search page had a strange location mentioned, clicked on link there & Lo & behold, my youngest's location every minute of every day for months... departure time, arrival time, travel time, & maps of the exact route they took every time!

Turns out you have to log out of that area, turning off computer doesn't even log you out.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 11:50 am 
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Actually you can get a new SSN. Identity theft victims get them routinely:
https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0 ... ity-number

Although a vague "I think it's out there" won't qualify, you have to document that someone's opening lines of credit in your name or generally being an asshat towards you.

BD, Google keeps nagging me to turn on that feature on my phone, periodically I check and sometimes its been flipped on (maybe from an errant swipe/push, maybe by itself, who can say). They coach you to enable their tracking system in the most innocent of terms.


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 Post subject: Re: OMG it has a DIMM!
PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2018 6:02 am 
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BD: Yes, you can "pause" it in controls but that doesn't imply it is turned off for good. The only record I see for me in the Timeline is when I was at Toronto airport 3 months ago. Mind you, not that I have turned on the Android device since then. You can delete timeline items but only one by one as far as I can tell.

When I do a Google search it does have a location for me at the bottom but that is actually about 8 miles from where I am really located. I suspect they are getting it off my IP (I don't think this '08 iMac has GPS) and our using CenturyLink for our ISP.


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