I have to say that I'm getting less and less impressed with the Mac mini servers as time goes by. In the last month I've seen 2 hard drive failures in them with clients, and in both cases it took over a week for the "parts" to arrive (i.e. hard drives) in order to get them repaired. I'm not sure if it's just a bad run of hard drives to blame or a design problem with the mini servers.
In both cases the drives didn't report SMART errors, just started having massive I/O issues and both got to the point where they would just lock up the machine randomly and/or not mount or boot from the drives. Both failures where the top drive. From what the Apple stores told my clients it's a "special" hard drive that they had to order which meant that both clients were without their servers for multiple days while waiting on the "special" hard drives to arrive.
Anyone else seeing these kinds of issues? I'm wondering if it's a design issue/heat problem with the top drives. I've seen a lot of others complaining about top drive failures on the apple support discussions too.
I think there's something to be said for running a server that you can easily swap the hard drive on (without invalidating your warranty) and that you can run server class hard drives in (not laptop drives). I am concerned about this because pretty much anyone that has walked into the actual Apple store looking for a server gets sold one of these. There are a LOT of them out there. It has even gone so far that one client we sent to the Apple store to pick up a Mac Pro to run as a server had to be very insistent with the sales people in order to get what they wanted because the Apple Store people were trying to push them into forgetting the whole "Mac Pro idea" because they "weren't meant to be servers" and just buy a Mac Mini server instead because it "would be better" and that the mac mini's were "designed to be servers" (ya right). Thankfully the client just kept saying no and finally got them to order what they needed. He said it literally took 15 minutes of saying no until they finally placed his order.
Also I think it's pretty essential for a piece of server hardware to have 2 NICs, but that's another argument altogether
I am not completely convinced that 2.5 inch drives are as reliable as 3.5s. I know I have seen a lot more failures of the smaller drives but have always assumed that had something to do with the portable use most of these drives see.
Good info Lars as I was considering the purchase of a Mini later this year.
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Seems like your hard drive curse continues mg.... even to your clients..... maybe it is just you and you have some special quality that kills HDs.... if that were the case you could probably make a fortune off of that hidden/unknown ability. ....
The military and CSIS could be VERY interested in your "gift".
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I've never used the internal drives on any of my mini's,
Always used external drives, No failures yet.
Mac Mini 2.4, Apple TV1 & TV2, iPod 4th gen, Apple iPad Mini...
The future is one of my favourite past times.
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