PC Advisor reviews Apple’s Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard Server: inexpensive, effective, and powerful

Apple Online Store“Apple’s Mac OS X Server, like it’s popular client version, has a very forward-facing and friendly graphical user interface. But if you want to roll your sleeves up and use a Unix terminal, OS X 10.6 Server is a complete POSIX-certified flavour of Unix that will respond to control through the default bash Terminal.app interface,” Andrew Harrison reports for PC Advisor.

“Apple Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard Server features several new facilities that will sit well in Apple’s core server markets of education, creative audio/visual media and small businesses. And it also scales up well to corporate installations. Like the client version, it majors on 64-bit performance to improve security and address huge amounts of memory. In SPEC benchmarks, Apple has shown that v10.6 Server is up to twice as fast than 10.5 in key operations such as file serving,” Harrison reports.

“This new Apple Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard Server supports Windows PCs well with email, calendars and address books all available to networked PCs through a modern web interface; and Macs additionally through built-in apps such as Mail, iCal and Address Book,” Harrison reports. “Apple Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard Server sells with an unlimited client license for £399. There are manifold Windows Server packages on sale, with a greatly varying number of client licenses either included or requiring to be paid for separately. Compared to such options with their labyrinthine license agreements that limit how many computers can be served and what hardware it can be installed on, this is a cheap and effective server solution”

“We found Snow Leopard Server to be a powerful but simple to use server solution, with the stability and power of Unix, topped with an intuitive interface familiar from Apple’s accessible Mac OS X client operating system. The adoption of open standards, along with a focus on technologies that well support the company’s expanding iPhone platform and media lab technologies, provides useful advantages over competing products. Snow Leopard Server’s extensibility and attractive pricing system alone may seal the deal, especially in education, publishing and media creation settings,” Harrison reports.

Full review here.


  1. And now you can get a Mac Mini Server with an Unlimited Snow Leopard License for $999.00.

    Mac Mini Server small package but, a nice big punch in the HP’s, Dell’s and Microsoft’s groin, Ballmer as no nads so I’m sure it didn’t hurt too much.

  2. Hell yes, it’s cheap. After all it’s intel only. Non intel users have to buy a new machine…

    BUT…. having said that, I am all for progress. Do I need an OS (or a computer for that matter) that runs 9 year old applications?

    correct me if I am mistaken, but doesn’t the 999 mini with SL preinstalled cost about the same as an unlimited client version of Leopard or Tiger did?

  3. We’re still on Tiger Server, and were prepared to skip Snow Leopard Server. The Mac Mini Server changed that.

    For $1000 we can sync our 12 desktop Macs, 3 MacBooks and all our iPhones (Mail, Calendars, Address Books).

    That’s a bargain.

  4. @ yay, yes. That’s what we paid for the unlimited version of Tiger Server a number of years ago (and I’m sure SL was the same).

    Apple will mess with the server market in a serious way with this. Apple doesn’t have much to loose giving this stuff away, but it could start cutting off some oxygen for other server options (Windows).

  5. yay: Unlimited Server is now $500. Prices have been dropping over last five years from what I recall was $1,000. When you buy the MiniServer Package you get a $800 Mini with 3X more drive capacity (less the CD/DVD drive) and the Unlimited Server. This is an amazing deal! I am thinking of buying one just to play around with and get more familiar with Apple Server.

  6. The $999 mini-Server is not exactly what the doctor ordered for the Enterprise Market … so we’ll mainly have to settle for the “education, publishing and media creation settings”, and law offices, auto dealerships, smaller departments, and – yes – doctor’s offices. And just about any other operation with single-digit members. Or double-digit, if you have multiple dedicated mini-Servers.
    You know what? That’s one HECK of a lot of opportunities! Seeing as these are offices that don’t WANT to hire an IT guru.

  7. Is anybody else seeing this? Microsoft is out running around putting up a doomed me-too store, crowing about a new OS that’s no more than an upgrade and, hailing balance sheet numbers “that beat the street” but actually show them collapsing. While they’re putting everything into lipstick and trying to copy (badly) Apple, Steve has launched an attack on monkey boy’s prize profit center. If you’re a business owner who has server needs, the implications of the story above will get your attention.

  8. Hi DLMeyer. Don’t forget the home entertainment systems, churches, nonprofit groups, small campaign groups, under ground streaming media groups after are Federal Government shuts down all conservative media groups, …

    Yes! “That’s one HECK of a lot of opportunities!”

  9. @disposableidentity,

    I have a question, we are almost ready to jump to a Mac mini with SL Server…

    Since there is no optical drive, how do you go about re-installing SL Server if the worst happens?

  10. @Jamie, I would assume you’d install it over the network from another computer with an optical drive. You should have other macs connected to your network….otherwise what’s the point of the server lol

  11. @Jamie,

    You need to have your data backed up – all you need do is plug in a 2TB Firewire 800 drive, configure Time Machine, and you’re good to go. If you’re serious about data recovery, you’ll probably want to set up a chron job and do overnight data synch to a reliable server located offsite (which could easily be an extra drive attached to your home computer, assuming that you’ve got sufficient network bandwidth, or could be something else entirely, like an offsite data vault service).

    I’m also curious about whether the DVD sharing application that comes with the Macbook Air runs on the Mac Mini Server.

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