Don't install Server over OS X client


I had a talk with Apple Support today and learned a few things which I thought I would share.

1) Don't install OS X Server over OS X client. It won't work properly, and the install takes FOREVER for some reason.

2) The use of 'Classic' environment isn't supported under OS X Server. But the Server engineer I spoke with says he uses it all the time. He did warn me that if Classic is running, Server will be significantly slower.

3) OS X Server includes ALL of the features of OS X Client, including iTunes, iMovie, and iDVD. It's built on the OS X Client base.

The second point is interesting. I run Classic on 10.3.9 server often, and I don't really see a difference in speed (iMac G5 1.8G).
I always thought that OS X Server only runs on Server machines coming directly from Apple, like XServe. This sounds to me that X Server runs for instance on my iMac G5... Is that right?
coyote said:
1) Don't install OS X Server over OS X client. It won't work properly, and the install takes FOREVER for some reason.
That is a little misleading...

Actually, one of the known (and Apple recommended) ways of installing Server on hardware that Server doesn't support on it's own is to do a clean install of Mac OS X client (for that hardware) and then install just the Server metapackage on top of that (and then all the required server updates). This only works when dealing with the same versions of Mac OS X and Mac OS X Server (like both being 10.2.x or both being 10.3.x).

Actually, it sounds like you got someone who doesn't know their stuff at Apple support... which isn't surprising, I can remember when almost no one in Apple's support division knew anything about Mac OS X (after it had been released). Still, that is an odd misstatement for them to make considering how often the issue comes up.
Pengu said:
um. why would server not support something. it is client + extras.
Well, the best example would be what actually happens...

Apple doesn't sell all that many copies of Server, so one version stays on the shelves for quite some time, like Server 10.2.3* did.

Now say you buy a new PowerMac and want to make it a Server. The PowerMac comes with 10.2.5 and a video card that it has didn't exist when 10.2.3 was current. When you try to install Server 10.2.3 (the only version Apple is selling out of the box), the video (among other things) responds oddly because it is seeing hardware it wasn't designed for.

The solution to this problem is what I gave earlier... do a clean install of the client version of 10.2.5 that came with the system, then install the Server metapackage off the Server 10.2.3 CDs, restart and use software update to bring the system to Server 10.2.5 (or what ever the latest version is).

This is how Apple gets around having to print new versions of Server every time they release new hardware. Mac OS X Server may be supported on some hardware, but the version that actually exists on the CDs (or DVDs) of a given printing may not. As long as you have a version of Mac OS X that does support that hardware, you can always build Mac OS X Server up using that version of Mac OS X as the base.

Needless to say, this has happened quite a lot with various hardware and versions of Mac OS X Server... which makes it odd that an Apple Support person wouldn't be aware of this. :confused:

* The actual Apple support article for this very situation can be found here.
never thought of that i guess..

anyone using OS X Server as a workstation/desktop? (not sure why you would..)

or an XServe for that matter?