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As the title says. I have a Mac Mini server--I bought it because I liked the lack of a optical drive. I don't really care to use the software, and now having to spend an additional $50 on Lion's "Server" add-on is meh.

Can I wipe the machine clean and install a fresh 10.7, non-server edition?

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So this is a pre-Lion Mac mini server? You want to buy and install 10.7 clean? – Steve-o Aug 25 '11 at 5:36
I think you are looking for the OS X Lion USB Thumb Drive? – Steve-o Aug 25 '11 at 5:39
Correct. 10.6 Server -> 10.7 Non-Server – Flowpoke Aug 25 '11 at 6:08
You can easily use the 'non-server' version of OS X with no problems, since OS X server is just 1 app added onto the machine. I recommend you don't even bother with reinstalls and just delete the in your application folder. – AMomchilov Aug 26 '11 at 0:27

Yes. I am currently using a late 2009 Mac mini Server with both Snow Leopard and Lion (non-server editions).

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I went the route of loading the InstallESD.dmg file onto a USB thumb drive and booting from it (holding down the option key). This worked like a charm. No issues/unusual steps due it the system having 10.6 Server installed beforehand.

The directions I followed are from here:

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I'm only after seeing this post. I don't have time at the minute to answer it properly but if you haven't found a solution yet let me know and I'll give you all the details.

I had a 2009 MacMini SL Server. I tried to upgrade it to Lion Server and it upgraded but no server function worked properly and it was as slow as a dog.

I EVENTUALLY wiped the RAID disks and successfully installed Lion and then Server on top of it. It was much faster and the server functions worked just fine.

It's a little tricky but by no means Rocket Science.

Just let me know.

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