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In my "old" Mac mini I substituted the HDD with an SDD and added more RAM.

I reinstalled Mac OS from the only CD I actually have, version 10.6 (I think it's Snow Leopard, has a version code '10A432'.

I tried to upgrade directly to the latest Mac OS High Sierra 10.13, but it failed, my system hangs while finishing installation after first or second reboot.

Official Tech Specs

Model Info

  • Part Number: MC238T/A
  • Model Number: A1283
  • Mac Mini 2.26/2X1G/160/SD/AP/BT - ITA

SW information

  • Mac OS X 10.6 (10A432)
  • Kernel Darwin 10.0.0

Questions

  • What's the maximum jump I can do in a single step?
  • Where can I legally download (and buy if needed) the DVD with the needed OS version?
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    Firstly, welcome to Ask Different! :) Can I ask you to edit your question to include the exact model details of your Mac mini? Without these details it's impossible for anyone here to properly answer your question because, as it stands, we don't even know if your Mac is compatible with macOS High Sierra. – Monomeeth Sep 11 '18 at 5:30
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    Go to the Apple menu and select About This Mac. In the window that pops up take a note of the Mac OS X version (listed below the Apple logo), and also the processor and RAM details for your Mac mini. Now, if you're running Snow Leopard, you'll also have a More Info... button at the bottom - click on this and in the Hardware Overview that appears take a note of the Model Identifier. Once you have all of that info let us know what it is. – Monomeeth Sep 11 '18 at 22:18
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You most probably have this model which can be upgraded to 10.11.

Apple has a support article describing the steps required to upgrade from 10.6.8 to 10.11. Basically you update up to 10.6.8 and then get the installer from the App Store.

  • Thanks for you interest in my question; I ask you, kindly, if you could you update your answer to directly answer to my questions. – realtebo Sep 26 '18 at 5:27
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    @realtebo The answer was on Apple's support site :-) – nohillside Sep 26 '18 at 5:41
  • Only one objection: my 10.6 has NO app store at all... ! – realtebo Sep 26 '18 at 21:18
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    @realtebo You need to update to 10.6.8 first (which should still be possible), see the "Learn more" section in the support article. – nohillside Sep 26 '18 at 21:28
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Upgrade to latest 10.6 (10.6.8)

It's needed to install the App Store update. You can install the update downloading the official ComboUpdate from here: https://support.apple.com/kb/dl1399

You must have App Store

If, and only if, you have 10.6.6 and do not have the App Store application, it's available as a separate download here: Apply the patch you can find here: https://support.apple.com/kb/DL1860

Upgrade OS to 10.11 El Capitan

Using App Store (the next link will work only on a Mac), download from App Store the upgrade to El Captain: https://itunes.apple.com/app/os-x-el-capitan/id1147835434?ls=1&mt=12

Try to elevate it to 10.14 Mojave

As commented by @LangLangC, minimum Mac Mini is the one from late 2012. To be able to update to 10.14 the late 2009 edition you have to patch the installer and then live with quite some quirks.

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    The last paragraph is incorrect. Minimum Mac Mini is late 2012. For 2009 you have to patch the installer and then live with quite some quirks. – LangLangC Sep 27 '18 at 13:27

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