Apple have removed a number of services from macOS Server and moved other services, such as content caching, to the “normal” macOS.

That doesn’t leave much. So, what do I get for my purchase? What are the added features/benefits of macOS Server versus regular macOS? Am I missing something important?


I have accepted an answer which basically says it’s no longer the same product.

A few years ago I actually paid for the product for the features they removed. It’s not a hardship as my main server runs Linux.

However, when I saw MacOS server in use in an office I thought it was an ideal alternative Linux to manage internal DNS, mail, file server, etc.

  • 3
    The functionality macOS Server provides nowadays is described in the App Store and on apple.com. Are you looking for an answer explaining what these descriptions mean for the end-user, are you looking for typical use cases or are you unsure about a specific feature?
    – nohillside
    Feb 28, 2020 at 5:35

1 Answer 1


macOS Server is now basically an MDM server, powerful in its own right, but all the traditional things we used to associate with Server, like network services, Open Directory, file serving, caching update server, i.e. the good old days, is gone.

Server is geared now for education and business customers to maintain, administer and provision macOS and iOS devices. It scales down to providing much finer control of provisioning and administering iDevices and macOS machines for a large Apple-centric family with kids of several ages, for example.

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