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So make sure to look for a good deal in order to keep this upgrade project economical. Speaking of economical, the Samsung SSD is overkill for this project, but I had it available from a previous build.

Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, and 2 GB of RAM Minimum

Since the iMac only uses a 1. We toyed with the idea of starting from scratch with a fresh install, but there were lots of files on the system and we wanted to make sure we had an opportunity to save any needed data.


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This great website has hundreds of beautifully detailed guides for repairing all sorts of computers, gadgets, and other electronics, including the one we needed for our iMac. These guides are so good that, during my time as an Apple technician, we frequently relied on the iFixit Guides over the Apple internal repair documentation. Overall, the upgrade took about one hour from start to finish.

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Experienced computer technicians will likely be able to do it even faster. We put everything back together, buttoned the system up, held our breath, and pressed the power switch. After a brief pause, the familiar Mac startup chime sounded and the iMac booted right up. To check the status of the upgrade, we headed to the System Profiler. Sure enough, our Mac reported a 2.

Can the processor be changed?

Now we had to deal with the RAM. Basically, it takes the firmware from the late Core 2 Duo iMac and applies it to our early Core Duo system. The Macs were practically identical except for the platform switch to the Core 2 Duo CPU, so the firmware upgrade works beautifully. The app will create a RAM disk to prep the firmware files and then give you instructions on how to apply the update, which involves restarting the Mac and then holding the power button until the status light blinks.

The update takes about 3 minutes and worked without a hitch on our system. It was time to deal with the software problem.


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Our iMac originally shipped with OS X Officially, A Snow Leopard system, updated and running the Google Chrome browser, would likely meet our needs just fine. So we dug up our old Snow Leopard installer, upgraded the OS, and then performed all necessary software updates to bring the system up to Some quick testing confirmed our initial predictions.

What to Do if Your Mac Can’t Run Mountain Lion

Our initial testing revealed noticeable improvements in performance; the system booted faster, apps launched in a flash, and everything seemed significantly smoother. We anticipated the need to quantify these changes, so we ran benchmarks both before and after the upgrade.

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Thread starter jklondon Start date Apr 4, Sort Posts by Likes. Forums Macs Desktops Mac mini. JavaScript is disabled. For a better experience, please enable JavaScript in your browser before proceeding. Apr 4, 2 0. Hi, I have been given a 1. Firstly I am looking to upgrade this machine to run with a GB hard drive and I would like to upgrade to use Lion so I can run photostream.

Any advice please, will all this work and worth my while?