2019 Mac Pro rack-mount model

Apple’s 2019 Mac Pro rack-mount model is now available for ordering, starting at $6,499 plus tax in the barest, stripped-down configuration:

3.5GHz 8‑core Intel Xeon W processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.0GHz
32GB (4x8GB) of DDR4 ECC memory
Radeon Pro 580X with 8GB of GDDR5 memory
256GB SSD storage
Rack mounting rails, Magic Mouse 2, Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad

Delivery time for this entry-level model is listed as 3-4 weeks. Upgrades, storage, display, etc. can push the price well above $50,000 and create additional delays, depending on the item(s).

Discussions

MacInTouch Community discussions include the following current topics (among others):

  • 2019 Mac Pro – gaming and GPU issues
  • Apple security – invisible updates, Apple Pay charges
  • Audio – Sonos port blocking and DNS blackholing
  • Bluetooth – new standard and audio capabilities
  • Competition – Intel Ghost Canyon NUC; Ryzen 4000, Tiger Lake
  • Fonts – Adobe changes, Affinity support, conversion, OpenType
  • Input devices – Contour and Logitech mice
  • Linux – MacBook Pro graphics failure workarounds
  • macOS Catalina – protection problems, Users location/migration
  • Malware – North Korean Mac malware, ad blockers, nasty phishing trick
  • Migration – missing macOS installers
  • Misc. – new vs. old tractors/technology
  • Photography – web hosting options, experiences, etc.
  • Security – IoT, firewalls and Ring cameras
  • Tax software – prices, capabilities, compatibility, etc.

Discussions

Linux discussion includes Chromebook conversion issues, better alternatives (new and used), issues with a new Dell Inspiron, and Linux workarounds with MacBook Pro graphics failures.

MacInTouch Community updates also discuss the following topics (among others):

Discussions

Apple migration/software update discussion traces a bizarre update loop back to a BOM bug, describes a bad Time Machine migration fixed by migrating from a clone, and discusses issues involved in migrating from an old iMac to Catalina.

macOS Catalina notes touch on virtualization, sleep bugs, 32-bit software elimination, forced update fiascos, a vexing file-open problem, and more.

MacInTouch Community updates also include the following topics (among others):

Discussions

macOS Catalina notes talk about Apple Books bugs, Dymo label software compatibility, QuickTime 7 elimination and virtualization workarounds, plus Thunderbolt sleep crashes and tips for installing Mojave (or High Sierra) on new Macs that can still run it while shipping with Catalina installed.

MacInTouch Community updates also touch on the following topics (among others):

Discussions

Storage discussion talks about fusion drive SSD upgrades, an important Samsung EVO 970 Plus firmware fix, Intel’s fusion-type Rapid Storage Technology, and APFS performance issues.

MacInTouch Community discussions also touch on the following topics (among others):

  • 2019 Mac Pro – rack-mount model/peripherals; SSD cost/performance
  • Adobe – security update misinformation
  • Hackintoshes – inexpensive HP Elite-based systems
  • Help please – iPhone XR vs. iPhone Plus for big fingers?
  • iMessage – audio alert problems
  • Input devices – Splashtop for Mac control via iPhone
  • iOS 13 – app crashing, battery drain, GPS bugs
  • macOS Catalina – Catalyst apps, Fusion drives, Apple Books issues, etc.
  • Printers/scanners – VueScan OCR; Epson all-in-one kudos
  • Security – Wyze personal information breach

Discussions

MacInTouch Community discussions include the following current topics, among others:

  • 2019 Mac Pro – rack version, performance tests, PCIe cards vs. Apple SSD
  • Apple TV – personal information confusion
  • Input devices – iPhone/iPad in lieu of mouse?
  • iOS 13 – battery drain, quality issues
  • macOS Catalina – bad Apple Books, virtualization, dead Dymo
  • Mapping – slow iPhone GPS failures
  • Old systems – Adam Rosen’s Mac museum moves
  • Products – all-in-one printer/scanner recommendations
  • Phone services – voice mail transcriptions, MagicJack, WiFi calling, etc.
  • QuickenRaymond James Financial connectivity restored
  • Security – Apple/Adobe abandonment (Acrobat/Reader, Preview)
  • Storage – Fusion drive APFS performance, alternatives
  • Tax software – TurboTax on fusion drives
  • Troubleshooting – Thunderbolt/panics with Catalina/sleep
  • Virtualization – multi-user performance issues
  • Web browsers – memory usage

 

Sonnet M.2 4×4 PCIe card

Sonnet M.2 4×4 is a full-length, full-height PCIe card that can host up to four M.2 SSDs, which can be combined for extremely high performance. The card offers an X16 interface to the PCIe 3.0 bus with x4 bandwidth for each M.2 2280 NVMe SSD, promising extremely high performance via software RAID configurations in appropriate host systems, such as the 2019 Mac Pro. A single (non-RAID) SSD can function as a boot drive. The card is compatible with Thunderbolt PCIe expansion chassis, though maximum performance is restricted by Thunderbolt’s bandwidth limits, and similar restrictions apply to PCIe 2 slots.

Sonnet M.2 4×4 [Amazon link] is due to ship Jan. 2, 2020, list-priced at $399.99 (sans SSDs) for host computers with appropriate PCIe slots running macOS 10.13 and later, Linux Kernel 5 and later, or Windows 10.

OWC Accelsior 4M2

OWC Accelsior 4M2 is a PCIe card from Other World Computing Inc. (macsales.com) that hosts four M.2 NVMe SSDs. Each SSD socket offers full x4 speed for maximum performance, and the full-height, half-length card handles PCI 3.0 at x8 speed in a 2019 Mac Pro or other computers (including slower PCIe 2.0 systems, such as classic Mac Pros).

You can boot off a single M.2 SSD, while the bundled SoftRAID app can create RAID 0, 1, 4, 5, 1+0 (10) volumes (sans support for FileVault encryption) for speeds “over 6,000 MB/s” (RAID-0, SoftRAID, two cards) with up to 8TB per card. Other features include “silent cooling via a finned heat sink cover”, an ASMedia ASM2824 controller, 380TBW endurance, and Trim support (OS-dependent).

OWC Accelsior 4M2 is priced from $479.99 with 1TB (Toshiba TLC flash) to $1,599.99 with 8 TB.  (Apple charges $2,600 for 8TB storage in a 2019 Mac Pro.)

Discussions

MacInTouch Community discussions include the following current topics, among others:

Discussions

2019 Mac Pro discussion continues on storage issues, Thunderbolt controllers and display support, motherboard (and liquid cooling) costs, halo effects, configuration costs and PC competition, Xeon W vs. SP (single vs. dual CPU) price models, and a happy teardown.

Virtualization notes talk about using virtual machines (VMs/VMDK) across multiple host environments over extended periods and also offer a procedure for booting a virtual machine off a real hard drive (“raw” disk).

MacInTouch Community discussions also include the following current topics, among others:

Discussions

2019 Mac Pro notes talk about storage upgrade issues, historical price comparisons, Thunderbolt video compatibility and bandwidth, 2013 Mac Pro obsolescence/support, Windows PC comparisons, tech support for $50K+ customers, Apple wheels, iFixit fun, component costs and other pricing/design factors, cheap RAM, an impressive Ryzenshine AMD-based hackintosh, road-robust design, the halo effect, and more.

Virtualization discussion looks at 32-bit support within macOS Catalina; issues with cloning/importing/booting disk volumes; standard VM formats; compatibility and update concerns; Parallels vs. VMware; archive formats; performance experiences; VirtualBox extension licenses; and more.

MacInTouch Community discussions also include the following topics, among others:

  • Adobe/alternatives – Affinity excitement; IDMarkz InDesign conversions
  • Antivirus software – suggestions for mom; Avast and F-Secure
  • Apple quality – iPhone/iPad scratches, cases
  • Apple security – hidden processes; silent updates/changes; parental control bypass bug
  • Audio – 64-bit apps for pop and click cleanup
  • Displays – BenQ EW3270U, Pro Display XDR compatibility, dual-panel (LMCL) technology, ProArt PA32UCX
  • File systems – APFS version confusion, detective work
  • iMacs – $1399 iMac 5K; RAM upgrades
  • iOS 13 – “bugs galore”, UI problems, update issues, file servers optimized charging
  • Mac Mini – OWC SSD upgrade confusion
  • MacBook Pro – 16-inch audio bug partial patch?
  • macOS Catalina – VueScan, QuickTime, 16-inch MacBook Pro and Mojave, dictation deprecation
  • Malware – malicious ads inject malware into iPhones from mainstream websites…
  • Migration – macOS choices for older Macs
  • Networking – AFP vs NFS vs SMB Performance
  • Old systems – publishers and preservation; Fortran; old Mac speed; Copland
  • Scams – snail mail and phone scams, and related advice
  • Security – Ring device invasions, etc.
  • Tax software – privacy/security issues and options
  • Thunderbolt – cellphone-triggered disconnects; OWC dock