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A simple guide to setting up your new Mac Mini

Hand holding a Mac mini

Got your hands on a new Mac Mini®? Whether you’re a first-time user or upgrading to a newer model, setting up your Mac Mini can feel like a fresh start. It’s a straightforward process, but a little guidance never hurts. From the initial unboxing to personalizing settings, we’ll cover all the essentials to get you started.

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What’s in the box?

If you bought your Mac Mini online—through Apple® or another reseller, like Amazon™—you might be surprised that the device is about the size of an old CD case. Inside, you'll find the Mac Mini itself, a power cord, and documentation. Make sure you have these items ready as you start the setup process.

Before you get started

Before you press the Power Button to turn on your Mac Mini, choose a suitable spot on your desk. Make sure it's close to a power outlet and has good ventilation to keep the device cool. You’ll also want to get your accessories such as external displays, keyboard, and Magic Mouse.

What’s Setup Assistant?

Setup Assistant is a built-in application that launches the first time you turn on your Mac Mini. It guides you through the essentials of setting up your device, including connecting to the internet, setting up your Apple ID, and configuring settings.

Setting up your Mac Mini

By following these steps, your Mac Mini will be ready to use. If you encounter any issues during setup, restarting the device often helps, or you can check online support from Apple® for more detailed troubleshooting.

1. Connect a mouse and keyboard

Set it up in its new place and connect your Mac Mini to power. Then, plug your mouse and keyboard into the USB ports. If they are Bluetooth® devices, you'll pair them later in the setup.

2. Set your language

This part is self-explanatory. When you turn on the Mac Mini, the first screen you’ll see will say “hello” and then ask you to choose your language. Select your preferred language to proceed.

3. Connect to the internet

Connecting to Wi-Fi is crucial for downloading the latest updates. Choose your network and enter the password.

4. Transfer your data

If you’re switching from another Mac or PC, Setup Assistant can help you transfer your files, apps, and settings using Migration Assistant. This feature allows you to transfer files from Mac computers and PCs. 

You can transfer data wirelessly or with an Ethernet cable, or you can choose to transfer your data later. If you want to transfer from a PC, you must update that computer to the most recent software and download the Migration Assistant from Apple.  

5. Sign in with your Apple ID

Your Apple ID ties all your devices together and gives you access to iCloud®, the App Store®, and more. Sign in or create a new ID if you don’t have one. After you sign in, create a user profile for your new Mac Mini (your computer user profile isn’t the same as your Apple ID).

6. Make this your new Mac

Customize settings like Siri® or take advantage of your other Apple devices. If you have an iPad®, iPhone®, or another Mac® with the right software version (iPadOS® 15 or later, iOS® 15 or later, or macOS 12 or later), you might get the option to “Make this our new Mac,” which allows you to bring these settings over from those devices and skips this step, completing set up. 

7. Set up security features

Set up a passcode to protect your data and privacy. From here, you can also set up a myriad of other settings, such as Location Services, Data Sharing with Apple developers, and Screen Time. 

8. Final Steps

You’re one step away from completing your Mac Mini setup. Configure your Touch ID and Apple Pay. If you don’t want to set this up now, you can always return to System Settings > Touch ID & Password and System Settings > Wallet & Apple Pay, respectively. 

Finally, you’ll choose your desktop’s look. Will it be light or dark mode? You can choose your computer’s wallpaper and layout. 

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*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*

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