Two questions about upgrading software...

I currently have Tiger 10.4.11 on my Mac Mini, my father just upgraded his mac's software from Snow Leopard to Mountain Lion and I was trying to find out if I can use his software (Snow Leopard) on my Mac since he is no longer using it? Also, can I upgrade straight from Tiger 10.4.11 to Snow Leopard 10.6? Or do I need to purchase the software that goes in between those two operating systems? Thank You

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    The OS disk that comes with a Mac is usually specific to that model Mac only. You will probably need to purchase the retail Snow Leopard disk. This would also give you a "license" to have Snow Leopard on your Mac Mini. Price for the retail DVD is currently only $20. Make sure your Mac Mini is Intel-based, not PowerPC based, as Snow Leopard can only be put on Intel-based Macs.

    Using the retail disk, you can upgrade directly from OS 10.4.11. I upgraded directly from OS 10.4.11 by doing the following:
    1) Made a separate new partition. The new partition can be on the same hard drive as the OS 10.4.11 partition, or on an external hard drive. Use disk utility on the Snow Leopard DVD to make the partition. Once starting up the Mac from the DVD, to find Disk Utility, click the "utilities" button, then select "Disk Utility" from the "Utilities" menu. Snow Leopard may need to modify the formatting on a partition, so if using an already existing partition, any files already on it may be erased.
    2) After creating the partition, Start Up again from the DVD and Install Snow Leopard to the new partition.
    3) During the install, the installer will search your Mac for any other partitions with an OS on it. Then it will ask if you want to import OS settings, applications and files from the old partition. You may have to wait many minutes before the installer asks if it can import.
    4) Start up with the Snow Leopard partition and do "Software Updates" (under the Apple menu) to bring Snow Leopard up to OS 10.6.8.
    5) When done you will have a dual boot Mac, and can start up from either the old partition (OS 10.4.11) or the new partition (OS 10.6.8). Handy if you have an app or a driver that won't run in Snow Leopard, and you need some time before updating those apps/drivers.

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