An enterprising Linux geek has managed to get his Apple Mac Mini to run off batteries.
Whilst we wouldn't go so far as to say that it's the tidiest mod we've ever seen, it certainly gets the job done. By removing the DVD drive from the Mini, Silas Bennett has been able to fit a 5-cell rechargeable battery into the housing, and hook that up to the mains port on the back. The whole thing consumes round about 12 watts of power, which is pretty impressive.
Amazingly, Silas tells of how he obtained power specifications for the Mini from an Apple engineer who happened to pick up an email that was sent, in desperation, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Outrageous.
Additionally, he has added in a 4GB microdrive instead of the IDE hard disk, to keep power consumption to a minimum. 4GB is plenty, it seems, for an installation of Debian Linux on the system.
According to Silas' website, left to do on the machine includes wiring in a battery monitor for power management, and then configuring the sleep states.
The project is well worth a 5-minute read, and you can find it over here