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Archived - Apple products that require an Ethernet crossover cable

This document outlines which Apple products require an Ethernet crossover cable, and which can use a standard Ethernet cable when connecting directly to another Apple product.

You can connect two computers together using an Ethernet cable to form a small network. Depending on the computer model, you may need to use a crossover Ethernet cable instead of a straight-through Ethernet cable.

Many later Macintosh computers are able to use either a straight-through Ethernet cable or a crossover Ethernet cable automatically through the use of Auto-Medium Dependent Interface Crossover (Auto-MDIX). Earlier Macintosh computers require the use of an Ethernet crossover cable because they only work with the Medium Dependent Interface (MDI) .

Auto-MDIX automatically switches between MDI and MDI-X, which allows either type of cable to be connected regardless of whether you are connecting two computers directly, or you are connecting to a hub or switch. MDI devices connected to Auto-MDIX devices do not require a crossover Ethernet cable.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Products that do not require a crossover cable

  • iMac (17-inch 1GHz) and later
  • eMac (ATI Graphics) and later
  • iBook (Dual USB) and later
  • Power Mac G4 (Gigabit Ethernet) and later
  • Xserve and later
  • Power Mac G5 and later
  • PowerBook G4 and later
  • Mac mini
  • AirPort Base Station (Dual Ethernet)
  • AirPort Extreme Base Station
  • AirPort Express
  • Time Capsule
  • All Intel-based Macintosh computers

Products that require a crossover cable if connecting to another product from this list

  • Power Macintosh G3 (Blue and White)
  • Power Mac G4 (PCI Graphics)
  • Power Mac G4 (AGP Graphics)
  • Power Mac G4 Cube
  • iMac
  • iMac (Slot Loading)
  • iMac (Summer 2000) (See Note)
  • iMac (Early 2001)
  • iMac (Summer 2001) (See Note)
  • iMac (Flat Panel)
  • iMac (17-inch Flat Panel)
  • eMac
  • PowerBook G3 Series (Bronze Keyboard)
  • PowerBook (FireWire)
  • iBook
  • iBook (FireWire)
  • AirPort Base Station (Graphite)
  • Apple TV
Last Modified: Jul 9, 2012
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  • Last Modified: Jul 9, 2012
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