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iMac G5 OS X Help

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#1
Hello all, SJ here. Over the weekend I picked up a spiffy little iMac G5 computer at the goodwill for $80. 17" LCD, 1.8GHz PPC CPU, 512MB DDR, 160GB HDD, OS X 10.3.9.



I'm basically looking to get this thing like how it would have been when you unboxed it in 2004, but I don't have what you need to do this, the OS X disc. Around in the system administration stuff I looked for a reformat-type utility with no result. Also if at all possible I guess it would be a good thing to update to a newer OS X release. Could I get some help here?
 
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#2
Honestly, I think your best bet would just be an e-mail to Apple. I am not sure what newer OS X releases support the PPC platform, just haven't followed that closely. And considering that an entirely new version is launching next month I believe, finding and older version would be harder now.
 
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#3
Joe you find the best garage sale deals.

Sell it to some Machead on eBay for $150.
 
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#4
Hmm not bad for $80 especially considering resale value of Macs generally, but idk how much use it's really going to be to you, especially with only a half gig of RAM. It can run 10.5 Leopard which is the second to latest release (about to be third) but starting with 10.6 Snow Leopard it's Intel only. Can go to everymac.com and find the specs such as max RAM but I suspect only a gig.

Mlee is probably on the right track IMO.
 
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#5
Joe you find the best garage sale deals.

Sell it to some Machead on eBay for $150.
Well I was going to try CL first, just to avoid shipping. I just figured if I could get it updated and cleaned up it could bring a bit more.

Would Apple really be interested in answering my questions?
 
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#6
Sure at like a store maybe but you can't get, like, phone support for that thing. What other specific questions do you have?
 
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#7
This takes PC3200U DDR 400 memory. I understand that the "U" means "unbuffered" and that makes it different than the run of the mill DDR 400 you'd see on here. Can I use regular ram in it and if not, where could I find the unbuffered stuff?
 

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#8
Use regular ram.

As far as creating a "new install", you can create a new Admin account, then try deleting the old one.

If that doesn't work, PM me, and I can show you where to acquire 10.3.9 for dirt cheap.

All in all, nice machines, but way too slow for today's stuff. Won't even play most HD stuff. Sell it to a collector and profit.
 
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#9
OS X 10.5 Is the latest OS you can use (highly recommend you use it) and the max ram on that is 2GB of just regular everyday PC3200-DDR 1 400. You have yourself a very nice system there, at a steal of a price. Look around the net, its not hard to find a Leopard disc (no cd keys or activations to worry about), or iWork 09 or iLife 08 or whatever year it is.
 

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#10
OS X 10.5 Is the latest OS you can use (highly recommend you use it) and the max ram on that is 2GB of just regular everyday PC3200-DDR 1 400. You have yourself a very nice system there, at a steal of a price. Look around the net, its not hard to find a Leopard disc (no cd keys or activations to worry about), or iWork 09 or iLife 08 or whatever year it is.
10.5 runs like crap on PPC based Macs. Total dog. I've tried it on a 1GHz iMac G4, 1.25Ghz Dual cpu PowerMac G4 and a 2GHz PowerMac G5, all upgraded with at least 2GB of memory (well, 1.5 in the G4 iMac). 10.4 (Tiger) was the best one in terms of performance with good features.
 
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#11
10.5 runs like crap on PPC based Macs. Total dog. I've tried it on a 1GHz iMac G4, 1.25Ghz Dual cpu PowerMac G4 and a 2GHz PowerMac G5, all upgraded with at least 2GB of memory (well, 1.5 in the G4 iMac). 10.4 (Tiger) was the best one in terms of performance with good features.
I shall respectfully disagree. I have run both 10.4 & 10.5 on my Powerbook G4 (1.67GHz / 2G ram / ATi 9700 Mobility) (I now run 10.4 from external firewire drive) and 10.5 has been by far the better choice. I'm sure some of it has to be due to the video hardware as its "pretty" transitions and animations take some power to run. Only in 10.5 does my powerbook read & write to my WHS, and for those who want to torture themselves Virtual PC runs tons better too for some odd reason. (Vista on a powerbook - the looks people give = awesome sauce!)i will say this one negative though, my headphone & mic jacks are non-functional in 10.5 but just fine in 10.4 - but i degrees...

At the very least, SJ, upgrade the OS to 10.4 at minimum and add at least 512MB more ram. just know that Flash is no longer updated for PPC, nor is java. Apple had dumped PPC and almost all 3rd party support has too. (universal builds just didnt last) You can run a modified Firefox 4 though, it really helps web nav on these old machines - http://www.floodgap.com/software/tenfourfox/
 

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#12
I have far less issues with SMB networks on 10.4. Sure, I could connect fairly easily to my server in 10.5 most of the time, but lord forbid I wanted to access a Samba share on the Mac from a Win box.

Also, on 10.4, I could at least play most 720p mkv with subtitles, on 10.5 I could not. It's performance was far inferior in everything. It only looked prettier.

10.5 even runs worse than 10.4 on my White Core 2 2.33GHz 20" iMac.

10.5 was a piece of crap. Thank God most of the performance issues are fixed in 10.6. It's a shame they didn't code it to run on PPC Macs.
 
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#13
PowerPC is being dropped from Snow Leopard because there is no similar performance advantage with the PowerPC architecture in going 64-bit as there is in moving from x86 to x64. X64/AMD64 offers twice as many general purpose registers as x86, and that's where virtually all of the performance boost derives. The performance gain usually offsets any performance loss associated with using larger data items by ~15% but not uncommonly by as much as 25%.

Not the case with PowerPC. The number of general purpose registers is unchanged between 32-bit and 64-bit PPC, so applications are left with the performance loss of using larger datums in 64-bit mode. As a result, PowerPC apps typically run a little slower in 64-bit mode than in 32-bit mode.]
Source
 
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#14
Alright, got 10.4 installed. It seems to be running a lot faster and works well. Now to get some memory in there.

Is there any way to revert it to the "Welcome" video with the current install? Maybe though the disc? I had to put in some personal info for the start-up process and would rather not let the next owner have it.
 

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#15
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#16
Alright, got 10.4 installed. It seems to be running a lot faster and works well. Now to get some memory in there.

Is there any way to revert it to the "Welcome" video with the current install? Maybe though the disc? I had to put in some personal info for the start-up process and would rather not let the next owner have it.
As Wile E stated above, you can create a new account (using fictitious info) using the "Accounts" control panel in System Preferences. Then delete the old one. If you are really paranoid you can also use the "Erase Free Space" option in Disk Utility to wipe it. You can also choose secure options like 35 pass erase if you want. :laugh:

10.5: How to reset Leopard back to the Setup Assistant
http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=2007110800450816
 
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#17
Alright thanks.

Jeez no one told me how much the DDR 400 was going to be. The stuff is basically twice as expensive as DDR2 that's twice as fast.

Currently got the high bid on a matching bluetooth wireless KB & mouse on fleabay for $25, maybe I'll win it.

For some reason Safari is hella slow on the machine, and seems really outdated. The newest FF doesn't support 10.4. What other web browser could I use?

Lastly, is there any way I could get my Zonet ZEW2500P working with the iMac? It doesn't automatically recognize it and I spent about 45 min. looking for a Mac driver for it with no luck.
 

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#18
i may have some ddr 400 laying around unused.

edit: nope, its pc-133 :laugh:
 
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#19
For some reason Safari is hella slow on the machine, and seems really outdated. The newest FF doesn't support 10.4. What other web browser could I use?
Call me kookie, but back in my Mac days I always preferred Netscape Navigator. NN 7 was a nice browser.
 

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#20
Alright thanks.

Jeez no one told me how much the DDR 400 was going to be. The stuff is basically twice as expensive as DDR2 that's twice as fast.

Currently got the high bid on a matching bluetooth wireless KB & mouse on fleabay for $25, maybe I'll win it.

For some reason Safari is hella slow on the machine, and seems really outdated. The newest FF doesn't support 10.4. What other web browser could I use?

Lastly, is there any way I could get my Zonet ZEW2500P working with the iMac? It doesn't automatically recognize it and I spent about 45 min. looking for a Mac driver for it with no luck.
http://www.floodgap.com/software/tenfourfox/
 
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#21
You could also try Camino or Opera.

http://www.macupdate.com/find/mac/web browser

Call me kookie, but back in my Mac days I always preferred Netscape Navigator. NN 7 was a nice browser.
It looks like the last version of Navigator was released in 2008 and has been unsupported since. I too remember good times with it (even back to the initial release based on Mosaic), but at some point it really started sucking in the early half of the 2000's.

End of Support for Netscape web browsers:
http://blog.netscape.com/2007/12/28/end-of-support-for-netscape-web-browsers/
Netscape X for Mac - Download.com
http://download.cnet.com/Netscape-X/3000-2356_4-25805.html
 
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#23
i JUST did a reinstall of 10.5.8 on a 21" imac JUST like that one.

pm me and i'll give you the DL of the iso
Wile E says the G5's can't handle 10.5. How is it treating you?
 
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#24
It can with enough RAM.