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View Full Version : Bought iBook G3 on eBay...still usable?




yanksrock100
Apr 7, 2012, 07:12 PM
Hey Guys! I was on ebay, looking around at the Macs. All I could find were iBook G3's for parts, until I came across one for $65 in working condition!
I have always liked these iBooks and the ibook g4, so I bought it.

The despcrition and specs are:

Mac OS X: 10.4.11 Tiger Processor: 800 MHz PowerPC G3 Memory: 256 MB Built-in Macintosh HD: 30 GB Machine Model: PowerBook4,3 CD ROM

Huge Bonuses:
AirPort Card Installed - Wireless! Software: Microsoft Office 2004 Suite (Word/PPT/Excel)

Also included: Power/Battery Charger

This machine is used so it has the normal wear (scuffs, scratches, spider cracks, etc.) This iBook is sold "as is". This machine may be missing one or more rubber feet and one or more rubber bumpers on the corners of the screen.

Will it still be usable to surf the web (such as forums) and do things like email, and word processing?

I've heard alot of people bagging on PowerPC Macs....and I just wanna make sure that this isnt a waste.
If $65 a good deal?

Is tiger a good OS?

Thanks!



SkyBell
Apr 7, 2012, 07:16 PM
Sure, if you're not expecting too much of it. MacRumors forums? Easy. Email? Done. Word Processing? Child's play. But beyond that, you may run into issues.

I had the exact same model and spec iBook a few years back, I had to use it for about two months as my only computer. It handled iTunes, iChat and light internet browsing just fine. Don't expect YouTube or any Flash based sites to work well...or at all even. And definitely max out that RAM if you can. It'll be a fine machine. :)

$65 isn't too bad, the included AP card would definitely make it worth that price IMO.

Master Kenobi
Apr 7, 2012, 07:27 PM
Within reason this should get those tasks done it won't be a speed demon but if you load it with the correct browser/software it will get the job done. I personally use tenfourfox on my ibook g4(They have a g3 version). Office 2004 is suitable for everyday writing, make sure you use the updater so that you can access the new .docx format that is default on all newer versions (side note avoid office 2008 it is newer but in my opinion 04 is faster and more full featured macros support etc.) Tiger is the best OS. If you are looking to upgrade you can probably find some ram on ebay/craigslist for cheap, maxing it out will help performance a lot, imho 256 is a little anemic. You can add one PC100 or PC133 512mb chip for a total of 640 (128mb on logic board, and yours must have another 128 in the extra ram slot).

The reason so many ibooks on ebay are part/repair is probably because they have an high failure rate for the graphics chip separating from the logic board. But as yours is still working hopefully yours is immune. I know it says you already purchased but if you are looking to get another in the future I would recommend a g4 they have a slightly better track record in this regard.

Another thing worth noting this has the original airport card which operates on wireless B, if you have an older router with one antennae this could limit all your other wireless to 11mbps vs 56mbps, just something to think about. If you have a newer router this is probably a nonissue.

Goftrey
Apr 7, 2012, 07:35 PM
$65 is a great deal! That's actually the 2nd most powerful G3 ever made to the 900mhz iBook :eek:

It'll do emailing, websurfing (try Camino or TenFourFox), word processing, dvd watching & even YouTube (with MacTubes, of course).

I had a 700mhz a while back an it was really great for all of the above tasks.

I'd recommend upgrading the RAM to the max of 640mb too just to make it feel a bit more snappier.

Good luck with it!

ppcg4mac
Apr 7, 2012, 07:36 PM
Congrats on the Mac, I would suggest that you disable Dashboard or Spotlight there is a program out there that can do this, but i cant find it right now. I still use a eMac with a 800MHZ as my daily machine, so it shouldn't be a big issue.

Goftrey
Apr 7, 2012, 07:44 PM
Congrats on the Mac, I would suggest that you disable Dashboard or Spotlight there is a program out there that can do this, but i cant find it right now. I still use a eMac with a 800MHZ as my daily machine, so it shouldn't be a big issue.

Here (http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/18182/disabletigerfeatures) it is, I forgot to mention it in my post.

yanksrock100
Apr 7, 2012, 10:46 PM
$65 is a great deal! That's actually the 2nd most powerful G3 ever made to the 900mhz iBook :eek:

It'll do emailing, websurfing (try Camino or TenFourFox), word processing, dvd watching & even YouTube (with MacTubes, of course).

I had a 700mhz a while back an it was really great for all of the above tasks.

I'd recommend upgrading the RAM to the max of 640mb too just to make it feel a bit more snappier.

Good luck with it!

I've heard about TenFourFox alot....and in some places it say it needs a minimum of 512 mb of ram, and it others it says 256....will it work when my iBook has 256?

Thanks! :)

pistooli
Apr 8, 2012, 01:17 AM
I've heard about TenFourFox alot....and in some places it say it needs a minimum of 512 mb of ram, and it others it says 256....will it work when my iBook has 256?

Thanks! :)

You are double posting (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1355253). :) See answer over there. :D

tom vilsack
Apr 8, 2012, 01:27 AM
***max the ram***

-TenFourFox is vg however i find on my ibook G4 800 (640ram) that safari 4.1.3 still runs the fastest...you might also want to consider Camino (has nice options of turning off flash,ads ect)
-For security you might want to turn off java in safari (safari/pref/security/unclick enable java)...also with flash i believe 10.1.102.64 is last ver for ppc)
-You can use disable tiger feature software,or do it yourself using terminal...

To turn Dashboard off: use terminal
defaults write com.apple.dashboard mcx-disabled -boolean YES

You have to restart the Dock after making either change for it to take effect:
killall Dock

To turn Spotlight off: use terminal

cd /etc
sudo nano hostconfig
SPOTLIGHT=-NO-
ctrl-x
y
enter

Then to get rid of the existing index, run these two commands
sudo mdutil -i off /
sudo mdutil -E /

reboot computer

remove spotlight icon

1. As an administrator, navigate to /System/Library/CoreServices, and delete Search.bundle. If you think might want to re-enable it later, just move it somewhere else or rename it.
2. Open up the Activity Monitor and force quit SystemUIServer. When it reopens, your menu bar will be Spotlight free.

***max the ram***

yanksrock100
Apr 8, 2012, 02:43 PM
Why should I disable spotlight and dashboard?

Do they not work, or do they slow down the computer?

Goftrey
Apr 8, 2012, 02:46 PM
Why should I disable spotlight and dashboard?

Do they not work, or do they slow down the computer?

I've never really found Dashboard to be a CPU or RAM hog, but I never use it so I disabled it. Spotlight though, really uses a lot of your CPU, and when you're on a G3, you need all the MHz you can get.

yanksrock100
Apr 8, 2012, 03:04 PM
I've never really found Dashboard to be a CPU or RAM hog, but I never use it so I disabled it. Spotlight though, really uses a lot of your CPU, and when you're on a G3, you need all the MHz you can get.

Ok thanks! With that disable Tiger Features download you recommended, is it possible to just disable Spotlight? I don't use spotlight, but the dashboard seems like something I would like to keep.

Goftrey
Apr 8, 2012, 03:07 PM
Ok thanks! With that disable Tiger Features download you recommended, is it possible to just disable Spotlight? I don't use spotlight, but the dashboard seems like something I would like to keep.

Yep. You can toggle what features you want & when within the app's UI.

yanksrock100
Apr 8, 2012, 05:31 PM
Yep. You can toggle what features you want & when within the app's UI.

Ok thanks! Ps. Saw your youtube vids...I subbed! Keep up the good work!

Goftrey
Apr 8, 2012, 06:07 PM
Ok thanks! Ps. Saw your youtube vids...I subbed! Keep up the good work!

Thank you so much, it really means a lot :)

yanksrock100
Apr 9, 2012, 03:50 PM
Thank you so much, it really means a lot :)

No problem! I never really realized how cool power PC macs are till I saw some of your videos. and good luck with your Mac Mini, once you get it!

Once I get this ibook I think I will do an unboxing, and then a review on my channel :)

Thanks for your help!:apple:

yanksrock100
Apr 11, 2012, 10:22 PM
I got it today, and its great! very usable, its faster than the Android Tablet i have. If anyone wants to see it, I have a couple videos on my youtube channel about it.

And if any one has any more suggestions, I would appreciate it :) (first time Tiger and PowerPC user)

Drew017
Apr 12, 2012, 10:34 AM
That's the exact same model I started out with! Yes, it's still usable, especially for light stuff like surfing and typing. If you really like it, but feel the need for speed, get a used macbook! That's what I did...

There aren't a lot of good browsers for Tiger. Camino and TenFour fox would be your best choice

I still have mine... it's the G3 in the signature