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orestes1984
Oct 29, 2012, 11:04 AM
I have a G5 Xserve, it makes lots of noise and is not particularly fast by todays standards though is fully functional. There is also plenty of room for a conversion going on in there with a full sized ATX board and a less heat producing dual core or quad core Intel CPUs. There is also the fact that I don't think I've actually seen this done yet.

Am I nuts for considering hacking up an Xserve by putting an ATX motherboard in there, or should I go ahead with it? I'd like some opinions on what I should do before I tear down a fully functional computer. I outlayed $100 to pick up this machine which was what I thought was a bargain and haven't gone backwards with it yet, but I've found for purposes other than sharing files its a little hamstrung.

I think I could do better for taking the PPC components out and replacing them with Intel ones and don't believe I will have much trouble with doing so. My main aim is to reduce the heat and noise that the machine produces while giving it a decent speed bump.



Android4tw
Oct 31, 2012, 11:27 PM
In the end of the day with really up to u on what you want to do with it. as for me i picked up a cheap G4 ( quicksilver ) and turned it into a hackintosh atm i am in the process of doing a few mods like adding more fans if u end up doing please add pic's :)

orestes1984
Nov 1, 2012, 01:53 AM
I've tried a few things to get some extra performance out of this machine, at least initially I was going to use it as a Linux box, now it's moved more into the role of a Home Sharing server. The fact is I forgot just how slow G5s actually are.

So I have two options really, keep it as a Home Sharing server until PPC iTunes no longer works with the Apple TV3

or

upgrade the internals to a low heat/noise Intel derivative.

Orange Furball
Nov 1, 2012, 02:09 AM
How much do these go for?

You might as well just sell it and put the money towards better Intel components for your hackintosh. I have a hackintosh (I sold my MacBook to pay for it) and it performs twice as well as my old Mac for 3/4 of the price

orestes1984
Nov 1, 2012, 03:21 AM
Pretty much what I paid for it, $100-$150 though there are still some trying to get $350-$400.

I'd rather keep it because they're cool to look at and they're kinda rare to have around. It's still useful enough for what it is, but it could be better.

There's a lot of room in those cases and with more efficient technology from a newer motherboard and a more efficient/low heat 35 or 45watt CPU I suspect I could build a nice Hackintosh in that case without the need of the massive fan array.

Something like an i5 2500T, it wouldn't have to be ridiculously fast, it would just have to run at a decent temp to fit in a 1U case without making ridiculous amounts of noise.

I'm still trying to flesh this out, but it would be a build something along the lines of this:

Intel ATX or M-ATX board that is Hack compatible.
i5 2500T.
1U ATX PSU.
1U PCI-E riser card... still not 100% on this.
Passive cooled/low noise H.264 compliant video card that is hack compatible... Even onboard intel video would do this and remove the need for the riser card above and a single board solution would probably be a lot more reliable
2.5" BD-R/DVD-RW combo drive.
Pin out adaption to fit ATX motherboard power button.
SATA cabling to fit the G5 Xserve sata ADMs... I suspect this last one will be fairly rudimentary and straight forward plug and play.
3 disk RAID5 array (striping + Parity)

That would give me ridiculously more power than what I need for a media server for many years to come. I could even run a Plex front end on it.

If anyone could point me in the direction of pin outs for the Xserve power button so I could work out how to wire it to a standard ATX switch that would be much appreciated

orestes1984
Nov 1, 2012, 09:11 AM
So the hunt begins, I am currently looking for a Micro ATX or ATX motherboard tray I can hack up mostly for the correct mounting posts. Any idea where I can find such a thing such as this? It seems like its easy enough to buy the whole case but I just want the tray and only so I can mount it in place of the existing mounting posts once I've sorted out cutting them out.

http://i.imgur.com/9qoTB.jpg

Once I sort out a tray I can work out how it'll fit the case and what sort of modifications I'm going to need to make. Ideally I want to create a flush surface I can slide a tray onto and a means of locking it in so I can modify the majority of the build out of the case and so it's easily mountable/removed.

Hmmm.... although I just found this in my long list of shopping repositories which should fit, the dimensions seem right and only an added 4mm in height.

http://www.moddiy.org/product_images/u/830/T2Xx1JXo8aXXXXXXXX_%21%21711175716__55161_zoom.jpg

http://www.moddiy.com/products/QDIY-Professional-Modder-Acrylic-ATX-Motherboard-Tray-%28YJZL01%29.html?setCurrencyId=7#.UJKLIoVWneI

The bonus in going down this route rather than adding ATX mounting points to the chasis itself is that it really adds to the simple snap in/snap out nature of the Xserve itself so long as height does not become an issue, it should mean that only the PSU will need to be disconnected to take the whole motherboard out.

Still... only roughly thought out ideas more than anything else

Orange Furball
Nov 1, 2012, 02:01 PM
If you can get exact dimensions, I can get aluminum custom cut to size, and tap it and add standoffs for you. My dad runs an aluminum shop here so I can get it done for you. Just let me know.

I have never even seen a g5 Xserve, so I have no idea how appealing they are.

How much do you plan on pouring into this project? I build my hackintosh for $850, but that was with a few extra things that you may not need. The case was about $60 so you save some money there. You can look in my signature for full specs.

Its gonna be a hard project. But you will enjoy what you've build when you're done. Some people may flame this thread because they don't like hackintoshes. Just ignore them!

seveej
Nov 1, 2012, 02:22 PM
SNIP

... now it's moved more into the role of a Home Sharing server. The fact is I forgot just how slow G5s actually are.

SNAP



Sorry, somewhat OT, but I'm confused. I have a G4 (MDD, 1 Ghz DP), running in pretty much that role (and then some), and I do not consider it especially slow. Sure, I would not start playing FPS games on it, but as a server it seems quite snappy.

FWIW, if you have an Xserve, and want a rackmountable hackintosh, I'd sell that Xserve and but some deadbeat rackmountable server box from 5-10 years ago, and put my hackintosh in that. That way you'd have less problems fitting your components in the box...

archtopshop
Nov 1, 2012, 03:25 PM
So the hunt begins, I am currently looking for a Micro ATX or ATX motherboard tray I can hack up mostly for the correct mounting posts. Any idea where I can find such a thing such as this? It seems like its easy enough to buy the whole case but I just want the tray and only so I can mount it in place of the existing mounting posts once I've sorted out cutting them out.

Image (http://i.imgur.com/9qoTB.jpg)

Once I sort out a tray I can work out how it'll fit the case and what sort of modifications I'm going to need to make. Ideally I want to create a flush surface I can slide a tray onto and a means of locking it in so I can modify the majority of the build out of the case and so it's easily mountable/removed.

Hmmm.... although I just found this in my long list of shopping repositories which should fit, the dimensions seem right and only an added 4mm in height.

Image (http://www.moddiy.org/product_images/u/830/T2Xx1JXo8aXXXXXXXX_%21%21711175716__55161_zoom.jpg)

http://www.moddiy.com/products/QDIY-Professional-Modder-Acrylic-ATX-Motherboard-Tray-%28YJZL01%29.html?setCurrencyId=7#.UJKLIoVWneI

The bonus in going down this route rather than adding ATX mounting points to the chasis itself is that it really adds to the simple snap in/snap out nature of the Xserve itself so long as height does not become an issue, it should mean that only the PSU will need to be disconnected to take the whole motherboard out.

Still... only roughly thought out ideas more than anything else

You should take this discussion to a more appropriate forum, such as tonymacx86.com, or insanelymac.com. Both of those websites have scores of threads detailing converting G4 and G5 Powermacs into hackintosh machines. While I might find what your doing interesting, it doesn't belong in this forum.

This forum is for those of us that still use Powermacs. It is for mac users who want to learn how to get more out of their older machines without gutting them of their insides and turning them into something that they are not.

Whomever moderates this forum should shut this thread down.

wobegong
Nov 1, 2012, 06:21 PM
This forum is for those of us that still use Powermacs. It is for mac users who want to learn how to get more out of their older machines without gutting them of their insides and turning them into something that they are not.

Whomever moderates this forum should shut this thread down.

Prehaps the original poster should have just said they want to convert their XSERVE into a normal PC (whether he turns it into a Hackintosh is up to him but no need to specify that here as it's not legit).

Nothing wrong with that when there are posts here about turning an eMac into an aquarium, both are about "getting more out of their old machines" and both are about "gutting them of their insides and turning them into something they are not".

nickjf20
Nov 1, 2012, 06:35 PM
Good luck with the project !

I've not seen one done before so should be good ... unlike the masses of standard G5 conversions (mine included :P)

nickjf20
Nov 1, 2012, 06:49 PM
Oh, and for the tray, I used one of these

http://www.kustompcs.co.uk/acatalog/info_2012.html

You can drill through the rivets so you're just left with the actual ATX mounting tray if you want (I did so the two sections were detachable)

orestes1984
Nov 1, 2012, 10:49 PM
Whomever moderates this forum should shut this thread down.


As per usual when someone decides to "think different" on this forum the MacRumors brigade gets enraged. "Shut the thread down" LOL... It's a wonder why these forum exists and why I've still got a low thread count after 7 years of lurking here.

Rather than wasting your own time, there's a much simpler concept also considering the range of Hackintosh threads on this forum. That is, if you don't like the concept of something, don't post an inane response, step away from the keyboard, let the rage dissipate and come back to see whether you're ready to hit the post reply button.

To answer your questions... yes I do like my PPC Mac but we're getting to the point where what we can do with these machines is some what more than limited. I have every intention of keeping the external casing of the machine in as close to original condition as possible and it will be a machine entirely built to run OS X.

If we can get more life out of the machines we enjoy and make them compliant with modern software requirements I really do not see what the issue is. Just like any other computer when it gets to the end of its usable life cycle, you upgrade it. However foreign this concept may be to the average MacRumors users, this is the reality of using a computer, so please, if you have nothing constructive to say, step away from the keyboard.

Oh, and for the tray, I used one of these

http://www.kustompcs.co.uk/acatalog/info_2012.html

You can drill through the rivets so you're just left with the actual ATX mounting tray if you want (I did so the two sections were detachable)

That Lian Li part seems to be commonly available and Lian Li make a range of good case parts. It's not quite a good fit for what I want to do though.