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stevietheb
Nov 23, 2005, 04:38 PM
So, in an effort to save some $$$, I decided to replace the hard drive in my iBook on my own. The SMART of the original was failing, so I bought a Toshiba MK6026GAXB—a 60GB 5400RPM 16MB cache drive. I used the guide found at pbfixit (http://www.pbfixit.com/Guide/83.14.0.html).

I'm fairly confident inside a computer, and I had step-by-step instructions...so I figured I'd be fine so long as I was patient. Things went really well until the dreaded power cable disconnection. The power button on the iBook, located to the upper right side of the keyboard, has a wireset that runs under the case all the way to the left hand side where it dives down through the metal shield and hooks on to the mother board. Looking back on it, I'm not entirely sure that it's completely necessary to remove this cable (which makes the following very painful)...but Ii was going to follow the instructions to the letter.

As the folks at pbfixit suggested, I was very gingerly attempting to coak this cable free, when—lo and behold!—I pulled the entire durn socket off the motherboard. So, I packed up my dissected iBook and took it to a mom-and-pop computer repair shop down the street. They're going to charge me about $100 to solder the thing back on.

In the end, I'm only going to be saving about $10 over what I was originally quoted to have the whole thing done for me (parts, labor, and all).

Blah...just thought I'd share.

mpw
Nov 23, 2005, 04:47 PM
When I replaced mine the instructions I had were step-by-step but I got half way only to find the 'helpful' comment to '..now remove the top cover..' totally ignored all the wired connections.
Unlike you I'd never been inside any PC before let alone a laptop so I didn't bother and just carried on with the replacement with the top half of the iBook propped up by a tin of beans keyhole surgeon style.
All went well and the only problem I've had is that the original discs that came with the iBook don't play nice with the new HDD but my Tiger discs and iLife'05 worked fine.

Oh and I'm missing a rubber foot so it rocks a little on a desk but that's no big problem.

tekmoe
Nov 23, 2005, 04:52 PM
you tried...and you failed.

happens all the time.

GreenDice
Nov 23, 2005, 10:45 PM
I was thinking about doing this myself but will reconsider.

katie ta achoo
Nov 23, 2005, 11:11 PM
oy, I just opened up the iBook...

I tore off the speaker cords, asked my father to help me get the connector out, so maybe, JUST MAYBE, I can get it back in.

THEN, he ripped the whole thing off the board.

It's headphones from now on.. but it's ok. My brother listens to crap music anyway. :D

calyxman
Nov 23, 2005, 11:18 PM
S--- happens. That's how my trackpad failed, though it wasn't from me, but from the schmuck that did the warranty service on my machine. They yanked the ribbon cable without loosening the socket and practically ripped it from the entire logic board. I had to disassemble the iBook all the way down to a standalone logic board just to be able to solder it back on. It works now, thankfully.

Mistakes happen, but you learn and move on. I'm sure once you get your machine fixed you'll enjoy it even more than before. :)

you tried...and you failed.

happens all the time.

I disagree. It doesn't happen ALL of the time. Unless that's just your luck.

mad jew
Nov 23, 2005, 11:28 PM
It cost you only $10 to get down and dirty with a naked iBook. That's definitely a positive.

Yeah, iBooks are obviously quite a bit more difficult to service compared with regular desktops, but that's just the nature of laptops. :(

YS2003
Nov 24, 2005, 07:46 AM
I wonder if Apple is going to make their portable lines more end user servisable in the near future. The current lines of notebooks from Apple are manufactured in such a way it is very difficult to upgrade HD or replace optical drive. I saw PBFixIt website and by looking at the steps listed there, I hesitate attempting any upgrade/replacement by myself.

On the contrary, Ti PB was very easy to replace HD (just pop off the bottom case and I have an clear access to the HD and its cable).

CalfCanuck
Nov 24, 2005, 10:22 AM
I wonder if Apple is going to make their portable lines more end user servisable in the near future. The current lines of notebooks from Apple are manufactured in such a way it is very difficult to upgrade HD or replace optical drive. I saw PBFixIt website and by looking at the steps listed there, I hesitate attempting any upgrade/replacement by myself.

On the contrary, Ti PB was very easy to replace HD (just pop off the bottom case and I have an clear access to the HD and its cable).
The problem with going smaller is that all designers have to pack more in a tighter space (compare a 2005 car engine to a 1960 one!).

While I've done a lot of non-warranty upgrades to multiple computers myself, I doubt they will get any easier in the future. The one advantage of sending it off to approved dealers is their learning curve - they've disassembled/reassembled every PB/iBook model thousands of times, so it's relatively fast and simple for them (barring the odd breakage as well, I'm sure).

caveman_uk
Nov 24, 2005, 10:40 AM
I successfully managed to replace the hard drive in my old G3 ibook. I was very careful and read through the instruction several times to make sure I knew what the gotcha's were. I took my time and it went fine.

calyxman
Nov 24, 2005, 10:46 AM
I wonder if Apple is going to make their portable lines more end user servisable in the near future. The current lines of notebooks from Apple are manufactured in such a way it is very difficult to upgrade HD or replace optical drive. I saw PBFixIt website and by looking at the steps listed there, I hesitate attempting any upgrade/replacement by myself.

I really doubt it. The tighter the design, the tougher it is to work on. My HP ZV6000 is in 800lb gorilla compared to my little G3 iBook. Replacing the hard drive on that thing is a matter of unscrewing a panel from the bottom of the notebook. That's it!

Indeed look at the process involved in installing additional memory on the G3 iBook (I think the G4's are similar as well). You have to pop out the keyboard, remove the airport card (if you have one, I don't), and then unscrew the metal panel and remove the clip to access the memory module. With HP, again, it's a matter of unscrewing a panel from the bottom of the notebook.

YS2003
Nov 24, 2005, 11:31 AM
Indeed look at the process involved in installing additional memory on the G3 iBook (I think the G4's are similar as well). You have to pop out the keyboard, remove the airport card (if you have one, I don't), and then unscrew the metal panel and remove the clip to access the memory module.

I think even the thin and light notebook can be made user accessible. Like a thin notebook such as Dell X200, which is easy to replace HD and other parts. So, the manufacturers should not give up the user upgradability issues simply because the notebook is getting thinner.

As far as adding RAM for a G4 iBook, you don't have to take out the airport card. You just pull the keyboard out and unscrew a few screws from the RAM shield and you can just pop in the new RAM in the RAM slots.

Crikey
Nov 24, 2005, 01:43 PM
( . . . )

As far as adding RAM for a G4 iBook, you don't have to take out the airport card. You just pull the keyboard out and unscrew a few screws from the RAM shield and you can just pop in the new RAM in the RAM slots.

Hmm. On mine, I had to remove the AirPort Extreme card, because it was mounted pretty much on top of the RAM shield. The RAM upgrade process wasn't bad, but I agree with other posters that it could be easier if user upgrades were a factor in Apple's design process. I'll eventually want to upgrade the hard disk, and that looks like much more hassle than it should be.


Crikey

Gokhan
Nov 25, 2005, 07:29 AM
man am i glad i got a ti powerbook !!

But for whats its worth i replaced the dc board on my alu powerbook and it was very very hard but i took my time drew diagrams of where the screws i took out would go and i repalced the dc board but the machine still was not fixed it would boot from a charged battery but not charge it hmmm

sold it on ebay thinking i screwed the logic board only to be informed by the buyer that after unplugging the battery cable going to the logic board the machine boots fine so i guess that was the culprit !!!!

but you have to have a very steady hand and be very very gentle i did bend one cable but i bent it back in to the correct shape and inserted into its port very scary though !!!!!

if u can pay a proffesional for anything apart from ram upgrades

California
Nov 25, 2005, 01:10 PM
Well I bought some of those black plastic spounger sticks to help me out when I feel courageous enough to tackle a non warranty iBook myself.

Until then, I plan my ibook upgrades like a strategic military advance:

if I'm going to pay an Apple tech to upgrade, then I want new better faster warrantied hard drive,

new better faster superdrive (if it didn't have it) etec.


I added bluetooth, new b faster hd, superdrive 1gig of ram plus new plastics to a 1ghz ibook I have. It was out of warranty, so in fact, adding the new hd and superdrive at least put part of the machine back under warranty. It's a new machine. Very very happy with it. But next time, I wish I could do the upgrade myself. I suppose if I cloned myself, I'd have the time to have a career as an Apple Tech.

stevietheb
Nov 26, 2005, 12:47 AM
Well, I got the iBook back this morning. I brought it home, reassembled it (I only took part of the iBook to the repair folks. I was able to effortlessly copy all of my stuff back from my firewire drive—so my new hard drive is whirring away—no problems.

Part of Apple's design that really irks me is this discouraging of user upgrades. My brother's new (well, now a year old) 12" Dell laptop is ridiculously easy to upgrade RAM and HD. Those are the only two upgrades that I'm really interested in—the RAM isn't too bad to do...keyboard, airport, and RAM shield half to come out—but it's still too much. This hard drive upgrade is ridiculous.

All that being said, I'm pleased with how easy it is to work with the iMac G5s—my next HD upgrade will be there.

Mechcozmo
Nov 26, 2005, 01:33 AM
Unlike you I'd never been inside any PC before let alone a laptop so I didn't bother and just carried on with the replacement with the top half of the iBook propped up by a tin of beans keyhole surgeon style.
Oh and I'm missing a rubber foot so it rocks a little on a desk but that's no big problem.

iBooks are tricky to work inside of. RAM and Airport is easy, but anything else and you start to get into the danger zone.

If I tell you that you can get your rubber feet replaced for free at an Apple Store, no charge, no questions asked, will you stop using Comic Sans? Please? :)

California
Nov 26, 2005, 01:40 AM
Well, I got the iBook back this morning. I was able to effortlessly copy all of my stuff back from my firewire drive—so my new hard drive is whirring away—no problems.


How is the toshiba working? Let us know about noise, speed etc...

mpw
Nov 26, 2005, 03:14 PM
iBooks are tricky to work inside of. RAM and Airport is easy, but anything else and you start to get into the danger zone.

If I tell you that you can get your rubber feet replaced for free at an Apple Store, no charge, no questions asked, will you stop using Comic Sans? Please? :)
Ooo, now had you said you knew where to get free rubber feet and you'd tell me if I stopped using Comic Sans you might've been on to something but you made a school boy error. Re-read yaw post and see if you can spot it. I'll check this thread again when I'm back from the AppleStore.

EDIT: Thanks Mad Jew, wouldn't want to look stopid.

Megatron
Nov 26, 2005, 03:26 PM
Even when you have a slight mess up like this - I still think it's better than just paying someone to do it because then you learn a little about how to work on it yourself, how it functions, etc. And that is priceless. :)

mad jew
Nov 26, 2005, 04:21 PM
...but you made a school boy error. Re-read you post and see if you can spot it.


I can't find a school boy error anywhere. :(

calyxman
Nov 26, 2005, 05:12 PM
Edit: Nevermind

Mechcozmo
Nov 26, 2005, 08:37 PM
Ooo, now had you said you knew where to get free rubber feet and you'd tell me if I stopped using Comic Sans you might've been on to something but you made a school boy error. Re-read yaw post and see if you can spot it. I'll check this thread again when I'm back from the AppleStore.

EDIT: Thanks Mad Jew, wouldn't want to look stopid.

Are referring to the fact that I used the present tense of the world "told" (tell) instead of saying, "If I told you where you could get your rubber feet replaced for free at an Apple Store, no charge, no questions asked, will you stop using Comic Sans?"

I'm confused. And I believe school-boy deserves a hyphen. And no comment on "yaw" since I'm not that mean.

katie ta achoo
Nov 26, 2005, 08:46 PM
Yeah... just ask them nicely.

I can't tell you how many little feet I've gotten replaced.

and if you can't get 'em, I'll get ya some and ship 'em over. Just paypal me back.

just pleeasseee stop using comic sans. ;)

Lacero
Nov 26, 2005, 08:53 PM
It took me nearly two hours to replace my PowerBook HD. At the end of the ordeal, I walked away with a faster PowerBook and a sore back from being hunched over in some ungodly position.

Without pbfixit.com, I would have been screwed (figuratively speaking). There were several roadblocks along the way to my self repair adventure, but I treaded really slowly, a bit of sweat and frustration but I managed through it well, and I can safely say I never want to upgrade my laptop HD ever again. Hope this helps.



Here's to the Crazy Ones http://forums.macrumors.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=35452 (http://www.uriah.com/apple-qt/movies/think-different.mov)

iMeowbot
Nov 26, 2005, 08:54 PM
Part of Apple's design that really irks me is this discouraging of user upgrades. My brother's new (well, now a year old) 12" Dell laptop is ridiculously easy to upgrade RAM and HD. Those are the only two upgrades that I'm really interested in—the RAM isn't too bad to do...keyboard, airport, and RAM shield half to come out—but it's still too much. This hard drive upgrade is ridiculous.
Yeah, Apple like to go through stages with these things. They'll come up with one model that's ridiculously easy to service, then the next one is a nightmare. Lather, rinse, repeat, you never know if the designers or engineers will win each round.

mkrishnan
Nov 26, 2005, 09:07 PM
Yeah, Apple like to go through stages with these things. They'll come up with one model that's ridiculously easy to service, then the next one is a nightmare. Lather, rinse, repeat, you never know if the designers or engineers will win each round.

Is it true that all Dell notebook's HDs are easy to upgrade, including the compact notebooks like the 600m? The RAM on Mac notebooks is very easy to upgrade as well. I think that the difficulty in doing these upgrades is a tradeoff for the compact, smooth form-factor. The tradeoff of not being able to (easily) upgrade my HD is a good one for me in exchange for getting a computer that's as shapely as an iBook is. :)

iMeowbot
Nov 26, 2005, 09:27 PM
Is it true that all Dell notebook's HDs are easy to upgrade, including the compact notebooks like the 600m?
Beats me, I always went with ThinkPads on the PC side. The lengths IBM used to go to in order to make parts replacement easy was fascinating. Their desktops tended to be really good in that area too, it seemed to be a priority to take the FRU concept seriously.
The RAM on Mac notebooks is very easy to upgrade as well. I think that the difficulty in doing these upgrades is a tradeoff for the compact, smooth form-factor. The tradeoff of not being able to (easily) upgrade my HD is a good one for me in exchange for getting a computer that's as shapely as an iBook is. :)
It's good that they make it easy to get at (some of) the RAM across the board, but the HD and optical drives should be getting that consideration too since they're so prone to breakage. If they spent just a little more effort on routing cables and making them more comfortable lengths, planning the layering of fasteners and so on, they could make things so much easier without any serious difference in build cost or ruining Ive's precious little lines. They showed that they still know how to do that with the first iMac G5. They also showed that they still know how to screw it up with the new iSight models. Meh, I suppose it's better than the '90s when they couldn't seem to get any new products out the door.

Mechcozmo
Nov 26, 2005, 11:28 PM
Beats me, I always went with ThinkPads on the PC side. The lengths IBM used to go to in order to make parts replacement easy was fascinating. Their desktops tended to be really good in that area too, it seemed to be a priority to take the FRU concept seriously.

It's good that they make it easy to get at (some of) the RAM across the board, but the HD and optical drives should be getting that consideration too since they're so prone to breakage. If they spent just a little more effort on routing cables and making them more comfortable lengths, planning the layering of fasteners and so on, they could make things so much easier without any serious difference in build cost or ruining Ive's precious little lines. They showed that they still know how to do that with the first iMac G5. They also showed that they still know how to screw it up with the new iSight models. Meh, I suppose it's better than the '90s when they couldn't seem to get any new products out the door.

I'd like to see more user-serviceability, however I've seen MORE PCs need servicing than do Macs. Because the parts need servicing/replacing more often, they are designed to be serviced more often. That being said, with older Macs it is a pain to do some upgrades... the PowerMac 7100 is an example of this. (Remove motherboard to upgrade RAM)

mkrishnan
Nov 27, 2005, 09:39 AM
Beats me, I always went with ThinkPads on the PC side. The lengths IBM used to go to in order to make parts replacement easy was fascinating. Their desktops tended to be really good in that area too, it seemed to be a priority to take the FRU concept seriously.

Mmmm... sorry. The poster you had replied to had been talking about Dell computers. :o

rosalindavenue
Nov 27, 2005, 10:17 AM
All that being said, I'm pleased with how easy it is to work with the iMac G5s—my next HD upgrade will be there.

You can do this (I think) if you have a pre "built-in-isight" model. The new "built-in isight" revision abandons the user serviceability model: from the user manual:

Warning: Do not attempt to open your iMac G5. If your iMac G5 needs service, consult the service and support information that came with your computer for instructions about how to contact an Apple Authorized Service Provider or Apple for service. Your iMac G5 does not have any user-serviceable parts, except the memory.

To quote someone named Wade Smith, "User serviceability of the new iMacs has been almost totally eradicated- RAM is now the only user accessible part. Replacement procedures are also much more complicated, requiring a special new tool, a la the Mini."

I found this information here (http://www.macintouch.com/imacg5part14.html) (scroll down)

So the laptop upgradability model has come to the imac g5-- just like the imac G4.

lexfuzo
Nov 27, 2005, 10:34 AM
Yeah, iBooks are obviously quite a bit more difficult to service compared with regular desktops, but that's just the nature of laptops. :(

Apple notebooks are especially unfriendly.
Did you ever service an IBM? - one screw to replace the RAM and three for the Harddisk.

dblissmn
Nov 27, 2005, 10:46 AM
I think Apple really needs to back off this thing with restricting access. My sister's Toshiba laptop makes it easier to switch the hard drive than Apple makes it to switch RAM. Changing a hard drive on her computer -- which, by the way, is about a 6.5 pound, 14.1 inch model and about four or five years old -- is based on the same principle as changing RAM on the Powerbook, only with fewer screws. You just open a hatch and pop out the hard drive, and pop in a new one.

I think it is especially important to make the hard drive accessible because it is probably the single most likely component to fail and making it a user-changeable part is an incredible convenience; letting you do in 10 minutes (plus, say, an hour and a half's worth of software installation) what you would have to wait three or four business days for the service tech to deal with. Bottom line, for me it is the difference between being able to use a laptop as your only computer, and not being able to. I can't afford four days of downtime. I'm fortunate in this respect in having a Digital Audio G4 that is super reliable and super easy to repair. When I kept blowing through hard drives on this machine when I first got it (due to Apple's phase of supplying incompetently refurbished IBM and Maxtor replacements that were the subjects of class action lawsuits), it was at least quick and easy to solve the problem.

Mechcozmo
Nov 27, 2005, 04:51 PM
I think Apple really needs to back off this thing with restricting access. My sister's Toshiba laptop makes it easier to switch the hard drive than Apple makes it to switch RAM. Changing a hard drive on her computer -- which, by the way, is about a 6.5 pound, 14.1 inch model and about four or five years old -- is based on the same principle as changing RAM on the Powerbook, only with fewer screws. You just open a hatch and pop out the hard drive, and pop in a new one.

I think it is especially important to make the hard drive accessible because it is probably the single most likely component to fail and making it a user-changeable part is an incredible convenience; letting you do in 10 minutes (plus, say, an hour and a half's worth of software installation) what you would have to wait three or four business days for the service tech to deal with. Bottom line, for me it is the difference between being able to use a laptop as your only computer, and not being able to. I can't afford four days of downtime. I'm fortunate in this respect in having a Digital Audio G4 that is super reliable and super easy to repair. When I kept blowing through hard drives on this machine when I first got it (due to Apple's phase of supplying incompetently refurbished IBM and Maxtor replacements that were the subjects of class action lawsuits), it was at least quick and easy to solve the problem.

This Sony PCG-F430 laptop that I'm currently working on is really not user-friendly... it isn't just Apple.

But you do raise good points. The PowerMacs, since the G3 B&W, have been fairly easy to work on their innards.

iMeowbot
Nov 27, 2005, 06:25 PM
Mmmm... sorry. The poster you had replied to had been talking about Dell computers. :o
Oh, I see what you mean now, we were kind of looking at different tiers. Maybe it's not fair, but I kind of expect Apple to compete with the good stuff instead of mass market average product.

Marky_Mark
Nov 28, 2005, 06:06 PM
As one of the previous posters alluded to, my work-issued Thinkpad just has a single large screw, not much smaller than the one Apple uses for the iBook battery, to undo and then the HDD just pulls out the side of the lappie. Take the caddy off and screw a new drive on...slide it all back in and voila - hot to trot.

This isn't difficult if you don't want it to be, so IMO it's definitely a conscious decision on Apple's part, and is probably to protect a very lucrative revenue stream - upgrades through service centres or simply new machines. Even my old Fujitsu Lifebook, which was the same footprint as my 12" iBook and about two-thirds the thickness, just had a panel on the underside for HDD and RAM access, so size doesn't have anything to do with it.

Apple have made a good job of the iBook battery flush-fit, there is no reason why they couldn't do the same with a HDD caddy on the other corner. RAM access I'm less concerned about, although if they'd thought things through, they might have put the RAM slot above the airport slot so you didn't have to remove one to get to the other.

madmaxmedia
Nov 28, 2005, 09:21 PM
I wonder if Apple is going to make their portable lines more end user servisable in the near future. The current lines of notebooks from Apple are manufactured in such a way it is very difficult to upgrade HD or replace optical drive. I saw PBFixIt website and by looking at the steps listed there, I hesitate attempting any upgrade/replacement by myself.

On the contrary, Ti PB was very easy to replace HD (just pop off the bottom case and I have an clear access to the HD and its cable).

The 15" AluBook is not too bad actually with the PBFixit.com directions (I have opened up TiBooks and AluBooks.) At least installing a new HD or optical drive is pretty easy...

madmaxmedia
Nov 28, 2005, 09:25 PM
I think it is especially important to make the hard drive accessible because it is probably the single most likely component to fail and making it a user-changeable part is an incredible convenience; letting you do in 10 minutes (plus, say, an hour and a half's worth of software installation) what you would have to wait three or four business days for the service tech to deal with.

That's a great point. I mean the other stuff (like being able to crack open the case to swap out a optical drive, etc.) is not a big deal, but having a simple slot for the HD to slide into makes good sense.

I recently upgraded the HD in my 15" PB, only to have the new HD fail! I am getting a replacement thanks to Newegg, but of course had to open up the PB again to remove the busted drive and (put in the new one.)

This isn't difficult if you don't want it to be, so IMO it's definitely a conscious decision on Apple's part, and is probably to protect a very lucrative revenue stream - upgrades through service centres or simply new machines.

I personally think the reasons are less nefarious. I suspect Apple is mainly designing for looks and to minimize size/thickness than anything else. I don't know about the other models, but in the 15" PB the HD is right under the trackpad, maybe they saved a little space on the mobo by doing it that way (just speculating though.) Typically the caddy-mounted HD's are on the side of the computer. Or otherwise they are somehow saving a small amount on costs, etc. So they're not necessarily going out of their way to make the HD non-user-replacable, but it's pretty low (or last) on their priority list.

It took me nearly two hours to replace my PowerBook HD. At the end of the ordeal, I walked away with a faster PowerBook and a sore back from being hunched over in some ungodly position.

Was that the 12"? On the 15" there are a few screws, but once you take off the top case/keyboard, the HD is right there.

DanielNTX
Nov 29, 2005, 03:39 AM
I did the same thing when I upgraded my notebook. I ripped out the right speaker channel audio socket connector. I had to resolder it. Not much fun. Another guy also did the same thing... http://mac-forums.com/forums/showpost.php?p=164581&postcount=14