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View Full Version : got my powerbook.. "dead" pixel, clean reinstall, tapping the trackpad.




silversyren
May 20, 2006, 12:49 AM
Hi guys,

Finally have my 15" powerbook g4, 1.67, wide-screen in hand.. it's cute and I'm pretty happy to finally have a laptop.

However.. it's got a little red pixel on the screen. if it's red does that mean it's dead or is it stuck and fixable? I tried rubbing it gently -- no dice.

Secondly, the seller didn't do a clean reinstall of the OS X and it's password protected -- so I tried to do it myself. The powerbook keeps spitting out the install disc 1. :/ It's the CD -- it's a bit scuffed and there's fingerprints on the back on it. Am I just screwed on being able to reinstall?

Lastly, is there anyway to tap the trackpad to make it "click" instead of using the click button?

Thanks!



Fleetwood Mac
May 20, 2006, 10:05 AM
You have a stuck pixel. I don't bilieve it can be fixed, unless you can afford to replace the LCD.

CD is probably fine. Just clean it with any non corrosive/acidic cleaner and your good to go. I use soap and water to clean the underbelly of my CDs, although I wouldn't really recommend that to you. ;)

calebjohnston
May 20, 2006, 10:07 AM
Hi guys,

Finally have my 15" powerbook g4, 1.67, wide-screen in hand.. it's cute and I'm pretty happy to finally have a laptop.

However.. it's got a little red pixel on the screen. if it's red does that mean it's dead or is it stuck and fixable? I tried rubbing it gently -- no dice.

Secondly, the seller didn't do a clean reinstall of the OS X and it's password protected -- so I tried to do it myself. The powerbook keeps spitting out the install disc 1. :/ It's the CD -- it's a bit scuffed and there's fingerprints on the back on it. Am I just screwed on being able to reinstall?

Lastly, is there anyway to tap the trackpad to make it "click" instead of using the click button?

Thanks!

Was the seller an individual or a store? If it's a store, then they have to fix it for you. If it's an individual, you might be out of luck. Ask them for the password.

silversyren
May 20, 2006, 10:39 AM
after some more careful cleaning, my powerbook finally accepts the disc. who knew they were so picky?

however.. i still need a password to reinstall! ugh. i sent an email to the seller (private seller off ebay) and hopefully he'll reply soon. it's really in his best interest -- i can access all his personal info and even get into his email account.

obrien234
May 20, 2006, 11:02 AM
Not too sound over protective or pyscho or anything, but you might want to check if that laptop was stolen too. If it is, and you clean install, you just let the guy pretty much get away with it.

I'm just saying this because if I were to sell my own computer, i'd make sure that all my stuff was off of it.

IJ Reilly
May 20, 2006, 11:37 AM
after some more careful cleaning, my powerbook finally accepts the disc. who knew they were so picky?

however.. i still need a password to reinstall! ugh. i sent an email to the seller (private seller off ebay) and hopefully he'll reply soon. it's really in his best interest -- i can access all his personal info and even get into his email account.

Unless the previous owner password protected the Mac through Open Firmware (rare), you can change the admin password from the install CD. Look in the installer menu, you should find it.

Heb1228
May 20, 2006, 11:45 AM
Like IJ said, its possible to reset the password with the OS X disk. After you do that, I think you should look around some on the previous installation to see who the previous owner was and if that information matches the seller. If not, it may be stolen. You may be able to contact the real owner and authorities and get the guy arrested. Of course, you may lose your new powerbook and/or not be able to get your money back (though I think ebay would work with you on this).

If there is an open firmware password, you should be able to reset PRAM and erase that. I know there's a way to, I think its a PRAM reset that will get you going, though I'm open to correction, I've never had to do it myself.

mkrishnan
May 20, 2006, 11:55 AM
Just wanted to add two quick things...

1) Since you have a *stuck* pixel and not a dead one, there is a small chance you can unstick it in an additional way... try a utility like this:

http://www.dashboardlineup.com/article.php/20060407153011535

Basically the idea is that by rapidly cycling the bias to that element of the LCD, you may be able to get it to start responding again. Seems to work occasionally....

2) To make your trackpad click by tapping, System Preferences -> Keyboard & Mouse -> Trackpad tab -> Trackpad Gestures -> Clicking (check the box).

silversyren
May 20, 2006, 12:11 PM
thanks for the widget! man those things are addicting.. I already downloaded coconut battery (at least the powerbook is flawless in that aspect!) I know you're not supposed to look at it but I stupidly did and now I'm slightly dizzy, hah. I'll leave it to run for ten minutes in a little bit and hope it works.

it's definitely not stolen -- the payment was with paypal sent to the owner of the powerbook, name, email, etc. I don't know if the owner was that computer savvy.. I think he may have used this laptop for a bunch of microsoft programs and he even has norton installed on it. I don't really need that, right? He may have tried but couldn't get the disc to work like me. :P

I'll try installing it again.

obrien234
May 20, 2006, 12:47 PM
In your first post you mentioned "finally having a laptop". If you have another mac, you can hook the two together with firewire and install it through the old one (assuming it has a DVD drive).

IJ Reilly
May 20, 2006, 02:40 PM
If there is an open firmware password, you should be able to reset PRAM and erase that. I know there's a way to, I think its a PRAM reset that will get you going, though I'm open to correction, I've never had to do it myself.

I'm pretty sure an Open Firmware password can't be reset this way, but I'm really only guessing since it wouldn't be of much value if it could.

Once upon a time, I was able to "unstick" a bad pixel on a laptop display by "massaging" it gently -- with a pencil eraser IIRC. I don't remember where I read about this weird technique, but it did work for me!