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laidbackliam
Oct 7, 2006, 09:51 PM
I'm about to buy a 400mhz g4 powermac for $100. its low on ram, and has two 9 gig hard drives on it, and is currently running 10.3


I'd like to use this as a home server, and maybe even hook it up to the TV in my new place, but my question is what kind of video cards can i use with it? If anyone has any websites they could point me to, i would appreciate it very much, or if they have direct answers/cards they want me to have.

My plan is having this put in a corner, hooked up to an old HP monitor and usb keyboard/mouse. slap a 250 or higher drive in it, use it for mp3/video storage, keep the drive space on my mbp a little higher. throw in a usb 2.o pci card.

i'm also debating a processor upgrade, but for what i want to use the computer for, i think that may be overkill.

if you're curious as to which g4 it is, here are pictures
http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a51/laidbackliam/G4inside.jpghttp://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a51/laidbackliam/G4front.jpghttp://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a51/laidbackliam/G4back.jpg



SmurfBoxMasta
Oct 7, 2006, 10:06 PM
with the initial $100 for the box + all the upgrades, you could just buy a faster & better equipped machine from the start, so whats the point ?

The one thing you can't change is the slow front side bus, which was improved in the later model machines......

as for video cards, it can use any one of several AGP 2x/4x cards like the Radeon 8500, 9000, 9800 and/or most of the Geforce MX/Ti series.....

laidbackliam
Oct 7, 2006, 10:27 PM
well,

i don't want it to be amazing.

i just want it to work. if i can upgrade things, i will. right now, ram is the only definate thing i will be doing. was just wondering what else i could do to it. i've got random dvd-r drives around the place that i can throw in, i have a monitor, keyboard and mouse already. i can get a large hard drive fairly cheaply. so, my only thing is that i would like to connect it to the tv, so if i can do that with an affordable video card, i'm seeing a total purchase price of around 300$, give or take a few bucks. processor upgrade won't happen, i'm just curious about it. i'm not upset about bus speeds. i know my mbp will be faster than it. its just supposed to be a server, nothing more. and it may connect to the tv. and it will be cheap. very.

aquajet
Oct 7, 2006, 10:48 PM
If I'm not mistaken, the pictures you've posted are those of a Yikes! G4. The video card in the pic is definitely a PCI card, and I don't see an AGP slot. In this case, I wouldn't bother with a video card upgrade (none of the cards listed by Smurf will work).

If you're considering a processor upgrade, then your options are limited. You'll need a ZIF upgrade card.

Sorry to say it, but this machine isn't nearly as desirable as the Sawtooth and later machines. :(

840quadra
Oct 7, 2006, 11:03 PM
Regardless of what people think about the older G4 hardware, what you would like to do with this G4 is completely acceptable, and within it's capabilities! It sounds like you are going into this knowing the system's limits and just want to give the system a bit more of an edge.

I have a G3 B&W that I use for the exact same things you are expecting to use the G4 for. It is currently a G4 500 (upgrade processor) has 280mb of memory, 2x 172gb ATA hard drives and a stock PCI ATI Rage pro 128 video card.

Tasks done with my B&W

- Watch videos in both iTunes, VLC and Quicktime
- Listen to music in iTunes
- Sync with iPods (USB 1.0 works well enough for file transfers just slow)
- Back up my Powermac G5, iBook G4, and Powermac 8500
- Use it for a server for Video, audio, and files
- RIP DVD's
- Compress videos using iSquint for my video iPod. (much slower than my G5, however it keeps the processor active and busy.


As far as video cards, your system should be fine with built in model. But if you want to go to a TV I would check out the selection at We love macs (http://www.welovemacs.com/applevideo.html)

laidbackliam
Oct 8, 2006, 01:19 PM
So, i'm getting the g4 powermac. i'm getting two 250 gig HD's for it. and thats where the modifications are going to stop, for now. (well, i'll get some ram, cause it has very little)

My question is, how does one set up a server? A friend offered to let me use his unlimited license osX server (10.4.XX), so thats cool. The Yikes! G4 only has a cd rom drive though, but i have old dvd drives from discarded machines so i can install the os no problem. I just don't know how to set up the server. I'd like it to be possible to rip a cd from my macbook pro and have the files go to the server (its a pipedream, really). also, would like to use it for back up of my documents/pictures folder. basically a full on media/school backup machine. one of the drives will be used solely for video's. i'm just wondering how i will be able to access everything through a server network. if anyone knows of a guide, i'd be extremely grateful.

dex22
Oct 8, 2006, 06:07 PM
Due to limitations in the hardware of that powermac model, the largest drives it will support are about 120GB. Larger drives cannot be formatted over 120GB and the extra space can't be accessed by partitioning.

You can get around this with a PCI IDE card.

laidbackliam
Oct 9, 2006, 12:57 AM
Due to limitations in the hardware of that powermac model, the largest drives it will support are about 120GB. Larger drives cannot be formatted over 120GB and the extra space can't be accessed by partitioning.

You can get around this with a PCI IDE card.

NOW THAT, is great information to know. thanks!

i'm really excited about getting all this set up.

[edit]

would any pci ide card work? or do i have to get one that says it will work with Mac OSx. on newegg, the cheapest one i can find is about 50 bucks, but i could get one for 11 bucks if it doesn't matter.

laidbackliam
Oct 13, 2006, 02:39 PM
so i got the powermac, on it right now. i'm trying to install osX server on it, but it won't let me do it. the dvd drive keeps spitting the disk back out. can i run this from a .dmg file?

CanadaRAM
Oct 13, 2006, 02:49 PM
Are you sure it's a DVD drive? :p Could be a CD-ROM depending on the configuration of the machine.

You definitely need a PCI - IDE interface card that is Mac compatible.
I suggest sticking with Sonnet, who know whereof they speak. Yes, it's going to be more expensive, but your time and the risk to your data is worth it.

PS. an unlimited license OSX server means that you can install it on one server and serve to an unlimited number of client Macs. It don't mean that the friend can allow you to pirate it...

laidbackliam
Oct 13, 2006, 02:52 PM
Are you sure it's a DVD drive? :p Could be a CD-ROM depending on the configuration of the machine.

You definitely need a PCI - IDE interface card that is Mac compatible.
I suggest sticking with Sonnet, who know whereof they speak. Yes, it's going to be more expensive, but your time and the risk to your data is worth it.

yeah, its a dvd drive. not burner, but is a dvd drive.

i have the pci card, just haven't put it in yet. i'm going to install osX on the 30 gig HD that came with it, then put the dual 250gigs in as storage.

laidbackliam
Oct 13, 2006, 03:21 PM
got the disk to work, but now i'm getting kernal panics, and won't let me install it.

its a 350mhz processor (not the original one i was going to buy). is that a thing that says that i can't install tiger? i'd like to have tiger if possible.

also, it has an agp slot, so it "can" be upgraded easier, but i doubt i'm going to.

disconap
Oct 14, 2006, 05:46 PM
got the disk to work, but now i'm getting kernal panics, and won't let me install it.

its a 350mhz processor (not the original one i was going to buy). is that a thing that says that i can't install tiger? i'd like to have tiger if possible.

also, it has an agp slot, so it "can" be upgraded easier, but i doubt i'm going to.

Without your specific specs (please post them when you get a chance), here's my advice:

Make sure your firmware is updated. Also make sure the disc you're installing with is a retail disc or designed for your machine, as some of the OSX installs are designed specifically for the machines they come with.

Past that, I would run disc utility from the installer to make sure that the main HD works. You might also want to check your RAM, since bad RAM can cause kernel panics; best way is to take out all but one stick and test each individual one (or as many as you need to hit your minimum requirements).

Good call on the 350, the drop in speed is better than the architecture of the 400 Yikes! model (and way, way more upgradeable, all the way up to 2.0gHz currently or dual 1.8 if you can run duals, some of that model can, some can't). The AGP Sawtooth is a solid machine, I still run mine as a primary...

I posted this in another thread, but I have some upgrade stuff for the Sawtooth if you're interested:

900mHz-1.2gHz PowerLogix upgrade (some issues, PM for explanation)
DVD-ROM/CD-r/rw drive

Huh, thought I had more, but I guess not. I also have my OEM 400mHz processor that I might be willing to trade for the 350 + a little cash (just in case I ever need to go back to stock), but really I suggest at least doubling your speed if you're going to upgrade (ebay is a good place to look). Your graphics card will be fine for everything but dual monitor or core image (the bells and whistles of Tiger, not necessary to run it at all). I personally suggest running Panther until your RAM and processor are upgraded, but it should run without a problem on your machine...

laidbackliam
Oct 15, 2006, 02:27 PM
g4 powermac
10.3.9
350mhz
512mb ram (2 x 256)
two western digital 250 gig drives
one ibm deskstar 30 gig drive (boot drive)
pci ide controller
dvd rom
agp slot
has a pci video card in it right now, supports vga output.

as long as i have iTunes on right now, i can access anything i want. i also have it networked through my router, so i can watch anything i want without it on my hard drive. i'm planning on getting a usb 2.0 card so i can set up an ipod syncing station.

disconap
Oct 15, 2006, 05:06 PM
So the kernel panics are sorted out?

On USB 2.0--don't worry too much about Mac compatibility, as actually most (if not all) are OSX compatible. Just buy one at a place with a good return policy; the advertised "OSX compliant" cards are $10-15 more and are really the same card (I've been running a generic NEC card in my box for over a year now with no problems).

I would suggest getting an AGP card for it; if you're not worried about gaming or anything, you can get a decent one for around $25 on ebay (Rage128Pros tend to go for around that (and support dvi-out as well as agp), they are the stock Sawtooth card and very dependable, I only upgraded to be able to run dual monitors).

laidbackliam
Oct 15, 2006, 10:30 PM
the kernal panics only happen when i'm trying to install tiger.

disconap
Oct 16, 2006, 02:02 PM
Hmm. Are you doing an archive install? Which stage of the install process (i.e., is it when reading from the install disc or when writing to disc)? And is it a retail copy of Tiger, or did you borrow it/buy it on ebay/download it/etc?

laidbackliam
Oct 17, 2006, 03:51 AM
it's when the disc is loading. then, and only then.

its a copy of a friends osX server. he has the unlimited license, was going to let me use it, but it just doesn't seem to work.

right now using panther seems to work fairly well, but i would like to have some server software installed here.

disconap
Oct 17, 2006, 03:55 PM
Hmm. Well, OS discs tend to not like being copied; can you get your friend to come by with the original? Also, and this may mean nothing, but you might want to try removing the PCI IDE controller while you do the install; sometimes the OS discs don't like third party hardware (I usually have to return almost to stock config to do a re-install of Panther)...

Doctor Q
Oct 17, 2006, 04:34 PM
Using a "borrowed" copy of Mac OS X is not within the software license, so this thread must be closed.