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View Full Version : Screen spanning on iMac G5 dangerous?


Diatribe
Oct 25, 2004, 02:26 AM
This is from MacInTouch (http://www.macintouch.com/imacg5part04.html#oct21)

This is in response to Howard Stollery's comments about using an extended desktop with an iMac G5:

The Screen Spanning Doctor program he is using as been around for quite awhile. What it does it modifies Open Firmware to allow these machines that only supported mirroring (any white iBook I believe) to have an extended desktop. So the limitation is not due to the OS, but it is the default in the Open Firmware settings. Once you reset that, you would need to apply the patch again.

While likely not a major issue for an iMac G5, I believe that the extended desktop was disabled in the iBooks for good reason (even though the graphics card is more than capable). iBooks rely mostly on convection through the keyboard to disapate heat. In my experience, the keyboards especially on the left hand side get warmer than they do in a Powerbook. Remember, that metal casing of the Powerbook is really a big heat sink. iBooks don't have that luxery. And while many Powerbook owners complain about fans always being on, they always seem to be off with iBooks unless they really get hot. So what happens when you close the lid on an iBook with this hack applied? Likely, you will get a ruined LCD display. While I have not seen the effects personally, my IT support staff has. Also, you are eliminating one of the primary ways an iBook gets rid of heat.

While it is probably okay to apply the patch and never close the lid and use the setup as two desktops, I really can't recommend using something that hacks your default hardware settings. There has been discussion that apply this patch can void your Apple warrenty/Applecare policy since you are now using the hardware outside of their specifications (I bet this applies to the iMac G5 too).

Given the numerous reports I see posted on the net and feedback I get from our IT staff, it seems like there is not much wiggle room when it comes to Apple deciding that a machine has been abused. Certainly hacking your hardware seems like you are opening a can of worms. What do you do if you machine won't boot and you can't restore Open Firmware to the default settings before sending it off to Apple.



I don't know how valid that concern is but I thought I'd let you guys know.

Sun Baked
Oct 25, 2004, 03:06 AM
Somebody will probably compare the iMac G5 to the Rev B+ SP PowerMac to see what changed in the firmware.

Though I think somebody said the machine has it's own product PowerMac x,1 designation -- like the cube had.

So it may be running it's own set of modified firmware -- unlike the iBook/PowerBook 12s, which the OS considers to be in the same family.

munkle
Oct 25, 2004, 03:30 AM
Regarding iBooks, surely the people who are applying this patch are those who want dual screens and will thus be keeping their lids opened. Not a big deal really but something to keep in mind though I guess.

solvs
Oct 25, 2004, 04:11 AM
Simple, never close the lid on the iMac and you'll be safe. ;)

(the first person who says the iMac doesn't have a lid gets smacked)

edesignuk
Oct 25, 2004, 04:18 AM
(the first person who says the iMac doesn't have a lid gets smacked)Repeatedly :D

Diatribe
Oct 25, 2004, 04:37 AM
The question is only how much more heat this creates and if this is dangerous for the iMac screen... if it is not much, oh well.
And who the hell would run an iBook with the hack in clamshell mode anyways? :eek:

mkaake
Oct 25, 2004, 06:30 AM
Simple, never close the lid on the iMac and you'll be safe. ;)

(the first person who says the iMac doesn't have a lid gets smacked)

that was my first thought too... :)

homerjward
Oct 25, 2004, 08:11 AM
Simple, never close the lid on the iMac and you'll be safe. ;)

(the first person who says the iMac doesn't have a lid gets smacked)
i think the lid is an option in a package with the sides:p

wPod
Oct 25, 2004, 08:26 AM
The question is only how much more heat this creates and if this is dangerous for the iMac screen... if it is not much, oh well.
And who the hell would run an iBook with the hack in clamshell mode anyways? :eek:

i would have liked to run my old iBook in clamshell mode. but i realized the risks of it so i kept in open in dual monitor mode. but now that i have a powerbook i use clamshell mode all the time. i dont really see much of a benifit expanding to the 12" screen. . . unless i really really need a little more space (you know, like when there are so many windows open when you 'expose'(with a funny thing over the e) them they are too small to read!)

as for a lid, i will ask about that at the apple store the next time im in, im curious as to know how much an add-onn like that costs. when i checked about the sides they said that came free with request! so maybe the lid is the same way

mkaake
Oct 25, 2004, 08:28 AM
i think the lid is an option in a package with the sides:p

:)

apple will start having to ship the iMac with a warning - 'Do Not Operate your iMac while still in box'

Diatribe
Oct 25, 2004, 08:38 AM
i would have liked to run my old iBook in clamshell mode. but i realized the risks of it so i kept in open in dual monitor mode. but now that i have a powerbook i use clamshell mode all the time. i dont really see much of a benifit expanding to the 12" screen. . . unless i really really need a little more space (you know, like when there are so many windows open when you 'expose'(with a funny thing over the e) them they are too small to read!)

as for a lid, i will ask about that at the apple store the next time im in, im curious as to know how much an add-onn like that costs. when i checked about the sides they said that came free with request! so maybe the lid is the same way

This is what I meant. Crazy enough to not think about the heat and use clamshell mode. I rarely use spanning on my 12", actually I hate spanning on everything that hasn't the same size. If I'd have two 23" CDs now THAT'd be awesome :D

The lids are supposed to be coming in now but the sides are just asked for way too much. Apple just underestimated the demand for the sides. :D

cluthz
Oct 25, 2004, 08:49 AM
With my powerbook screen and external screen on running multiple windows and apps keeps the GPU much cooler (ca 20C lower) than playing ut2003 (or another 3d instensive game) on the 12-inch (without the external on), so i don't think a second screen will burn out your iMac.