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View Full Version : HELP!! PowerBook Problem


TEG
Nov 14, 2004, 10:24 PM
Hi Guys and Gals,

I'm having a major problem with my PowerBook G4 500, and Even The Genius Bar can't figure it out.

Background:
Friday Night, I was using my Powerbook just fine. I decided to replace the New Battery, with the old Battery. Well, I went into my room, plugged it into the UFO Power Adapter, and ploped out the battery. BOOM, the system is off. The DC-DC converter hadn't started supplying the system with power when I ejected the battery. I was also in the process of downloading a file over BitTorrent, one of his stories to proof, and downloading Red Vs. Blue (Eps. 40,41,42,43). Well I started up Waipahu (My TiBook) and got to the login screen, and logged in. Got to the desktop, adjusted the brightness, and the system froze, no mouse, no flashing time, no Kernel Panic. I restarted (Using the Mac 3-finger salute), and the screen went to black but chimed. I tried this several times, and ended up clearing the PRam, then shutting down. After 5 minutes, I powered it up, and got to the same place before in OS X. I used the Panther Install CD to check the Hard Drive, and the installer froze switching to Disk Utility. Well I restarted again, and was able to scan the disk, a corrupt data file, unrepairable. I then went to bed. Next Afternoon, I started up into OS9 and backed up all required data for School, thinking a quick HD wipe and reinstall would fix it. Well, I couldn't even get OS X installer to get past the EULA. After trying 7 or 8 times, I decided to go to bed again. Today, I took it to the Apple Store at Summerset in Detroit. I talked to the Genius, who reformatted my system and reinstalled Panther from his own disc. Well, after spending 2.5 hours there, he sent me home, after performing a surface scan of my drive and finding no problems. He told me it was either the HD or the logic board, and even though Apple replace my display less than 90 days ago, they can't fix it for anything less than $319. Leaving a bit dissatisfied, I left and went back to my Apartment. Now I'm in my school's computer lab, performing a Format, writing all zeros, after having the AS install freeze several times, my own reinstall freeze several times, and still having the Panther CD freeze on me, OS9 seems to work right now. However, I hope someone knows something else I can do to this computer. I really need it for my studies, and the sooner the better.

Thanks,
TEG

Sun Baked
Nov 14, 2004, 10:27 PM
Have you tried resetting the logic board, sometimes the power management goes wacky on portables.

TEG
Nov 14, 2004, 10:49 PM
Yes Sunbaked, I did. Didn't seem to help.

TEG

PlaceofDis
Nov 14, 2004, 11:07 PM
have you tried the Hardware cd to see if anything is messed up? i would see if that yields any results, could let you know if there is a problem with the harddrive or logic board, of if nothing comes of it if it is with the OS X installation

another possible idea is if you have an external, or a friend does, install OS X on that and boot from there, to see how the logic board handles that

what i think you need to do is starting narrowing down what the problem could be to figure out what has to be fixed, it does sound like its a corrupt partition/install of OS X, but depending on the file i guess it could cause problems, but then again, booting from the disc shouldnt cause problems either

just out of curiosity, are you still using that old battery??
do you have a battery in there? or are you just running if off of the outlet?

im wondering if there might be a problem with any of them....just a wild guess, might want to try and eliminate them as causes as well

sorry i cant give you a quick fix or anything, and trying to get this to work is basically time consuming but good luck and let us know your progress so we can help

TEG
Nov 14, 2004, 11:16 PM
Fixes Tried So Far:

Reformatted the Disk (HFS+ w/ and wo/ Journaling)
Installed 2 new Copies of OSX
Attempted to Reformat All Zeros (Freeze in the middle)
Ran HW Test CD, no Problems.
Switch Ram Locations, ran with one chip only

One Thing I am noticing is that my fan is never kicking in. Ususally durring an install the Fan kicks on. I think it may be overheating. But How does one test it?

TEG

DanTekGeek
Nov 14, 2004, 11:18 PM
first thing i allways try with a broken computer is booting from a live linux distrobution. if that dosent work, then you know that you have amore serious problem than a bad hard drive. i wish you the best of luck with this, i knwo how scary it is for something to happen to ones laptop

Sun Baked
Nov 14, 2004, 11:23 PM
One Thing I am noticing is that my fan is never kicking in. Ususally durring an install the Fan kicks on. I think it may be overheating. But How does one test it?

TEGCheck the fan cable under the keyboard, if it became disconnected that will freeze the machine every time the processor gets hot -- and corrupt the HD.

PlaceofDis
Nov 14, 2004, 11:34 PM
were the fans on when you ran the Hardware Test CD? i think they should be coming on then too,

if not give sunbaked's idea i try

TEG
Nov 15, 2004, 12:03 AM
I disconnected the Fan, and reconnected it. Still nothing.

I just bought an iCurve, could I use a fan and the iCurve to get around this until I can get a new fan? Should I call Apple for a new fan, or a local authorized dealership?

TEG

Sun Baked
Nov 15, 2004, 03:39 AM
The fan could be fine, something else may be wrong... there are a few board on this PB.

Which is why I asked about a PMU reset (since it is a Power controller), but on this machine you'd probably have to take the machine apart and remove the backup battery (or the PMU) for awhile to reset the PMU.

Don't remember if there even is a CUDA switch on this machine.

TEG
Nov 15, 2004, 08:43 AM
Well, I used the reset button on the back as suggested in the KBase. I was thinking about letting it sit for a while. However right now, It is running fine in my room, on my new iCurve, with the window open, keeping the room at about 40F.

Thanks for the help guys. I'll let you know what happens.

TEG

TEG
Nov 17, 2004, 10:31 AM
Now I have an even bigger question. Where can I find a place that sells PB fans? I'm in the Detroit Area (shutters) and really need this badly. Today, I'm going out to buy a desk fan to see if that helps, however if it doesn't I'll have to find another option for the time being. Please Help.

TEG

DanTekGeek
Nov 17, 2004, 10:33 AM
try http://www.pbparts.com