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Old Aug 6, 2007, 12:03 PM   #1
BadJuju
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iBook G4 as monitor for G3 tower

I have a G3 tower which lost it's monitor in a move. Wondering if there is a way to use my iBook G4 as a monitor until I can find a replacement. If so, how?

Thanks much.
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 12:07 PM   #2
mkrishnan
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No, there isn't. The closest you could come is that you could activate remote login / desktop sharing and then use a VNC client (like CotVNC) to login (and then you can get fullscreen graphical access to the G3 on the iBook) but you'll need to use some other monitor to configure the G3 to begin with. Or else, I suppose you could use a TV tuner card to get the G3 into the iBook, but that's honestly a waste of time and money....
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 12:35 PM   #3
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You do have some options

I was in a similar situation (except with a G4 tower and an iBook). Here's what I did:

1. Boot the tower up in target mode (hold T when starting up machine)
2. Hook up a firewire cable to the tower (assuming it has one, I'm not sure about G3 towers).
3. Hook up the other end of the firewire cable to your iBook.
4. Boot up your iBook and hold down "option" to select the boot drive. When available, select the startup disk on the tower, and click the continue arrow. You will now be booting off your startup disk in your tower on your iBook.
5. Just to avoid confusion, I eject my local iBook drive after the iBook has started up. This will keep you from accidentally modifying anything on that drive, which is pretty easy if both drives come up as the default "Macintosh HD"
6. Open up System Preferences, and go to "Sharing" and enable remote login
7. Set up a VNC program, like Chicken of the VNC
(Proceed to 10)

---- OR ----
8. Purchase Apple Remote Desktop (expensive) and install it on our iBook. Configure it to run your tower remotely (in this case, you'd have to enable ARD access under your "Sharing" preferences
(Proceed to 10)

---- OR ----
8. Install the free version of LogMeIn (logmein.com) to run your tower remotely through a web browser
9. Initialize LogMeIn on your tower, and make sure that it will start up automatically. Also make sure to turn off any startup security.

10. Shut down your tower, and hook an ethernet cable up to it to gain internet access. Shut down your iBook, too.
10. Hack off the end of a normal monitor cable (VGA) that is no longer of use to you, or purchase a cheap cable and cut it off. You have to do this part, becuase as far as I know you can't boot up an Apple tower without having SOME sort of video connection present.
11. Start up your iBook using it's normal startup disk. Then either use your VNC program, Apple Remote Desktop, or go to logmein.com and log in, and start running your tower remotely.

This should work temporarily for your needs, at least until a replacement monitor is available. I might mention that at slickdeals.net there are a couple monitors on sale at BestBuy.com as well as in the stores. I just picked up an Acer 22" Widescreen for $220 with the service plan, which I run off my iBook using the screen spanning hack, and then run my tower remotely using LogMeIn on the smaller 14" iBook screen. It works great for multitasking, as I usually have my tower run for file backups, and to burn DVDs and CDs and don't want to tie up my laptop's optical drive.

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. I'd be glad to help!
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 12:42 PM   #4
mkrishnan
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Using Target Disk Mode is a pretty good idea in terms of ways to modify the system. There won't be any trouble using the PM software installation on another computer with different hardware, will there? I.E. will the modified drive actually boot and work correctly for the PM and the iBook at the same time? That's very interesting.
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 01:22 PM   #5
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Hey, I live in Bloomington!! Cool to see someone from around here on MR!
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 01:25 PM   #6
BadJuju
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Great info. Thanks, I'll try target mode.
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 01:31 PM   #7
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Welcome to MR

And (I'm sorry, but it has to be said) a Search of the forums is a good first thing to try, this is a topic that has been covered on MR many times before. So you can often find answers faster with one or two Search terms.
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Old Aug 6, 2007, 01:44 PM   #8
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Thanks, RAM. I didn't really find the info I thought I'd find after running through the Search first, so posted here.

Cheers.
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Old Aug 7, 2007, 05:23 PM   #9
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Hi alangyssler,

Thanks for the great info.

I've never used a VNC program before, however I'm curious about it, so I have a few questions for you if you don't mind:

1) What would the internet setup be for the machines in this situation? Would you need a separate internet connection for each machine? Could they share the same internet connnection, using a router?

2) Are there any security concerns of others gaining access to either machine in this kind of setup? What about doing online banking, brokerage, etc., via the server machine?

3) How difficult would it be for a beginner to VNC to set this up? I saw a demo of Apple Remote Desktop and it looked a little complicated. Any recommendations?

Thanks!
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Old Aug 14, 2007, 01:19 AM   #10
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I'll try to answer your questions to the best of my ability, but I don't claim to be an expert when it comes to some VNC situations.

1) What would the internet setup be for the machines in this situation? Would you need a separate internet connection for each machine? Could they share the same internet connnection, using a router?

In my case, I have all the computers connected to the same router. In a home environment, just hook up your cable/dsl up to a router, and hook up into the router at both stations. I'm not sure what results you'd get with wireless. I would imagine that it would work, but it might not be the quickest, or most stable/secure method. I've also not tried hooking the two machines up to one another with a twisted pair ethernet cable. I would stick with a wired router, if possible.

2) Are there any security concerns of others gaining access to either machine in this kind of setup? What about doing online banking, brokerage, etc., via the server machine?

I would always exercise caution when doing these activities. Being on your own (hopefully secured) network should cut down on the chances of your personal info being snatched up, but as always use your best judgement (especially on a shared/public computer). Start with a solid password, and make sure to plug any network security holes. Of course, if you're doing banking on your "master" computer, and just accessing the "slave" computer through ARD, then I would imagine you're no more at risk than if you were using your computer without ARD active, since you're not enabling control of your "master" workstation.

I have not experienced any security issues, however it is certainly a valid concern. I'll try to find some more concrete information for you on the topic.


3) How difficult would it be for a beginner to VNC to set this up? I saw a demo of Apple Remote Desktop and it looked a little complicated. Any recommendations?

I've used Apple Remote Desktop to administer several computer labs, as well as to keep track of students' activities while in my classroom. ARD 3 is incredible! It's pretty straight forward to set up. There's a first rate tutorial at Apple's website: http://www.apple.com/remotedesktop/t...easysetup.html

As far as other VNC solutions go, I'm not very familiar with Chicken of the VNC, but I have used LogMeIn for a while now and, in addition to it being cross platform, not restricted to a local area network, and being free, it's a breeze to set up. Just follow these steps: https://secure.logmein.com/support_settingup_lmi.asp

Please feel free to PM me, or let me know if you have any questions. I also welcome any other suggestions/criticisms/corrections from anyone out there that might have more experience than I.

Hope this helps!
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Desktop: 1.25ghz DP G4 MDD, 1x80GB, 2x120GB, 2GB RAM, too many external devices.
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Old Sep 8, 2007, 08:38 AM   #11
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Thanks alangyssler! Your answers are very helpful.
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