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Old Mar 20, 2009, 03:33 PM   #1
humansuperball
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iBook G3 will not boot

I received an iBook G3 dual usb from my friend after it stopped working. (500mhz, 128+256MB ram, 40GB hd) After working on it for a few days, I fixed the ati graphics chip problem that many ibooks have, and so now it will turn on fine. The problem is I cannot get it to boot off of the hard drive. It will boot off a live Ubuntu disk and run fine, and it will install both Ubuntu and os x, but after installation and reset, it will not boot. I can browse files on the drive when running off a live cd, so I think the hard drive is fine. It will also boot off my friends mac through firewire. Any help will be appreciated.
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Old Mar 21, 2009, 06:55 PM   #2
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Update: Forgot to mention that when I install Ubuntu and restart, it will show the Ubuntu splashscreen but never load. If I install OS X, it shows the apple but never loads. Holding down option during boot will show the hd as a bootable drive.
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Old Mar 23, 2009, 03:18 PM   #3
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Well no one has replied yet, probably cause no one has an clue as to the problem. I finally got my hands on the ibook disk set with the hardware test disk and such. I ran the tests about 20 times, and everything passed each time. I was able to install OS X and have it boot, but the boot time is about 30-35minutes, and it never fully loads. The drive sounds a lot like what 3 of my ipods did when their drives crapped out. So I'm leaning towards the problem being a bad hd. Any input?
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Old Mar 23, 2009, 03:30 PM   #4
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try booting from the install cd, then go into disk utility and select your disk and see if the smart status is verified if it isn't then your hdd is failing, also have you tried booting from an external hdd
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Old Mar 23, 2009, 07:24 PM   #5
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It says that the drive is fine and it can't find any problems, and the drive test on the apple hardware test cd says the drive is fine, and I ran that 20 times. The noise the drive is making is like a repetitive beat which goes on for about 4 min each time, and nothing happens while it makes this noise. As soon as it makes a normal disk read noise things start loading. My iPods all made the same noise when they died.
For external drives, I have been able to boot Ubuntu off of a usb drive easy, and I also booted off my friends mac with firewire. I even installed os x on my ipod and booted off of that, but I had that thing running constantly for 6 months as a drive devoted to Bittorrent, so it only works if it has been in the freezer for awhile. I am pretty sure it is a bad drive, but all tests say the drive is fine.
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Old Mar 24, 2009, 02:38 AM   #6
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sounds like a bad drive
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Old Mar 24, 2009, 02:35 PM   #7
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Yeah, a regular thump means the arm that swings out to read the plate is catching on something. I would start with a new HD. Failing that, a new cable. Oh, and you've got the startup disk set to the HD (as opposed to the cd or a network drive)?? The g3's, especially the 12"ers make nice little netbooks.
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Old Mar 24, 2009, 03:34 PM   #8
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Ya I'm pretty sure it's a bad drive, but I don't have any definitive proof. All tests have passed, and yet it won't boot os x or ubuntu. I did get a successful install of os 9 that ran without a hitch, but I'm attributing that to the fact that os 9 is a whole lot less intense of a boot, and so the disk could do it.
I'll try to borrow a working hd from a friend that I can put in the ibook and test. If anyone has any more ideas, keep them coming.
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Old Mar 24, 2009, 07:22 PM   #9
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I had an ibook with the exact same specs as that, it was my first mac. Anyway, you don't want to try to replace the hard drive, thats for damn sure. It took me forever to do it to mine.
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Old Mar 24, 2009, 09:52 PM   #10
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Haha well I can take it apart and put it back together in about 15min cause I have done it so many times trying to fix the graphics chip. I might also take the drive out and put it in an enclosure and install on it externally to see if it is a connection problem.
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