Can I (should I) buy Leopard and install it on my Powerbook ?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by parkerlewis, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    I have a PowerBook G4 with Mac OS X 10.4.11.
    1.67 GHz PowerPC G4
    512 MB
    75 GB HD

    I'm thinking of buying OS X Leopard and doing a nice clean install on my PowerBook. Is this possible and is it a good idea?
  2. macrumors 6502a


    Jun 25, 2008
    United States
    You could. I'd probably just hold off and buy Snow Leopard in a few months.
  3. Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    I wouldn't bother. Tiger will end up being faster for you in the long run.
    Particularly since you're at the minimum end of RAM requirements. Leopard will be horribly slow, and I expect Snow Leopard will be little better.
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Oct 16, 2007
    I had the same spec PowerBook just a few months ago.

    It ran Leopard perfectly fine.

    (Just up the RAM to 1gb if you can)

    Put Leopard on it, or wait for Snow Leopard :)
  5. macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2009
    Buy it!

    Tiger may be faster, but support will obviously end sooner then Leopard, so get the Mac Box Set while you can, as Snow Leopard will be arriving soon and that is expected to only run on intel machines, so that rules out your powerbook. Hope I helped.
  6. macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2008
    I run Leopard on my Powerbook with similar specs. It works fine. Waitinfg for Snow Leopard is a thought, but there is the possiblity that they cut off PPC Macs with SL. I'd go with Leopard. I never looked back.
  7. macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2009
    I'm running tiger and just upgraded to 1.5 gigs of ram and a 250Gb 5400 rpm hard drive. I would imagine I could run Leopard or Snow Leopard brilliantly.

    I would suggest for you that have less than a gig of memory to drop the 30 or 40 bucks on another gig of memory - makes a HUGE difference. Very cheap for a very nice quickness increase.
  8. macrumors 65816


    Sep 11, 2007
    Toronto, Canada
    Upgrade the RAM first. Snow Leopard will not be compatible with PPC.
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    Thanks everyone. I think I'll buy Leopard but you guys are right, I'll definitely upgrade the RAM.

    Just a quick question though, how exactly can I do that? Do I go to an Apple Store and say "can I get some more memory?" Also when I go on the Apple Store website, all I get under memory are MacBooks. Where are the PowerBooks? or am I missing something?
  10. macrumors 68020


    Mar 12, 2006
    Rural America
    Actually, going to the Apple Store wouldn't be your best bet. They may not even still carry the RAM you need, as PowerBooks are about ready to bite the dust (in Apple's eyes, at least).

    I'd recommend going to a RAM website and ordering online. A great site is, which is very reliable and has very good prices. You can find exactly the type of RAM you need by using their site.
  11. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 15, 2004
    Brooklyn NY
    The short answer is no, it's probably not worth it. With the money you'd be paying for Leopard and the extra ram that it needs to run smoothly, you could be saving up to invest in a new machine that comes with leopard and more ram. The value of PPC macs is dropping, fast. It's not smart to burn too much money on them.

    That being said, don't let me stop you if it's what you really want... my opinion is this way because I work at an apple resale/repair shop. I see lots of people spend too much money on older machines that end up breaking soon after. PPC is practically dead. Be careful where you put your money.
  12. macrumors Core

    Jun 16, 2004
    My 1.5Ghz G4 PB with 2GB RAM runs Leopard at a pretty decent speed.
  13. macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2004
    Mac since 7.5
    I recently got a MBP and gave my wife my 1.33GHz/2x512MB G4 PB with a fresh install of Leopard. She is very happy with the performance. I've only messed with it a little (I do have a new MBP after all) but it does seem to perform fairly well.
    Don't know how you'd do with less RAM, but that's a pretty inexpensive upgrade.

    PPC may be dead as a platform, but if your computing needs are mainly web, email, Office, and iTunes, you can get a couple of years more out of your G4 with a small investment while you continue to save for a new Mac for later.
  14. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    I really wouldn't be doing this if I thought I could get a new Mac anytime soon. The thing is, I can't. I just don't have the money. And I probably won't have the money for another couple of years. So until I get a new laptop, I'll have to make do with my PowerBook. I'm just really curious about Leopard and I wanna try it asap!

    Thanks for the advice guys. Also is great. I'll definitely be ordering from there.

    Exactly. A couple of years is all I need anyway!
  15. macrumors 68030


    Oct 15, 2008

    Like Vista, Leopard is a resource killer. Your CPU speed is okay for Leopard, but you definitely need more RAM. I reverted all of my machines with less than 2 GB RAM and processors below a 1.67 GHz G4 back to Tiger, because Leopard would only crawl on those systems.

    The two things Leopard has going for it are Quick Look and the MUCH better network browser in Finder. Everything else is debatable in my opinion, but those two features justify an upgrade - and the costs for a memory upgrade for your notebook.

    Just don't install Leopard on your machine as it is right now, you -will- hate it.
  16. macrumors member

    Sep 17, 2008
    I can't really comment about whether it is a good idea (considering the price of Leopard, RAM, and SL's imminent release) but it is definitely doable. I have that exact computer and Leopard ran totally fine. I do suggest maybe 1 GB of RAM.
  17. macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2009
    I was under the impression that Snow Leopard was 64-bit only...
    So Leopard would be the only way to cling onto supported Apple software (Panther is usually not supported today)...
    As for the performance and investment isssues, I cannot really advise you.
  18. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    Alright, so I think I'm gonna get 2 1GB memory. So I'll have 2GB memory on my Powerbook. Then I'll install Leopard and everything will run smoothly! Thanks everyone!
  19. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 15, 2004
    Brooklyn NY
    Very true. They're still perfectly good machines... but web, email, Office, and iTunes does not require plunking down $129 for Leopard. Go for the ram, absolutely, but think twice about upgrading to an operating system that you probably don't need and, to be honest, doesn't run so fantastic on the older G4s.

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