Tips for installing panther

Discussion in 'Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther) Discussion' started by Le Big Mac, Feb 5, 2004.

  1. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #1
    Just bought panther. I'm planning to install on my iMac (G4, 1mhz).

    What are the basic tips to doing it?

    I don't need anything complicated, like partitions and what not, I just want to install it so that it runs as well as possible.

    Do I want a "clean" install? and what does that involve? What are the risks--what data should I back up.

    Thanks.
     
  2. janey macrumors 603

    janey

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    Dec 20, 2002
    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #2
    back up all the stuff you want, make sure you have installers for your apps, copy your prefs too while you're at it (in /Library/Preferences and /users/(username)/Library/Preferences). Don't forget to back up your extra screensavers and whatnot, and do an erase and install of Panther.
    :)
    And afterwards, zap the pram a couple of times (apple+command+p+r on startup), boot into single user mode (hold down apple+s at startup) and run fsck (type "fsck -yf"), and then move all your old files back :)

    good luck.
     
  3. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030

    johnnyjibbs

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    Location:
    London, UK
    #3
    I did an upgrade install of Panther (only option - up-to-date version, see) and everything's fine but I have never zapped the PRAM before. What does that actually do and would it be beneficial for me to do that?
     
  4. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

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    #4
    While of course I'll back up, how likely is it that I'll have to restore stuff? Is this a worst-case thing, or a decent-chance thing?
     
  5. rebelprogrammer macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2003
    Location:
    uk
    #5
    I did an upgrade first, seemed to work just great, but caused all sorts of trouble with hanging and stuff when I re-installed my graphics tablet.

    Did an erase and install, works like a dream. Faster, v stable, magic.
     
  6. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    Los Angeles
    #6
    It's an absolute 100% certaintly that you'll have to restore. A clean install erases the drive before it installs the OS. Everything is lost.

    edit: I just re-read your original post. I had thought you definitely wanted a clean install. If you archive or upgrade you should back up, but the chances of needing the backup later are very low.
     
  7. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

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    #7
    youch. definitely don't want that hassle. not until I have a second HD.
     
  8. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    #8
    The next best solution is to "archive & install".
     
  9. janey macrumors 603

    janey

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    Location:
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    #9
    takes up a lot of space. screws up permissions. slows down the computer.
    i think erase and install is the best way to install panther.

    to the pram question: http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=86194
     
  10. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #10
    I disagree completely. Archive & Install is easily the best method in my opinion, because it gives all of the benefits of Erase & Install without any of the hassles. It doesn't take up a lot of space other than Previous System Folders, which can be deleted as soon as you're happy that Panther is running stable. It doesn't screw up permissions. And it doesn't slow down the computer. I have no idea where you got that. The Upgrade method can do that (if you have a lot of cruft from the old OS) but not Archive.

    What Archive & Install does do, is it gives you a clean install without all the mess from an Upgrade. It also keeps all your personal files and preferences intact so you don't have to jump through a million hoops to backup your stuff and restore it (especially for someone without a free hard drive for backup). If you have any problems due to old preferences, you can always go into ~/Library/Preferences and selectively delete the offending files.

    Of course, you're free to disagree and that's cool, I just wanted to present an alternate view of the situation. :cool:
     
  11. janey macrumors 603

    janey

    Joined:
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    #11
    hah. right.
    i dont know what you're on :) and i sorta dont want to know. Archive and Install just deletes the old base system files and replaces them with the new. Only the System folder gets changed, nothing else. It does screw up permissions (i remember having to wait half an hour to get all my permissions fixed after doing one) and they werent screwed up before i installed panther, and Archive does slow down the computer too. Try doing a few Archive and Installs, and then do an Erase and Install and you'll see what I mean. Oh, the previous system folders...they take up so much space :D :D
    Besides, everything becomes a mess sooner or later...its just easier to start over again. There are just so many prefs and crap that needs to be deleted...
     
  12. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    Los Angeles
    #12
    I think a clean install is always the best way to go, but if that's a hardship for some reason I don't see the big deal. Repair permissions and delete the old system folder.
     
  13. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #13
    Hmm, that's interesting.

    % ls /Previous\ Systems/Previous\ System\ 1
    Applications/   System/         etc@            private/        var@
    Developer/      Users/          mach.sym        sbin/
    Library/        bin/            mach_kernel     usr/


    Looks like the entire OS to me. All of this gets moved out of the way before the new OS is installed. It's exactly the same as if you had done a clean install, and then unpacked a backup of your previous system into the /Previous Systems directory. That stuff in /Previous Systems is now nothing but data as far as the new OS is concerned.

    If the permissions were messed up immediately after an Archive & Install, they would have been the same way after an Erase & Install. The resulting system, save for the /Users (which remains untouched) and /Previous Systems, is exactly the same in both cases. Maybe you discovered a fluke, but I'd be very, very surprised if this were always the case.

    The only way I can possibly see this happening is if OS X actually looks in /Previous Systems for more libraries/frameworks and applications to use, and has to search through a bunch of duplicate/old versions each time. I don't know if it does this or not. Heck, I have an extra system with nothing important on it, I just may take you up on this and try it out... ;)

    True. Mine's about 3 GB. That's why I said you can go ahead and deleting once you're happy with how the new system is running.

    Yes, but don't make things harder than they need to be! The beauty of Archive & Install is that you do start over again, but you don't have to jump through hoops to backup and restore your data. Your home directory is still there with all your files. Any drag-and-drop installed applications are still there under /Previous Systems: just drag them out and back into /Applications (actually, the installer may do this for you, I don't remember). If you're worried about old preferences, just rename ~/Library or delete bad preference files.

    You do need to reinstall applications which litter files in places like /Library (Photoshop??), so maybe that's a special case for Erase & Install (some people would say it's a case for Upgrade, but we do agree that that's generally a bad idea all around, right? :) ). But I wouldn't be surprised if most of those cases work just fine in Archive & Install by just reinstalling the application on top of what's there.

    When I upgraded 4 machines to Panther, I did an Erase & Install on the first one. Actually it wasn't so bad because I was adding a new drive to that system, so I just installed on the new drive and kept Jaguar + all my data on the old one. I re-created the user accounts and copied home directories from the old drive to the new one. I decided to be ultra-safe and blow away all my old preferences. It was a pain in the butt to go and reconfigure every application just the way I like it set, but I thought I was saving myself trouble in the long run. I also reinstalled all my applications from the original CDs, rather than copying them over from the Jaguar /Applications directory. Took awhile...

    I was still skeptical of Archive & Install, but I tried it on the next system. I decided to be daring and leave my old preferences, to see if any problems came up. None did. I didn't have to re-create my user accounts. Didn't have to reinstall any applications from their CDs either. This method was so much easier than Erase & Install, that I did it on the other 2 machines as well, with similar results. And just think if I'd truly erased the first system, having to backup and then restore all my data, it would've taken all day!

    Considering that the Macintosh is aimed at people who want the computer to do stuff for them, not the other way around, jumping through fewer hoops is generally the preferred method of doing things. Some of us just like tinkering with the computer and feel better when we have absolute control over everything that happens. I used to be that way. And that's fine, but to most people that's a chore, not a joy. Nowadays I'm happier to just get on with what I'm doing rather than futzing around with the computer. I had fun tinkering with Linux and FreeBSD for 9 years of my life, but now I use Mac OS X for a reason.

    Ehh, anyway. :D I hope I don't come off as trying to start an argument or flamewar. I respect your preference (a few years ago I would have shared that preference), but I don't agree that Archive & Install messes things up -- I just don't see any evidence for that. At least not on a typical system. In my mind it's the best of both worlds and I really do think it's the best choice for the majority of Mac users.
     

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