What OS will my G3 run

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by ronnyd8719, May 9, 2004.

  1. ronnyd8719 macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2004
    My Bother in Law gave me a black and white G3. I am a PC person and I want to get into macs. It didn't work so I figured I could fix it, so I did. I also upgraded it. He are the specs. 14.1TFT/266MHZ- 1MB/ 10GB HD/ 4MB video/ CD/Modem 56K/ Ethernet 10K. I upgraded the ram to 192 MB and the Hard drive was 4GB and now it is 10 GB. I am trying to run OS 10. It will run well. Sometime I can shut it down and restart with no problems other times I will get a floppy disk with a blinking question mark. I have found a lot about this on the net, but really no solid fix. It seams the system file can't be found. I understand that and the only way I can see to get it to see it is to reinstall OS10 not fun. Then I may be able to use the computer for the day and if I shut it down I will have to reinstall the OS.
    IS my system able to run MAC OS X??
    Any help would be very thankful.
    God Bless
    P.S. I did buy the OS. The OS it cam with is 8.5. It works but the addon USB Ports I bought don't. I can't win for losing.LOL
  2. ltgator333 macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2003
    Albion, MI
    I'm gonna take a stab at that this is a beige G3, as in somewhere on the front of it it has a the colorful apple logo and says "Power Macintosh G3". In which case, Apple supports OS X versions 10.0-10.2.8 that I'm aware of, with 10.3.x requiring third party software to run on this machine. I have in the house a pair of machines similar to what you have, and from what specs you've provided I can tell you that the machine should run 10.0-10.2.8(Jaguar) but it's not gonna be impressively fast. A 266Mhz G3 is pretty close to the bottom end of processors OS X is designed to run on, and the big trouble is OS X will have 192Mb of RAM used up in no time at all, I would say the realistic minimum your gonna want is around 256Mb.
    As for the install problem, I had that problem as well with one of the machines that I put OS X on, and the only thing I can say is you probably want to pick up a Mac OS 9 install CD and format your HD and install that first then install OS X, or at least that's what seemed to work for me. Also, you prob may try clearing your PRAM by hitting option+apple+P+R on start up.
    Another thing about the RAM and installing OS X on beige G3's- you probably only want to leave one RAM slot occupied for the install, there's been complaints (including mine) of the installer freezing up on these machines before the install completes.
    If you have OS X 10.3.x(Panther) you'll probably have to also get a utility called XPostfacto from other world computing, it's a free utility and it can make a world of difference.
    Hope this helps
  3. chv400 macrumors 6502

    Dec 16, 2003
    Houston, TX
    You might want to get a PCI graphics card for the computer. The onbaord graphics will only beable to do 640x480. RAM would definitly help.
  4. ftaok macrumors 601


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    I don't have any ideas, but I think ltgator and chv are mistaken in thinking he has a desktop Mac. It sounds like he has a Powerbook of some sort. He listed 14.1 TFT as one of the specs. Sounds like a LCD screen and I don't think Apple ever made a 14.1" LCD screen for a desktop.
  5. atari1356 macrumors 68000


    Feb 27, 2004
    I think the computer he has is a laptop, since he says "14.1TFT". It's probably a 266MHz Wallstreet... so, the video ram wouldn't be upgradeable.

    As to the original question, if the computer is indeed a 266MHz "Wallstreet" PowerBook, is should run Mac OS X according to this page (look under the "Software" column towards the bottom of the page):

  6. gopher macrumors 65816

    Mar 31, 2002
    Maryland, USA
    The 266 Mhz Powerbook G3 will run up to 10.2.8, but I only recommend up to 10.2.6. And that's if he can upgrade the hard drive to have at least 3.5 GB free. Also he may want a MacAlly UH 276 USB card so he can connect USB devices to his Powerbook. Very few serial or parallel printers work with Mac OS X. It will not run 10.3. Since it already has a 10 GB hard drive, something else, he needs to backup his data and repartition the hard drive to 7.9 GB in the first partition since Mac OS X won't install on machines less than 333 Mhz with larger than 8 GB partitions. For more on optimizing Classic environment, visit:


    Also I might add, he will want to run Mac OS 9.1 or higher for the Classic environment, which means purchasing the retail version of Mac OS 9 to install it on his computer.
  7. 7on macrumors 601


    Nov 9, 2003
    Dress Rosa
    Thought I'd post this

    Attached Files:

  8. ronnyd8719 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2004
    Thanks for all the help. It was much needed.

    I would like to thanks all of you for the help. I am now running OS 10.1 with no problems. I had purchused a Mcally 276 USB Slot card at the time I got the computer due to me needing USB to load pictures from my digital camera to the laptop, but you are right all the scsi and the rest of the outputs and inputs on the back of the laptop are not very useful. If anyone would like a scsi zip drive that goes with the G3 266 Wallstreet I have one that was not used much and it is in great shape. I will sell it for a good price if any takers.
    I tried to upgrade to OS 10.1.2, but I used a chinese OS 9.2.1 and then a OS 10 so that may be as high as I can go. I am happy with that. One thing I have not figured out is the network. I have a router and when I plug in the RJ-45 to the laptop it gets the right IP address, but I can't see the windows computers. If someone can explain it like ya'll did the OS 9 and OS 10 I would be grateful. I am sure it is some setting I don't have right, but the router is giving it a address. Maybe I need to do something to my router. Like I said before I am a Mac newbie, but I like to learn. Again thanks for all the help.

    I have read that I can put more ram that 192. The spec say 192. If anyone can tell me about this please help. I know ram would help. Also what ram would I need to get. If I upgrade I would get 256.
  9. gopher macrumors 65816

    Mar 31, 2002
    Maryland, USA
    It is generally not recommended to go beyond Apple's RAM specs. You may end up having more kernel panics:


    Though if you order higher quality RAM the risk of this is lessened.


    And I've seen people take the September 1998 machines up to 256 MB of RAM without issue to 10.2.6.

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