Can I install a netbook OS on my iBook G4?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by iMatt mini, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. iMatt mini macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Central New Jersey
    #1
    I have another computer I use for most of what I do, but I'm also looking to turn my old iBook G4 into a netbook for notetaking in class and on-the-go stuff.

    I searched the forums and didn't find anything relevant, but I found an OS, Jolicloud that I would like to try out but I'm not sure it's compatible. Can anyone steer me in the right direction? Or maybe a different netbook OS to use, or am I better off just sticking with Tiger?

    Thanks
     
  2. eli8527 macrumors newbie

    eli8527

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    #2
    I know that there are a few Linux Netbook OS. I haven't tried it out, but it seems like Ubuntu Netbook Remix seems like a good one.
     
  3. iMatt mini thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Central New Jersey
    #3
    I've used an Ubuntu LiveCD on it before, so I would assume any netbook OS that runs on Linux should work, right?
    I'm just worried about WiFi compatibility, since almost everything I would be using it for would use the Internet

    Edit: The Ubuntu Netbook Remix doesn't look like it'll work.

    Minimum Requirements:
    Processor: Intel® Atom™ processor
     
  4. eli8527 macrumors newbie

    eli8527

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    #4
  5. iMatt mini thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Central New Jersey
    #5
    What about the processor though?
    That guide says for wireless internet you need physical access to the router to plug it in to the computer. This would be a problem at college, I wouldn't be able to make a direct connection
     
  6. MultiFinder17 macrumors 68000

    MultiFinder17

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2008
    Location:
    Tampa, Florida
    #6
    You can use any OS you like, so long as it's been to the PowerPC.

    Personally, I'd just use Panther or Tiger on it. It'll still let you do all the netbookish thing you want to do, and let you dabble in real computing from time to time ;)
     
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #7
    All the main builds of Ubuntu and most other Linux distributions are Intel (/AMD/x86/64) only. The Atom is the main processor on the netbooks, so I think they set the requirements that way to make it less confusing for netbook users (although I would suspect it would run fine on Celeron M netbooks like mine).

    The issue isn't the Atom requirement but the underlying fact that the official distributions aren't made for PPC anymore. What you would have to do is install a community-managed PPC build of Ubuntu Desktop (I would be fairly shocked if anyone has made a community-managed PPC build of remix, but I'd be happy to be wrong).

    Then, after you do that, you would have to manually add in the remix package from the repository in addition to doing any other tweaks to get the PPC build working.

    What it means is that you (may) need a physical ethernet connection during the setup process. Once you get wireless working, you don't need it anymore. If you never have access to an ethernet connection, you would have to download all the necessary files manually and cache them on a USB drive or something.

    I honestly would not bother... I would recommend as alternatives...
    - Put your effort into maximizing Panther or Tiger performance
    - Buy more RAM if your computer isn't maxed out
    - Buy a more modern computer (I had an iBook G4, no offense, but I sold mine -- incidentally and used the money to buy a netbook -- some two years ago).
     
  8. iMatt mini thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Central New Jersey
    #8
    I did upgrade the RAM about two years ago to 2GB, so it isn't necessarily slow. I already have another computer I use, I was just looking to change this one up a bit to maximize usefulness for college, but I could make do with what I currently have (Tiger).
    I wasn't looking to buy something else (a netbook). Not yet, at least.
    Thanks for the help though.
     
  9. NewMacbookPlz macrumors 68040

    NewMacbookPlz

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2008
    #9
    IIRC, the maximum RAM that the iBook G4 can address is 1.25GB. You may have 2GB in the computer physically, but it won't be able to use all of it.
     

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