Choosing an OS for a G4

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by binaryslyder, Apr 23, 2008.

  1. binaryslyder macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2007
    First off, I just want to say how much support I've already received from this forum community. Not only was the community here instrumental in helping me select me Macbook, but you showed me that I don't need to spend $700 for a 4gb ram upgrade.

    Ok, so here it goes:

    I'm not a super techy person. I'm the guy who knows his tech stuff from watching all his friends do it, but here's my chance.

    I'm coming into possession of a G4 later tonight. My information is extremely limited, but here is the information that I have:

    1. Its a G4
    2. The case is Green
    3. Aside from missing an HDD, its in perfect working condition

    I've got a ton of spare drives from old computers laying around so I'm pretty sure that end won't be problem. Even if it is, that's what, $50?

    My question pertains to what OS would be best for my new found g4. My initial research seems to show that this guy could, in theory, take just about anything from tiger to panther to linux or even leopard if I'm super lucky.

    The sole reason I got this mac is so that my daughter can play video games. She's four and loves to play on my old PC. She's particularly fond of . I downloaded the .swf file and she plays with the drawing for hours.

    So, what OS do think is my best choice?
    I was considering either a version of OSX running emulation where needed or just going to linux.

    But what do you folks think? Your input is invaluable.
  2. Eric Lewis macrumors 68020

    Eric Lewis

    Feb 4, 2007
    CANADA? eh?
    there is no green G4s?"

    wats the processor speed
  3. gonyr macrumors 6502

    Jul 9, 2006
    Niagara County, NY
    I think a digital audio model could be described by some as green. Hopefully the person you're getting it from isn't mistaking a lime imac g3 for a g4.

    Any regular (non SATA) hard drive should work with no problems.

    In any case, assuming it is a g4, I think your best bet for an os is tiger regardless of the model. Just be sure to upgrade the ram to a gigabyte or so.
  4. binaryslyder thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2007
    Thank so far to both of you guys.

    I won't be able to confirm the color until tomorrow, but I believe this is what it looks like:

    I should probably mention at this point that I'm nearly color blind. I suppose that it could be the "graphite" color and I'm just seeing things wrong. However, I could swear that in the original photo the case is a dark/forrest green color (would you believe I'm a photographer!)

    If this mac never touches the internets, any harm to running windows emulation for some of the video games?
  5. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816


    Nov 24, 2005
    I'm only really here at night.
    That pic is of a Yikes, Sawtooth, Digital Audio or Gigabit Ethernet model G4, NONE of which would be any good at running windows emulation for any real PC games. Emulators of that era had little or no support for 3D acceleration, and were barely usable for anything beyond word processing, spreadsheets and possibly an occasional web page design......
    all of which could be accomplished much easier and faster with native mac applications......

    and you certainly don't need emulation to run .swf games or flash animations......they work just fine on macs

    And BTW, whether or not the mac is connected to the internet would make no difference as to it's ability to play games per se.

    Finally, the best OS for this machine would be Panther 10.3 or Tiger 10.4, assuming that it will have at least 1GB of ram (they can take 1.5 or 2GB max) and a fast HDD......

    Although Leopard will run on those machines, it would be D*O*G A*S*S slow and not really usable :eek:
  6. ArmyKnight12 macrumors 6502


    Sep 13, 2007
  7. Mac OS X Ocelot macrumors 6502a

    Mac OS X Ocelot

    Sep 7, 2005
    Just wondering, what's the speed on that model? I have a 1.25GHz iMac and Leopard runs just as well as Tiger. I just wish I could put more than 1GB in there...
  8. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604


    Sep 8, 2002
    The Netherlands
    Looking closely at that pic it looks newer that the Yikes / Sawtooth G4 because if its power-on button.
    But, in any case, it's max @ 733 MHz, and therefore I would recommend Tiger of you can get the RAM (> 1 GB) and preferably a better grfx card than the ATi Rage 128 (pro). Maybe, just maybe, a better one is already in there, but that'll be a bonus. Something like a very cheap ATi Radeon 8500 or 9000 would be absolutely fine.
    Panther would be better with if you stick with less RAM, and the crappy ATi Rage card.

    In all cases try to put a decent 7200 rpm HD in there.... be aware of the 128 GB limit...
  9. binaryslyder thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2007
    Thanks. Most of my drives are old 5400's that aren't above 160gb anyways. I'm not super worried as I still have my Macbook for normal use and an old custom PC. This G4 was a gift from a friend who would have pitched it into the trash can.
  10. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816


    Nov 24, 2005
    I'm only really here at night.

    Yep, Leopard runs just fine on my 1.6ghz/1.5GB/Radeon9800Pro/RaptorSATA Quicksilver too, but it was a bit slow before, with the 867/768/Radeon8500/ATA100 setup.

    But both of our machines are way faster (in many ways) than the OP' I just wanted to let him/her know what to expect with 10.5
  11. binaryslyder thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2007
    Color Update

    So I'm not going to get the G4 in my hands until tomorrow, but in the mean time I thought I would update:

    I called my brother (the one who picked it up) and he confirmed that the color is not in fact green, as I thought in the pictures. It appears to be a silver/grey color. He looked at a few of the samples I sent him and his best guess is that it's the "graphite" color. I'll know tomorrow when I finally drive over to his house and pick it up.

    Is that better or worse?
  12. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Feb 2, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Some of the Graphite Models aren't too bad, However Virtualization will still be quite slow and you will still want to run Tiger rather than leopard.

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