Hard drive compatibility in iMac G3s for data recovery

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by cindiandbob, Dec 18, 2014.

  1. cindiandbob macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2014
    #1
    Hi,
    I have an old iMac 400MHz slot-loading G3 model #M5521 that won't power up (think it's a dead power supply), and I'm trying to get the data off my hard drive. I also happen to have a 333MHz tray-loading G3 model #M4984 and am wondering if I can put the HD from the 400MHz into the 333MHz, just to use to boot up and back up my data onto a flash drive.

    Here are the specs:
    iMac #1 (the one with all my data on it): 400MHz slot-loading G3, Model #M5521, 20.4GB hard drive (may not be the original HD - think it originally came with a 13GB), 320MB memory (256 and 64 cards), dvd drive, serial #RN9445BXHCW, and is running OS 10.3.9. The hard drive says on it: Maxtor HD model # 92049U3, 20.4GB, manufactured 15 July 2000.

    iMac #2: 333MHz tray-loading G3, Model #M4984, 6GB hard drive, 288MB memory, CD drive, serial #XB9361VUGSQ, and is running OS 9.2.2.

    The questions we have are whether the 400MHZ iMac hard drive can be put into the 333MHz iMac and, if so, whether it would be able to boot/run it given it is running OS 10.3.9. We are trying to do this ourselves, as we are money-limited, and my husband is capable of changing the hard drives, however the 333MHz iMac is the only other machine/method we have to use to try to recover the data. Any info you could provide on the compatibility of the two hard drives/iMacs would be very much appreciated.

    Thanks a lot, Cindi
     
  2. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030

    Yebubbleman

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #2
    The drives should be compatible. My guess is that they're both IDE (ATA 66 or ATA 100). Not 100% solid on this. Rather than hooking up the drive to another old iMac (as iMac surgery, even on G3s, is only so glamorous), why don't you guys just buy an IDE external drive enclosure. Those ought to not run you more than $30.
     
  3. tdhurst macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #3
    99.99% yes

    I used to do this all the time (sometimes clients paid me in old computers that I'd swap parts throughout to resell) on iMac G3s and G4 Towers.

    There's a 99.99% chance it will work just fine, though the previous comment about buying an external is a good backup plan.

    And if not, the worst that will likely happen is that it just won't start up.
     
  4. cindiandbob thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2014
    #4
    Hard drive compatibility in iMac G3s for data recovery

    Question -- If I do decide to do the hard drive transplant, I read somewhere that there might be a limit on the size of the hard drive that the 333MHz iMac could handle (maybe a limit of 8GB?). Does anyone know if that is true or would be a problem? Thanks.




     
  5. iamMacPerson macrumors 68030

    iamMacPerson

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2011
    Location:
    AZ/10.0.1.1
    #5
    The limit it would see is 128GB however the OS and files will need to be in the first 8GB of the hard drive otherwise the computer will not boot. It should be OK to boot as the system files usually don't get moved once the installer places them where they need to go.

    Just know that moving the data to a thumb drive will be painfully slow since that iMac has USB 1.1 which will run at a theoretical maximum of 12Mbit/s (USB 2.0 is 480Mbit/s and USB 3.0 is 5Gbit/s). I'd recommend getting an IDE/ATA hard drive enclosure and sticking the drive in there. From there it would be usable on any modern Mac externally.
     
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    Take the old drive out and try it in the other Mac.

    There's nothing complicated about this.

    Or, as was suggested above, get either an external enclosure or an IDE "dongle" and use that to connect it to the newer Mac...
     
  7. tdhurst macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #7
    Huh?

    You are reading way, way, way too much into this.

    Just swap the hard drives.
     

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