Help: Installing Mac OS in Powerbook G4

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by coughybean, Feb 4, 2009.

  1. coughybean macrumors newbie

    Jan 8, 2009
    Hi all, I seriously need your help! I have a PowerBook G4 which failed me a couple of months ago. The screen would just freeze. Recently, I've managed to wipe the hard disk and wanted to do a clean install using the restore disk provided but it keeps hanging mid way (installation wouldn't complete). I thought it might a RAM problem so I changed one but the problem wouldn't go away.

    I downloaded Apple Hardware Test ( for PowerBook G4 but it says the version I downloaded is not supported. Wondering why as it specifies that it is for powerbook G4!

    Anyone had the same problem or can help me? If it is not the Hard Disk and Ram problem, are there any diagnostic tools that you folks can recommend so that I can run it against my PowerBook G4?

    I have another MacBook that I bought recently and it comes with Apple Care too. I installed TechTool Deluxe in it. Anyway I can make use of this Tech Tool for my powerbook?

    Appreciate all kinds of solutions!
  2. dvdhsu macrumors 6502a


    Mar 28, 2008
    Palo Alto, CA
    Is the OS X a legit version?
    Have you used the disk on another computer?
    Try resetting the PRAM and NVRAM

    Please do that, and if it doesn't work, just come back.
    Good luck!
  3. JediMeister macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    Call AppleCare and see if they'll replace the software discs or bring it into a service provider to have them do the reinstall. You seem pretty knowledgeable, in your situation I'd bite the bullet and just ask AppleCare for the discs, especially if your computer isn't covered under the 3 year service agreement anymore. I don't think the newer version of TechTool Deluxe is compatible with that older system besides.
  4. JustGretchen macrumors 6502

    Dec 2, 2008
    Yes, call applecare and get a guaranteed working copy of that disk. They should provide you one for free or cheap.

    If the powerbook was randomly freezing up before, you may consider that it may need a new hard disk as well as it could be bad.

    My powerbook did similar things years ago. I'd be using it and it'd boot fine and all that but randomly it'd just lock up. It turned out the hard disk was bad.
  5. coughybean thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 8, 2009
    Hm, yes the OS X comes with the PowerBook... unless Apple copied one for me! haha (which is unlikely) :) and nope, in fact this is the first time I opened the CD package! Does PRAM and NVRAM really affect the performance (e.g. causing it to hang/ freeze)?

    Ok, thanks for your suggestion! Will do that as well! :)

    Hmm, I replaced the hard disk 2 years ago (this is the 2nd disk)

    Anyway, I chanced upon an Apple support website while looking for a Hardware Diagnostic Tool (bootable) and to my surprise, I could just insert the Restore DVD and hold on to the option button while it is restarting. I ran the quick and extended test (it checks on Logic Board, Memory, Hard disk, VRAM) and all results were positive! So, what could be wrong with my Powerbook G4?

    Assuming all hardware are running fine as suggested by the Apple Hardware Test, I can only think of the following that might be causing the freezing problem:

    1. Cd Rom
    2. Restore Disc

    Any way that I can adopt to by pass booting from CD Drive in Powerbook? i.e. attach an external CD Rom to my powerbook and boot the laptop from there? boot from external USB Hard drive?

    Hope to hear from you guys soon!
  6. Fishtalk macrumors regular

    Oct 21, 2008
    Yup! the same thing happend to me... and MacRumors suggested changing the Ram stick.... So I took one out.... and THEN my computer was completley dead.....Disaster/// back to you guys and sombody said I hadn't reseated something or other properly.... This time it booted, but once again it all froze up after 5 minutes.... SO I plucked up my courage and changed the bottom Ram stick for the Top and threw out the top stick... Put it all back together again and IT WORKED.... bought a new stick on eBay and its been perfect eversince....Good luck
    Pismo G3
  7. BlueRevolution macrumors 603


    Jul 26, 2004
    Montreal, QC
    This is the thread he's referring to. I'm not so sure that it's the same issue, though.

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