Highest OS on a 1.2 GHz iBook with 256 RAM??

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by nyguy4u, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. nyguy4u macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2008
    Hey guys, I just purchased an excellent condition iBook for only $50. Computer is literally flawless, couldn't pass up the dea. I purchased Tiger 10.4.11 on eBay, and did a fresh install. Computer works great as a backup for me. I noticed though that not many things are compatible with 10.4.11, so I want to go even higher with the OS if possible. Question is, what can I go up to?

    The computer is a 1.2 GHz PowerPC G4, 256 RAM.

    I have no problem upgrading the RAM only if I HAVE to. I think I can go up to 1GB of RAM? Correct?

    So, I guess my question is, with my specs.. what's the highest OS I can go without upgrading my RAM? And what is the highest I can go if I do upgrade my RAM? Is it even worth it?
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    10.4 is the highest, though you can try 10.5, but that needs at least 768 MB RAM officially. And the maximum RAM for that iBook is 1.25 GB RAM, thus buying a 1 GB stick will suffice.

    PS: Some people have a good time with 10.5 on their G4 iBooks, some have had a bad time (like me).
  3. nyguy4u thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2008
    10.4 is Leopard, correct? So I COULD go to 10.5 with a gig RAM then? What type of problems are there with 10.4 vs 10.5 with a gig RAM?
  4. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    10.4 is Tiger, 10.5 is Leopard, 10.6 is Snow Leopard (which will not run on your iBook).
    The problems I had with 10.5 on my 2004 G4 iBook with 1 GHz and 1.25 GB RAM was responsiveness. It felt slower than 10.4 (which felt faster than 10.3 and 10.2), even though it had nice new features (Spaces, which is welcome on a 12" display), but I had to move back to 10.4 eventually.
  5. nyguy4u thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2008
    Hmm.. interesting. Thanks for the info.

    Almost thinking of just upgrading the RAM then, and nothing else.
  6. Imixmuan macrumors 6502

    Dec 18, 2010
    I own and am typing on a ibook 1.2ghz G4, running Tiger and 1.25 gb of RAM. 50 bucks was a steal. Upgrade the RAM, you will be shocked at the speed improvements. I installed Leopard once, but also felt Leopard was unresponsive, lots of spinning beachballs, so I went back to Tiger. Plus, I need Classic. One day I will likely have to go Leopard, but as long as there are applications like Mactubes and Tenfourfox that support Tiger, I don't see the need.

    There is also Linux MintPPC. I installed that on another ibook as well, worked great for the most part but sadly that ibook went bellyup. Also, highly recommend this blog:


    He runs Tiger comfortably in the modern world on a 500mhz Sawtooth, has lots of hints and tips, links to last PPC apps to run on Tiger, etc etc. Your ibook is over twice as fast, so anything he does you should be able to do as well if not better-er. Screen spanning for your ibook (you'll need a hack, google is your friend) and using an external monitor is also awesome.
  7. tom vilsack macrumors 68000

    tom vilsack

    Nov 20, 2010
    ladner cdn
    I have owned similar ibook in past and own a powerbook G4 1.5GHz now.

    I found the ibook to slow for leopard were the powerbook runs it just fine...the biggest difference was not the ram (ibook was maxed to 1.25 gig,powerbook has only 512mb) but was the video graphics...
    ibook=ATI Mobility Radeon 9200 (4X AGP) with 32 MB of SDRAM
    powerbook=NVIDIA GeForce FX Go5200 with 64 MB of DDR SDRAM

    you could always partition harddrive and run both tiger and leopard...
  8. GermanyChris macrumors 601


    Jul 3, 2011
    I'd stay with Tiger too, I was unimpressed with my PowerBooks performance with Leopard so it's back.
  9. alexreich macrumors 6502a


    Jan 26, 2011
    I would maximize the RAM, and run Tiger. That 1.2GHz and 1GB+ (I don't know the specifics of that machine) RAM in Tiger would be nice, but in Leopard it's pretty god-awful.

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