How do I get my G4 to run better?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by macrumorsusero1, Oct 27, 2009.

  1. macrumorsusero1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    #1
    I am stuck for ideas on how to make my PowerBook G4 run like it used to.

    I have a (pretty old now) G4, 80g -with more than 40g of space left, running OS X 10.4 and 512 of ram. I get about 20 minutes from the battery, so have it plugged into the socket most of the time.

    Basically it is slow. It beachballs often, the fan is on more often than it used to be, some USB devices wont work on it. Also recently applications have started to 'quit unexpectedly' more often than they used to.

    I love this machine and really don't want to upgrade. Is there anything I can do to make it run better? My mates same spec G4 works much better than mine.:confused:

    Any help would be really appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    Texas, unfortunately.
    #2
    Have you reinstalled the OS recently? That can often help a lot in the speed department. Upgrading the RAM (If you can) is never a bad idea either.
     
  3. macrumorsusero1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    #3
    Thanks. :)

    I no longer have the original discs. Is there any way round this, or do I need to buy new OS?

    I will get onto the RAM upgrade.
     
  4. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    Texas, unfortunately.
    #4
    I'm going to assume your PowerBook has at least a combo drive; in which case, I believe you can order some replacment disks from Apple for a fee. Though I'm not sure if they would have them for 10.4 anymore...
     
  5. mac88 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    Location:
    Boston, MA.
    #5
    Try Apple first. Then check eBay. You may be able to pick them up cheap. Good luck!
     
  6. macrumorsusero1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    #6
    Thanks again Cassie.

    Ok, yep, have a combo drive. If I am paying for discs, could I/should I just upgrade OS?
     
  7. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #7
    Best thing you can do is upgrade to 2gb of memory, 2x 1gb DDR PC3200 400mhz sodimms if you have the 15" aluminum model or just 1gb DDR if you have the 12" model. Next would be the WD 250gb or 320gb IDE 2.5" hard drive, they both come in 5,400 RPM flavors. Also you can run Leopard 10.5. Those 3 upgrades will probably set you back around $150-200 depending on where you source them from new/used.
     
  8. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603

    GimmeSlack12

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #8
    What clock speed is the PB? I would say 10.4 is as high as you can go, and even with the RAM maxxed out don't expect miracles. If you want it to run as fast as it once did then you'll have to go back to the OS it came with.

    EDIT: Just saw you only have 512mb RAM!!!! Dude, max that out you'll get a bit more kick out of that ol' G4.
     
  9. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    Texas, unfortunately.
    #9
    Well, I'd say that if you're going to upgrade your RAM to at least 1 GB, it might be a good idea to get 10.5. But I wouldn't recommend it unless your processor speed is 1.33 GHz or above, 1 GHz at the minimum if you really want it. But at that point, it would probably be as slow or slower then it is now.
     
  10. macrumorsusero1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    #10
    Awesome. Thanks everyone.:D

    I have a 12", 1.5GHz. So will get more RAM and I think I'll stick with 10.4. Then look at a new HDD.

    Am looking now. Is it worth replacing the battery, or do I just live with being plugged in?
     
  11. Elbert C macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Location:
    AK, USA
    #11
    A few things you can try before re-installing OSX

    Tuning Mac OS X Performance
     
  12. Freyqq macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    #12
    I have the 12" pb, and what really worked for me was to turn off spotlight. It seemed so slow b\c it was indexing everything every time I changed something. This is in 10.5, though, so idk if it will be as useful in 10.4.
     
  13. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #13
    The maximum memory yours will take is 1.25gb since 256mb is soldered to your logicboard so upgrading with a 1gb DDR sodimm is your best bet. Even with the slo..o..w stock HDD my PB is still pretty good with everything I throw at it. I usually have a few apps open at once and usually don't notice any slowdown unless there's a lot of flash on a website.

    I also have Spotlight completely disabled as I never use it.

    With a good battery, you should be able to get 4-5 hours of life so it's definitely worth upgrading. I have a secondary battery that I just use around the house, it only lasts maybe an hour or two but I know I'm always near power so it's good for me. Bought it on ebay for like $15? lol.
     

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