iBook G3: For use or display?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by tevion5, Feb 15, 2015.

  1. tevion5 macrumors 68000

    tevion5

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    Ireland
    #1
    I often get free IT equipment from my college, as the computer science building I study in throws things out from time to time. I've gotten a Dell Optiplex 780, and a 1GHz Quicksilver before.

    After one haul, I mentioned seeing an incredibly ugly pink toshiba laptop (that even scavengers like myself couldn't love) and my mom said to get her a laptop for web browsing if I saw one.

    When I got back to Dublin the next week, it was gone however. Since then I've been keeping an eye out on eBay for a cheap local laptop. Macintosh of course... ;) I figured a PPC might suit her needs for close to free, so I started bidding on a few PowerBooks and iBooks.

    What I got, is an iBook G3 700MHz for 99c. At that price, I can't go wrong, but I'm wondering if it will be strong enough for web browsing. If not I can add it to my sizeable collection, but I would be happier if she didn't have to use any of my machines to compare holiday packages on...

    So what do you think? It has I believe, 640MB RAM, 700MHz G3, 30GB HDD. Do you think I can put tiger on this thing and run TFF? She would only use it for web browsing and looking at some photos online maybe.

    I gave her my old 4S recently so I've got her finally using email and iMessage and FaceTime, for better or worse. She's not very tech savvy, so she won't be doing anything demanding in the slightest.

    So what does the forum say, an Internet portal, or another useless one for my ever more cramped shelves?
     
  2. CubeHacker macrumors 65816

    CubeHacker

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #2
    Its not always about doing something demanding, but about trying to do something "current". For example, trying to load facebook on that G3 in Tenfourfox is going to be like sludge. Same thing for many popular websites such as amazon.com, ebay, weather.com...etc. Forget about getting youtube.com to work. Most modern websites are loaded with bloat and will slow that thing down to near painful levels. It all comes down to how patient your mom is.
     
  3. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #3
    I agree with this, and I'm typing this post from a very similar machine(14" 800mhz, 640mb RAM).

    I'm running OS 9.2.2 with Classilla, and it's definitely useable but a bit on the sluggish side even with that set-up. TFF does a better job with regard to rendering pages than Classilla, but is very slow on this hardware.

    I use and tolerate this hardware mostly out of interest in keeping it going(I hadn't even powered up my G3 iBook in probably a month before this evening) but would hate for it to be my main/only computer. There's also the fact that if her home network(or any public networks she accesses) uses WPA2 or a more advanced encryption on WPA, she won't be able to access it.

    A newer Powerbook G4 would be much more capable for her in pretty much every way, if you want to go with inexpensive PPC hardware.
     
  4. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #4
    Firefox and therefore TenFourFox is a CPU pig. My G4 1.67 GHz PowerBook is overloaded on some sites with TFF and even Leopard WebKit and it has a lot more horsepower than a 700 MHz G3. That being said, if your needs are like what I need for my iBook G3 (forums) then it is fine provided no high resolution pictures are being loaded.
     
  5. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #5
    I have the 14" version of that G3. You can surf on it with the usual restrictions, which means no usuable Youtube/Facebook etc or anything multimedia laden unless you really like waiting to watch slideshows.

    Also there are reliability issues with those early iBooks. Tbh, I would have gone the PC route and bought her an older Thinkpad. You can throw Linux on that for security's sake, batteries are cheap. For me, right now, PPC notebooks are really more for the enthusiast rather than for general use.
     
  6. tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    Ireland
    #6
    I may well decide to get her an old PC still, just at 99c I knew I would keep it if it wasn't useful. I can see how it performs I suppose, but I know even my 800MHz iMac G4 can be slow with TFF. I know Clasilla and Mac OS9 would run well on it, but my mom and OS9 is just not a functioning scenario :p

    Looks like it might end up sharing a spot beside my PowerBook 140. Worse things can happen!
     
  7. tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    Ireland
    #7
    Well it arrived at my Mom's house today (I was informed over FaceTime) and it's in excellent condition for a machine this old. Just some light scratching and no dents or discolouration. I'll need to get a new battery for it, but it is fully working.

    Turns out my mom doesn't really want it for web browsing, as she can use my Dad's very luxurious 27" iMac for that.

    She only wants it for:

    1. E-Mail
    2. Desktop Publishing

    With this in mind, I believe this iBook might actually be up to the task! I figure I can put Microsoft Office for Mac 2004 on it for Word and PowerPoint, and then even the old Tiger Mail app client should be capable of handling G-Mail?

    Seems like it should manage no?
     
  8. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #8
    Here I have to disagree!

    Oh, in comparison to other PowerPC browsers that may be true. And with a default install it may also be true. But, just like with Leopard if you make optimizations you can generally remove this as a problem.

    I use T4Fx every day. CPU will spike when initially loading a page, but with optimization once the page is loaded (and assuming you have Flash blocked or disabled) CPU should idle normally. I never have any issues dropping right back to less than 10% of CPU usage or so once a page is loaded.

    CPU and RAM usage as well as speed of page loading were all the things that drove me to finding the optimizations that I've made.

    We've had this discussion before, and while T4Fx will never be as light or fast as say, Stainless or Sunrise you can make it much better than the default settings give you.

    ----------

    Are we talking like Pages? Or maybe doing something in Word?

    Or are we talking Adobe CS (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator), QuarkXPress or perhaps CorelDraw or Pagewrecker (oops, sorry, Pagemaker)?

    If the former you should do ok. If the latter your mother will probably disown you. :D
     
  9. tevion5, Feb 17, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015

    tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    Ireland
    #9
    Ha! The thought of trying to explain something like QuarkXPress to my mother. Sure I might as well teach her Logic Pro while I'm at it...

    As I said in the last part of my post, I think I will put Office 2004 on it for Microsoft Word. This is the basics I'm talking about here. Surely the iBook is not so feeble as to be incapable of emails and word documents?
     
  10. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #10
    I think I have Office 2008 on mine, as well as on my Pismo. It's slow, but mostly useable.

    Office 2004 or even Office X would be a lot more useable. If you want to stick with OS 9, there's always Office 2001. There are programs that enable XML compatibility(I'm sure others can advise specific programs) if she requires that.

    I'm pretty sure that the original install for these computers included some version of Appleworks, which would like be relatively useable also.
     
  11. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #11
    No, in this case you should be absolutely fine.

    You could even cheat if you want to and get OpenOffice (or some similar PowerPC version, there are a few out there) which will write .doc and .docx files. And there is always Apple Mail.

    But, yes, if you do really wish just to install Office 2004 you should have no problems.
     
  12. tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    Ireland
    #12
    Super, I'll see how it goes, but it might work out!
     
  13. tevion5, Feb 20, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015

    tevion5 thread starter macrumors 68000

    tevion5

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    Ireland
    #13
    Home today and gave it a quick inspection. Looks to be in amazing condition for a 'C' grade condition 99c acquisition. I will have to wait for the battery and power adapter to arrive to set it up, but seeing as the seller assured me it's in full working order I must say I'm quite impressed.

    IMG_8268.JPG IMG_8269.JPG IMG_8270.JPG


    Here it is beside my brother's colossal 17" MBP for the fun of it.

    IMG_8271.JPG IMG_8272.JPG
     
  14. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2014
    Location:
    Lincolnshire, UK
    #14
    Wow! 99c - that's incredible. I was bidding on one of these this week (in the UK) - I bailed out long before it finished at £46 (approx $70)
     

Share This Page