iMac G4 Internet speed

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by macprankster, Oct 13, 2014.

  1. macprankster macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    #1
    hi all. i'm new to this forum and i just want to greet all of you. i have a question that maybe someone can help me with.

    i bought an iMac g4 out of nostalgia. it has a 1.25 ghz processor, 256mb ddr sdram, airport express card, a powerpc g4 processor and has os 10.4.11 installed. i do not in any way expect it to beat any current generation macs; i got it with the intent of having my kids use it to mainly surf the web. this is where my problems started.

    first of all, it would not connect to my home wifi network. i recently upgraded to xfinity's 150mbps download/10mbps upload package and i got around the problem for a while by using a new airport express base station and hardwiring the mac to it. it was fine at the start but after a day or so it started to crawl. bad. like speediest clocked its download speed to 2mbps bad. so bad that my kids won't even touch it, and it saddens me because it really is a wonderful work of art, and i would trade my own iMac for it if i am not using mine to edit my photos.

    it was intention from the start to upgrade whatever i can to keep it soldier on and that is how i found myself in this forum. i'd like to get your advice on where to start, what components to upgrade first (and maybe the best place to buy them) and how to go about modifying settings or hardware to enable the old girl to run with the net. any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    salut!
     
  2. havokalien macrumors 6502a

    havokalien

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2006
    Location:
    Kelso, Wa
    #2
    Well a few things

    In internet options set the cache to 0. No cache with your internet speed will increase you experience as it won't have to access the hard drive.

    There are 2 ram slots. One needs to be accessed by taking the logic board out the other is right under the screwed down cover. I think with both it supports a gig of ram.

    Classilla may be a good browser as safari stopped being updated for OS X 10.4. Of course with an airport extreme card in there you should be able to go wireless on it, not sure if it does wep2 off the top of my head.

    Beyond that I would suggest just enjoying it and leave it at that. If you max out both memory slots remember to put on new thermal paste and clean out all the dust. Ifixit has a great guide.
     
  3. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #3
    Airport Extreme cards can do WPA2. With at least 1GB of ram, Leopard runs rather well on that model iMac.
     
  4. macprankster thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    #4
    wow. thanks for the speedy replies.

    which memory would you recommend and what website would be best to buy it from? is it true that it only supports up to 1gig max in memory? what would happen then if i stick a 2gb module in it?

    is there any way for me to cut the cord on it? for some reason i cannot get the supplied airport extreme card [firmware 405.1 (3.90.34.0.p18)] to shake hands with my home network. could it be just a bad card? if so, how can i test it and what should i get to replace it?
     
  5. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #5
    I am picking up my iLamp today and checked this the other day. According to everymac.com it will support up to 2GB of RAM, which is as much as any G4 based Mac will take. Apple's specs report 1GB of RAM as the maximum.
     
  6. HereBeMonsters macrumors 6502

    HereBeMonsters

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2012
    Location:
    Fareham, UK
    #6
    It will take 2GB of RAM, but only 1GB in each slot. With the second slot being on the other side of the board, you have to take it apart completely to get to it. Not the easiest of jobs, I have to say.

    You can get to the Airport card from the bottom of the machine though - it's right next to the RAM.

    If you go the whole hog and max out the specs (as per the one in my signature) it's not only a decent web browser (TenFourFox is my choice) but great for iTunes, basic photo editing and even non-HD video.

    It's the Mac I use most often, as it sits on my main desk in my study. Very happy with it.
     
  7. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #7
    It will support 2GB RAM - 1GB per slot.....when you take it apart you also need thermal paste to reapply to the heat pipe surfaces (look on Youtube for videos) when you put it back together
     
  8. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #8
    Just to pile on, but my 1.25ghz currently has 1gb(from the factory as per the sticker on the bottom). I also upgraded it with a new(er) 7200rpm 120gb HDD(the original was dead when I got it).

    Mine is a great internet browser running 10.5 with either TFF or Leopard Webkit.

    I suspect that the RAM is your limiting factor here.

    By the way, as someone mentioned any time you take it apart you need to repaste the heat pipes between the logic board and the case top. While you have it apart, I'd suggest that you also pull the heatsink from the CPU, and clean and apply fresh paste here also.
     
  9. HereBeMonsters macrumors 6502

    HereBeMonsters

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2012
    Location:
    Fareham, UK
    #9
    Oh yeah, that too. :rolleyes: It's not an easy job!
     
  10. GraniteTheWolf, Oct 14, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2014

    GraniteTheWolf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2013
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    #10
    Everyone above mentioning the ram and the hard drive know exactly what they are talking about.

    Make sure you have at least 1gb of ram or more, and if your skilled enough or know someone who is it is a VERY good idea to upgrade to a newer 7200rpm faster ide hard drive or pata SSD.

    I have a 1.25ghz iMac G4 17" that I upgraded myself with a 400gb 7200 rpm hdd and 2gb of ram, and a newer ide superdrive. Its very snappy around leopard, I can watch standard def youtube using YouView, and for web browsing its great with Camino.

    To me TenFourFox feels very very slow compared to Camino (despite it being out of date a bit) Slow to load, slow to scroll... not sure why.
    Even Safari is faster then TFF for me on my iMac.
     
  11. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #11
    I recommend downloading a program called Mactracker. It lets you know tons of useful info on most any Apple gear in history. It is available online for 10.5 or 10.6 and in the App Store for 10.7+ and iOS.

    Your biggest problem is the RAM. Though Tiger is capable of running on just 256 MB of RAM, it is hardly a pleasurable experience to say the least. Mozilla browsers (TenFourFox, Firefox, Aurorafox, etc.) also use a lot of RAM. If possible, a hard drive upgrade would work wonders in that machine as well. This is not a problem for many of us who have parts bins but since it sounds like this is your first PPC you may want to check your local computer shops. My local shop, called Second Source Computers, always has those old parts I need and normally will sell really cheaply (to me at least). Check out those little stores around you!
     
  12. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #12
    I'll also add that with a Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM IDE drive, the computer is virtually silent. The big, slow in the top of the dome makes very little noise-the hard drive is really the only significant source of noise in this design. A quiet drive kills almost any remaining sound.

    I still need to track down 1gb PC-2700 modules to get mine up to 2 gb.
     
  13. macprankster thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    #13
    thanks all. 'll make a shopping list of all your advised upgrades. used to build mown pc a long time ago; i'll see if my skills are still up to spec before i start dismantling the mac.
     
  14. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #14
    Just a further point - you don't need an expensive PATA SSD. I have a 120GB SATA SSD in my iMac G4....using an IDE to SATA adapter I got from Amazon. It's pretty quick with the SSD and 2GB RAM running OS X 10.5
     
  15. HereBeMonsters macrumors 6502

    HereBeMonsters

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2012
    Location:
    Fareham, UK
    #15
    Having tried both, I'd say the PATA SSD was marginally quicker than the SATA one with the converter, and getting it into place in the case was WAY easier!

    My Powerbook has the PATA one now, iMac has the SATA with converter.
     
  16. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #16
    Not sure why getting the SATA SSD in the case was an issue....the old existing HD was 3.5" form factor and the SATA SSD is 2.5" - even with the adapter there was plenty of free space in the drive bay left over to pretty much put it wherever you want. I secured mine with some double-stick velcro so it wouldn't bounce around inside the case if you moved the iMac somewhere.
     
  17. HereBeMonsters macrumors 6502

    HereBeMonsters

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2012
    Location:
    Fareham, UK
    #17
    The adaptor I got was an in-line type affair that had no cable to provide slack. It eventually fitted, but it was very fiddly!
     
  18. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #19
  19. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #20
  20. robertdsc macrumors regular

    robertdsc

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2014
    #21
    Under separate conditions but with a similar adapter, my experience shows that the drive with adapter is classified as Master. Any other drives connected to the same cable would have to be Slave.
     
  21. weckart macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2004
    #22
    Thanks. My Superdrive's days of bossing that bus are over.
     
  22. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #23
    And with leopard you can use Safari 5 which is still a good browser :D
     
  23. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #24
    But horribly insecure if using the stock WebKit.
     
  24. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #25
    Not a problem if you are just surfing the web, not doing banking or seecret stuff.
     

Share This Page