iMac G4 - reinstall Mac OS X

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by llimac, Nov 30, 2014.

  1. llimac macrumors newbie

    Nov 30, 2014
    Hi everyone,

    I recently got an iMac G4 PowerPC from my workplace. When I turn it on it (obviously) asks for a login and a password, which I don't know.

    Any suggestions on how to solve that? (I doubt it)

    Anyway,I don't mind reinstalling the OS, so that's what I'm trying now.

    I don't exactly know which version of OS X is running, but it's not a very old one. I tried booting recovery mode (command+R) and it doesn't.
    Also tried booting in safe mode: sometimes it doesn't but when it does, it asks for the password.

    Then I tried downloading a Mac OS X 10.0 and 10.4 install disk DMG's, burning them on CD's, DVD's and even a USB stick (from Disk Utility in a MacBook Pro), booting the G4 while pressing Option but it only appears the main HHD. I also tried booting from the USB using Open Firmware mode (which I have access to) doing this:
    No success...

    I don't have any original Mac OS X install disks.
    I have a MacBook Pro that I could use to boot in Target mode, but I don't think it would work because it's an Intel Mac.

    I have very little experience with Mac's and PowerPC's
    After trying these many options, asking a forum it's the last one, so any help will be greatly appreciated. All I want is to reinstall the OS :apple: i can't belive it can be so difficult...

    Thanks in advance,

  2. gooser macrumors 6502a

    Jul 4, 2013
    your workplace? ask them what the password is. next option? BUY a 10.4 RETAIL disc off e-bay or amazon. you should be able to reset the password from the disc. or erase the drive and reinstall the os if you choose.
  3. Hrududu macrumors 68020


    Jul 25, 2008
    Central US
    You can remove the password once booted from the install disc. Of course, at that point, you might as well just reinstall entirely. There is no Recovery Mode for OS prior to 10.7 and booting into safe mode will ALWAYS ask for a login password.
  4. weckart macrumors 601

    Nov 7, 2004
    Tiger should boot any iMac G4. Just make sure you do not mount the DMG file before burning in Disk Utility. Burning in a Macbook is fine.

    If it does not work for you, try putting the iMac in Target mode. That will let you access the hard drive via a Firewire cable. You could try deleting the invisible file /var/db/.AppleSetupDone

    That will put the current installation into setup mode where it takes you through creating a user account.
  5. stroked Suspended


    May 3, 2010
    Create a new admin account by deleting a specific file.

    You need to enter terminal and create a new admin account:

    1. Reboot
    2. Hold Apple + s down after you hear the chime.
    3. When you get text prompt, enter these terminal commands to create a brand new admin account (hitting return after each line):

    mount -uw /

    rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone

    shutdown -h now

    4. After rebooting you should have a brand new admin account. When you login as the new admin you can simply delete the old one and you're good to go again!
  6. supernova777 macrumors member

    Dec 22, 2007
  7. redhatcode29 macrumors 6502


    Jul 21, 2014
    Kuala Lumpur
    Hi, when you say Os9 + osx, are they incorporated in the same installation or is it a sepate installation.
    I am thinking of running Panther and Os9 in an imac g3.

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