Need files from broken PowerBook G4

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by jollyjoe23, Mar 3, 2014.

  1. jollyjoe23 macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2014
    Hi. My boyfriends powerbook G4 broke a few months ago and it's now stuck on the blue startup screen. I have a huge amount of files that are really important to me stored on his computer, we've since split ways but he's let me hold onto it until I can retrieve my files. I would really like to get his computer back to him.

    I don't know a thing about macs. It starts up in safe mode but I can't find everything I need without being able to use spotlight. I can kind of use terminal as long as it isn't something to complicated.

    Any help would be appreciated.
  2. msevild macrumors regular

    Oct 11, 2007
    Most people don't put data outside of their home folder. If you have an external device to save the data on to I would copy the user folder in Macintosh HD/Users. Any other data might be located in the first level of the Macintosh HD itself.
  3. macs4nw macrumors 601


    If nothing else works (unless the laptop and it's internals are physically damaged), you can as a last resort always remove the HDD --where all your files reside-- from the PowerBook, mount it in an enclosure, and copy all those files that are important to you, to your own computer.

    Unless you're familiar with all the intricacies of opening up a laptop, and then afterwards putting it all back together, this will of course cost you, to have it done by someone who knows what they're doing, but that may be a small price to pay, depending on how important those files are to you.
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Does the PowerBook have a firewire port?

    If so, have you tried connecting it to another Mac using "firewire target disk mode"?
  5. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    This isn't the cheapest option, but it's the most reliable:
    1. Buy/borrow an external drive, plug it in, and format as HFS+.
    2. Plug in the laptop via Target Disc Mode. Let us know the laptop and Mac models, and we can advise you on which cable you need.
    3. Use Carbon Copy Cloner to clone the laptop's drive.
    This will give you a backup of the drive in case something further goes wrong with the laptop.

Share This Page