New Hard Drive for Powermac G4

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by LOAV, Jul 24, 2008.

  1. LOAV macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #1
    Hello all, I am a new user for Mac computers and I'm looking to put a new harddrive into the powermac. The current hd is only 20gb so I planned on going up to 320. The questions I have are: Will I need any other components to support a harddrive that big and if I were to install it as my only harddrive, could I just put it in and install osx 10.4 on it?
     
  2. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
    Location:
    I'm only really here at night.
    #2
    Would need to know the actual model to know for sure, but since it appears that you have an older G4, most of them only supported HDD's up to 128GB as is. But the last 2 or 3 models to come out (Quicksilver 2002 & later) did remove that limitation by way of a better, more up to date motherboard controller.

    However, for those older ones, you can buy a pci controller card that will allow any size of HDD...... but at this point in time, I would suggest moving up to SATA if you are going to go this route....simply because the prices for SATA drives are the same or lower than the IDE drives, SATA is way faster, and will allow you some forward-compatibility should you want to get a newer machine in the near future :)

    SATA cards are available from SIIG, Sonnet, Firmtek and a few other mfgr's. They usually run ~$60-80 depending on where you get them......check around online but make sure you look for a mac-specific card......those el-cheapo $15 windblows cards wont work in macs :p

    But regardless of what HDD you put in there, YES, 10.4 will run on G4's quite well as long as you have at least 1GB of ram and a video card that supports QuartzExtreme (offloads the screen effects processing from the cpu to the video card)
     
  3. LOAV thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #3
    Ok, I got a WD 160 gig hdd. I put it in as the only hard drive and put osx 10.4 in the disc drive, but it won't do anything. It turns on, but nothing comes up on the monitor and it just sits there idle. Does the drive need to be formatted first? and how can I do that without another Mac?

    Also, I'm not sure exactly which G4 I have. I do know that it had a 20gb hdd, 400mhz processor, 256RAM, and that's about it.
     
  4. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
    Location:
    I'm only really here at night.
    #4
    OK, you have either a Yikes, Sawtooth, or Gigabit Ethernet model, none of which supports HD's over 128GB without a pci controller card. Bigger drives will work, but the machine will only recognize 128GB of the space on them.......

    But anyways, you have to hold down the "c" key during startup to get the machine to boot from the OS disk. Once booted to the installer screen, then go the utilities menu and select "Disk Utility". Use it to format the HD to HFS Extended-journaled. Once the formatting is completed, then go back to the installer screen and proceed.......

    2 possible issues are:

    A) If you have 10.4 on a DVD, but your machine only has a CD-R/RW drive.......this no workie :p

    B) Did check to see if the drive was jumpered as Master ?
    Most are set that way from the factory, but it wont hurt to check :p
     
  5. LOAV thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    #5
    I'm fine with the limited disk space until I get a PCI controller.
    I have 10.4 on CD's so it should work.

    Thanks for helping by the way.

    ** I just tried holding the C key down, but nothing came up. I get the chime, but nothing shows up on the monitor. The power light on the monitor just goes to orange and doesn't show anything. The hdd is also set as Master.
     
  6. LOAV thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008

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