OS X on G3 Bondi Blue?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Jkj12, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. Jkj12 macrumors member

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    #1
    Hi guys

    I have an iMac g3 Bondi Blue rev a in my basement that I want to wake up from the dead. Then why not try to install OS X on it?

    It doesn't boot right now so i'm not sure about the specs, but something like this:

    rev a 233Ghz
    160Mb ram (or close to that)
    4Gb HDD
    2Mb graphics card

    Can I install a version of OS X with these specs or should I just install OS9 or lower?
    I was thinking about 10.2 Jaguar (or maybe Puma?) and upgrade the ram if I can find that type for a reasonable price?

    Any suggestions?
     
  2. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #2
    It'll run anything up to and including OS X 10.3. I can imagine the performance would be inspiring though. I'd stick with OS 9.
     
  3. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

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    #3
    There's a major speed difference between OS9 and 10.3 on that model, but the latter is useable. The difference in memory management, protected memory and almost-up-2-date browser is worth it IMO, depending on what you need it for of course. Anything internet related, and you should definitely pick 10.3.

    But with 4 Gb of space (Wow!), you might as well dual boot, if it is just for all fun and play.. :)
     
  4. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #4
    I'm running 10.4 on mine and it's roughly the same specs, 233mhz.

    However, I cheated a little. I pulled the drive out of the iMac and put it in an external case connected to my Quicksilver But here's the process anyway…

    1. Partition the drive. You need to have one partition (the primary, boot partition) that is less than 8GB in size and you need to make sure the OS9 drivers are installed when partitioning. The rest of the drive can be partitioned any way you want it. APM/HFS+ of course on all partitions

    2. Install Tiger (Leopard is a no go on a G3, unless you can figure out how to do it - someone has).

    3. Put the drive back in the iMac.

    4. Boot.

    I did it this way because I kept running into too many problems trying to boot/install from CDs. The Mac booted right up. The key here though is a less than 8GB partition with OS9 drivers.

    This little iMac I have has less than 100mb ram and Tiger runs slow but I don't use it for much and it can handle streaming internet radio from iTunes pretty well.
     
  5. MatthewLTL macrumors 68000

    MatthewLTL

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    #5
    My iMac 333 rand Panter with only 128MB RAM with a 40GB HDD. If i could fix it back up i would have to install OS X on a drive than stick it in.

    What would happen if you installed it IE (with the MDD) to 10.4 WITHOUT OS 9 drivers or without 8GB or less? I know for a fact you cant install it on the system with it in the computer if its not 8GB or less but i didnt have another mac at the time to experiment.

    Also what would happen if you DID put Leopard on would it just Kernel Panic?
     
  6. weckart macrumors 68040

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    #6
    Leopard wants a G4 as a minimum so basically it would never boot even if you cloned an install.
     
  7. MatthewLTL macrumors 68000

    MatthewLTL

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    #7
    i know but what i mean is would you get the crash screen or would you not even the the :apple: screen?
     
  8. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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  9. MatthewLTL macrumors 68000

    MatthewLTL

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    #9
    i cant be cerious?
     
  10. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #10
    Not sure what "cerious" means but I can tell you from experience that it kernel panic about halfway into booting.
     
  11. Jkj12 thread starter macrumors member

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    #11
    I have an old ~60 gig hdd I can throw in it. Will it make any significant speed increase with a newer hdd or is the whole system just too slow?

    It looks like I can find ram at decent prices for it, so maybe an upgrade to 256 or 384 will make a difference?

    Maybe some Linux version is a better solution?
     
  12. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #12
    A good 7200rpm drive or even a newer 5400rpm drive will do a decent job of perking things up, although the computer will always be hampered by its slow ATA bus.
     
  13. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #13
    If the 64 GB is 7200 RPM you might see a slight speed increase, so it wouldn't hurt. Maxing out the RAM is a very good idea to improve speed.
     
  14. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #14
    As bunnspecial mentioned it kernel panics almost immediately at the Apple logo.
     
  15. weckart macrumors 68040

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    #15
    As others said, the kernel would run away screaming when it realised it was being fobbed off with a G3 instead of a G4. Leopard is too classy for that old junk.
     
  16. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #16
    I recommend Panther for your machine as it requires a minimum of 128MB RAM (same as Jaguar) but it is much faster and better and more stable than Jaguar (also more compatible). You should also max out the RAM; that would help a lot. The 60GB hard drive would be a major improvement in speed (the higher the capacity, the higher the density, the faster it is). Even if the spindle spins slower, the sectors move faster because they are smaller and more numerous.
    Linux would get you better security because you'd be using an up-to-date OS, but i've heard that you actually get less compatibility and worse performance.

    ----------

    cerious = curious
     
  17. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #17
    I agree on a RAM upgrade being a good idea.

    For those who have never worked on one of these, however, I will caution that it's not exactly straightforward(unlike slot loaders, where you just use a coin to turn a screw on the bottom to access the RAM).

    You need 144 pin SDRAM SO-DIMMs. PC66 is the correct speed, although PC100 and PC133 will work fine. I'd suggest looking for them, as they tend to be easier to find and less expensive in large capacities. The computer has two RAM slots, both located on the processor card. One is on the top of the processor card, the other on the bottom(it's actually a similar set up as used on several Powerbook G3s). "Officially" only the top stick is upgradeable, although it's not a big deal to remove the processor card and change both sticks. Just be sure that you have some thermal compound handy, as you will want to apply fresh when you remove the heatsink to remove the processor card.

    It's been a little while since I had one apart, but working form memory you remove the bottom plastic and then disconnect the power cable, monitor cable, and IRDA cable(if present). You may need to remove the a couple of additional screws, but the logic board, hard drive, and all the other "guts" slide out from the rear the computer on a tray.

    The CPU, heatsink, and RAM slots are located inside a metal "cage" that sits toward the rear of the logic board. The cover of the "cage" pops right off. Once it's off, you can readily access the top RAM slot. To access the bottom one, you need to remove the heatsink(one clip that goes across it) and then the processor card lifts right out. You can then change the RAM stick on the underside. Clean the processor core and heatsink, apply fresh thermal compound, and reassemble.

    As per Everymac.com, if you have a Rev. A you can put in one 128mb stick and one 256mb stick. On Rev. B models, you can put in 2x256mb sticks. RAM is cheap enough-and it's buried deep enough in this computer-that I'd recommend just going ahead and maxing it while you have it apart.
     
  18. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #18
    I worked in a big box PC store when the iMac launched. The Tech Centre where I worked was installing RAM upgrades at the point of purchase for about every second iMac Rev A sold. Quite regularly skinned my knuckles getting the "sled" out.

    It was somewhat easier in the older Performas!
     
  19. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #19
    Even though mine doesn't run, I went ahead and maxed the RAM in it at one point when I had it apart.

    I didn't exactly have a shortage of 128 and 256mb PC133 sticks from upgrading other computers(especially since the Pismo and all the TiBooks can take 2x512) and if I ever do get it going I don't want to have to tackle THAT job again.

    I've since found some VRAM DIMMs that I need to install also, again if I ever get around to fixing the PSU and getting the computer running.

    BTW, I have quite a bit of RAM(I think a couple hundred MB) to put in my 8500 but have been delaying putting it in because of how much is involved in getting to that. Since tomorrow is going to be a snow day also, maybe I'll tackle it tomorrow. Putting RAM in that one requires removing the logic board, which basically requires removing everything else(PSU, floppy drive, CD ROM, hard drive). Between that and the brittle plastic, I'm not looking forward to it.
     
  20. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #20
    I only remember upgrading the one to 128MB (a lot in early '99) for someone that was heavily using Photoshop. Involved getting the CPU card out to access the bottom slot IIRC. Nowadays I wouldn't blink at that, seemed a bit more scary at the time!
     
  21. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #21


    OS X Leopard requires a G4 due to AltiVec technology. A G3 would simply kernel panic halfway through booting.



    A 7200 RPM hard drive would be a nice upgrade over a 5400 RPM. Most drives say it right on the cover! Maxing the RAM out is a great boost especially on old systems.
     
  22. proxyLain macrumors newbie

    proxyLain

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    Dec 17, 2014
    #22
    I tried OSX on a G3 that was around 400Mhz (or maybe it was the 233 Mhz?) from what I remember. It was pain slow. Did this around ~2004-2005 I think.
    Guess useable is a matter of taste.
     
  23. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #23
    I've said this many times-all of my G3s are primarily OS 9 machines, but all also have Tiger installed(with the exception of my main beige G3, which has only OS 9, and my secondary beige, which has 10.2)

    On a tower at least, OS X isn't that bad. My 300mhz B&W is fairly useable with it. Even on my various iBooks and my Powerbook G3 are definitely useable with Tiger, if a bit sluggish.

    OS X loves RAM, so one of the keys to good performance is to load it up with as much as the system will accept. My slot-loading iMac, my B&W towers, and my Pismo Powerbook all have 1gb. My lowest-RAM G3-at least of the ones that run-is my Clamshell, which has 576mb(64mb on board+512mb). Of course, if I ever get my Rev. A Bondi Blue running, it will have 364mb.

    The second key is a good hard drive. Hard drive technology has improved tremendously since these computers were first made 17 years ago. Even a newer 5400rpm drive will likely outperform the stock drive, and a 7200rpm drive will make a big difference.
     
  24. MatthewLTL macrumors 68000

    MatthewLTL

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    #24
    I have a rev D board with a 333 and 256MB RAM on the CPU card. If you want the CPU upgrade it is yours, also the logic board has the firmware upgrade for OS X support, I can even provide you with some Panther CDs

    EDIT: I also have the 6MB VRAM "RAM" stick it will allow you to upgrade your Video Card RAM to the max of 6MB, Also your's if you want it.
     
  25. 128keaton macrumors 68020

    128keaton

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    Jan 13, 2013
    #25
    Mines not exactly a Bondi Blue, a bit newer, a Graphite 500 MHz DV. Has TWO :eek: GB of RAM, and a 200GB 7200 RPM drive (which is much quieter than the stock drive) partitioned 100GB for OS 9 and 100GB for 10.4.11. Both run very nice.
     

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