Powerbook G4 is driving me absolutely loco

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by TheLordsServant, Aug 9, 2009.

  1. TheLordsServant macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2008
    #1
    Well, I know that I'm supposed to use descriptive titles, but with all the weird things my Powerbook is doing, there's no way I could describe it any other way.

    First of all, my machine is S.L.O.W. It's a 1.67ghz with 1GB RAM, and it's slower than my iMac G3 400mhz with 256MB RAM. It takes around 10 seconds just to open the main hard drive folder by clicking on it on the desktop. It takes around 30 seconds to open iTunes, and if I try to play a song, I get the spinning beach ball for an additional five to ten seconds. If I leave the Sudden Motion Sensor on, it activates constantly. Like, every three seconds. The sleep light comes on randomly, flashes several times, and then shuts off, whether the machine is on or off. Even if the machine is totally off, the sleep light will occasionally come on. Also, if the sleep light comes on, and you close the computer, it will not go into sleep until the sleep light goes off. Sometimes, I lose audio, and it will come back sometimes after waiting a little while with it off. I want to say it's heat related, but I'm no expert. I've had my fair share of experience with Macs, dating all the way back to the Macintosh II, but with the newer machines, I just don't have any experience.


    Does anyone have any thoughts? I've reset PRAM, PMU, and tried rebooting. I figure my last ditch attempt will be to reload the OS, but I would prefer not to do that.
     
  2. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #2
    Try booting from the CD and see if it's still slow? I ask because I've had to replace all of my PB HDD's and this sounds very familiar. Cheap Newegg fix though.
     
  3. NIPRING macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Did you reset the nvram too? It may come down to an archive and install.
     
  4. docal97 macrumors 6502a

    docal97

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    #4
    i'd reload osx. If that doesn't fix the problem, i'd take it in. Maybe a bad logic board if nothing else fixes the problem.
     
  5. J DILLA macrumors member

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    #5
    get another 1gb of ram, makes it a lot faster
     
  6. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #6
    Yes but if there is a real issue that will not fully solve the problems. I'd take the advice above and see if that helps.
     
  7. zorahk macrumors 6502

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    #7
    fixed
     
  8. Bill Gates macrumors 68020

    Bill Gates

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    #8
    Oh how we all appreciate your posts, whether it be excellent advice as posted above or the everlasting pursuit of the best MBP screen! :rolleyes:

    I would try running the Apple hardware test, and make sure that everything passes, and in a reasonable amount of time. Even though you are opposed to reinstalling Mac OS X, if the hardware test passes, I would give it serious consideration. It's the surefire way to tell whether the issue is with hardware or software. Also, do you hear the hard drive constantly spinning up and spinning down when you put your head to the case, or any other abnormal noises?
     
  9. TheLordsServant thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 14, 2008
    #9
    Reloaded OSX last night after backing up my data, still same problem. It's even worse now, though, the machine is so slow that I can't open any applications on it, I can click something in the dock and it will just bounce for as long as I let it. It will run, but every thirty minutes or so I have to pull the battery to get it to shut down so I can restart and start using it again.
     
  10. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #10
    Was it slow when booted up & using the install CD? I know there are limited things you can do but did it seem faster? I'm still leaning towards a failing HDD. I take it you still have the original in it?
     
  11. uberamd macrumors 68030

    uberamd

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    #11
    If you have the original discs that came with it, run the hardware diagnostics. Or you can download/buy a program like TechTool Pro that lets you boot off the DVD and it does a diagnostic of your hard drive, memory, etc. It will do a SMART reading of your hard drive and tell you if SMART has detected any potential failures as well.

    Edit: If you can, download and install http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/23232 and see what it says about your drive.
     
  12. TheLordsServant thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 14, 2008
    #12
    Just ran Hardware Diagnostics. Everything passed on the quick test, but on the extended test, Video RAM failed. I'm betting this means the logic board is bad, but I can't confirm that.


    I believe the hard drive is original, but I purchased the Powerbook secondhand, so I do not know this for a fact.

    Also, it did seem to take a little while before it would register the mouse clicks, and the touchpad seemed unresponsive during the OSX install. It took around 2.5 hours to install it off the stock CD. (Mac OSX 10.4)

    EDIT: SMARTreporter said verified.
     
  13. palane macrumors member

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    Jan 13, 2009
    #13
    Drive

    My guess is the hard drive. You mentioned it took 2 1/2 hours to reinstall OS X. Way too long. How full is the drive? One possibility is to back up the computer, partition and reformat the drive, and then try reinstalling. If it still takes hours, my guess is you're looking at a new drive to keep it going.

    BB

     
  14. J DILLA macrumors member

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    #14
    :rolleyes: just get some ram bro
     
  15. klee1987 macrumors regular

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    Jun 20, 2009
    #15
    I second this. It's a matter of time before it will refuse to even boot.

    I have had several hard drive failures in several windows machines.....it took half an hour to boot into Windows XP.....it then died a day or two after that

    Anyway, listen for strange noises coming from the drive.
     
  16. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #16
    Replacing the HDD in the 1.67 isn't that bad. You can do it in 30 minutes at a cost of $80. Every PB I have (five) has had the drive die. It'll eliminate the most likely suspect anyway. RAM slot & battery are other problem areas with those machines but my bet is the HDD.
     
  17. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

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    Jan 9, 2008
    #17
    First, ignore this moron. Everyone knows 1 GB is more than enough memory for a single core PowerPC notebook. Memory isn't the issue.

    I think it might be more than your HDD being full/fragmented, there's a pretty good chance that it's dying; as mentioned, replace it.

    Get a nice new hard drive (obviously you'll need to get an ATA instead of an SATA HDD), and you'll probably notice a world of difference.

    The fact that it's slower than before could have to do with the fact that you just reinstalled and Spotlight might be running. Have you checked that? Spotlight can tie up even the fastest machine, irrespective of CPU and memory.

    Bottom line, NEW HDD. I don't think a faulty frame buffer would affect you like this.

    Good luck. (Also, as suggested, do an NVRAM reset... and try a CUDA reset as well.)
     
  18. mikes70mustang macrumors 68000

    mikes70mustang

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    #18
    If a new HDD doesnt fix it then i think your out of luck
     
  19. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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  20. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #20
    Can you put in a 250 GB drive in the Rev D powerbook?
     
  21. uberamd macrumors 68030

    uberamd

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    #21
    Exactly. Thus, before spending a lot of money on a new hard drive, see if someone has an old, but functional drive lying around you can use. It would be a shame to buy a drive and still have the problem. Maybe this only applies to people like me who work in the tech industry, we always have extra parts on hand to do this kind of testing.
     
  22. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #22
    Once more and then I'll let myself be ignored again.
    Does the PB 1.67 accept a 250 gb hdd?
     
  23. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #23
    Accept as in is it shunted by the 128GB limit or accept as in some people have had trouble with it?

    It doesn't have the 128GB limit, but I don't know about any other problems.
     
  24. uberamd macrumors 68030

    uberamd

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    #24
  25. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #25
    If shunted by the 128 gb limit why would anyone put a 250 gb hdd into it?
    So you're saying the PB can take a 250 gb drive, which would mean that all 250 gbs (or the formatted size) would be useable?

    And thanks for answering. Apparently need I need a new thread and a dumb title to get a question answered. :)


    Thanks :rolleyes: but I did search google son. I've been here long enough to know not to ask before searching. ;) I've been told by MacSales themselves that 100 GB is the max FYI. I believe I have the e-mail somewhere around here.
     

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