Powerbook G4 Tiger to Leopard?

Event Horizon

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 17, 2007
13
0
Way Out West
I'm about to upgrade my iMac 24" to Snow Leopard (late adopter I know) - can I (and should I) upgrade my 6.5 year-old Powerbook G4 to Leopard using the iMac's original restore discs, or as it's Intel and the PB is PPC will that not be possible?

It's 1.25Ghz with 512 MB RAM which was just snazzy in the day, but I know doesn't cut the mustard now - is it really worth my while trying to put Leopard on there or should I clean reinstall Tiger to get it running smoothly again?

If Leopard is worth it can I get it off the iMac or its discs before upgrading that to SL? I understand the discs are machine specific, but can I hook the machines together and get Leopard onto the PB using Target Mode?
 

spinnerlys

Guest
Sep 7, 2008
14,335
7
forlod bygningen
I'm about to upgrade my iMac 24" to Snow Leopard (late adopter I know) - can I (and should I) upgrade my 6.5 year-old Powerbook G4 to Leopard using the iMac's original restore discs, or as it's Intel and the PB is PPC will that not be possible?

It's 1.25Ghz with 512 MB RAM which was just snazzy in the day, but I know doesn't cut the mustard now - is it really worth my while trying to put Leopard on there or should I clean reinstall Tiger to get it running smoothly again?

If Leopard is worth it can I get it off the iMac or its discs before upgrading that to SL? I understand the discs are machine specific, but can I hook the machines together and get Leopard onto the PB using Target Mode?
As the DVDs are machine specific, the DVDs won't work with your PB.

You can give cloning a try via CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper and the Target Disk Mode, but your Mac might be better off with Tiger, as 1.25GHz might feel a bit sluggish with Leopard.
 

iThinkergoiMac

macrumors 68030
Jan 20, 2010
2,666
4
Terra
No, that won't work. The version of Leopard that came with your iMac is Intel-specific. It doesn't have all the necessary pieces to run on a PPC machine. I have Leopard on my PBG4 (though I have 2 GB RAM which makes a huge difference) and it runs fine. You'll need a retail version of Leopard, though.
 

Morris

macrumors regular
Dec 19, 2006
172
83
London, Europe
I run Leopard on a G4 Powerbook with 1.5GHz CPU and 1.25 GB RAM (the max. for this model) and it runs just fine. Definitely an improvement over running Tiger. Also, there is a lot of software that won't run on Tiger but will run fine on Leopard.

See if you can get your hands on some extra memory for your G4 and a retail DVD of Leopard and you should be fine.
 

cjmillsnun

macrumors 68020
Aug 28, 2009
2,399
45
No, that won't work. The version of Leopard that came with your iMac is Intel-specific. It doesn't have all the necessary pieces to run on a PPC machine. I have Leopard on my PBG4 (though I have 2 GB RAM which makes a huge difference) and it runs fine. You'll need a retail version of Leopard, though.
I disagree that the version is Intel specific.

I have installed Leopard on a Power Mac G4 Quicksilver by imaging 10.5.8 from my MacBook (originally supplied with 10.5.6) because the DVD drive on my G4 had died and I couldn't use my 10.5 retail disk.
 

iThinkergoiMac

macrumors 68030
Jan 20, 2010
2,666
4
Terra
Huh. Well, I know for a fact some of the ones shipped with Intel Macs are Intel only... a friend of mine tried to installed Leopard to his fiance's PPC Mac from her Intel iMac and it wouldn't do it because it was Intel only.
 

Winni

macrumors 68040
Oct 15, 2008
3,140
1,016
Germany.
I'm about to upgrade my iMac 24" to Snow Leopard (late adopter I know) - can I (and should I) upgrade my 6.5 year-old Powerbook G4 to Leopard using the iMac's original restore discs, or as it's Intel and the PB is PPC will that not be possible?

It's 1.25Ghz with 512 MB RAM which was just snazzy in the day, but I know doesn't cut the mustard now - is it really worth my while trying to put Leopard on there or should I clean reinstall Tiger to get it running smoothly again?

If Leopard is worth it can I get it off the iMac or its discs before upgrading that to SL? I understand the discs are machine specific, but can I hook the machines together and get Leopard onto the PB using Target Mode?
Yes you can, SuperDuper! is your friend - an Intel Leopard install can actually also be used on a PowerPC machine (I've done it), the entire OS is a Universal build. So you can clone the installation to the PowerPC, provided that the target disk isn't too small.

However, the only G4 machine that I ever saw running Leopard at an acceptable speed was a 17" PowerBook G4 1.67 GHz with 2 GB RAM. The other G4s that I have with lower specs are a pain to use with Leopard, and those would be a 12" PowerBook G4 1 GHz with 768 MB and a 17" iMac G4 1 GHz with 1 GB RAM. Leopard just crawls on those boxes. You're MUCH better off installing Ubuntu Linux 9.04 for PowerPC on G4 Macs - that OS is really fast on that old hardware.
 

Winni

macrumors 68040
Oct 15, 2008
3,140
1,016
Germany.
Huh. Well, I know for a fact some of the ones shipped with Intel Macs are Intel only... a friend of mine tried to installed Leopard to his fiance's PPC Mac from her Intel iMac and it wouldn't do it because it was Intel only.
OS X versions shipped with a specific Mac actually run a check whether you are installing it on the machine it was bundled with. It probably didn't refuse the installation because of the CPU architecture, but because it was not the machine type it belonged to. For instance, a Mac Pro disc will refuse to install on an iMac, and an iMac disk won't install on a MacBook Pro.

I've installed the retail box of Leopard on an Intel Mac Pro, started the Mac Pro in target disk mode, connected it via FireWire to my Powerbook G4 and then booted the PowerBook G4 from the Mac Pro hard disk. To be honest, I was very surprised that this actually worked, but it did. It also worked the other way around. Leopard was a real universal build.
 

Event Horizon

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 17, 2007
13
0
Way Out West
your Mac might be better off with Tiger,
Thanks guys, in the light of all you've said, I think I'm better off sticking with Tiger. The Powerbook is getting on a bit now with a pretty much exhausted battery - the cost and hassle of adding RAM and then trying the Super Duper clone etc doesn't excite me in the circumstances. I'll start saving for a MBP or second iteration iPad.

Thanks for your help - I really appreciate it
 

Arrandale

macrumors regular
Feb 24, 2010
166
1
I'm about to upgrade my iMac 24" to Snow Leopard (late adopter I know) - can I (and should I) upgrade my 6.5 year-old Powerbook G4 to Leopard using the iMac's original restore discs, or as it's Intel and the PB is PPC will that not be possible?

It's 1.25Ghz with 512 MB RAM which was just snazzy in the day, but I know doesn't cut the mustard now - is it really worth my while trying to put Leopard on there or should I clean reinstall Tiger to get it running smoothly again?

If Leopard is worth it can I get it off the iMac or its discs before upgrading that to SL? I understand the discs are machine specific, but can I hook the machines together and get Leopard onto the PB using Target Mode?
Target Mode will get you to the g4's internal HDD... not the install disk

sorry mate, you're going to have to buy leopard for your g4 separately
 

iThinkergoiMac

macrumors 68030
Jan 20, 2010
2,666
4
Terra
I've installed the retail box of Leopard on an Intel Mac Pro, started the Mac Pro in target disk mode, connected it via FireWire to my Powerbook G4 and then booted the PowerBook G4 from the Mac Pro hard disk. To be honest, I was very surprised that this actually worked, but it did. It also worked the other way around. Leopard was a real universal build.
That's because you installed it with the retail version, which has the PPC code no matter what you install it on. Your situation is different than what I said. My friend knows what he's talking about, obviously it refused to install because he was trying on a non-iMac, but he couldn't get it to boot TDM like you described either.

When I said I knew for a fact, I meant I knew for a fact. ;)