PPC and Leopard as Daily Driver

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by MacSoftware3, Jun 26, 2017.

  1. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #76
    Everyone signed up to the same forum rules. Those who don't agree with them are free to not post and take their patronage elsewhere. ;)
     
  2. amagichnich, Jun 29, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017

    amagichnich macrumors regular

    amagichnich

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    #77
    Every law, every rule is man made and can therefore undergo a process of change.
    but youre right, I'll shut my mouth (better said keyboard) now and stick to the rules ;)
     
  3. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #78
    Let's try and bring this thread back on topic.
    Quite a bit faster, yes. Will be close to 2x CPU performance compared to your single 700 MHz. Doesn't mean browsing the web will be quick, but certainly more tolerable.

    As for the ATI Radeon 9200SE, it will need to be flashed to work. The best advice I can give is to simply do some research on that.
     
  4. LightBulbFun macrumors 6502a

    LightBulbFun

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    #79
    your forgetting that the Dual 867 MDD also has 1MB of L3 cache per CPU :)

    Good L2/L3 cache on a PPC mac is a god send when it comes to boosting performance as the 60x/Max Bus was/is very slow compared to competing x86 Buses

    so the G4s often end up bandwidth starved from the main memory.

    so not only does the MDD have the leg up in number of CPUs and clock speed, it also has the leg up on the eMac because it has L3 cache (not to mention a 133Mhz bus vs the 100Mhz bus on the eMac)

    so @MacSoftware3 overall you should see a nice jump moving from the eMac to the MDD :)
     
  5. Hrududu macrumors 68020

    Hrududu

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    #80
    Thats a good machine. I've not used a dual 867, but I have a DP 1.25 and 1.42 which are excellent machines. TenFourFox does pretty well on dual CPU systems, so I think you'll be very pleased with the web browsing experience no matter which browser you go with.
     
  6. amagichnich macrumors regular

    amagichnich

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    #81
    Regarding L3 cache... I always thought L3 is only used in multi core / multi cpu systems to keeo the data coherent between the cores/cpus. So obviously a DP system has to have L3 cache. But why have some of the TiBooks L3 as well?
    And why have later ppcs no L3 anymore?
    Or a I completely mistaken?
     
  7. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #82
    The cache is used to store instructions for the CPU to execute. The exact way it's used depends on the architecture, but having more is generally a good thing because it's a LOT faster to fetch instructions from the cache than from the RAM or elsewhere.

    On a G4, L3 cache generally is of great benefit. The original 7400 series only had L2 cache and it was off-die. If you look at a 7400 CPU card, you can see the external L2 cache chips. The 7450 series moved the L2 cache onto the CPU die, which has the advantage of being physically closer to the CPU. Remember that electrons move at the speed of light, and even in the G4 series we were starting to get into clock speeds where physical distances ARE significant when moving data around. Some 7450 series processors then added an interface for an external L3 cache.

    Later G4 processors used in Macs did eliminate the L3 entirely but both increased the size and speed of the L2 cache. 7448 processors, for example, have 1mb of full speed L2 cache.
     
  8. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #83
    Looks like I missed out whilst I've been in hospital for an operation!
     
  9. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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  10. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #85
    All good, thanks :)
    --- Post Merged, Jun 30, 2017 ---
    I've recently compared a 400Mhz Powerbook G3 (now sold unfortunately) and my 800 Mhz iBook G3 - despite having twice the CPU speed, more memory and better graphics it couldn't compete with the Powerbook with it's 1Mb L2 cache. Just shows how import that cache is on lower PPC hardware.
     
  11. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #86
    Most Macs I've used are fast enough with period OSs and software. I look back to my computers like the 512Ke as examples of that. Of course good high end computers can be pushed well past their prime, but there are some Macs that are just plain slow no matter what you do to them.

    A lot of the low end Performa models are like that, as is the first generation MacBook Air(1,1).

    The real standout in the "slowest Mac of all time" competition, though, to me is the 233mhz Wallstreet, often derisively known as the "Mainstreet." Aside from its terrible 12" passive matrix screen, the real problem with it is the lack of L2 cache. Even running OS 8.6 it's slow-mine will sometimes lag when I'm typing in Word 97. BTW, I do have the RAM maxed in it-offhand it's 384mb. In use, it feels slower to me than older computers like the Kanga G3(mine has 160mb of RAM) or PB 3400C.

    I should say that the above doesn't apply to the 233mhz PDQ which mercifully added L2, or to a high spec Wallstreet(I have a 292 and it's fine).
     
  12. kajac123 macrumors newbie

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    Jul 17, 2017
    #87
    I'm using a dual-processor PowerMac G5 early 2005 as one of my main computers. I recently picked it up for about 60 $ with plans of upgrading the motherboard to an Intel one and install Sierra, but it actually is quite comfortable to use as it is. I am surprised about how well it works in 2017. So my plans of upgrading it is currently on hiatus.

    I use iWork 09 for productivity (which I also use on my modern MacBook Pro with Sierra, dont like the new iWork suite), Spotify and iTunes for Music, VLC for video, and LeopardWebkit and TenFourFox for browsing. And it is totally useful even today.

    A fun fact is that several of the cheap Windows laptops and tablets sold today are still slower than this G5.
     
  13. amagichnich macrumors regular

    amagichnich

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    #88
    Depends on what you do with them. They perform better with web codecs and video codecs as they are hardware supported. But especially in multi tasking even a G4 outperforms a cheap modern device. On my Powerbook G4 I sometimes run easily 10+ apps. My mum's 2in1 tablet thing isn't capable of multitasking at all - a few tabs in Firefox and Word open and the thing gets damn slow :D have fun with your mighty G5!!
     
  14. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #89
    What plans do you have for the case when/if you upgrade the motherboard to an 'Intel' one?

    The layout of an Intel MacPro is much different than a G5. If you mean, you plan to gut it and install a Windows motherboard than there will also be case surgery. I'm just asking because if you have an idea that there will be some sort of straight out swap without any case modification you're going to be in for a few surprises.
     
  15. kajac123 macrumors newbie

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    Jul 17, 2017
    #90
    My plan is to replace the motherboard with a mATX-one (that is compatible with OSX Sierra). I do not want to modify the case, as I want to be able to reinstall the G5 components and make it back to a stock G5 later. My idea is to place a mATX motherboard in the centre of the machine, and create a new connector panel with USBs and sound (and maybe ethernet) to the existing port holes at the rear of the powermac. Then I plan to use a PCI metalplate to mount a display connector that is wired from the graphics card. I also plan to use the existing components like the fans, harddisk (with an additional SSD), DVD-writer and the powerbutton w/USB-plug. Here is someone who has done it similair to what I'm thinking.

    The only modifications I would need to do is to create a few holes to mount the motherboard. Maybe I don't need to do that if I create an adapterplate first :)


    Anyhow, I don't think I'm going to do this just yet. I quite like using it as a genuine PowerMac G5. It is much more capable than I ever imagined when I bought it :)
     
  16. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #91
    Interesting idea. - I like the idea of a stealth Hackintosh. That said, it would probably work out cheaper in the long run to buy a broken G5 just for the case and parts as they cost less than a decent PC case nowadays.
     
  17. kajac123 macrumors newbie

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    #92
    Probably, but getting hold of one of these machines where I live (Norway) has been quite a challenge! It seems that people just think they're worthless and throw them in the trash. And when I find them, they are usually located in Oslo, and I live in Bergen (on the opposite side of the country). The shipping cost would have exceeded the price of the machine. But I'm happy that I now have one that is in almost mint condition. No dents or any other damage on the case, just a few scratches on the side panel :)

    But the hackintosh project is currently on hiatus, as I love using it as a G5-mac. I actually plan to upgrade the memory. It has 1,5 GB now, but I consider upgrading it to 4 or even 8 gb.
     
  18. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #93
    Ram is a fairly cheap upgrade. I just dropped in 8GB on my Quad to make it maxed out at 16GB. About $30.

    Some of the old ram went into my 2.3Ghz DC which gave it 6.5GB I believe and my dual G5 at work has 3.5GB I believe.
     
  19. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #94
    Definitely go for more memory, Leopard will appreciate it. Being an early 2005 G5 it should have a 128Mb VRAM GPU - if for some reason it's been fitted with a 64Mb Nvdia card, swapping to another with more VRAM will make the GUI more snappy.
     
  20. MysticCow macrumors 6502a

    MysticCow

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    #95
    In other news, Celery Processors and Intel Integrated Graphics still suck!
     
  21. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #96
    4GB should be enough, I certainly wouldn't pay a lot more to go to 8GB. I had the RAM lying around to upgrade my older 7,2 to the full 8GB. Leopard and period apps won't use much above 4GB except in exceptional circumstances ... and that's with as many browser tabs open as the CPUs can deal with and all of Creative Suite opening large documents!
     
  22. AphoticD macrumors 6502a

    AphoticD

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    #97
    It sounds like it's going to be a solid machine. The PC card won't work on the G4 without flashing it. If it's not possible (or too tricky) to flash, try searching for a Mac AGP 4x card which supports Core Image such as
    * Nvidia GeForce 7800 GS
    * ATI Radeon X800 XT
    * ATI Radeon 9800 Pro
    * ATI Radeon 9600

    (most to least powerful).

    The 9800 Pro Special Mac Edition (256MB AGP 8x DVI/ADC) card has been the only Mac graphics card to fail on me after a decade or so of solid use. Cost me nearly a grand when it was new as an aftermarket addition to my Dual G5. After going through this failure and since rebuilding my PowerPC collection, I've switched all my dedicated PPC cards across to Nvidia.

    These include a stock FX 5200 (64MB) and a whopper of a GeForce 6800 GT (256MB) in two different dual G5 7,2's and the ultimate in the form of a Quadro FX 4500 (512MB) in a DC G5 11,2 - These all operate beautifully as Core Image supported cards. I've found however that even the stock 64MB card is smooth as silk for general use. Admittedly, it does struggle with 3D games and apps like Motion. But, I like it as it runs cool, silent and has a generally low power consumption.

    The point of my stock card story is you don't always need to go for the most powerful graphics card just because. The more expensive the card, typically, the hotter and louder they run and the more juice they suck. A passively cooled Radeon 9600 would probably suffice as a solid Core Image supported option in a MDD G4.

    Max out to 2GB of RAM if you can and to give it peak performance, either drop in an SSD or a new 7200rpm HDD and it will kick along for many many years to come.

    The major benefit of the G4 tower over the eMac is expansion (and internal space). Install a SATA 1.5Gbps PCI card (such as the Sonnet Tempo or similar) for bootable internal SATA drive options and a PCI USB 2.0 card for better peripheral I/O throughput.

    From my experience, TenFourFox (and WebKit/Safari) run better in Leopard than Tiger on the same hardware. I'm not sure if anyone has noted this, but although Tiger feels snappier, it lags behind Leopard when it comes down to getting work done. File transfers, app loading, web page loading, boot times, etc all appear more responsive, but ultimately take longer to complete. Perhaps Leopard's under-the-hood improvements came at a cost of reducing priority to the UI to deliver better performance from the underlying operating system features.

    The G4 Dual 867Mhz with 1MB L3 cache will hum along nicely under Leopard and give you more (modern-ish) software options than running Tiger, Panther (or Mac OS 9). It's always a good idea to keep Tiger (and/or Panther) on a smaller partition in the event you need or want to boot the older OS for Classic support, or a specific app. I tend to keep a small 10GB Tiger drive setup on my G5s with a full OS install, Classic, Xcode Dev Tools, X11 and general maintenance software (DiskWarrior, Speed Tools, Onyx, Carbon Copy Cloner, among others).

    When the MDD arrives, post your pics and put the old beast to work! I strongly believe that older Mac hardware can perform as a daily driver if you can live within a few limitations. Sometimes great things have come from such limitations. I would not want to begin to count how many hours I've wasted in my life due to my Macs having too many options - Bootcamp / Windows, Gaming, Linux, THE INTERNET! Just imagine how productive we could be if there were no distractions! Ahem.. speaking of which, I better get back to it.

    -AphoticD
     
  23. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #98
    I hadn't noticed. But then, Tiger was removed from all my personal installations as soon as I got Leopard. With certain exceptions that's all I use.

    It would go a ways to explaining to me however, all the problems I had with moving, copying and deleting files from our Windows server way back when. Tiger was very unstable in a mixed Windows/Mac/Windows Server environment. And I had to do a lot of tricks to make it able to access the server in the first place.
     
  24. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #99
    I'd agree with that one. Leopard/Snow Leopard were very stable in a mixed environment. Then we got Lion. Apple knew best and threw away the open source samba and their in house replacement was ... rubbish.
     
  25. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

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    #100
    Totally agree there. SMB wasn't fixed until Yosemite. Had to use SMB1 if I want to work on InDesign files on the network. Otherwise, try and save and bam ID quits!
     

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