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TheShortTimer

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Mar 27, 2017
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Seeing as I won't be going anywhere within the near future due to the COVID-19 UK lockdown, I've been thinking that now would be a good time to iron out the problems affecting my 1999 Sawtooth. The spec is:

1.5 GB RAM
130 GB IDE HDD
1Ghz Sonnet CPU
ATI Radeon 7000 64MB DDR AGP
M-AUDIO 2496 PCI card
NEC USB 2.0 PCI card.

It has a triple boot with Tiger, Panther and OS 9 but rarely chimes when booting Tiger or Panther. I've tried the most obvious solutions such as zapping the PRAM and pressing the PMU button but to no avail. More significantly, in the past few weeks whilst using Tiger I have experienced freezes during video playback - the computer will completely lock up and endlessly repeat a snipped from the last sound emitted prior to the freeze. This occurs identically with VLC and QuickTime and probably other players.

On one occasion, the standard kernel panic "restart your computer" notification was displayed, with the stuck audio continuing to play. Here's a download link (on MEGA) to a 30 second WAV recording of the looping sounds in case it offers any clues. I've run the extended AHT and it gave the Sawtooth a clean bill of health but I'm not sure how much stock can be placed in this. Also I should point out that the onboard battery has expired and needs to be replaced.

What do you think might be the culprit(s)? My instincts, which are a legacy of my days as a Windows user are to choose the nuclear option and reinstall Tiger from scratch but perhaps that might be a drastic option. In case anyone is curious about the condition of the logic board, I offer the photos below and I'd also appreciate some advice on how to safely clean the board and components without risking ESD! ?

DqPV4kk.jpg

TvomBSA.jpg

muCtg8r.jpg

BADjkfG.jpg

NmuwPVs.jpg
 
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RogerWilco6502

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Jan 12, 2019
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Seeing as I won't be going anywhere within the near future due to the COVID-19 UK lockdown, I've been thinking that now would be a good time to iron out the problems affecting my 1999 Sawtooth. The spec is:

1.5 GB RAM
130 GB IDE HDD
1Ghz Sonnet CPU
ATI Radeon 7000 64MB DDR AGP
M-AUDIO 2496 PCI card
NEC USB 2.0 PCI card.

It has a triple boot with Tiger, Panther and OS 9 but rarely chimes when booting Tiger or Panther. I've tried the most obvious solutions such as zapping the PRAM and pressing the PMU button but to no avail. More significantly, in the past few weeks whilst using Tiger I have experienced freezes during video playback - the computer will completely lock up and endlessly repeat a snipped from the last sound emitted prior to the freeze. This occurs identically with VLC and QuickTime and probably other players.

On one occasion, the standard kernel panic "restart your computer" notification was displayed, with the stuck audio continuing to play. Here's a download link (on MEGA) to a 30 second WAV recording of the looping sounds in case it offers any clues. I've run the extended AHT and it gave the Sawtooth a clean bill of health but I'm not sure how much stock can be placed in this. Also I should point out that the onboard battery has expired and needs to be replaced.

What do you think might be the culprit(s)? My instincts, which are a legacy of my days as a Windows user are to choose the nuclear option and reinstall Tiger from scratch but perhaps that might be a drastic option. In case anyone is curious about the condition of the logic board, I offer the photos below and I'd also appreciate some advice on how to safely clean the board and components without risking ESD! ?

DqPV4kk.jpg

TvomBSA.jpg

muCtg8r.jpg

BADjkfG.jpg

NmuwPVs.jpg
I am really bad with troubleshooting, but I do have a few ideas. First off, perform integrity checks on the Tiger and Panther partitions. The fact that it hardly ever bongs though would indicate a hardware issue or a firmware issue. Try removing each expansion card and see if any of them might be causing your issue (are there any cards that OS 9 ignores but OS X sees?) Also, I always get confused about which machines get upset when the battery is missing/dead, but that is probably also something to try.
 
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TheShortTimer

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Mar 27, 2017
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I am really bad with troubleshooting, but I do have a few ideas. First off, perform integrity checks on the Tiger and Panther partitions.

You're a better troubleshooter than you realise. :) I did exactly that a few days ago with TechTool Pro 4 and everything was reported as ok.

Try removing each expansion card and see if any of them might be causing your issue (are there any cards that OS 9 ignores but OS X sees?) Also, I always get confused about which machines get upset when the battery is missing/dead, but that is probably also something to try.

The PCI cards have been removed. It's worth noting that the 2496 was installed for years without any problems and I experienced the freezing prior to installing the USB 2.0 card but it's definitely worth seeing if there's a difference with their absence. I'll replace the battery asap.

The fact that it hardly ever bongs though would indicate a hardware issue or a firmware issue.

I've run a few tests whilst typing this reply and the Sawtooth chimes when booting to OS 9 but never with Tiger and Panther - unless, they were booted after choosing Startup Disk within the Control Panels of OS 9. Speaking of which, of every 6 boots to OS 9, 2 of them result in in the computer freezing with only the watch icon and the clock displayed.

What might conclusively establish whether the freezing is a hardware or software issue is to transfer the HDD to my QS and see if the problems persist on a different machine...
 
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RogerWilco6502

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You're a better troubleshooter than you realise. :) I did exactly that a few days ago with TechTool Pro 4 and everything was reported as ok.
Thanks ;)

The PCI cards have been removed. It's worth noting that the 2496 was installed for years without any problems and I experienced the freezing prior to installing the USB 2.0 card but it's definitely worth seeing if there's a difference with their absence. I'll replace the battery asap.
Ok, interesting. Do you know if this system is picky about the battery?

I've run a few tests whilst typing this reply and the Sawtooth chimes when booting to OS 9 but never with Tiger and Panther - unless, they were booted after choosing Startup Disk within the Control Panels of OS 9. Speaking of which, of every 6 boots to OS 9, 2 of them result in in the computer freezing with only the watch icon and the clock displayed.

What might conclusively establish whether the freezing is a hardware or software issue is to transfer the HDD to my QS and see if the problems persist on a different machine...
Yeah, I wish you the best. Another idea I just had is that maybe there's bad memory, but AHT would have found that.
 

reukiodo

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Nov 22, 2013
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I have similar issues with fresh install of OS X freezing, but I haven't tried OS 9 or replacing the battery. I think it still has the original ATI Rage 128 GPU, and possibly a USB2 card.
 
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for this

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Nov 18, 2014
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I would try reseating the RAM sticks.

For the sound problem, is the speaker rim still in good shaped? Mine (MDD) is crumbling.
 
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wnlewis

macrumors regular
Jan 20, 2017
176
42
Newton, Kansas
The battery would be my first guess, and yes, you must use the correct battery. The primary source seems to be a company in Israel.

Another thing that helps is to physically remove the battery, and the power cord from the back of the computer. Leave it unplugged overnight. Then, making sure you have a good battery, put the battery back in, install the cord, hold down Command + Option + P + R and let it chime at least three times.

Although probably not likely, the Sawtooth G4's are from the time of bad capacitors. Take a close look. If any are bulged or leaking you will either, 1.) buy a new motherboard, or 2.) if your soldering skills are good, replace the capacitors. If you buy a new motherboard, try to get one with a Uni North = 7 or larger, that allows dual processor upgrades, and was a newer upgrade to the Sawtooth (AGP) line.

You could also have RAM that is going bad, or just on the edge.

If you can get it, try to get a copy of DiskWarrior (DW) 4.1, DVD Rev. 810. That is "go to" software for OS 10 through 10.5.8. It can also fix partition/volume wrapper issues. If you have two or more partitions, and one partition seems to be unrepairable, try going to the other partition and see if that one can be fixed. If that one can be fixed, then go back to the first one and try again. This is somewhat like trying to fix a stone wall. If you can get the stones in on one side, it may make it possible to put the stones in on the other.

If you do find partition issues, you really need to check the drive health and/or make sure all drives/partitions are equal to, or less than, 127.8 Gb's. The Sawtooth G4's have significant logical block addressing (LBA) issues on the IDE bus. There is a way around that, but that's another subject.

The other software to get is Drive Genus 2. In some ways it is more capable than DW, but it does not sort out software issues as well.
 
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z970

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Jun 2, 2017
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For the sound problem, is the speaker rim still in good shaped? Mine (MDD) is crumbling.

I've found that, depending on the damage, they can be repaired with Elmer's school glue (preferably the clear type). I've had good results from that, even if it requires smothering the entire cone with a layer.

I've actually fixed several speakers that way. But just make sure the application is completely dry before playing any sound.
 

Eriamjh1138@DAN

macrumors 6502a
Sep 16, 2007
864
850
BFE, MI
I’ll bite.
Looking at the pics, I see lots of dust and crud in crevices, on components, between micro leads, and possibly some dendritic growth around small surface mount components. I recommend a full enema. Uhh... I mean, a full cleaning. Disconnect everything. Break it down to the PCB and remove all cards and connections.

Clean the mobo with flux remover, 70/30 isopropyl alcohol, compressed air, a toothbrush, and a six pack of beer (for yourself). Completely air dry, blow dry, sun dry, etc. the mobo and parts, then reassemble. Wear anti-static straps connected to chassis ground (ground of a plug or a metal pipe in the house).

Humidity and temperature could be your problem that contribute to the faults and carp-outs, but it’s worth a shot.
also, a new pram battery if you haven’t in the last 5 years.

I don’t see any bad caps. It is from the beginning of the era of Capacitor Plague, but my experience is that became more prominent in Apple G5s from about 2004-2005.
 
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TheShortTimer

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Mar 27, 2017
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I would try reseating the RAM sticks.

I'll give that a go, can't hurt. :)

For the sound problem, is the speaker rim still in good shaped? Mine (MDD) is crumbling.

The speaker has deteriorated but that's not the problem. It's the sound looping when the computer freezes.


I’ll bite.
Looking at the pics, I see lots of dust and crud in crevices, on components, between micro leads, and possibly some dendritic growth around small surface mount components. I recommend a full enema. Uhh... I mean, a full cleaning. Disconnect everything. Break it down to the PCB and remove all cards and connections.

Clean the mobo with flux remover, 70/30 isopropyl alcohol, compressed air, a toothbrush, and a six pack of beer (for yourself). Completely air dry, blow dry, sun dry, etc. the mobo and parts, then reassemble. Wear anti-static straps connected to chassis ground (ground of a plug or a metal pipe in the house).

Thanks for the cleaning directions. I'll order the the flux remover and 70/30 isopropyl alcohol. The rest, I already own but I'll substitute the beer for a soft drink because I'm teetotal. ;)

Humidity and temperature could be your problem that contribute to the faults and carp-outs, but it’s worth a shot.
also, a new pram battery if you haven’t in the last 5 years.

Yeah I did mention that the battery was dead. I've ordered a pack of half-AA 3.6v batteries because I have several machines which need replacements.

I don’t see any bad caps. It is from the beginning of the era of Capacitor Plague, but my experience is that became more prominent in Apple G5s from about 2004-2005.

Again thanks for checking. I did wonder if that was a contributor due to my experience with the iMac G5 and their notorious capacitor failures. As you can see in my signature, I have one with that affliction. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, I'm holed up indoors and will put the ample time at my disposal towards carrying out a overhaul. Once it's complete, I'll post back with the results.

Thanks for replying all. This is a great community. :)
 
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TheShortTimer

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Well then, that makes two of us.

Being anti-sugar, I'll usually opt for water instead. Its neutral qualities and low to unattached price tags make for a rather attractive choice, anyway. :)

Come to think of it, you're right. I'll drink some tea instead and forego the soda drinks. The artificial sweetener laced alternatives are just as bad...
 
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z970

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Jun 2, 2017
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Come to think of it, you're right. I'll drink some tea instead and forego the soda drinks. The artificial sweetener laced alternatives are just as bad...

They are at minimal just as bad, oftentimes even worse. All the diet sodas without any sugar make heavy use of aspartame, a synthetic sweetener. Insult to injury, they are often accompanied by blue / red / yellow / rainbow dye number 40 (which ought to belong nowhere near the common western diet).

This is just one account, but the stuff clearly has an at best shady history.

And that's to say nothing of the enamel eroding effects that exposure to carbonated water has on the teeth, which unfortunately more or less extends out to sparkling water as well.

No wonder I've got a certain philosophy...: there is beauty in simplicity. :)

No need to be entertained by fancy, over-marketed products poorly designed for ingestion...
 
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TheShortTimer

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I will continue to update this thread as I work through the recommendations.

So far, I've replaced the battery (it has passed on and gone to meet its maker) and run the Sawtooth with all of the expansion cards removed, pressed the CUDA and zapped the PRAM several times but the computer still doesn't chime when booting into OS X. It does however always chime with 9.2.2. On 1 every 4 boots to OS 9 results in a frozen desktop with the wristwatch icon.

For the next phase of troubleshooting, I'll install OS 9 and Tiger from scratch on a spare drive and then see whether the problems persist with both. If they do then I'll know that there's a problem with the logic board.
 

1042686

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Sep 3, 2016
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Hmm, probably coincidence but my 10.4.11 B&W never bongs either.

That & Fermented alcoholic beverages are fantastic. I’ve lately been especially fond of craft hard ciders with a floral nose from European yeasts.

Deelish.
 

z970

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Jun 2, 2017
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"'E's not pinin'! 'E's passed on! This parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! 'E's expired and gone to meet 'is maker! 'E's a stiff! Bereft of life, 'e rests in peace! If you hadn't nailed 'im to the perch 'e'd be pushing up the daisies! 'Is metabolic processes are now 'istory! 'E's off the twig! 'E's kicked the bucket, 'e's shuffled off 'is mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisible!!

THIS IS AN EX-PARROT!!"

Ahhh, the subtle brilliance of Ponty Mython...

Never gets old. :D
 

TheShortTimer

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Ahhh, the subtle brilliance of Ponty Mython...

Never gets old. :D

There's a credit sequence for the programmers in the early Mac that for the life of me I can't remember right now but it was a homage to those of the TV series. Kind of ironic given that Cleese appeared in TV adverts by Compaq that took shots at the Mac (and also IBM's products). They must've realised that it wasn't personal - strictly business.

Here's another good one that I stumbled across, courtesy of the legendary David Pogue:

z1rb1JP.png
 

Slix

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Mar 24, 2010
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I don't remember exactly how this works for dual/triple boots, but is it possible you had the system audio muted before shutting down that particular partition? So, for instance, you had OS 9 on full volume but Tiger on silent, so the startup chime doesn't occur?
 

TheShortTimer

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I don't remember exactly how this works for dual/triple boots, but is it possible you had the system audio muted before shutting down that particular partition? So, for instance, you had OS 9 on full volume but Tiger on silent, so the startup chime doesn't occur?

Here's the sound pane from System Preferences. The settings are identical in Tiger and Panther:

HV5VnWe.png


I installed Tiger from scratch on a spare drive and still the Sawtooth will not chime within OS X. It appears that there is a fault of some kind with the logic board because the Quicksilver chimes when booting from the Sawtooth's multi-OS HDD. Nonetheless, I'll continue with the clean up and decide if I want to transfer the optical drive (DVR-110D) and expansion cards over to the Quicksilver - seeing as its stock Pioneer DVR-104 can't read DVD+R's!
 

z970

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Jun 2, 2017
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It appears that there is a fault of some kind with the logic board because the Quicksilver chimes when booting from the Sawtooth's multi-OS HDD.

If it isn't freezing or kernel panicking, and System Profiler and Apple Service Diagnostics pass it, I wouldn't worry about the logic board at all, especially if the chime is present under OS 9.

I've actually started to unplug the internal speaker on my machines, because I don't want to keep hearing the same loud, low-quality "bong" every time a simple restart is performed.
 
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1042686

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I've actually started to unplug the internal speaker on my machines, because I don't want to keep hearing the same loud, low-quality "bong" every time a simple restart is performed.

I believe the bong is Apple's equivalent to "I'm Sorry Dave I'm afraid I can't do that".

:D
 

skinniezinho

Suspended
Jan 1, 2009
1,084
91
Portugal
Have you installed the firmware to your sonnet cpu upgrade?


I had a sawtooth with sonnet cpu and if I remember correctly it doesn’t always chimed.
You can use Rember to test the ram also. (I would test each stick individually )
If ram is ok and you cleaned it all, I would check for some broken hdd cable and install clean version of OSX
 
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TheShortTimer

macrumors 68030
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Mar 27, 2017
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If it isn't freezing or kernel panicking, and System Profiler and Apple Service Diagnostics pass it, I wouldn't worry about the logic board at all, especially if the chime is present under OS 9.

It does freeze up every so often when booting to OS 9 though. I could reinstall the Mac OS 9 Lives CD as part of the process of elimination.

Have you installed the firmware to your sonnet cpu upgrade?


Yes, from when I purchased the CPU in 2011. :) Although I'll have a look at the updater file. Thanks!

I had a sawtooth with sonnet cpu and if I remember correctly it doesn’t always chimed.

That's interesting.

You can use Rember to test the ram also. (I would test each stick individually )

Tech Tools Pro gave the RAM a clean bill of health but it couldn't hurt to see what Rember comes back with. It's not a program that I've heard of before. Here's the download URL for anyone else who'd like to try it.

If ram is ok and you cleaned it all, I would check for some broken hdd cable and install clean version of OSX

As I mentioned earlier, the Sawtooth's installations all chime when run from the Quicksilver and I did try a clean version of OS X but the problem remains.
 
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