Run iBook logic board as server without GPU?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by poiihy, Mar 11, 2015.

  1. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #1
    I have the logic board of my Radeongated iBook (I have all parts actually). It has the infamous GPU failure (I call it Radeongate because they are Radeon GPUs, just like the 2011 MBPs and some iMacs).

    Can I run this logic board as a server of some sort without the GPU? And can I pry the GPU off the logic board? Or will it refuse to work without a GPU?

    And how would I manage it? I think how I would do it, is I would first install an OS on a hard drive using another PPC Mac, then set it up to autologin with screen sharing and SSH, etc, enabled. Then I can remotely connect to it and manage it.
     
  2. chrfr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    #2
    This isn't possible. Attempting to remove a chip by force will damage the board irreparably.
     
  3. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #3
    Ok then can I use it with the non-working GPU left on the board?
     
  4. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #4
    No. It will fail to initialize the GPU and refuse to boot.
     
  5. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #5
    Are you sure? When I was fiddling with it I got an image to show a few times and I saw the ? because there was no HDD, so it was working properly. Maybe it would initialize because some pins are connected, but not work because not all pins are connected.
     
  6. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #6
    You wouldn't be able to see that if the GPU had completely failed. You wouldn't even get a chime.
     
  7. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #7
    But I've always gotten a chine when I started it, just no screen. Always a chime. And when fiddling with the chip (pushing it around and stuff) sometimes i would get light and maybe even image. And in that image I would see the ? Icon because there is no HDD.

    No the GPU is not completely failed, it's just bad solder joints. Just like the 2011 MBPs.

    But I always get a chime.
     
  8. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #8
    Does it behave the same way with an external display, to rule out an issue with the display cable?
     
  9. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #9
    Yes. It's the GPU soldering for sure.
     
  10. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #10
    In that case what you want to do may be possible, since when OS X boots up without a display attached it tends to bypass the GPU and emulate a GPU using the CPU when Screen Sharing (which of course also makes the refresh rate much slower). No guarantees though.

    ----------

    In any case, an iBook wouldn't make a great server due to its 10/100BASE-T Ethernet port.
     
  11. poiihy, Mar 11, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2015

    poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #11
    Can an iBook boot from USB stick?

    This one has two USB ports so I suppose I can...

    On Mactracker it looks like all iBook G3s have USB 1.1 ports. That sucks :(
     
  12. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #12
    Although I've never tried it, I'm sure a white iBook G3 would, and would probably even show up in boot manager(although admittedly that doesn't help you any).

    Be patient...

    I've booted my TiBook in Leopard a few times with an external hard drive via USB. It takes probably 10-15 minutes for it to get to a functioning desktop.
     
  13. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #13
    It helps because then I can install OS X and set it up on USB stick and boot from it on the iBook. Then connect to it with screen sharing.
    But the problem is... how do I connect to it? I need to know the IP... actually that is no problem. I can just connect to the router and see what the IP of the iBook is.
     
  14. desantii macrumors 6502

    desantii

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    Sep 9, 2006
    Location:
    Aurora, IL
    #14
    IF it's really solder joints and you are adventurous you could "bake" the motherboard to try and reflow the solder...
     
  15. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #15
    yeah I know that but it would just fail again, and also if I do that then I have to put it back together, and hell no, I don't want to put it back together!! :eek:

    I am just going to sell the good parts and try to make use of the board.
     
  16. Zotaccian macrumors 6502a

    Zotaccian

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #16
    Do something similar :D

    [​IMG]

    It also slows down thiefs when they are trying to steal your server and prevents you accidentally knocking it down from table etc. :rolleyes:

    But yes, solder joints would need to be rejoined for the machine to be reliable, which I assume is very important for a server.
     
  17. weckart macrumors 68040

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    Nov 7, 2004
    #17
    If it has USB 2.0 then a USB-Ethernet adapter should double the theoretical throughput. That should be enough for a simple file server.
     
  18. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #18
    Clamping down an iBook like that is a very very bad idea. That is where the hard drive is and if you clamp it too hard you can crush the hard drive.
     
  19. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #19
    While it is possible to run a Mac without a GPU (like an Xserve), it is not going to be reliable. I am going to assume you mean a G3, which was limited to 10/100, USB 1.1, and FW 400. Couple that with the fact that the CPU must do all GPU work when remotely connected, the slow and rather small hard drives, and heat issues and you have a lackluster server.
     
  20. poiihy thread starter macrumors 68020

    poiihy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    #20

    What do you mean it would not be "reliable"? You mean it would be slow, because of all the limitations you stated, but it would be reliable, as long as the system is not depended on the GPU.
    There would be no heat issues as this is just a bare logic board and I can put any heatsink/fan arrangement.
    This logic board has no hard drive with it so you can't determine anything about the hard drives.
    The only problem with this is that it has it's limitations like you mentioned, but it still would be a good server to tinker with and for light tasks, like a file server. But it's not gonna run a Minecraft server, that's for sure. (I could try though :D )
     
  21. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #21
    I have seen some Radeongated logic boards simply fail to boot overall after a while...

    It will be slow and at most would be a toy of a server.
     

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