trying to get OSX for my powerbook G3

northmac

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 31, 2005
2
0
I'm posting a question because I don't trust the salesguy at my local mac shop; he seemed more interested in selling me a new computer.

Basically, I have P-book G3 (meagre 128 RAM) that would need a RAM upgrade to, supposedly, 512 in order to handle OSX. The salesguy warned that this option would still be slow and that I should get a new computer, since the G4 is the minimum processor to run OSX effectively.

- Anybody with experience for this --- will the RAM upgrade (from 128 to 512) will be good enough? For me, I just need a computer that's a decent photo warehouse and music library.

- Other alternatives? Can you actually do a hardware upgrade to get a new processor chip (G3 to G4)?
 

stoid

macrumors 601
Absolutely upgrade to at least 512 MB of RAM. What is the processor speed? Anything under about 450 or 500Mhz might drag a little, though a buddy of mine had 10.2 installed on a 233Mhz G3 PowerBook until the screen fizzled and he bought a new iBook G4. It was rather slow, but it still worked. You'll need a DVD drive to properly install Tiger 10.4 (out later this month hopefully), but Panther 10.3 should install no problem.
 

northmac

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 31, 2005
2
0
Thanks for the advice.

re: MHz
I'm too much of a novice to know how to determine the MHz. Would I find this inidicated on the bottom the laptop? (Currently writing this from office computer, so I don't actually have the mac in front of me)
 

tdhurst

macrumors 601
Dec 27, 2003
4,146
256
Phoenix, AZ
No worrries

Don't worry about it, just get more ram. I ran jaguar on the OLDEST powerbook G3 (233, I believe) and it was acceptable.
If it has usb ports and 640 ram, it will be useable for basic tasks, but nothing processor intensive.
 

jayb2000

macrumors 6502a
Apr 18, 2003
748
0
RI -> CA -> ME
I am running 10.3 on my 400mhz G3 iMac with 512mb ram, it runs fine. It's not super speedy when importing CDs and I can't use garage band, but for everything else it seems fine.

Not sure in OS 9 where to find that info, but I thought under the Apple menu you could do about this computer or such and get what the Mhz is.
 

tdhurst

macrumors 601
Dec 27, 2003
4,146
256
Phoenix, AZ
answer

Apple system profiler

either it is under the apple menu or on the hard drive in the utilities folder. just press command f in the finder and do a search for it.
 

Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
18,752
1,218
New Zealand
I'm not sure where the cutoff is, but I'm pretty sure that the oldest PB G3s can only run up to 10.2, not 10.3.
 

minton

macrumors member
Jul 30, 2004
76
4
California
10.2 is the limit for the Wallstreet powerbooks (g3 up to roughly 300 mhz)
I've run it and it's acceptable.
10.3 is/will be the limit for Lombard powerbooks (g3 up to 400 mhz).
10.4 will run on Pismo powerbooks (g3 up to 500 mhz).
The Pismo is my current main computer, and I love it. I had an aluminum g4 and got rid of it. 90% of the satisfaction in using a computer is how it feels in the hands of the user, and the black is easier on the eyes than the silver and the plastic is more comfortable than the aluminum.
 

spacepower7

macrumors 68000
May 6, 2004
1,509
0
Ram

RAM is always the first thing to upgrade.

Graphics chips matter almost as much as processor speed.

"10.2 is the limit for the Wallstreet powerbooks (g3 up to roughly 300 mhz)
I've run it and it's acceptable.
10.3 is/will be the limit for Lombard powerbooks (g3 up to 400 mhz)."

Opinions and facts:
I have used 10.2 and 10.1 on a Pismo(400MHZ) with 256 RAM. It was very usable for email, word, websurfing etc... not heavy multimedia.
I also used 10.1 and 10.2 on a 333MHZ Lombard with 192 RAM. It was deathly slow.

The main difference between these 2 machines:
Lombard: 66MHZ bus, 64 bit ATI graphics with 4 MB VRAM
Pismo: 100MHZ bus, 128 bit ATI graphics with 8 MB VRAM

Apple settled a class action lawsuit because they promised that 10.1 would accelerated graphics on all G3s. 10.1 only accelerated graphics on G3s with 128 bit graphics chips. Apple settled and gave the complaintants options of full refunds for the retail cost of 10.1 (for a promise of not using 10.1 on their machines) or a $25 Apple Store credit.

In my opinion and Apple's, don't bother using OS X (any versions) on a pre-Pismo Powerbook or Clamshell iBook. It is possible to do, but not a very satisfying computing experience. OS9 is much faster on these machines, even for web, word, email, and multimedia.

BTW
"The Pismo is my current main computer, and I love it. I had an aluminum g4 and got rid of it. 90% of the satisfaction in using a computer is how it feels in the hands of the user, and the black is easier on the eyes than the silver and the plastic is more comfortable than the aluminum."

I love my Pismo too. I also have a G4 Albook, but i agree that the Pismo feels much better to touch. The Pismo keyboard is also much better. The Albook is weird, too sterile after using a Pismo for years. The Albook is cold when I first start using it, then it is too hot that I can't use it on my lap. The Pismo never had this problem.

Albook ports are all on the sides. I have Applecare but I know sometime soon that I am going to mess up the power cord connector bc I actually use my powerbook in my lap (it is a laptop ;) ) I am afraid of getting an iPod Shuffle or USB mouse bc it might break the USB ports if i use the PB in my lap.

sorry for the rant, but my Pismo still rocks!!!
 

trentcanuck

macrumors member
Oct 2, 2004
38
0
os x

OS X is TOTALLY usable on G3's.

My first mac was a clamshell 300Mhz, running OSX, and I liked it enough that I've used Macs ever since.

I've run X on Wallstreet, Lombard, and Pismo G3's, and for low-intensity use, it's just fine, even with 256 or 384 megs RAM.
 

hayduke

macrumors 65816
Mar 8, 2005
1,177
2
is a state of mind.
Can't get the installer to run...

I have the 10.2.9 install disks and I'm trying to install that on a PB G3 233MHz. I currently have 10.1 installed so I basically just want to upgrade. The main reason to do this is so that I can hook it up to my stereo and stream music to it wirelessly. Unfortunately iTunes 4 will only install in >10.1 (not >=10.1!!). When I try to boot from the install CD or run the install application the machine simply reboots from the internal drive under 10.1. Any ideas?

-The Duke Is Loose-

P.S. In case you're wondering I already have the 8Gb partition at the beginning of the internal drive...that was necessary to get OS X installed at all (without a lot of hacking at least...).
 

earthtoandy

macrumors 6502
Jan 18, 2003
250
0
I have a 233 iMac with 192mb of ram and with OS X its runs better than it ever had before. That being said anything above standard tasks (mail, safari and the like) it is way too slow.
 

Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
18,752
1,218
New Zealand
hayduke said:
When I try to boot from the install CD or run the install application the machine simply reboots from the internal drive under 10.1. Any ideas?
Try holding Option at the startup tone, then click the CD icon. That might not work on older systems though, so you should also try selecting the CD from the Startup Disk pane.
 

obrien234

macrumors regular
Apr 12, 2005
146
0
Brighton, MI
no problem

os x should not be a big problem, I'm running 10.3.9 and it runs great for common things. Rendering video takes awhile, but I still can edit and everything works out. That's all on 400MHz processor with just 512 RAM.
 

Mechcozmo

macrumors 603
Jul 17, 2004
5,215
2
hayduke said:
When I try to boot from the install CD or run the install application the machine simply reboots from the internal drive under 10.1. Any ideas?
Press 'C' as the computer starts up.

And you should have built-in USB at the least, hopefully built-in FireWire to run OS X on a G3. 512 MB of RAM will be fine.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,777
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
appleretailguy said:
Apple system profiler

either it is under the apple menu or on the hard drive in the utilities folder. just press command f in the finder and do a search for it.
You should be able to get processor speed without even running Sys profiler, just by choosing about this mac, from the Apple menu. It should say it in the middle of the popup.
 
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