What to do with a Quad?

DearthnVader

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My beloved Quad G5 that I picked up with a DC 2.3Ghz for $80 is just sitting around collecting dust, mostly due to the lack of a modern web browser.

TenFourFox is just painful Leopard Web Kit too buggy, and FireFox Quatum on Debian PPC64 doesn't render correct.

Any tips on how I can get more, or any, use out of this beast?

I haven't even powered on the Quad in two or three months.

Lately I've been toying with a Dell Inspiron with an AMD A series APU and 4GB of Ram. Amazingly it runs Catalina pretty well even tho the graphic are not supported. Sad thing it the Quad G5 has more raw CPU power, but Apple cut PPC64 off at the knees with 10.6.

With a modern video card the Quad would still run Catalina just fine on 16GB of ram, it has the raw CPU power and enough bandwidth.
 
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Macbookprodude

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My beloved Quad G5 that I picked up with a DC 2.3Ghz for $80 is just sitting around collecting dust, mostly due to the lack of a modern web browser.

TenFourFox is just painful Leopard Web Kit too buggy, and FireFox Quatum on Debian PPC64 doesn't render correct.

Any tips on how I can get more, or any, use out of this beast?

I haven't even powered on the Quad in two or three months.

Lately I've been toying with a Dell Inspiron with an AMD A series APU and 4GB of Ram. Amazingly it runs Catalina pretty well even tho the graphic are not supported. Sad thing it the Quad G5 has more raw CPU power, but Apple cut PPC64 off at the knees with 10.6.

With a modern video card the Quad would still run Catalina just fine on 16GB of ram, it has the raw CPU power and enough bandwidth.
Hello,

I too have a G5 Quad - I don't use it anymore because nothing really will run on it except for 104fox and other software. You might be able to breathe new life in it under Linux or BSD as they still make Ubuntu for example, to run on G5 and G4 PowerPC systems. Sadly, Leopard is EOL for PPC machines in general, G5 Quad included. Still a beast of a machine ! Speaking of Catalina on a G5 ? This won't work as Catalina is made for an Intel Mac, PowerPC won't support anything after Leopard, sadly.
 

wicknix

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For Debian ppc64 try the arcticfox build for it. http://www.xenosoft.de/arcticfox-27.9.19.linux-powerpc64.tar.bz2
Just extract it anywhere and either double click it (arcticfox or arcticfox-bin) in your file manager, or run it via terminal with ./arcticfox.
On a side note ppc64 debian is pretty unstable and crashy. If you install any of 32-bit varients (ubuntu/debian/fienix/mint/etc) you'll have even more browser options and better stability. You can use a 32-bit rootfs with a 64-bit kernel.

Don't forget Icewasel-ppc for leopard. Slimmed and trimmed TFF. Think of it as TFF-light.
Download and info: https://randommacstuff.blogspot.com/p/powerpc-mac.html

Cheers
 

DearthnVader

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For Debian ppc64 try the arcticfox build for it. http://www.xenosoft.de/arcticfox-27.9.19.linux-powerpc64.tar.bz2
Just extract it anywhere and either double click it (arcticfox or arcticfox-bin) in your file manager, or run it via terminal with ./arcticfox.
On a side note ppc64 debian is pretty unstable and crashy. If you install any of 32-bit varients (ubuntu/debian/fienix/mint/etc) you'll have even more browser options and better stability. You can use a 32-bit rootfs with a 64-bit kernel.

Don't forget Icewasel-ppc for leopard. Slimmed and trimmed TFF. Think of it as TFF-light.
Download and info: https://randommacstuff.blogspot.com/p/powerpc-mac.html

Cheers
Thanks, I'm giving Icewasel a go, we'll see how that does!
 
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Project Alice

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My beloved Quad G5 that I picked up with a DC 2.3Ghz for $80 is just sitting around collecting dust, mostly due to the lack of a modern web browser.

TenFourFox is just painful Leopard Web Kit too buggy, and FireFox Quatum on Debian PPC64 doesn't render correct.

Any tips on how I can get more, or any, use out of this beast?

I haven't even powered on the Quad in two or three months.

Lately I've been toying with a Dell Inspiron with an AMD A series APU and 4GB of Ram. Amazingly it runs Catalina pretty well even tho the graphic are not supported. Sad thing it the Quad G5 has more raw CPU power, but Apple cut PPC64 off at the knees with 10.6.

With a modern video card the Quad would still run Catalina just fine on 16GB of ram, it has the raw CPU power and enough bandwidth.
Hmmm…what to do with a Quad?

Graphic design, web browsing via T4Fx (no idea how you have your browser set up, but mine is functionally as fast as on my Intel Macs), word processing, email, disk burning, games and supporting my other systems.

I mean, my Quad isn't there just to look pretty.

View attachment 896665
I use a 1.5Ghz Powerbook as my daily portable, and have no problems with TFF. It is absolutely usable. I don't know why you would be having any problem with it on a Quad. Leopard webkit is basically dead unless someone decides to update it.
 
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z970mp

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Hmmm…what to do with a Quad?

Graphic design, web browsing via T4Fx (no idea how you have your browser set up, but mine is functionally as fast as on my Intel Macs), word processing, email, disk burning, games and supporting my other systems.

I mean, my Quad isn't there just to look pretty.

View attachment 896665
I think his point is more so that there is a lack of software options to truly take advantage of what the Quad offers, or something alone those lines.

Yes, you can do all of the above with a Quad, but you can also do them more or less the same with a Quicksilver, or an iMac G5, or an eMac, or a Mini, or a PowerBook, etc...

I understand where he's coming from. Due to a sheer lack of specially tailored OS and software options for the PCIe G5s (read: none), which are in many ways very different beasts to the rest of their PowerPC brethren, everything is mashed up into either ppc32 or ppc64, ppc32 being as compatible with the broader family as possible, and ppc64 BE being an unstable mess, with ppc64 LE, while relatively well supported in the modern open source world, is entirely unsupported at the hardware level by the machines in question.

It's a disappointing reality, to say the least, when you really consider just what they could be supported by, and what they could do and pull off with specialized 2020 software.

Maybe that's what @DearthnVader was trying to say... which I agree with, assuming that.
 
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Amethyst1

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Lately I've been toying with a Dell Inspiron with an AMD A series APU and 4GB of Ram. Amazingly it runs Catalina pretty well even tho the graphic are not supported. Sad thing it the Quad G5 has more raw CPU power
Which APU are you using? 'Cause, the first A-series APUs came out in 2011, and unless yours is extremely low-end (dual-core or "sumthin"), I'd expect it to be more powerful than the Quad.
 

RhianB

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I’m bummed out on MorphOS’s pricing structure but if you’re willing to drop some cash, that could be a solution as well.
 

repairedCheese

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TenFourFox is just painful Leopard Web Kit too buggy, and FireFox Quatum on Debian PPC64 doesn't render correct.
You know, if you're willing to try ppc64 Linux, then you should check PowerPC Void Linux. You'll need to do updates because last I checked, their isos are old, but they've actually been working on getting 64-bit Firefox working properly on these old machines. I can't even get Debian ppc64 to boot on my G5, but I haven't heard good things in comparison.
 

DearthnVader

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It's a disappointing reality, to say the least, when you really consider just what they could be supported by, and what they could do and pull off with 2020 software.

Maybe that's what @DearthnVader was trying to say... which I agree with, assuming that.
That is more or less what I was driving at, Apple dropped support for the 64bit PowerPC far to soon, I mean we are just now, with Catalina seeing a pure 64bit macOS, and I think the Quad has the legs to run Catalina just fine.

I know, that's "spilled milk" at this point, but to each their own, I always say.

Originally, with the Quad I had planed on roiling my own Linux distribution based on Debian PPC64, making it as slim, fast, and user friendly as I could. I wanted to build a custom UI based on Wayland/Weston, but I ran into an issue with Xwayland "crashing too fast" that I was unable to resolve.


Which APU are you using? 'Cause, the first A-series APUs came out in 2011, and unless yours is extremely low-end (dual-core or "sumthin"), I'd expect it to be more powerful than the Quad.
It's an AMD A9-9420e with a Radeon R5 1.8Ghz with turbo to 2.7Ghz.

It is no speed demon, Inspiron 3185.

I just like the challenge of hackintoshing computers most people think can't be hackintoshed, and this thing shipped with Windows 10, I wiped it with a fresh install when I got it, but 10 is a dog on it, I assume it was really made for Windows 8.

Sell it on - I'm not being flippant but there are many users who'd be over the moon to own a Quad and would have no trouble finding a use for it.
I had considered that, prices on Ebay seem to be all over the map, ranging from $150-$450 plus hefty shipping.

Really, it deserves to have a good home with someone that can utilize it better that me.
 

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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It's a strange dilemma...like with all PPCs, the main reason for ownership is to be just using PPC not necessarily what it does because we all know there's superior hardware out there at a fraction of the cost that can get the job done quicker.
Hell, even my £20 secondhand Lumia 930 Windows Phone outputs video (4K) that's too demanding for playback on my Mac Pro.

Having said all that, I'm pretty sure Lubuntu/Debian matched with a hefty modern GPU will give good results as illustrated here:

 
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iluvmacs99

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Apr 9, 2019
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My beloved Quad G5 that I picked up with a DC 2.3Ghz for $80 is just sitting around collecting dust, mostly due to the lack of a modern web browser.

TenFourFox is just painful Leopard Web Kit too buggy, and FireFox Quatum on Debian PPC64 doesn't render correct.

Any tips on how I can get more, or any, use out of this beast?

I haven't even powered on the Quad in two or three months.

Lately I've been toying with a Dell Inspiron with an AMD A series APU and 4GB of Ram. Amazingly it runs Catalina pretty well even tho the graphic are not supported. Sad thing it the Quad G5 has more raw CPU power, but Apple cut PPC64 off at the knees with 10.6.

With a modern video card the Quad would still run Catalina just fine on 16GB of ram, it has the raw CPU power and enough bandwidth.
Compared to the functionality of a modern browser and working on Google Suite and with Google Drive, TenFourFox with PowerPEP is somewhat painful to use even on my PowerMac G5 and Powerbook G4 against my Macbook Air, Mac Mini, Mac Pro and Macbook Pro 17" which are all Intel machines. My Mac Pro is my fastest machine in my Mac collection and is a super breeze and a blast to browse the web and watch 4K material. It's nice to have all that horsepower, much more than what the PowerMac G5 Quad could deliver.

Having said that, unless you have a pressing need to run legacy software for Tiger, Leopard and OS 9.2.2 (which I do as I work as a mac support person in a computer recycling facility), then it's difficult to find any use out of the beasts you've got. I do use the PowerMac G5 to browse the web sometimes when my Intel Macs are used to render video or high megapixel images. I use the Powerbook G4 because it's got a nice 15" screen for writing stuff when I don't feel like I want to lug around my 17" Macbook Pro to the library. And I find the G5 makes a good cheap DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) that works with older firewire mixers which I could get cheap compared to modern stuff. And I've got a classic video capturing card for my PowerMac G5 that I could capture VHS and Beta and MiniDV tapes and convert them as a stream file so my Mac Pro can convert them to modern MP4. It's amazing what I could find sometimes from people donating their older PPC software and hardware that I couldn't afford to buy when they were new and still are useful today at much much cheaper prices than the Intel equivalent.
 
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DearthnVader

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Icewasel never seems to get over 1xx% cpu usage, is it really isn't that well optimized for the Quad.

Other than that, it seems to run pretty well, better than Ten4Fox.
 

defjam

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If you have to ask what you should do with it then it's my opinion you should give strong consideration to, as already suggested, pass it along either by sale or gift. A few months ago I came across a quad on Ebay with a BIN price of $125 (including shipping). It was a great deal but I examined my current G5 usage and concluded to pass on it. I've always wanted one (almost bought one new) but didn't see using it much. Given the liquid cooled G5s are known to experience leakage I just didn't think it was a wise idea to buy it for such little use all the while remaining vigilant about the cooling system.

Furthermore I ended up selling off / donating all but one of my PPC systems. I just wasn't using them enough. They weren't in the way or anything but I came to the realization someone else could get more use out of them than I was. Sounds like you're in a similar situation with the quad.
 
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eyoungren

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I think his point is more so that there is a lack of software options to truly take advantage of what the Quad offers, or something alone those lines.

Yes, you can do all of the above with a Quad, but you can also do them more or less the same with a Quicksilver, or an iMac G5, or an eMac, or a Mini, or a PowerBook, etc...

I understand where he's coming from. Due to a sheer lack of specially tailored OS and software options for the PCIe G5s (read: none), which are in many ways very different beasts to the rest of their PowerPC brethren, everything is mashed up into either ppc32 or ppc64, ppc32 being as compatible with the broader family as possible, and ppc64 BE being an unstable mess, with ppc64 LE, while relatively well supported in the modern open source world, is entirely unsupported at the hardware level by the machines in question.

It's a disappointing reality, to say the least, when you really consider just what they could be supported by, and what they could do and pull off with 2020 software.

Maybe that's what @DearthnVader was trying to say... which I agree with, assuming that.
I guess you and OP were operating on the same wavelength then. I see nothing in OP's first post to suggest anything other than a search for a general purpose to having the Mac.

For me, the Quad is a much more powerful platform to do the things I mentioned. You and OP are getting into specialized areas with super-niche purposes that the Mac is capable of but no one designed for (software-wise). That's not anything I need my Quad for.

While I do wish that Apple hadn't abandoned PowerPC and having used my Quad I feel the same, in that it could run modern software and macOS, it doesn't.

I have to agree then, pass the Mac along. OP is not going to find the purpose he seeks for this Mac under that criteria.
 
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z970mp

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You know, if you're willing to try ppc64 Linux, then you should check PowerPC Void Linux. You'll need to do updates because last I checked, their isos are old, but they've actually been working on getting 64-bit Firefox working properly on these old machines. I can't even get Debian ppc64 to boot on my G5, but I haven't heard good things in comparison.
Based off what I've heard thus far, I'm really starting to think Void and the like are definitely the future of PowerPC Linux, as opposed to Debian and Ubuntu, which have just had too many unaddressed problems since Jessie, Ubuntu slightly less so.

I'll give the development team a little more time to continue fixing issues and test machines, then in the future (when I know I'll be freer to do things) probably either launch a dedicated second Wiki, or renovate the existing one in some way.

In the meantime, maybe we should think about donating a spare machine or two to the developers so that they can make sure everything works on as broad a net as possible?

Compared to the functionality of a modern browser and working on Google Suite and with Google Drive, TenFourFox with PowerPEP is somewhat painful to use even on my PowerMac G5 and Powerbook G4 against my Macbook Air, Mac Mini, Mac Pro and Macbook Pro 17" which are all Intel machines. My Mac Pro is my fastest machine in my Mac collection and is a super breeze and a blast to browse the web and watch 4K material. It's nice to have all that horsepower, much more than what the PowerMac G5 Quad could deliver.
PowerPEP was a transitional name. It was only to smooth the gap between PowerUOC and foxPEP, the latter of which being its current and final "branding".

Concerning the performance differences, I agree. The fact that TenFourFox lacks GPU acceleration is largely to blame for the stigma of PowerPC Macs being slow on the Web, likely because Tiger does not support doing this (although I can't definitively confirm that).

Linux by and large doesn't have this impediment, because it properly offloads all the grunt work to the GPU whenever it's told, thus making Web browsing wholly superior there as opposed to Tiger or Leopard. This is evidenced by reproducible performance gains whenever playing video, rendering content, or comparing about:support between the two operating system famililies.
 
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DearthnVader

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If you have to ask what you should do with it then it's my opinion you should give strong consideration to, as already suggested, pass it along either by sale or gift. A few months ago I came across a quad on Ebay with a BIN price of $125 (including shipping). It was a great deal but I examined my current G5 usage and concluded to pass on it. I've always wanted one (almost bought one new) but didn't see using it much. Given the liquid cooled G5s are known to experience leakage I just didn't think it was a wise idea to buy it for such little use all the while remaining vigilant about the cooling system.

Furthermore I ended up selling off / donating all but one of my PPC systems. I just wasn't using them enough. They weren't in the way or anything but I came to the realization someone else could get more use out of them than I was. Sounds like you're in a similar situation with the quad.
Thanks for everyone's replies.

I decided to sell them on, the Quad and the late 2005 Dual Core 2.3Ghz.

They sold pretty quick, $250+ Shipping for the Quad, and $100 sold local for the DC.

Hope the new users can get more use out of them than I did, I had not even powered on the Quad before today since Oct. 19th 2019, and the Dual Core long before that.

Don't worry tho, I still have a Dual 1Ghz QuickSilver, a 1Ghz iMac G4, and two iBook G4's, so I have not abandoned PPC.
 
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