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Just Another Tech Blog

Anything and everything having to do with technology, computers, science, and most of all... Linux! The documentation of my Linux endeavor.



PowerMac G4 and OS X?

Monday, October 09, 2006

After much wait, I have FINALLY gotten my Dad's old PowerMac G4. It is pretty nice actually. It has the dual 500mhz processors and AGP Graphics (ATI Rage 128 Pro... 16MB :D ). On the downside... only 256MB RAM and 20gigs of hard drive... gotta upgrade that. Anywayz... it came with OS 9.0 install... yeah... old to say the least. So, my immediate urge was to put OS X on the thing. Well... turns out that is not that easy.
I went online to see if the G4 would be able to run OS X and stumbled upon quite a few pages detailing all the steps needed to get OS X to install on a G4 such as the one I have. Here is one of them. As you can see... there is a lot of BIG PRINT and WARNINGs and overall pretty scary stuff. Well, not scary... but..... hmm... ok, fine it was scary. I did not think SO many things could go wrong. None the less... I still attempted it. First off, I had to upgrade my Mac OS 9.0 to Mac OS 9.1 to accept the required frimware update. So, I head over to the apple website and browse the archive of updates, finding the one I need. Since I can't get internet to the G4 itself (no wireless adapter), I downloaded it on my main computer and then saved it to my flash drive. Updating OS 9.0 was fairly easy... just double click on the install file and say "YES" to everything. I did however, get an error while the program was checking my hard drive... but I ignored it and continued. Everything went fine... upon reboot I was running OS 9.1. BUT, I wanted OS X... so there was still a lot to do. Next on the list was installing the firmware update for my G4. I got the firmware from the Apple site fairly easily, doing the same as with the OS update. Firmware update went fine too. As one may expect, firmware will probably not be installed in the most "orthodox" way. Installing the new firmware required the machine to be shut down, then power up while the program button is pressed, and then waiting until you hear a long tone. So that went fine... now just the installation of OS X... or so I hoped.
To boot from the OS X CD, you have to hold the C key down while the machine is powering up. I did that... and the CD booted, but then I got a Kernel Panic error... yeah... that sucks! So I was thinking what could have gone wrong when I remembered I was using the OS X install CD from my Dad's new iMac (20 inch monitor.... 1 gig of RAM... 250gig hard drive... ATI X1600Pro graphics... *drool*). That was most likely the problem. *sigh* well, maybe I find I fix for this.... probably not... SOOOOO..... any ideas?
posted by linnerd40, Monday, October 09, 2006


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