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commodorejohn's picture
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Joined: 2011 Aug 1
PowerBook G4 "high-res" & Tiger - installation

I've got a PowerBook G4 (the 15" 1.67GHz model, M9969LL/A) that I want to set up as a dual-boot system. I've got the hard disk partitioned and I've successfully installed Debian from CD. However, when I try to boot the Tiger install disk, it gets partway in and crashes - sometimes while loading, sometimes at the "connect a mouse" screen, but never very far into the install process. I've tried this with both the retail DVD and the four-CD set (on the theory that it might be having trouble reading DVDs) with no luck. I'm pretty certain the drive is good, as the Debian install went off without a hitch, but I'm lost as to what the problem could be in that case. Does this model of PowerBook require an OEM install CD or something?

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IIGS_User's picture
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Joined: 2009 Apr 8

Every 10.4 and 10.5 system should be installable.

xy
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Joined: 2009 Aug 7

Here:
http://groups.google.com/group/macos9/browse_thread/thread/7f82598932a24...
is an interesting discussion on the many problems of dual boot Linux and Mac HDs.

IIGS_User's picture
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Joined: 2009 Apr 8

Every 10.4 and 10.5 system should be installable.

My book of this kind has been shipped with 10.4.2, at its time.
So, 10.4.2 to 10.5.x should work.

commodorejohn's picture
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Joined: 2011 Aug 1

Hmm. I'm kind of wondering then if the drive isn't faulty, because I know the disc is good. I hope it's not broke, I specifically requested and paid extra for a DVD drive...

IIGS_User's picture
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Joined: 2009 Apr 8

specifically requested and paid extra for a DVD drive...

Ouh. We'll hope with you. Smile

T-1000's picture
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Joined: 2011 Sep 15

Maybe you could try to clone the contents of the install dvd to a USB stick. I just did that with a Mac OS 10.5 install DVD and it worked fine. Booted both my eMac and my iMac G5.

commodorejohn's picture
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Joined: 2011 Aug 1

Is this model capable of booting from USB? I've had a devil of a time trying to get that to work in the past.

Bolkonskij's picture
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Joined: 2009 Aug 3

IIRC PPC Macs couldn't boot from USB.

Are you sure the disc drive is okay? I had a similiar issue when I tried to install 10.4 on my TiBook. It would refuse to continue the installation at a certain point and freeze. At that point I had no idea that the disc drive was the culprit and I used firewire target disk mode to install the OS from my PowerMac. That might be an option for you as well, if you have a firewire cable + a second mac

os9er's picture
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Joined: 2013 Nov 15

@Bolkonskij : PowerPC Macs generally are capable of booting from USB (unless of course it's an older one that doesn't have USB); I've done it with my PB G4 17-inch many times now, using an Open Firmware command. For some reason, it just doesn't show it on the boot selection screen (after holding down the Option key).

bertyboy's picture
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Joined: 2009 Jun 14

I have the 17in model - using it right now to type this. OSX 10.4 should be fine, but make sure the install media is clean and undamaged. Burn another copy if you suspect anything wrong with it. Could be flaky RAM too.

commodorejohn's picture
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Joined: 2011 Aug 1

I don't have a FireWire cable, I'd have to buy one. Does Target Disk mode require an existing Mac OS install on the target machine?

I did try burning a new copy of the DVD, but there was no change. I'll give it a try with the original RAM and see if things improve, but I'm not sure why OSX would crash when Debian runs fine...

bertyboy's picture
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Joined: 2009 Jun 14

OSX 10.3 got more fussy about the RAM in Macs, 10.4 was EXTEREMELY more so, 10.5 was even more so than 10.4.

I've had numerous Macs, desktops and laptops, easily within the requirements, have issues with OSX 10.4 and 10.5, and if I drop back to 10.3 or 10.4, they're fine. And that's with me only buying Micron / Kensington RAM. But never had any issues with Micron / Kensington RAM bought from new, except for one stick - took it back to the shop after 5-6 years (came with lifetime warranty) and they replaced it in about 20 seconds.

Bolkonskij's picture
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Joined: 2009 Aug 3

> Does Target Disk mode require an existing Mac OS install on the target machine?

To the best of my knowledge - No. You connect the two machines, you press & hold the "T" button while booting on the target machine and its hard disk will show up on the desktop of the non-target machine. As if it is an additional hard disk. You can then reboot the non-target Mac, booting from the Tiger disc and installing 10.4 on the hard disk of the target Mac.

I've done that myself using my PowerMac and my TiBook (with a defunct disc drive). I even took out the disc drive later on to save weight while replacing my hard disk with a SSD. I now have a lightweight, fast OS 9 / Tiger machine for on the road Smile

Get a Firewire cable. Should solve your problem. And they're really cheap now.

T-1000's picture
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Joined: 2011 Sep 15

What does "IIRC PPC Macs" mean? I'm not familiar with the term. As I wrote above, I managed to boot both my eMac Northern Lights and iMac G5 from a USB stick. I do think that all Macs with USB 1.1 are able to do this.

commodorejohn's picture
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Joined: 2011 Aug 1

"If I recall correctly," PPC Macs...

I'll give it a try in any case. I don't believe the problem is the RAM; I tried it with the 512MB stick it came with, with no more luck than before (and the Leopard install on the supplied drive was perfectly happy to recognize my 2GB.) I'm starting to think the drive really is the issue, only I'd think that the CD installer would've worked if the Debian CD worked.

I'll try the USB stick, and if that doesn't work I can give FireWire a try (have to get a cable though, but I think a coworker of mine has one I can borrow.)

MikeTomTom's picture
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Joined: 2009 Dec 7

What does "IIRC PPC Macs" mean?

Means; "If I Recall Correctly, PPC Macs..." If a comma had been placed after the IIRC, it may have helped.

Booting from USB 2.0 drives on PPC Mac is problematical, but there seems to be evidence on line that it is possible if you use Carbon Copy Cloner or similar to write an existing installed OS to USB drive and booting up with the Option key held down to choose the USB drive's OS to start up from.

T-1000's picture
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Joined: 2011 Sep 15

Yes, here is an article on this topic: http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=20060301112336384

Worth to note is that as far as I know of, all PPC Macs with USB 1.1 or at least all of them that can boot Mac OS 9 and have USB 1.1 (all of them?) can boot from an USB stick. However, you are not able to choose it from within the system but only by using the Option key upon startup. I also managed to get the iMac G5 with USB 2 to boot from it by hacking open firmware as described in that link. (I don't think I really had to hack open firmware but the disk was formated using Mac OS 9 drivers at first so it wouldn't show up in the "boot agent" (Option key). Reformating without Mac OS 9 drivers made that little stick work. I haven't bother to reset the changes which means the computer looks for it's boot USB stick every startup before it recognize the System on my internal hard drive... Smile

The best way to clone a disk in Mac OS X is to use the asr command in the terminal.

T-1000's picture
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Joined: 2011 Sep 15

Double post. Please delete or ignore this post.

bertyboy's picture
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Joined: 2009 Jun 14

Just to prove my point about bad RAM, I've been upgrading an old G4 with 1GB RAM to OSX 10.4. Had about 8 attempts, install always had errors, applying patches to 10.4.11 always had errors, sometimes, like the OP, I get KP or grey screen during the setup for the install. Took the 2 extra 256MB sticks out, leaving the one Crucial / Micron 512MB stick and hey presto, everything worked first time.

commodorejohn's picture
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Joined: 2011 Aug 1

Okay, figured it out, I was using an early version of the Tiger install disk (10.4.1, I think.) It should've been a clue that it didn't automatically support the trackpad and wanted a mouse plugged in. Burned me a 10.4.6 disk and everything went beautifully.