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amnesia152.sit (148.41 KB)
MD5: ea3702f3fd86b9e21e234416db895fd8
For System 7.0 - 7.6 - Mac OS 9
Guides on emulating older applications

BatteryAmnesia is a utility for any PowerBook that uses a nickel-cadmium (NiCad) battery or Nickel-Hydride (NiMH) battery. Over time, these batteries are susceptible to a "memory effect", which can reduce their battery capacity. The memory effect can be cured by fully discharging the battery before recharging it.

The Apple PowerBook manual recommends a method for discharging your battery, by running your PowerBook on battery power until it shuts down, manually dismissing the low battery warnings that periodically pop up. The big drawback with this technique is that you have to be present to dismiss the low battery warning dialogs when they come up. Also, the PowerBook software will put itself to sleep "softly" before it is completely discharged.

BatteryAmnesia provides a safe, fast and automatic way to deep discharge your PowerBook's battery. BatteryAmnesia automatically bypasses the low battery warning dialogs, and prevents the "soft" sleep brought on by those dialogs. Instead, BatteryAmnesia will run your PowerBook's battery down until the "hard" hardware shutdown occurs, which is at a lower voltage. This provides a better discharge.

Once you tell BatteryAmnesia to begin the discharge cycle, it will drain the battery as fast as possible, by using as much power as it can. The screen backlighting is automatically increased to maximum, CPU "resting" is prevented, and the hard drive is prevented from spinning down.


Architecture: PPC

BatteryAmnesia will run on any PowerBook with a Nicad or NiMH battery. It will not run on a PowerBook 100 or Macintosh Portable.

BatteryAmnesia can be run on PowerBooks with Lithium-ion batteries (e.g., PowerBook 3400, iBook, PowerBook G3, PowerBook G4). However, Li+ batteries are not susceptible to the memory effect, so BatteryAmnesia doesn't provide any benefits on these models.


Bolkonskij's picture
by Bolkonskij - 2010, December 30 - 9:15am

I haven't tried it out myself, but when I came across it I remembered the positive reports I had read about it some years ago. Thanks to the extensive LEM archive I've been able to find the article about Battery Amnesia. (from 2002, boy... time sure flies by!)

Check it out if you're interested:

MCP's picture
by MCP - 2010, December 29 - 4:22pm

My own experiences with any PowerBook using pre- lithium-ion batteries has been dismal. I don't even like to mince words about it, either. Those things are s**t. Cannot tell you how much money I wasted trying to get those things to live up to what they were reported to be able to do. From the WallStreets forward, however, everything has been A-OK!

MikeTomTom's picture
by MikeTomTom - 2010, December 29 - 2:01pm

Anythings "worth a try". Especially if you have a working PB *** with an 030 or 040 CPU and a dead or near dead battery... fresh batteries for those must be getting pretty difficult to come by, these days Wink

Personally, I think Dan Knight must've been stretching it on the "from 10 mins to 2 1/2 hours" bit tho' - just going by my own actual not nearly so spectacular experiences (perhaps he booted it up, turned the display & any networking off and didn't run any apps for a couple of hours?).

Bolkonskij's picture
by Bolkonskij - 2010, December 29 - 12:46pm

Hmm... Dan Knight from Low End Mac once reported that he brought back a PB's battery from 10 minutes to 2 1/2 hours using BA. So it must work. Doesn't seem to work with everyone's PowerBook though. Anyway, worth a try I'd say.

As for the iBook, it won't work. Read the description above regarding Lithium-ion batteries...

MikeTomTom's picture
by MikeTomTom - 2010, December 29 - 12:05pm


I'm going to try this out on my G3 iBook (although not officially supported). It would be miraculous if my battery came back to life!

Considering I tried this software out on my PB 160 to no avail (back when BA was kind of relevant), then yes, if this works on a G3, indeed it would be a miracle.

I also tried this on my PB 180... to much the same fanfare... That is; it did not work for me, even back when Mac PB's were pre PPC CPU's - The shareware author at the time wanted money for it, IIRC...

Out of desperation, I resorted to (advice I'd heard on usenet) wrapping the battery in plastic wrap and freezing it in the deep-freeze for a few days. The results were much of a muchness... the battery was dead, well, it held a charge for about 90 secs, actually...

And as they still say on usenet: "YMMV".

themacmeister's picture
by themacmeister - 2010, December 29 - 10:07am

I'm going to try this out on my G3 iBook (although not officially supported). It would be miraculous if my battery came back to life!

bertyboy's picture
by bertyboy - 2010, December 29 - 9:28am

A useful upload, Apple also released a "Battery Reset" for PBG3.
But are any of these still relevant ?
I thought it was shown by scientists that rechargable batteries like this had tere lives shortened by "forks", that is forks of the metal element, Nickel or Lithium, branching out from the terminals towards the opposite terminal, caused by RAPID recharging.
When the forks finally meet, you get battery fires (a short-circuit). I remember reading this on the BBC website, can find the page if essential (although the BBC search is quite good).

It's an article, but not the one I originally read. The original research was done in Japan and was more complete, and from about 2007-8.

Bolkonskij's picture
by Bolkonskij - 2010, December 29 - 8:46am

A powerful tool that helps bringing old batteries back to life. Can safe you the hassle of looking for a new battery for your e.g. PowerBook 180. Might be useful for those users of older PowerBooks among you Smile