Trying this again – Purchased another G5 Quad

Well I did not plan on this purchase, but…

I was at work yesterday looking at craigslist to see if there was anything good and with my luck, there was a 3 day old posting for a G5 quad and a 23″ ACD for $150. I emailed the guy and to my luck he still had it so when I got off work I drove the hour and a half to Reno so I could come home with it.

Since I promised the guy I was coming to get it tonight he let me have it for $100 which made the deal even sweeter. I met him at his office where he makes TV shows and is currently working on a midwestern show that will be a “Netflix Original” in the near future.

I looked at the G5 and it was in pristine shape, it was purchased and used by a Charter School in Reno and eventually he ended up with it and installed was the entire Adobe CS3 collection. The display didn’t have a scratch on it. So I gave him my money and started to head towards In-n-out burger to pick up some dinner and head home but that was interrupted by my 2003 Ram 2500 with the 5.7L hemi deciding to start overheating so I parked in the Peppermill parking lot and waited.

On the way home I brought plenty of sweatshirts to keep things from getting scratches, and my MacBook Air is hidden under them.


I ended up not getting food and drove home (truck didn’t overheat!), and discovered the clutch fan was the cause of overheating in my truck.

I hooked the G5 up and used it for a bit, it’s packing 12GB of Ram (4x1GB and 4x2GB sticks) which will be upgraded to 16GB this evening, 256MB Geforce 6600, 250GB WD hard drive, and the rare Bluetooth/Airport card. My other quad didn’t have one but my dual core 2GHz did.

This G5 has been unmolested with the factory plastic pin and still runs in between 105-130*F at idle while being quiet, a nice touch over my other Quad.

My previous G5 will be used for parts and maybe someday if I ever find a single pump LCS to rebuild I’ll put it into the other machine so it is still semi-usable. Or shoot, maybe swap in a DC 2.3 or 2.0GHz processor and heatsink.

Time to resume my projects 🙂


Posted in G5, Hardware, OS X 10.5 Leopard, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Resurrecting a 466MHz PMG4 DA

The last time I mentioned this machine was February of 2015 – well over a year ago and figured I should bring it back to life! I shoved it into a shed last summer with my B&W and the 8 or so Dell Optiplex GX620 towers I owned at the same time and over this past weekend I decided to work with it again.

This machine was purchased from a guy I found on Craigslist on April 15,2014 while on vacation in the Santa Cruz, CA area. The guy only wanted $5 which I was more than happy to pay for and so I went to pick it up! He actually lived not even two miles away from the Mystery Spot location in Santa Cruz along the same main road.

What I found was a 466MHz Digital Audio G4. 256MB Ram, 30GB Hard Drive, and a weak Rage 128. The case was super clean with very minimal scratches. I have always ran Tiger on this machine but have considered throwing in a better processor to try Leopard out on.

Jump forward to Saturday evening (June 4) when I pulled it out of the shed. I didn’t mess with it until the next day so when I did, I decided I’d install some nicer stuff.


First upgrade was RAM, and they only have 3 slots with a max of 512MB PC133 per slot (totalling 1.5GB). I of course did not have any 512MB sticks so I was stuck with 256MB. I located every stick of desktop RAM I had and spread them out along my bed (counted 84 sticks, mostly DDR and DDR2) and found three 256MB sticks. The furry friend decided that DDR2 was her favorite ram by sleeping on top of several sticks! So the machine currently has 768MB of RAM.


Next was a SATA hard drive. I had a 320GB WD Blue sitting around and decided I should use that so I grabbed a SATA card. I raised my hopes thinking I had a Molex to SATA power adapter running around which I could not find, so I found a old power supply and cut the SATA end off and mated it to the original Molex adapter (looks pretty factory I think, outside of the heatshrink! Added factory looking zip ties as well). And about half an hour later I found 3 Molex to SATA adapters. Oh well.


Next was a graphics card. I had two to choose between, a G5 Radeon 9600 64MB or a stock MDD Geforce 4MX 64MB. Ultimately I ended going with the MDD card to keep stock ADC port functionality.

Here is where things started to go south. I booted the Tiger installer DVD to find the machine throwing kernel panics whenever I would boot off of it. Even after swapping the RAM, removing PCI cards, CUDA reset, all of the like, the machine still kernel paniced. I was on the edge of gutting the machine out to fit in a Micro ATX board but that changed!


I posted about my struggle on the PowerPC MacRumors thread and one user had the same machine with the same issue and mentioned that after swapping the clock battery it booted fine. Since I was gutting my MDD for a logic board replacement (future post) I took the good battery out and shoved it into the DA, and sure enough it booted the installer!

On my merry way I successfully installed Tiger and set the machine up. Now maybe I can test out some software on the thing!


Future plans for this machine? I wouldn’t mind a processor upgrade, 1.5GB Ram, USB2.0 card, and a 128MB Radeon 9600 from a G5. All it takes is finding one and money! I won’t be throwing any more money into this thing for the meantime as I have other projects I’d like to complete first. Again, we will see!

Stay tuned 🙂

Posted in Customization, G4, Hardware, OS X 10.4 Tiger, Software, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

VNC Viewer for PowerPC

Within the past few weeks I’ve been using my G5 2.3GHz (there is a story behind this machine, was originally an original 2003 dual 2GHz but now has the hearts of a early 2005 2.3GHz. I gutted the 2.3 as the case was perfect and I am using it for my i7 PowerMacX build) and I learned a few things including workarounds.

My new rack server is running Windows Server 2012 R2, and using Leopard’s built in VNC viewer brought me to a black screen; using Microsoft Remote Desktop 2.0.1 said it could not connect. So, I was left to question if there were any alternate VNC viewer programs that could still connect to a newer machine.

Fortunately, I came across VNC Viewer which does exactly what I need it to, connecting to my server remotely! The latest version for PowerPC is 5.2.3 which will work with Leopard and I suspect Tiger (although I haven’t tried that quite yet, maybe a task for my G4 DA 466MHz). The download is available on the PowerPC Archive’s server here (3MB).

Happy remote controlling! I found this as an essential tool to keep around and you will too!

VNC Viewer

Posted in OS X 10.4 Tiger, OS X 10.5 Leopard, Software, Uses for PowerPC | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Some Updates on the MDD

So today I had some downtime and figured I would improve the MDD a bit in the hardware dept.

One thing I didn’t mention was that I replaced the broken Optical Drive with a DVD burner out of a Core 2 Duo Gateway desktop and now I can use discs in the thing! Next thing was a CMOS battery as that was dead too so I found one that worked out of a 2.3GHz Power Mac G5 logic board from a G5 I recently gutted.

However there’s something that tops the other two things I replaced. Any guesses? It’s an SSD with a SATA card. This SSD is a 60GB Kingston SATAII drive that has been ran according to DriveDx for over two years. This SSD has been in almost every computer I owned since 2012 as it has been swapped between many PCs and Macs! I finally went to a 120GB in my MacBook Pro so the old 60GB needed a home in which case I found the MDD would be a good fit. Copying over files from the original hard drive now so soon I should be running at SSD speeds!

Just a minor update, figured I should share 🙂


Posted in Customization, G4, Hardware | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Power Mac G4 – Dual 800MHz MDD

Ahh. Here I go with another G4! I also picked up my old 800MHz iMac G4 just over a week ago. I’ll post more on that iMac soon but for now it’s all about this odd MDD!

Every once in a while on a local buy/sell Facebook group in my local area someone lists a Mac. I also picked up a 500MHz iMac G3 Snow White from a guy on there (owned it for about 3 days, I’ll post on that later too) but there was this MDD on there. The guy wanted $40 and I ended up paying $30 for it. Picked it up on 8/3/15 on my lunch break from work.

So something seems odd in the title of this post. 800MHz? Well this machine was originally a FireWire 800 single 1GHz model that the guy swapped a 800MHz dual processor card into this thing which came out of a 2001 QuickSilver. Works really good and I even get 1MB of L3 per CPU. The only bummer is that the system bus runs at 133MHz not 166MHz but I’m not complaining. If I end up keeping this it will turn into a dual 1.25 or 1.42GHz. In terms of other specs, it has 2GB of Ram, 60GB Seagate HD, 64MB nVidia GeForce 4MX, SuperDrive, and an AirPort Extreme card.

When people think of the MDD they think of “windtunnel” due to the three fans being crazy loud. One of my first posts on this blog talked about swapping the fans on my dual 1GHz MDD back in February 2014. Suprisingly enough the Samsung power supply in this MDD is really quiet and I can stand it. The evening before I bought the MDD I went on ebay and bought 2x 80mm fans to swap out in the PSU to find out the next day this thing was pretty quiet and I didn’t need to swap them. Owell, spare fans if I ever buy a noisy MDD!

So plans for this Mac? Well now it is my highest clocked PowerPC, I gutted one of my G5 towers for a hackintosh case and traded my Dual Core G5 for 8GB of DDR3 and a 120GB SSD still in the original packaging. Both the G5s I got back in March! But I will set this mac up on my desk next to my hackintosh and use it for PowerPC stuff. I have a PCI SATA card and a spare 60GB Kingston SSD that will be going into the MDD. Stay tuned!


Posted in G4, Hardware, OS X 10.5 Leopard | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

G4 Cubes

In the last post I said that I picked up two 500MHz models. I already sold one to a loyal buyer for $150 shipped which meant I still had a Cube left over. So I decided that I’ll be keeping this one. But I have plans for this one – for sure!

So history on the Cube. In 2000 Steve thought that there would be a market for a smaller Power Mac and that’s where the Cube came in. No internal PCI ports however things like Ram/Hard Drive can be upgraded (and deeper the CPU and GPU). Steve wanted it to be fanless although a fan bracket is there. And the other unfortunate thing is that these don’t have a 3.5mm audio jack.

Apple put the Cube “on ice” in 2001 after slow sales and having more style than functionality (on top of it’s high price). The Mac Mini seemed like the replacement for that particualr market, and furthermore the 2013 Mac Pro has similar specifications (in size) and general design idea as the G4 Cube.

So out of that $150 for the other G4 cube $140 went on a single 1.5GHz PowerLogix processor for the Cube. I looked for hours on eBay and the only CPU I could find was a 1.2GHz Sonnet for $180 and within posting that I was trying to hunt one down on MacRumors I had a reply and bought it immediately.

The other cool thing about this deal is that I will get a brand new 80x15mm fan and the appropriate connectors to wire a fan up in the cube, that 1.5GHz will need it!

So I have three guides I will be writing up here soon, and I think you will all find them neat!

G4 cube 500

Posted in G4, Hardware, Ideas, OS X 10.4 Tiger | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

More New Macs, In Fact 4!

So where I live in the middle of nowhere, every once in a while I have to make an hour and a half trip into the “Biggest Little City in The World” known as Reno, Nevada. The reasoning for this past weekend was to go to the Pick N Pull and get a door for a friend’s Chevy Cavalier. However, before I leave I browse through Craigslist and came across two good deals that I couldn’t pass up.

IMG_0917The first was a set of G4 Cubes, the guy was asking $50 a piece or $100 for both. No speakers but I did get power adapters and a iMac G3 plus a newer HP keyboard. These are both 500MHz models that were once used in a Reno school lab. Excellent deal and I didn’t even negotiate with the guy on the price. I had a Cube in the past for less than a week, and maybe this time I can keep one for longer than that! The other 500MHz is being sold as I have no use for two Cubes.

Next up are a set of G5s. This guy was also asking $100 for both, I offered $70 and he was cool with that. Keep in mind this listing and the Cube listing were both 17 and 20 days old. Lucky for him I didn’t have a $10 bill so he got $80. One is a 2.3GHz early 2005 model and the other is one I haven’t owned yet, a 2.0GHz dual core model from the Late 05 lineup. Also received a keyboard/magic mouse, power cords to both, and a boxed copy of OS X Leopard! In this scenario, I will sell the 2.3 as I’ve owned 4 early 05 machines (2.0, 2.3, another 2.3 plus a 2.7) and want to move onto the dual/quad core era.

One thing I wanted to point out is how ridiculously thick the odd power cord is used with the dual core models. These machines used a 1000w power supply where the 2.7GHz G5 used a 650w model. The Late 05 was the only Mac to use that connector as the 2006 Mac Pro went back to the standard three prong we see on every computer in existence. Anyway, this connector is called the C-19 which is used for heavy duty server equipment that uses apparently 1000w+ power supplies.


So this trip was a good haul, keep two sell the other two!

Posted in G4, G5, Hardware, News, OS X 10.5 Leopard | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment