The Planted Tank Forum banner

1 - 20 of 42 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking for some Mac pros out there. I just picked up a free G3 (300 Mhz, CD, & zip drive), thanks to Craigslist. I've always wanted to mess around with a Mac, but I didn't want to buy one. I haven't opened it up yet, but it does start up. The person in charge at the company I got this from didn't do a great job securing it, since there are allot of confidential company related files on it. Luckily, I don't care about it and just want to reformat the thing.

It has OS 8, can I install OS X?

I'm trying to get OS 9 if I can't use OS X and I want to install clean, reformat the drive, etc. Will the CD allow me to do this or is there a sequence of keys that I have to perform?

Any good forums for Macs?

Can I install a regular video card, that came from a PC, in the G3? The apple monitor that came with it is small, like 12" or so. I have larger PC monitors.

Thanks in advance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,045 Posts
on a G3 I don't think you would want to load up OS- X. It was released to be run on G4's. As to the system software you might get ahold of apple and see if you can get a system disk.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,012 Posts
Apple barely supports the G3 version now. Even getting answers to questions is difficult because all of the "help" forums are loaded with questions about much newer versions. Since the G3, there have been the G4, and the Intel Macs, which use the OS-X versions. I don't think you can go beyond OS-8.6, if that far, for a G3 Mac. In fact even getting on the web with the G3 will be difficult. It is good for word processing, etc., but that is about all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I don't really care to do word processing and stuff. I have P4's for my day to day stuff. Just want to learn more about the Mac. I've always been a PC guy. The only thing I really did on a mac before was change the IP address to use DHCP. I think I did upgrade the OS once, but I don't remember much about it.

Hopefully someone will give up a G4.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,045 Posts
You forgot the best processor of them all the G5.

But the G3's were used up to OS 9.
That was what we were running way back then on a network I admined back in those days. And specifically it ws running on the greenbox G3's and powerbooks.

Sorry I missed the other question.
Video card. Not likley. IIRC the MACs didn't bother with the AGP interface and their PCI slots are laid out differently so you are not able to tuck a PC vid card in a Mac.

There shouldn't be any problem using basic web and wordprocessing and CD burning and video editing and music editing and photo editing on that system. Of course it won't be anywhere near as fast as a modern day PC (of course) and you will have to run older versions of those types of software. But aside from that a G3 was still a very functional system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I got OS9, so how do I boot it so I can do a complete install of it. I want to wipe the drive clean.

Also, I believe the hard drive is small, like around 6gb. I have some 20 or maybe even 40 gb IDE hard drives. Will they be sufficient or are they special apple hard drives I have to use on them?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
987 Posts
My first mac was a G4 dually so I'm not sure how much applies to older machines but... the G4 used the same type HD as our PC and in fact, hubby swapped out the two 80gs he'd attempted to run RAID with in the PC and put them in the G4. (he discovered after getting them that the RAID compatable motherboard needed a special *type* of drive that hadn't been released yet. Nice huh?). As to video cards, there are aftermarket cards available.

Running OSX, my understanding from friends who still have G3s is that the earlier versions will run ok, but I think maybe starting with the as yet unreleased Leopard, it's not really a good idea. I'll check but that was my understanding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
987 Posts
I got OS9, so how do I boot it so I can do a complete install of it. I want to wipe the drive clean.

Also, I believe the hard drive is small, like around 6gb. I have some 20 or maybe even 40 gb IDE hard drives. Will they be sufficient or are they special apple hard drives I have to use on them?

Missed the first part. Should be able to do a complete install by just inserting the disk when it boots up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks.

I have a bad case of the allergies now and I know that opening the thing up would probably make it worse, sine it's probably really dusty inside.

What's the button with the apple logo on the keyboard called?

On the PC, you can press the CTRL ALT DELETE to open up the task manager, are there any keyboard shortcuts to any system utilities/functions on the Mac?
 

·
Plant Lover
Joined
·
294 Posts
Some good forums: MacWorld Magazine (discuss tab), MacAddict Magazine (now Mac Life, but the web site may not have changed... more of a teenager attitude, but responsive and helpful), and MacFixit web site (keeps you up to date on various Mac bugs and such).

You won't get much of the Mac experience on the G3 running OS9, as the experience has changed mightily with OSX.

Also the install disc should ask you if you want to reboot after you load it, and then boot to the CD. You can always boot to a CD by putting it in and holding down the "C" key on restart (provided the the CD has a bootable OS on it). If you really want the drive wiped clean, have the CD zero all data on reformat (takes longer). You can always do this by starting up from the CD and running Disk Utility (reformat disc, also use this to partition a drive).

Last, the apple key is the "command" key, but "apple" key is applicable as well. There are countless key board shortcuts, and you can determine many of them. I can't remember the major ones with OS9. You access sytem preferences in "control panels" (I think I remember that right... it was a long time ago, in the "apple menu".

One of the slight bummers about OS9, that dissappeared with OSX, is the possibility of extension conflicts that can cause instability. OSX is rock solid. You also will find the interface is much more intuitive than Windows, and fewer steps are needed for just about anything. It is just a more elegant interface.

Hard drive, as long as the bay size and interface (ADA, IDE, whatever) is the same, I think you can swap them out. My old G4 has an IBM and a Seagate drive in it (one master, one slave). On the G4 at least, getting in the box and doing any of this is simple. Apple even has "How To" quick time videos (or they use to... may not if yours is unsupported now) on their web site. Pretty easy to navigate to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Thanks again. I'm trying to boot OS9, but it won't boot from CD. When I tried to install from the CD by clicking on the 'Mac OS Install" icon, I get an error message that the program cannot run on the computer and to look at the documentation. Unfortunately, I'm a mac idiot. LOL

It looks like I might need to get a G4/G5 cheap. I found a G4 listed...
G4 Tower, has OS 9.2.2 on it. 512 MB RAM 384 MB Hard Drive, 15 inch Mitsubishi EnergyStar Monitor, Mac Clear Keyboard, Clear Mouse Inlcuded.
They were asking for 250.00 obo. Is it worth it?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
166 Posts
My Internet computer is a G3 Laptop. I am currently running OS 9.2. You can try this: Turn on the computer. Insert the OS9 CD. Go to Special on the top menu. Hit Restart. Hold down the letter C on your keyboard while the computer boots up. This should let you boot the computer from the CD. If it works try to install the software. If the hardware on the computer is OK it should let you install the new OS.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,012 Posts
Thanks again. I'm trying to boot OS9, but it won't boot from CD. When I tried to install from the CD by clicking on the 'Mac OS Install" icon, I get an error message that the program cannot run on the computer and to look at the documentation. Unfortunately, I'm a mac idiot. LOL

It looks like I might need to get a G4/G5 cheap. I found a G4 listed...


They were asking for 250.00 obo. Is it worth it?
No! A thousand times no!! You can buy a brand new Mac Mini, with the Intel processor, for only about $800, maybe less. And, that is infinitely better in all ways. You just need a keyboard, mouse and monitor for it, which you probably already have. I haven't checked, but I suspect you can get older Mac Mini's on ebay for a lot less than $800.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Sounds good, but I really didn't want to spend allot of money on a Mac. Even $250 was too much, but if I could sell the G3 I just got, I won't have too much into a used G4/G5.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
The Mac didn't boot up with the OS9 CD. The CD was an image, which I burned on CD and tried to boot with. When I tried to boot while pressing 'C', the Mac just started up as normal, not from the CD. I'm not sure if it's because the keyboard is a USB keyboard or something else. I know in the PC world, the PC has to startup the usb drivers in order to use any usb devices.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
166 Posts
It should not matter if the keyboard is USB. Turn off the computer with the CD inside the CD drive. Hold the C letter and turn on the computer. You have to hold the C letter until it start loading the extensions (little icons at the bottom). In any case that the OS9 CD is bad it should eject it and boot normaly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,235 Posts
No! A thousand times no!! You can buy a brand new Mac Mini, with the Intel processor, for only about $800, maybe less. And, that is infinitely better in all ways. You just need a keyboard, mouse and monitor for it, which you probably already have. I haven't checked, but I suspect you can get older Mac Mini's on ebay for a lot less than $800.
The referb mini unit is 699... Considered it then picked up a new dual core Imac as our apple experiment. I've been a PC user for a long time too but is it really worth the time to have an old MAC running if your going to struggle finding the junk to make it work? To me time is money... Makes me think of my first laptop sitting under my desk that can only run Win 95. 32mb of ram and 8mb on the mother board and the upgraded 4.5 gig HD. :)

The main point is MAC has changed again and for the better IMO. Ditch the junk.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I've tried booting from the CD several times and no luck. I'll try another CD.

I hate wasting time also. I rather use a PC, than try to fix it. That's why I never really built PC's, since I rather just use them. But as you guys can tell, I know sh*t about Macs, so I don't mind spending the extra effort learning as much as I can. I also have a Sparc station that I plan to work on as well.

Anyways, unless I can get a hold of a really cheap/free G4/G5, then I'm probably going to hold on to the G3 for awhile. Way to learn when starting from the bottom. :D

I just opened it up. It wasn't hard, but it doesn't look easy getting access to the hard drive and memory. The G3 is a desktop model, not the tower. It's easy access to the zip, CD, and floppy drives and also the I/O cards, but I just can't figure how to get underneath to access the HD and memory. :(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Ok. I got OS 9.1 and it looks like it's installing now. (whew) I'll see how this goes. If I get this done, I'm going to open it up again and try to swap the hard drive to a
 
1 - 20 of 42 Posts
Top