Got another 17" iMac G4 yesterday, this time it's working! After a certain amount of panicking... Got it fairly cheap because the hard drive was dead, but I saw it power up and screen etc. were good so I bought it. The first bit of panic arose when I realised it was the FIRST 17" version, which means slower speed, no easy way to add modern WiFi , and the top OS X it'll run is 10.4, also that it's even more than a pig to work on than the usual iMac G4.
Then I tried booting from the DVD drive and found that was dead too. Again no great cause for alarm - they're VERY old and the DVD is usually the first thing to go. Though I did worry that there might be a fault with the disc controller or something! IDE DVD drives are like gold dust these days, so a while back I bought a couple of the little adapters that convert SATA to IDE that didn't have the connections upside down (see this post) at a couple of pounds, and I've bought a couple of SATA drives in readiness - most SATA drives are faster, cheaper, and MUCH less worn than IDE! This was my opportunity to see if one would work in a G4.
So I swapped out the drives and put in new ones, put it all back together again (which is the hard part because there are a lot of cables and weird connectors that have to go in the right places) and booted up... not. Twice... Third time, fortunately, I remembered to set the jumpers on the drives so that they didn't conflict, and things were OK. Finally got it running properly about 9 PM, finished installing and updating the operating system about eleven.
Next stage is to up the internal memory, put in a new PRAM battery, and do the finishing touches like heat sink paste, install some software, and hopefully !PROFIT!
I think this is probably going to be the last one I do, unless something really cheap practically forces itself on me - they're a lot of work and I seem to be doing better with photographic stuff. But I find them fun to work on, so I'm not saying never again...
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