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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my 500 MHz G3 took a tumble and now has an internal HD making strange grumbling noises.

I would like to install 10.4 to an external firewire drive and boot from that. The mobility factor doesn't mean much to me as I plug it in anyways, and just use it to type notes in class and learn a bit more about macs. Supposing I had a 10.4 dmg or original install DVD (laptop has DVD-ROM).

1. Would it be possible to install to the external firewire and boot from it permanently while loading the DVD from the DVD-ROM drive.

2. If (shudder) the DVD drive is also toast, can this be installed from a MacBook, onto the FW drive and then loaded by the G3, again, only if the DVD-ROM in the G3 is fried.

I ask this in advance just to get some direction of where I need to focus my efforts, and not enlist and annoy a friend with the MacBook to embark on a fruitless chase.

Thanks for your responses.
Kyle.
 

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1. Would it be possible to install to the external firewire and boot from it permanently while loading the DVD from the DVD-ROM drive.
Yes.

2. If (shudder) the DVD drive is also toast, can this be installed from a MacBook, onto the FW drive and then loaded by the G3, again, only if the DVD-ROM in the G3 is fried.
No. The MacBook will only install an Intel-based OS, which will not be bootable by the iBook. (It is unlikely the MacBook will be able to install to an external FireWire hard drive to begin with. If you run the installer from the MacBook, using its original discs, the external hard drive will probably have a red exclamation mark which will refuse the install.) The MacBook can only install from its original discs, or a 10.5 Leopard disc when it ships. (No other discs of any kind will function.)
 

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No. The MacBook will only install an Intel-based OS, which will not be bootable by the iBook. (It is unlikely the MacBook will be able to install to an external FireWire hard drive to begin with. If you run the installer from the MacBook, using its original discs, the external hard drive will probably have a red exclamation mark which will refuse the install.) The MacBook can only install from its original discs, or a 10.5 Leopard disc when it ships. (No other discs of any kind will function.)
My understanding is if you put the MacBook in target disk mode, it's optical drive will be available as a FireWire drive to another Mac that you connect it to via FireWire. If this is true, then you could install the iBook's PPC version of OS X on the external FireWire hard drive that way. I'm not sure if the iBook would be able to boot from the MacBook's optical drive that way in order to run the installer though.
 

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My understanding is if you put the MacBook in target disk mode, it's optical drive will be available as a FireWire drive to another Mac that you connect it to via FireWire. If this is true, then you could install the iBook's PPC version of OS X on the external FireWire hard drive that way. I'm not sure if the iBook would be able to boot from the MacBook's optical drive that way in order to run the installer though.
That should work, actually, but then you would need a FireWire hub as the iBook's one and only FireWire port would be connected to the MacBook, leaving you wondering where the external FW HD will be plugged into. Unless, your external FW HD has two FireWire ports: Plug external FW HD into MacBook, and second FireWire cable from HD to the iBook. In theory. ;)
 

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That should work, actually, but then you would need a FireWire hub as the iBook's one and only FireWire port would be connected to the MacBook, leaving you wondering where the external FW HD will be plugged into. Unless, your external FW HD has two FireWire ports: Plug external FW HD into MacBook, and second FireWire cable from HD to the iBook. In theory. ;)
Most FireWire enclosures I've seen have 2 FireWire ports for daisy chaining, so this shouldn't be an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks...I'm still at it!

Hello all, thanks for your input... This little project was on the backburner for me for a while, but I spent a good part of the weekend working a bit...

I removed the HDD, which contrary to everything I heard about it, was actually rather pleasant and interesting. Its not the hardest thing to do, I've never taken one apart but was at the HDD in under an hour...if you don't count the 45 minutes I spent on the one screw I stripped...was that a pain!

If anyone without experience wanted to upgrade the HDD or something else that deep inside, don't shy away! Its not that tough! Just make sure you get a decent set of Torx screwdrivers and be careful on each size driver you use, that's how I stripped a philips, they all seemed about the same and I hadn't changed the bit and screwed myself...bad pun intended.

So. I got the HDD out, and I was able to power on with the bottom casing removed. I got about the same results as before, but I figured I might be better off with the disk out if its making wierd noise, and I noticed that even though I couldn't boot from DVD, it was quicker to not boot from DVD than with that god-awful HDD still rattling.

I bought my machine used with panther already installed, so I have no apple discs, but i did get a release of finnix and ubuntu for PPC. When loading through the DVD with the HDD installed, the machine chimed up, and powered off after a minute or so, thing is, as soon as i removed the HDD and plugged it back in to AC, it started right on its own, but still no boot.

It wouldn't boot without the internal HDD either.

Next, i took my Firewire hard disk enclosure and connected my DVD burner to it. I put each of my PPC linux distros in and booted with C, nothing, booted with command+option+shift+del and i got to the screen with a refresh and a next button and eventually the same cd logo with a little penguin came up for each disc with a FW logo under. Beyond clicking the cd and then clicking next, I don't know what to do. It comes right back to the same screen, but sometimes with the FW logo, next button and CD logo a little distorted from the original image, like there was a negative of the colour for the FW logo and the CD had some little lines in it. If i keep clicking next, after the 3rd or 4th time, it comes up with an HDD logo (despite no HDD internal or external) and I click next and still get nothing.

That's the long story.

Essentially, I would be ever-grateful if I could get some more feedback from the folks on this board if someone could indicate the following:

Can iBook G3 dual usb 500 MHz boot up anything Live with no internal HDD present? Is there some sort of open-firmware setting that requires 2 devices on the IDE bus? I only have a bad drive to connect there, so if it is necessary, I will go out of my way to get one to test.

Next, with the strange colour distortion that I mentioned, could this be indicative of other problems..like logic board failure :(
When I tried booting from my Linux CDs in the DVD rom of the iBook, I got the folder/? looking for bootable volume screen, but again, after reading the cd, it went to either a graphically glitched folder/? or another one that I havent seen where the folder resembles more like a folder you would see in Windows with the ?/Mac face in it.

I've zapped my PRAM and I don't know if its supposed to give the low pitched whistle then chime when you do that, or if its supposed to give a straight chime. It did the whistle, then chime when I tried.

Thanks for all the input you guys have given towards my cause. If any of the above is indicative that my machine would make a good door-stop or paper-weight, please do not hesitate to let me know. Otherwise, as long as there's a chance this may come back to life, I'll go on with my stubborn as hell ways and keep at it till I throw it out a window or something...I might be getting close.

Kyle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yeah, i took awhile to get at it, but im on a budget, going to school full time and working full time. Believe me, I've wanted to get back to work on this for a while.
 

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I do not think a Live CD will work without a hard drive, as it needs swap space. I'd just put a new hard drive in the machine, even if it is a 10 or 20 GB drive (for budget reasons), and do it the right way. They are not expensive these days, and will save you grief.
 

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I personally don't understand why you don't just replace the internal drive. Using the external drive will be slow. You don't need anything special as far as brand of hard drive...just avoid buying it from Apple, they seem to charge extra to have their logo on the label.

I suggest getting a Seagate drive, as they have a 5 year warranty. You should be able to buy one from almost any computer shop. The only concern would be size limitations and you want to research the maximum capacity of drive that your system will handle.
 
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