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6 posts

Wannabe Geek

Topic # 22627 3-Jun-2008 15:13
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Hello ladies and gents.

I'm looking to upgrade my old 700 MHz G4 eMac (until I can afford a whole new computer). I'm going for new HDD, DVD, and all the ram it can handle. I've managed to track down the disassembly instructions and all that jazz. I think I can handle the fiddly bits, but I can't figure out how I'd restart the computer if I have put a fresh (blank) hard drive in. Is there a way I can boot from an external drive? So I could get an external Firewire case and put the old HDD in it, boot from that and then install Leopard on the new HDD? Leaving me with a completely fresh HDD in the eMac and an external drive with all my old stuff on it.

Is it that simple (probably is)?

Thanks in advance for any help I receive.


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62 posts

Master Geek

  Reply # 135208 3-Jun-2008 15:50
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Good luck with that, the old eMac's weren't the most upgrade friendly of machines.

First up Leopard will run like a dog no matter if you bump up the RAM to 1Gb (the limit I believe).  We've just upped one machine to Tiger and she ain't fast.  There is a solder trick to clock the thing up and apparently the 700Mhz will do 900Mhz just, but 800Mhz is stable as (not bad for a freebie).

As for the disk.  My suggestion would be to clone the old disk to the new disk.  I'm sure OS X must have software for that, personally I use Ghost on a Windows machine, but that's only because in 10 years it hasn't let me down.  After the clone, just pop the new drive into the case.

Otherwise if you are planning on reinstalling the OS then there is a keyboard trick (anyone?) where you hold down a key I think and the machine will boot from DVD.  So slap the OS X disk in and go mad.

The Tiger install we did took like 2 hours or something, the machine is that slow.  And even though it is up and running the majority of new websites with Flash, Shockwave and the like are deathly slow.  The 5 year old doesn't mind but I couldn't use the machine without pulling my hair out.

Again good luck

165 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 1

  Reply # 135229 3-Jun-2008 16:58
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Use SuperDuper to clone your drive, it creates bootable clones of your internal hard drive.  (Google for SuperDuper and it's free too)  If you have an external firewire drive that you are going to put inside your eMac you can clone your current drive to that and then boot from the cloned Firewire drive to check everything works before you open up your eMac.

You can boot from your SuperDuper cloned drive by holding the option key down during the boot sequence (the startup sound) and then select the external drive.

Also, holding down 'C' should force a Mac to load the dvd/cd-rom drive, not sure about the old eMacs though.

Leopard will run slow but Tiger should be OK, we used to run Tiger on an eMac but it was 1Ghz if I remember correctly.

6 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 135301 3-Jun-2008 20:48
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Thanks for the help guys. Time to rip my computer apart.

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