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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Apr 20, 2007
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    miltiple hard drives in an imac?
    Hello!! i'm not a mac user, never have been, but please be nice!

    I'm thinking about buying an old imac, (no, I'm not converting to a mac user*, Ubuntu for life ) one of those colourfull ones, 300mhz or whatever it was, to use as a home/web server. my current 300mhz server is dying, and i can pick one of them up for $30, and i can put a pretty slide show or something on the monitor

    I just have one question, how many hard drives will fit into one of these things? for $30 i really don't care if i break it trying, but if I'm real determined, how many will #1 the motherboard support, and #2 will fit in the case (can remove the cd drive if it helps). has anyone done any case modding to get more in?

    i'm well aware i can add usb hard drives, (or get usb enclosures) i assume these old machines only have usb1, and i'd really just rather get them in the case. an external hard drive enclosure puts me up to $60ish dollars, i can buy another PC with space for that.

    *nothing against macs, awesome machines, but ubuntu makes a better server, and i can't afford one as a desktop

  2. #2

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    I have 2 of them sitting here. Really there is room for one HDD but if you take out the CDROM I am sure you could put two. There is one connector so I doubt more than 2. Only other way is usb on the older ones (1.1 of course so it's slow) or Firewire on the newer 350Mhz and up.

    Good luck. Nice little machine for what you want it for except for drives. Ubuntu works nice on my 333Mhz Grape iMac G3. Very nice!

  3. #3


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtravis7 View Post
    Good luck. Nice little machine for what you want it for except for drives. Ubuntu works nice on my 333Mhz Grape iMac G3. Very nice!
    hmmm, the main thing i need is expandability! i'v scheduled money for a second 320gb drive purely for backups (spent way too long backing up my DVD collection to lose it all) and I've already run out of space...

    maybe a mac isn't what I'm looking for... (although they are pretty)

    unless someone else has a suggestion?

  4. #4

    knightlie's Avatar
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    Specs:
    Lenovo Z560 Hackintosh -:- '06 iMac -:- iPod Touch 2ndGen
    For that usage you could try a LinkSys NSLU-2, or a Buffalo something-or-other, both of which are Linux-based and can have customised distros installed on them. I use an NLSU-2 with uNSLUng installed on it with an 80Gb USB drive for backing up and MP3 storage.

  5. #5


    Member Since
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    .... or i could use a random PC i find lying around....


    the reason i wanted an imac for is purely because they are really sexy, but the day i can't find a terribly outdated PC (for free) is the day i get out of the IT business

  6. #6

    knightlie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hatchetjuggla View Post
    .... or i could use a random PC i find lying around....
    I have about three myself, but an NSLU-2 is about the size of a pack of cigarettes, and uses much less power than a PC. The last thing I want is another PC lying around sucking up electricity just to store MP3s.

    Of course if you choosing it for aesthetic reasons then get am iMac.

  7. #7

    bryphotoguy's Avatar
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    I recently took apart my iMac 350MHz slot load and here is a photo of the HD/ CD caddy directly under the monitor.
    I agree with the dtravis7. You're only getting one drive in there unless you take out the cd drive. There is only one IDE slot on the logic board.
    I'm debating what I want to do with my iMac.
    Peace,
    Bryan
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    January 2008 Member of the Month

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Apr 20, 2007
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    Thanks heaps for the pic

    I might get one anyway, and back up via ethernet to a drive in one of my other PC. should really have my backup stored somewhere else....

    I won't need a CD drive in my server, i can always install ubuntu via ethernet...

  9. #9

    bryphotoguy's Avatar
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    Also, I think you need to worry about the capacity of the drive when dealing with these iMacs. To run OSX 10.4 you will need to find a DV model with a 400MHz processor or faster. I can't remember if there is a firmware upgrade or not but if you plan on sticking to OS 9, the iMac will not recognize a HD over 150GB or something.... I do remember reading about someone running into this problem.
    I would say get a 400MHz or faster w/ firewire and you'll be ok.
    If you get an iMac, let me know. I'd love the burner or DVD drive. Mine's only got the cdrom and I can't find a slot load drive on eBay.
    Peace,
    Bryan

    January 2008 Member of the Month

  10. #10


    Member Since
    Apr 15, 2007
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    Slightly off topic:

    On my USB 2.0 drive, I have a very difficult time streaming things (I expected this), would the stream rate be much better if I just bought the cord for my HDD that is firewire, would I be able to stream videos off of it? I'm just too lazy to transfer stuff to the iMac's HDD first

  11. #11

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamC View Post
    Slightly off topic:

    On my USB 2.0 drive, I have a very difficult time streaming things (I expected this), would the stream rate be much better if I just bought the cord for my HDD that is firewire, would I be able to stream videos off of it? I'm just too lazy to transfer stuff to the iMac's HDD first
    All I can say is here I stream videos from my Core Duo Mini with my external connected Firewire. Works smooth.

  12. #12

    bryphotoguy's Avatar
    Member Since
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    By streaming do you just mean your watching movies that are saved on your external drive?
    I've never tried it, actually maybe little itunes shows of the office but that worked fine.
    Try firewire, it transfers faster. If that doesn't work, I dunno.
    Bryan

    January 2008 Member of the Month

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