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Thread: Dead USB Ports

  1. #1

    Audio.Trench's Avatar
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    Dead USB Ports
    So I finally got our G4 1.33ghz Powerbook back up using an external FW hard drive to boot to.

    Everything works great, apart from the fact that the USB ports do not work anymore.

    When I plug my basic Logitech mouse (which works on other computers) into either of the 2 USB ports, the red optical light turns on, and there is power going to the mouse.

    However, the mouse does not actually work. I've tried my Logitech mouse, my Logitech Trackball, and my Wacom tablet (which lights flash blue while plugged in). I've downloaded the drivers for my tablet and for the trackball. Nothing happens, System Prefs does not show anything connected either.

    I've even tried resetting the PRAM, but to no avail.

    I've done some searching and the only reasonable explanation I can find is a dead/dying logic and/or DC Board (as the left side usb/modem/audio ports are on the DC board).

    Is my hypothesis correct? Or is there a fix for this that's within reason?

    It's currently running 10.4.11

    I'm just waiting for my backup to finish copying to the hard drive so I can restart for the new updates to take effect, so maybe that might fix it. But in the mean time, is there anything else I can do to remedy this?

    Any help is appreciated!

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
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    I'm not all that familiar with the Powerbook models, but it does seem to be hardware related. If it turns out to be a logic board or DC board defect, you really don't have much choice other than to replace the board or buy another machine.

    You might want to check with several of the on line repair sites that specialize in Mac computers to get an idea of how to replace the defective board yourself and what it will cost.

    1. ifixit site

    2. Powerbook Medic

    Regards.

  3. #3

    Audio.Trench's Avatar
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    Thanks for the links. However, I just finished rebooting after the software update, and everything seems to be working fine now for both USB ports.

    I was just scoping eBay out, and a new DC board is about $70 USD, and a logicboard is about $175-$300. So yeah, too much for my broke self! haha.

    I can deal with this setup for now until I can afford to buy a new laptop. School starts this summer, so I might have some extra cash for a machine, as I'll need it for audio engineering.

  4. #4

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Normally Repair Permissions and/or a reboot is all that is required to bring USB ports back online, unless the connectors have been damaged using the wrong type of connectors or too much force making connection.

  5. #5

    Audio.Trench's Avatar
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    That was the next step I was going to try after the reboot, but fortuneatly they worked afterwards.

    It's weird though, because for the longest time one of them didn't work. Now the both work.

    I still have a hunch that the logic/DC boards are possibly failing.

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