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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

SATA drive in an iBook G4, 1.33 GHz? Does it affect the trackpad?


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evolutionairy

 
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Hello!

I recently acquired an iBook G4, 1.33 GHz, 512 Mb on-board RAM, with a 40 Gb hard drive and no operating system (INSANELY cheap - couldn't resist!).

I had a 1 Gb RAM chip, slotted that. Had a 150 Gb SATA drive: pulled the connector off, swapped it with the 40 Gb drive's, and it fit perfectly. I went to install OS X 10.5 (retail disc) and it asked for a mouse. I figured I hadn't connected the trackpad cable, so I went ahead with the install, and when finished, I opened up the RAM compartment and pushed the cable in a little more snugly. Still no trackpad.

Not having a lot of experience with iBooks, I got a new top-case, swapped them, and the trackpad STILL doesn't work. (Because of this and the fact that I have sound, I don't think it's a hardware problem or that I ripped anything)

So my question is this: could it be because I've got a SATA drive instead of a PATA drive in there? (Ran all the software updates, verified the disk permissions, verified the hard disk - checked out OK). OR do I just need to re-install everything? (An aside - I downloaded SideTrack 1.5 but every time I try to open it in the system preferences it tells me to restart to install the drivers; I restart, no drivers.)

Any clues are much appreciated!

Amy
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EvenStranger

 
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None of the iBooks used SATA drives. They all used PATA. My guess, since you've seen similar results with two top cases, is one of the pins in the plug is crushed and not connecting properly. Look inside the connector on the motherboard and make sure all the pins are standing straight up. If any of them are crushed or bent, you may need to take a pair of needle nose pliers and very gently straighten it back up again. If none of the pins are bent, then it could just be a bad trackpad controller on the board.
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evolutionairy

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvenStranger View Post
...similar results with two top cases, is one of the pins in the plug is crushed and not connecting properly. Look inside the connector on the motherboard and make sure all the pins are standing straight up. If any of them are crushed or bent, you may need to take a pair of needle nose pliers and very gently straighten it back up again...
EvenStranger, thank you, you're totally right!!! I bought a lighted magnifying glass after work and checked out the socket: the end pin is bent! However, I don't think I can get a pair of needle nose pliers in there... I'm working on being creative, so far I'm thinking skinny forceps....

Amy
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evolutionairy

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evolutionairy View Post
EvenStranger, thank you, you're totally right!!! I bought a lighted magnifying glass after work and checked out the socket: the end pin is bent! However, I don't think I can get a pair of needle nose pliers in there... I'm working on being creative, so far I'm thinking skinny forceps...
...and the creative answer is a sewing needle. I was able to straighten the pin, fit the cable, and the trackpad works as if there was nothing ever wrong with it.

I can't thank you enough, EvenStranger - I wouldn't have thought to look inside the socket as I just couldn't see the pins (just dots).

Amy (Is there a backflip emoticon?)
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Glad I was able to help. Enjoy the (now working) laptop!
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How did you manage to get the SATA drive in the iBook if you don't mind me asking? Your explanation was a bit to brief for me to get, and I'd loge to do just that to resurrect my old iBook and give it some oompf!
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I infer from Amy's answer that she didn't -- she instead got a PATA drive and unbent the pin. Maybe I'm wrong.
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Additionally, adding a SATA drive likely wouldn't give the machine any extra "oomph!".

SATA1 has a maximum transfer rate of 150Mb/s. The later versions of PATA supported up to 133Mb/s. In reality, most hard drives will never saturate a 133Mb/s bus, let alone 150Mb/s. So, the big difference here is in the type of drive you buy being appropriate to the host machine.

There are still lots of PATA hard drives on the market, so just be sure to get the right kind for your machine and abandon the thought of trying to "hack" or make it fit in some way.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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