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  1. #1
    Powerbook 520 - OS Install Help
    hey guys, i have a Powerbook 520 that has no OS on it. when booting the unit from the HDD, it displays a "disk with a ? in the middle". if memory serves me, that is telling me that, basically, the disk isnt bootable. I have, what apears to be Official OS 7.5 install Disks (1-7, let me know if that is all of the disks, i may be able to obtain the rest of the set, if there is more).

    Now on to the problem, when booting from install disk1, or inserting it after the 520 is already booted and displaying the ?disk?, i am promted with the install screen. Easy, Custom Install, Custom Remove, you know what im talking about. The problem is, there isnt enuff space on the HDD for even a CUSTOM minimal "for this mac only" instal, i fall about 300k short. From what i read, the MINIMUM HDD size that shipped with the 520 prvides more than enuff space for this OS. SOOOooo, i can only assume that there is a bunch of "junk" on this drive, only problem do i get it off.

    I did attemp to do a custom remove, and managed to "remove" everything except for the system files........only assuming, but alot more space was free'd up on the HDD, and at this point is where i fall 300k short of performing the minimal install of OS 7.5.

    Correct me if im wrong, but if i atleast get a minimal system going, i would be able to remove all of the "junk", and then perform a complete install.

    *not sure if this is a place to metion this*
    googleing around, i found A (singular) *nix distro that would boot on this machine. but im not even sure THAT would help me in this situation.

    *Misc info*
    PowerBook 520
    System 7.5 Install disks #1 - #7 (inform me if there is more)
    Access to Linux and MS systems only (no other mac acess)
    Although i do not currently own a Apple, i did spend 4 year Exxclusivly using Apple's. mostly OS9 and OSX. its jsut been a few (aprox. 4) since ive used a mac, and even then, the OS9 and OSX would format the disk for me (Well, option available on the disk), and i am not given that option using my install disks

    so basically, i need help somehow getting an OS installed on this machine.

    Thnx for you time.

  2. #2

    Macman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 30, 2004
    San Antonio, Texas
    PowerMac G4 Cube 450mhz 832mb
    hmm, thats hard. if you get a system installed on it, you could most likely do an erase and install/custom remove of the stuff currently on it. could be a problem with the hd though.
    maybe why it isnt reading an os or correct size. if at all possible, I recommend installing os x on it if it will take it.

  3. #3
    LOL, i would love to "just install OSX", but alas, this is a PRE-PPC, like 25mhz or something.

    ...............but you knew that.

  4. #4

    Member Since
    Mar 30, 2004
    12" Apple PowerBook G4 (1.5GHz)
    What you need is a bootable floppy. A system as old as that could boot completely from a floppy, and Apple used to include minimal bootable Systems on floppies, both with the machine, and with OS upgrades, for troubleshooting.

    If you can find that disk, you should be able to boot the PowerBook. The HD will mount on the desktop, and you'll be able to Trash all the junk or reformat the disk.

  5. #5
    thats what i like to hear....HOPE

    umm, do you know if i need a specific disk for this laptop, or just a generic 7.5 rescue disk, or will any (any meaniing, any that will bott on this machine, OS8 or under) rescue floppy do?

    i dont believe that i have a rescue disk handy, but im almost positive i can download one........only problem is, i know a PC cant make a MAc floppy, especially a bootable one.........maybe Linux?

  6. #6

    macEfan's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 01, 2004
    Somewhere in the world
    Powermac g4 400mhz, 10gb, 256mb ram, OS9
    Lightbulb Mac boot floppy
    I know you can download the file from the apple website. I your PC can't make the disk, I bet there are some on Ebay.

  7. #7
    I got a powerbook like this one, too, a 520c, for $5 but there's a problem with the screen. Does anyone here have a monitor cable? Or any of the expansion options for this laptop? I'm not really a Mac geek, I'm more of a linux geek and this thing begs to have Debian on it, heh heh. But anyway, I'm looking for the monitor cable for this. Also, is there a vga cable for it? I can get a mac monitor but I have a few vga monitors that I can use now. The picture on the screen is stuffed into the upper left corner. The pic in the link is fuzzy but it gets the point across. I plan on taking it apart and checking everything out (looks like it's been taken apart before, the hinge is very loose)

    Thanks for any help!


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