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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Jul 11, 2014
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    6
    I just got an iMac G5, how do you get it to work?
    Hi everyone I'm new here.
    I've been given an imac g5 and need some advice as I'm also new to apple software & hardware but have experience on windows software & hardware. Now that I've been given this machine its finally given me a kick up the **** to use a apple device, haha.

    The problem is that before it was given to me the hard-drive had been wiped (on a windows pc, I believe) so when you turn it on you get a grey screen with a folder flashing between a question mark and mac logo, what do I need to get or do to make this machine work?

    Another problem is that I think there's a CD in drive because I cant fit discs in. How do you eject? There's no button I've read on google you hold down certain commands on the keyboard while its booting up to eject, but it doesn't work for me.

    Which leads to a question about keyboards and mice.
    Can you use windows keyboards and mice on the imac g5 or apple computers in general? Although the keybords commands didnt work for me, I did get into the "BootROM" or "Open Firmware" (looks like dos) by holding the power button down. But I couldn't type using my windows keyboard

    So to end, any advice or point in the right direction would be much appreciated
    I'm looking forward to using the machine, but at the moment I'm constantly scratching my head when searching on google as I cant really find a consistent answer.

    Many thanks in advance.

    Oh yeah the specs, imac g5 20"/2.0/512mb/250gb/super/56k/bt/ap

  2. #2

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Sep 30, 2007
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    To eject the disc:
    How to Eject a Disk on Startup in an iMac | eHow

    I'm not 100% sure a Windows keyboard will work on the pre-intel Macs, but I think they will. Almost any mouse will work fine.

    As for installing an OS, you'll need an installation disc for OS X. Hopefully that's what's in the drive. If not, you'll have to buy one, and copies for a Mac that old are actually rather expensive.

  3. #3

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Nambucca Heads Australia
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    22,120
    Specs:
    Imac 27" Retina 5K, 512GB flash memory, 3.3GHz, 16GB memory, macOS Sierra beta.
    You are going to have to buy an operating system. For a G5, suggest Leopard OS X.5 which will not be cheap on eBay and such. When you have the DVD, pop it in, boot and hold down 'C'. When booted from the disc, leave the Installer, go to Utilities > Disk Utility > Erase and Format mac OS XExtended (Journaled), into Partition > Options and make sure Apple Partition Map is selected.

    Back to the Installer and proceed. Update to OS X.5.8 using Software Update. And be patient. Macs work different to Windows. Have a look at tip for switchers.


    http://allthingsd.com/20080702/some-...-from-windows/


    And member chas m's great sticky:-


    http://www.mac-forums.com/forums/swi...-switcher.html
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  4. #4


    Member Since
    Jul 11, 2014
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    Quote Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
    I tried those commands and they don't work, must be the windows keyboard? Unsure why the mouse command don't work? So looks like I'm gonna have to buy an apple keyboard.

    Quote Originally Posted by harryb2448 View Post
    For a G5, suggest Leopard OS X.5 which will not be cheap on eBay and such.
    So about the operating system what would be a cheap option?
    And if for some reason the dvd drive doesn't work can I copy the dvd to usb (using windows) and boot? Just wondering because its an old system and I'm using windows.

    Thanks for speedy responses
    Last edited by BN1_Soldier; 07-11-2014 at 05:56 PM.

  5. #5

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Specs:
    Imac 27" Retina 5K, 512GB flash memory, 3.3GHz, 16GB memory, macOS Sierra beta.
    Rule one this is like Windows ~ no cheap option. Go to eBay and such but only buy a black retails install DVD, no silver/grey model specific discs at any prce. Normally about +$80.00.

    And no to USB as PowerPC Macs do not boot from USB.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  6. #6


    Member Since
    Jul 11, 2014
    Posts
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    I think my first step is to buy the original keyboard to get the disc out, fingers crossed its got the install disc inside. Thanks very much for advice

  7. #7

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    May 20, 2008
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    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by BN1_Soldier View Post
    I tried those commands and they don't work, must be the windows keyboard? Unsure why the mouse command don't work? So looks like I'm gonna have to buy an apple keyboard.
    Holding down the mouse button when you restart the computer usually does the trick. If this method is not working...it is always possible that the disk drive itself is dead/not working.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Jul 11, 2014
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    Just wondering if mouse button command isn't working because there's no operating system installed?

  9. #9

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    Dec 22, 2006
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    Texas, where else?
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    15" MBP '06 2.33 C2D 4GB 10.7; 13" MBA '14 1.8 i7 8GB 10.11; 21" iMac '13 2.9 i5 8GB 10.11; 6S
    Quote Originally Posted by BN1_Soldier View Post
    Just wondering if mouse button command isn't working because there's no operating system installed?
    No - because that would occur prior to the OS loading.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  10. #10

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Jan 04, 2005
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    Modesto, Ca.
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    Specs:
    iMac 2010 27" QuadI7 OSX10.11, iMac 2008 OSX10.11, MBP Late2011OSX10.11 , iPad Air, iPhone 3GS
    Holding down the left mouse button right after the Startup BONG and keeping it down till the DVD ejects will work without an OS installed. If it's not I would bet the optical drive is messed up.

    When you press the power button to you get a loud Bong like sound through the speakers?

  11. #11


    Member Since
    Jul 11, 2014
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    6
    Quote Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
    No - because that would occur prior to the OS loading.
    ok thanks for clearing that up


    Quote Originally Posted by dtravis7 View Post
    When you press the power button to you get a loud Bong like sound through the speakers?
    No I don't but I do if I hold the button down, it goes into BootROM/Open Firmware. But I can't type because of my windows keyboard.

  12. #12


    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2010
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    Victoria, BC
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    Specs:
    Mid-2012 MBP (16GB, 1TB HD), Monoprice 24-inch second monitor, iPhone 5s 32GB, iPad Air 2 64GB
    Are you using an Apple mouse? If not, are you sure you are holding down the LEFT mouse key and not the RIGHT mouse key?

  13. #13


    Member Since
    Jul 11, 2014
    Posts
    6
    No I'm using an windows usb mouse. Yes I used left mouse key and tried right just in case.

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