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wicker_man 04-10-2006 04:20 PM

Got my first Mac- an iMac G3! :)
Hey everybody- I've got my first Mac!!!

Somebody locally was selling it for £10- A Grape iMac G3 400MHz, 64MB RAM, 10GB HDD, slot load DVD drive, 2 firewire ports, original keyboard and round mouse. It's running OS 9.0.3.
I'm not too sure what revision it is (although I'm guessing its a DV).

Now, I need to get it sorted for installing OS X, from the advice I have been given, 10.3 (Panther) works well on these? I have a friend who's upgraded to Tiger on his Powerbook and will probably give me the install disc for free.

I plan to upgrade the RAM and Hard drive pretty soon. It's pretty easy to access the RAM, it currently has a single 64mb stick in. Would an additional 256mb stick be ok? What type would I need (and does anybody have any good links to cheap RAM in the UK?)

The hard drive is pretty noisy, and will be replaced with a larger one before installing OSX. But do I need to have the 8GB primary partition on it?

Currently I am just running iTunes 2 and playing a bit of music from my USB ext HDD (the speakers don't sound that bad- are they the Harmon Kardons?)

Any help would be appreciated, thanks!

EDIT-XTREEM 04-10-2006 05:09 PM

Thats a great price! I would go for 10.3 or 10.2 on the iMac. You should upgrade to ram to 256 or more. I cant answer any more of your questions because i dont know, sorry...

dtravis7 04-10-2006 05:25 PM

This should be your machine. Read everything there. It should answer your questions.

It will take 1GB RAM!! 512 would be great if you can afford it.

wicker_man 04-10-2006 05:55 PM

Looking at the Lowendmac site, I think its the 1999 iMac DV, because it has the DVD ROM as opposed to the CD-ROM in the 2000 version. Also, the 2000 version has the Pro mouse and keyboard, I;ve got the round 'hockey puck' mouse and smaller 'grape' keyboard.

I think the main issue is upgrading the hard drive, which looks to be a big job, especially with the CRT.

dtravis7 04-10-2006 05:59 PM

Opps, I don't know how I copied the wrong URL. Yours what I was going to send you! Glad you found it.

SilverEagle5 04-11-2006 04:50 PM

I work for my high school in the tech dept. when I'm on vacation from college... anyway, we have a few iMac DVs that we put OS 10.3 on, and it runs pretty well. We had to do a firmware upgrade on them, though. I only did so because my boss told me to... I'm not sure what happens if you don't, or if it even lets you install OSX.

wicker_man 04-11-2006 05:30 PM

Do you know if the DV models need to have the 8GB primary partition for OS X? I am going to be getting a bigger 7200rpm HDD to install it.
Also, would Tiger run OK (i.e. usable) with 256mb RAM?
And should any PC100 168pin SDRAM module work OK?

I found this guide to replacing the hard drive:

SilverEagle5 04-11-2006 05:35 PM

I have no idea. Panther runs fine with 256, not sure what type of RAM it is, though. We wiped them and cloned them with NetRestore.

Badger 04-11-2006 08:04 PM

Here's a link to a complete walk-through of changing the HD in these models: All of the later iMacs came with HDs bigger than 8gbs. Since your HD (the original) is 10gb you won't have a problem with that. I ran 10.3 (Panther) on a 333 mh iMac with no problems but I maxed out the RAM. All versions of X are RAM hungry. You could go with 256 mbs but I would go with at least 512. The only warning is to be sure that you've upgraded the firmware before you put any OS X disc in it. If not you'll screw up the video and give yourself a major job fixing it. Yes, they are HK speakers.

wicker_man 04-12-2006 11:25 AM

I need some more information regarding the firmware update.

The iMac (DV 400MHz Grape with slot load DVD) is currently running OS 9.0.3. It is not connected to the internet yet, but my Windows laptop is, and I have an external 20GB hard drive (USB, formatted to FAT32) which I can use to transfer data.

So basically, what firmware updates will I need for OS X (either Panther or Tiger) and how do I install them? I am aware that doing it incorrectly can kill the iMac.

Thanks in advance.

Badger 04-12-2006 12:10 PM

You can check the installed firmware in the Apple System Profiler, under "system profile>production information." This Apple page has links to the firmware versions downloads: The version you'll want is 4.1.9; click on the readme icon to get the installation steps. You need to have at least OS 9.1 to run the firmware updater so here's the 9x updates page: If you want to run classic under X you should take the system to 9.2.2.
Apple keeps an iMac G3 support section active. It's a good page to bookmark: If I remember correctly you can download the various archives to the pc and then copy them (via the external disk) to the mac. Only after they are on the mac do you open them.

wicker_man 04-12-2006 03:25 PM

OK, it's updated to OS9.1, and firmware 4.1.9.
Now, to get a new hard drive and more RAM, and get hold of OS X (most likely Tiger).

When I install the new hard drive, it will be empty. Do I just install the OS X disc and it will simply format and install?

Badger 04-12-2006 07:34 PM

Sounds like you are good to go. So... Once you have the old HD out match the jumpers on the new HD to the old one. This is usually cable-select. When the new HD is installed you can boot from the OS X installer disc. Most new HDs come formated for Windows. When you boot with the X install disc early in the install procedure it will give the option to format the new disk. When you do this take the step to install the OS 9 drivers as well. That way you can also boot from OS 9 as well as X. (Even if you don't plan to install OS 9 this is a good step to do now.)

wicker_man 04-15-2006 02:38 PM

I got a 128mb ram stick cheaply and currently have a total of 192mb, which I was planning on running with a for a while. (I have still got to get a HDD and OS X install CDs.)

However, somebody I was talking to was saying 10.4 Tiger wouldn't install unless I had 256mb of RAM.

Is this true, or will it install and run fine until I can upgrade more?
And how much RAM does 10.3 Panther need?


lil 04-15-2006 02:48 PM

Tiger will plod by on 256MB.

You will really need a minimum of 512MB on that iMac G3 to make up for speed lost in other departments.

Panther will live nicely enough in 256MB, but an upgrade to 512MB shouldn't be shyed away from if possible—as I am sure you will want to run more and more apps on it over time.


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