Mac OS forum


Exchange Hard Drive between two Powerbook G4s

by flippertie / January 22, 2013 9:20 AM PST

I have two very old Powerbook G4s, Aluminium, not titanium. One is 12" and one 15".

The 15" has a dead hard drive. What would happen if I took the hard drive from the 12" and moved it to the larger) and slightly newer) 15"?

I'd be confident doing this on a Windows/ Intel laptop - but have no idea how a Mac would respond.

Any comments, suggestions or pointers to resources would be much appreciated.

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All Answers

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If size and pin compatible
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 22, 2013 9:22 AM PST

The worst I'd see is the need to boot the OS DVD and start over. But drives are pretty cheap so why do this?

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by flippertie / January 22, 2013 11:41 AM PST

Thanks for the response.

I'm assuming the drives will be physically compatible. I'm more interested in what a Mac OS would do if it was moved into new hardware and rebooted. A PC would throw a bunch of error messages, then fall back to default drivers and allow you to continue. Could then update from the internet. I don't know if a mac would do the same - or go into lockdown.

As to why: I refurbish laptops for a local charity who pass them on to people who can use them. I was given a bag with the two laptops, and one charger only. No CDs for OS or software. The smaller laptop boots, and has MS Office, Photoshop etc installed, but also has a damaged keyboard, dead battery, and a flaky power connection. The bigger one is in much better shape, apart from the dead hard drive.

I hope to make one working system to pass on.

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Fairly certain that the machine would boot,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / January 22, 2013 8:45 PM PST
In reply to: hi

and even if it didn't, you have lost nothing.

Be careful with giving away a machine with things like Photoshop and MS Office installed on them.

Those are licensed products and you are not the owner of them and probably do not have anything to say that the original owner, the license holder, is not still using that license or that the product was not transferred to another computer that the donator of those laptops replaced them with.


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Licensing is ok
by Flippertie2 / January 23, 2013 10:29 AM PST

I know the owner - he upgraded to an Imac and then a macbook air. Has just installed a new Office and no longer uses photoshop, so no issues there. I'll give it a go when I have time... and can find a torx screwdrive to get into the machine case!

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(NT) Easily found in any Radio Shack, Home Depot or Lowes
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / January 23, 2013 8:49 PM PST
In reply to: Licensing is ok
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Not in hong kong ...
by Flippertie2 / January 23, 2013 11:39 PM PST

We don't have those stores in Hong Kong but there are great arcades full of tiny shops with all the bits and pieces you can imageine. I just need to make time to get there...

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by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / January 24, 2013 7:57 AM PST
In reply to: Not in hong kong ...

I didn't see any location information in your posts


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