iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

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Hello everyone!

I am new to the forums and I'm fairly new to Macs as well. I come in search of answers for my original iBook G3 clamshell (Tangerine - M2453). I'm having much difficulty with installing mac os 9.2.1 off a full retail CD I purchased from ebay. It's the CD with the white background and the orange 9. The iBook currently has os 9.0.4 installed with everything as up-to-date as it could be. The CD boots up just fine when holding down the C key. The problem I'm having is when I try to install os 9.2.1 it gets to the point where it says "Installing Mac OS 9.2.1 onto "My HDD"" and about half way it just stops. Sometimes I get a "Installer Engine" or "InstallMod" failed to load, but not much else. What am I doing wrong? This model iBook should be able to be updated to 9.2.1 from the CD, correct?

I would absolutely just erase the HD and try to install it then. However, I fear even then I wont be able to install 9.2.1 and it will leave me with a iBook without an OS.

Thanks for your help!

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bushnrvn's picture
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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

I'm not sure, and it looks like Macintosh Garden is down for maintenance, but I don't think the Tangerine iBook G3 (original) ever shipped with an OS 9.2.x disc so I'd assume you'd have to use a retail disc to upgrade it.

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

bushnrvn wrote:

I'm not sure, and it looks like Macintosh Garden is down for maintenance, but I don't think the Tangerine iBook G3 (original) ever shipped with an OS 9.2.x disc so I'd assume you'd have to use a retail disc to upgrade it.

Isn't that what I have? It's the white background with orange 9 CD. The eBay ad said it was a retail disc.

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

It sounds like you do. I was just confirming your thought that it would be able to be upgraded.

Do you have any issues with any other discs?

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Dr. Webster's picture
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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

Sounds like you do have the retail discs.

Failing in the middle of an install doesn't sound like it would be caused by a non-retail disc anyway; usually you get an error message before the install even starts explaining that the disc won't work on the Mac you're trying to run it on.

My first guess: Do you know if your firmware has ever been upgraded? Here's the link to the last version, 4.1.7:

http://www.pure-mac.com/appud.html#ibookfwud

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

bushnrvn wrote:

It sounds like you do. I was just confirming your thought that it would be able to be upgraded.

Do you have any issues with any other discs?

Like right after I hit save I realized you were just confirming my thoughts, haha.

Well anyways, I don't have any other CDs beside a 2004 techtool thing which is too new for the iBook. I purchased this iBook from eBay as well and it came with nothing...not even RAM Sad I did take care of that though.

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

Dr. Webster wrote:

Sounds like you do have the retail discs.

Failing in the middle of an install doesn't sound like it would be caused by a non-retail disc anyway; usually you get an error message before the install even starts explaining that the disc won't work on the Mac you're trying to run it on.

My first guess: Do you know if your firmware has ever been upgraded? Here's the link to the last version, 4.1.7:

http://www.pure-mac.com/appud.html#ibookfwud

Come to think of it I highly doubt the firmware has been upgraded at all. When I get home I will try that. In the link you provided it says that 4.1.7 can only be installed on Mac OS 9.1 and I'm running 9.0.4. Will it still upgrade?

Edit: I could just boot up in OS 9.2 and install the firmware from there huh? Sorry for the newbie questions Smile

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

So here's what happened so far.

I hooked the iBook up to the internet via Ethernet cable. I then downloaded the firmware update and tried installing on OS 9.0.4 and with OS 9.2.1 disc booted. Both methods gained the same results. It loads up and says "checking iBook firmware" and shows the progress bar fully finishing, but then it disappears. No "update complete" or "your Mac is up to date." Am I correct to assume that means I'm up to date? Or did that also not properly install?

Edit: I did figure out that after the update program "checks iBook firmware" it then drops another icon on the desktop to install the firmware. However, as expected that did not work as I do not have OS 9.1 or later.

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

You can check your current firmware in Apple System Profiler.

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

bushnrvn wrote:

You can check your current firmware in Apple System Profiler.

Thanks Smile

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

So my boot ROM version is 3.4. That is the firmware version, correct?

If so, how in the heck do I update the firmware? I need OS 9.1 minimum to run, but I can't upgrade my OS without the firmware. Puzzled

I may be jumping to conclusions, but I think my iBook might have some hardware malfunction/logic board capacitor issue...I'm very new to Macs, but I don't think the whole process is suppose to be this frustrating. The OS wont install, my battery wont charge, the shift+command keys do nothing and my airport card just wont work correctly. I was hoping it was just a bad OS install, but I'm starting to think even if I replace/erase the HD it will still be unable to install.

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

Finally I get a little further with this!

So, I purchased an OS X 10.3 Panther CD set and go figure, that installed perfectly. Perhaps I obtained a faulty 9.2 copy... Anyways OS X is running good, airport card works now too. I cannot figure out the battery situation(wont charge), but there is plenty of info already on the web for that. The shift and command keys still do not work, but I think that if I re-seat the ribbon cable it might help.

Any suggestions or advice would be appreciated Big smile

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Re: iBook G3 Clamshell OS install help!

Just another quick update. The keyboard was actually broken. I was able to grab one off eBay for $25. Works great now. The battery was also at fault for not charging(dead cells or something), not the computer like I originally thought. So with the exception of the battery, the iBook is fully functional. I still am not sure why OS 9.2.1 didn't install. I guess the iBook just didn't like the CD. Out of curiosity I bought a 9.1 disc and that installed fine. Strange... But no worries anymore. Haha.

Thanks all for the help. Now to track down a good battery and figure out a purpose for this iBook. Roller coaster tycoon anyone? Smile