Currently Being ModeratedOct 11, 2012 10:17 AM (in response to bgalitz)
One way is to just backup data. The other is to make a complete bootable backup which is the way to easily restore your computer to 100% of its configuration at the time of backup. Note for a G4 to be bootable to a backup you have to have a Firewire drive. Furthermore, make sure it is bootable as some newer Firewire interfaces may no longer be guaranteed bootable since modern Macs can boot to USB.
Most commonly used backup methods - https://discussions.apple.com/docs/DOC-3045
=Cloning And Backup Tools=
A bootable clone is an exact copy of your drive which is capable of booting your computer. Making a copy of your computer which is capable of actually starting the computer requires special copying procedures which simply dragging files in Finder won't achieve. Some people just back up data files but if you have problems you have to reinstall all your operating system and all your applications. With a bootable clone you just start up from the backup drive and clone back everything. Note, PPC generation Macs require Firewire connections to boot from an external drive.
To clone one hard drive to another hard drive you can use:
CarbonCopy Cloner - http://www.bombich.com/software/ccc.html (donationware)
SuperDuper - http://www.shirt-pocket.com/SuperDuper/SuperDuperDescription.html (shareware)
IBackup - http://www.grapefruit.ch/iBackup/index.html (free)
The Restore function of Disk Utility included in OS X. Kappy's directions - http://discussions.apple.com/message.jspa?messageID=8799711
Tri-Backup (commercial) - http://www.tri-edre.com/english/tribackup.html(commercial)
Silverkeeper - http://www.lacie.com/silverkeeper/ (free) - version 2 has some issues (references: http://www.macintouch.com/readerreports/backup/index.html#d12jan2009, and http://www.macintouch.com/readerreports/backup/index.html#d13jan2009) and it is recommended Tiger users stick with 1.1.4. Silverkeeper is no longer supported starting with OSX 10.7
Kappy's Backup Software Recommendations - http://discussions.apple.com/message.jspa?messageID=9065665 and https://discussions.apple.com/message/15838096
Overview of Mac OS X Backup Programs - http://8help.osu.edu/1247.html
Currently Being ModeratedOct 11, 2012 10:26 AM (in response to bgalitz)
Is it not even showing up in Disk Utility?
Most new drives come formatted for Windows and need to me reformatted to Mac extended for general Mac use. Usually though the computer will show a Windows drive.
Is this a bus powered drive or does it have its own power supply? If bus powered it may not be receiving sufficient power. This is a common situation with old Macs. You may need to attach it to a powered USB hub so it gets its power that way.
Some external drives just plain do not work well with Macs. Some will show but will not boot (and a USB will not boot your computer anyway).
Currently Being ModeratedOct 11, 2012 1:33 PM (in response to bgalitz)
What model Seagate HD did you get?
It's best to use a Firewire connected hard drive, because it will be bootable if you have problems with your PB. USB connected HDs are not bootable.
Look at Mac Backup - Mac Backup Software, Hardware, and Guides for Your Mac http://macs.about.com/od/usingyourmac/tp/backuphub.htm and Mac OS X data backup FAQ http://www.macmaps.com/backup.html and Important Mac Backup Tips- Time Machine, CCC, SuperDuper http://mikosweb.com/it-advice-blog/70-mac-backup-tips Here's a list/description of Mac backup software http://www.pure-mac.com/backup.html
The majority of Mac users use CarbonCopy Cloner @ http://www.bombich.com/software/ccc.html , or SuperDuper @ http://www.shirt-pocket.com/SuperDuper/SuperDuperDescription.html . You can also use or the Restore function of Disk Utility included in OS X.
When you backup, boot into Safe Mode (depress the Shift key at startup) and the backup will be safer and faster.
Message was edited by: Texas Mac Man
Currently Being ModeratedOct 11, 2012 10:21 PM (in response to Limnos)
I beg to differ. I just got a generic USB superdrive as I recently installed a 2nd hard drive where the optical drive used to be and by going into open firmware(OPT+APPLE+O+F), and simply typed: boot ud:,\\:tbxi - I was able to boot up my Leopard install disc and all worked quite well. The only caveat is that I had to purchase a USB Y-adapter to be used for making up the power to drive the superdrive.
So, booting a PPC mac from USB 2.0 is possible and many ways of doing it have already been posted on the net. There is even a way to get the MacBook Air's superdrive to work on all macs, though I am not at a position to discuss it here.
Mainly wanted to point out that booting PowerPC macs via USB IS possible, and its not quite as slow as I thought.