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G4 recovery without discs or command-r

440 Views 4 Replies Latest reply: May 31, 2013 9:02 AM by a brody RSS
junks6 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
May 29, 2013 10:34 AM

I have an old family Powerbook G4 OSX 10.3.9


I want to wipe it with a couple passes and install OSX.


However, I don't have the discs and command-r on bootup doesn't do anything (maybe no recovery partition?)


How can I deal with this? Thanks!

PowerBook, Mac OS X (10.3.x), G4
  • Niel Level 10 Level 10 (234,305 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 29, 2013 10:42 AM (in response to junks6)

    You need the computer's original disks or a retail 10.4 or 10.5 package; phone AppleCare or check places such as Amazon, or eBay. The recovery partition wasn't introduced until 10.7 and will therefore never be available on a G3, G4, G5, Core Solo, or Core Duo Mac.



  • Niel Level 10 Level 10 (234,305 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 29, 2013 10:57 AM (in response to junks6)

    You can throw them away and securely empty the Trash.



  • a brody Level 9 Level 9 (62,005 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 31, 2013 9:02 AM (in response to junks6)

    Your best bet is to remove the hard drive, and put inside a Firewire 2.5" ATA/IDE case from  and not a SATA case.   And also get an internal 2.5" ATA/IDE (not SATA) 9.5mm drive that is at least as large to put internally in the computer. has guides for removing the hard drive and putting a new one in.


    Once you have done that, clone the external drive to the internal, and create a third user for yourself that has admin access on the internal.   Cloning can be done by Carbon Copy Cloner or Superduper.

    Then you can login your admin user and secure delete the other user folders after deleting their accounts.


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