11 Replies Latest reply: Jul 20, 2009 1:33 PM by Niteshooter
DaveHanson Level 1 (0 points)
Hello everyone! I recently replaced my old iMac G4 with a new MacBook Pro, but I hate to get rid of it. Any suggestions on what I can do with it? Just looking for any suggestions or what you have done with yours!

17" iMac G4, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • K Shaffer Level 6 (12,582 points)
    Given a space to allow it to remain in your place, a second computer
    has several possibilities; since you have a portable and this iMac G4.

    Since the iMac is a good video player, and music player, that in itself
    may be a fair reason to keep one around, perhaps in a room that
    does not already have some kind of entertainment center. It could be
    purposed for more specific uses, or just a general browser and kind
    of a backup to get information. I prefer to have at least two computers.

    If you have a competent relative who would appreciate the gift of such
    a curiously well designed machine, and who would not just give or
    throw it away at the first sign of something going on requiring repair,
    then you could re-home the device... Set it up with a daily user account,
    and an Admin account, so the new owner won't be likely to mistakenly
    wipe out the system. I gave away an iMac G4 w/ 17" screen, superdrive
    and most options, to a relative, and said it was conditional. To not throw
    or give it away; to give it back to me if it was going to be disposed of.

    But, someone with a hobby could use a computer specific to one task;
    and certainly find more about one or two favorites online from the iMac.
    Some cooks use an old (SCSI) Mac for a recipe file, and since they can
    print and do other tasks, they are really not obsolete at all.

    At some point, the hard disk drive and optical drive may need replacing;
    and other things most desktop computers need over time could be looked
    into and checked or replaced. The iMac G4 17" 1.25 can use 2GB of RAM.
    It can handle large internal and external drives, FireWire and USB 2.0. It
    can use an external optical drive and boot from its own clone... There are
    several possibilities in both conventional and unconventional uses.

    These also make a nice start of a small collection of interesting Apple Macs.

    In any event...
    Good luck & happy computing!
  • Kenichi Watanabe Level 7 (32,979 points)
    There are many time consuming tasks that you do not want to tie up your new Mac with performing. For example, you may have a connection of old music tapes and records that you want to digitize. When you do such tasks, you should leave the Mac to single-task on it to get the best results. Let your iMac G4 do it.

    You can use the iMac G4's display as a second screen for your MacBook Pro using this clever program and the free VNC protocol.


    If you use an good Cat-5 or better Ethernet cable for a direct wired connection between the two Macs, the video signal speed will be decent. I have an old PC laptop running Linux that is the third screen for my iMac (with two screens the normal way).
  • Mrbill317 Level 1 (0 points)
    Dave do you still have your imac?
  • DaveHanson Level 1 (0 points)
  • kyftp Level 1 (0 points)
    I hooked my old G4 up to my receiver and am using it as a music server. Works great and I get internet radio. (Canceling my sat radio.)

    Message was edited by: kyftp
  • MacBraveheart Level 1 (130 points)
    Like Dave I am loathe to "retire" my little used G4 iMac 1.25GHz with the 20 inch screen now that we are on MacBook Pros but it is gathering dust. I was asked if we could use it AS the display for the new MacPro we are getting for our mini recording studio and am not sure if that is possible. I understand that it is possible to use the iMac as a SECOND display but as a primary one? Hmmm...

    Dave- what conclusion have you come to for yours? If any...
  • K Shaffer Level 6 (12,582 points)
    Screen Recycler 1.3.2 is one option, though not free...

    Targeted to all users with two computers to extend screen real estate.
    It's like a dual monitor setup without the need to buy an additional monitor.

    Use any machine as additional monitor on your Mac.

    System requirements:
    • Mac OS X 10.4 and/or 10.5 on one Mac
    • Two computers, one being a Mac

    Price €19.95 + tax

    For more information, visit:


    {Though I've not tried this, and have no interests in it,
    the idea has been around awhile. I'd use the iMac G4
    in a location where a computer such as it would be
    visible and practical. Since it can play video and do
    more than some older entertainment devices. Even
    in a near-kitchen area and used to support recipes
    and other things while preparing meals may be fine.}

    Older Macs had been purposed for tasks including
    inventories, garage and small business records, &
    other various tasks. The iMac G4 has this great
    and striking industrial design, inviting to show it off.

    In any event...
    Good luck & happy computing!
  • iso_omena Level 1 (0 points)
    I am also keeping an oldie 17" G4 iMac running Tiger 10.4.11. I like this machine pretty much and in fact I do most of my home computing with iMac, though we have several modern laptops in the house. I just like this "classic" sounds of computing - the silent crackling of hard disk and constant whisper of the fans This oldie also works as a great music centre with JBL Creature speaker system, being also an attractive design element in the room.

    My suggestion is - please do not give your iMac to someone who cannot appreciate it!
  • Steve M. Level 5 (4,740 points)
    I've got one too. I use it everyday! It's all I've got.

    Steve M.
  • DC 10 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi Intersting subject - I have a 17" the same model and pretty much the exact same specs of course...

    I love our Imac - we use it for all our online bill paying stuff... as long as there are updates for Safari and Itunes we will keep using it...

    TO be honest with you - I like having a non-windows machine in the house using UNIX -

    I am looking for a 20" or 17" if someone wants to sell one cheap - They look great and It's a shame that Apple gave up on them...

    What dumb move for them - They should bring back a retro line with current specs of the new stuff - I would buy one in a snap!

    Anyway thanks,
  • Niteshooter Level 2 (450 points)
    I just bought a used one. It's great for viewing movies when it's just me, surfing the web, sending emails and even the odd photoshop job.

    Did bump up the memory to a GB and the HD so Tiger runs quite well. Also use it as my internet radio since the Pro speakers sound good along with an iSub.