4 Replies Latest reply: Sep 17, 2009 8:09 PM by rccharles
HawaiianHippie Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Aloha all!

I'm in the process of prepping about a dozen old iMacs for donation. They are all G3 machines, with processors from 333 - 600 MHz.

I've got another thread open for technical support upgrading one of the oldest machines, a 333 with 32 MB RAM running OS 8. I put that project to the side for now, and focused on reformatting the rest of the machines first.

Problem is, one of the rest of the machines was also a 333. I was in the automaton zone. You know, plug in computer, turn on, write down information, insert OS X install disk, restart. No thinking involved. And this one booted to OS 9, so it didn't scream "OLD" at me.

So I installed OS X on it. And now, it won't boot. It comes up to a grey screen with the following message:

bootr, unknown word
Failed to boot
Apple iMac open firmware 3.0.f10 built on 03/05/99 at 21:14:19
Copyright blah blah
All rights reserved
ok
0>

Ok, it hits me that this machine is the same as the other one, and I probably needed to update the firmware. Missed that step.

So I put in an OS 9 install disk, turn the machine off and back on while holding the C key. it doesn't work, just the same message as before. I try 2 or 3 times, no luck.

Right. So I'll boot it off of an external Firewire drive using the SODA trick. Except that this unit has no Firewire.

So, am I screwed? Have I ruined a perfectly good machine by slipping into the monotony trance? or is there salvation?

Mahalo!
Tom

Various and sundry, Mac OS X (10.5.5), Run a lab, got a lot.
  • Texas Mac Man Level 8 Level 8 (46,540 points)
    There are several issues here. Not sure how you can revert back.

    1. Do the iMacs meet the Tiger *OS X 10.4 Tiger Requirements* for RAM, Firewire, etc.
    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=301341

    2. Did you use a retail version (black with silver X) installer and not a model specific version (gray) (See Can I use another Mac's system restore disc on my Mac? ).

    3. Some Macs require a firmware (Boot ROM version in System Profiler) update. Mac OS X: Available firmware updates
    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=86117 If an update is required, the update must be installed (using OS 9) BEFORE you install OS X. Did you do this?

     Cheers, Tom



    Edit - I thought I read that you were installing Tiger 10.4. What OS are you trying to install? Here's the *OS X 10.3 Panther Requirements*
    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106163 Still black CDs.

    Message was edited by: Texas Mac Man
  • HawaiianHippie Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Sorry, thought I had specified. 10.3.9 is the ultimate goal. The installation disk (nice and black) is 10.3.5, then I run a combo installer to take it to 10.3.9.

    The machine is capable of handling the OS, according to Apple documents and forum wisdom.

    As I said, this machine should have received a firmware update before I installed the OS, but I skipped that step. I have the downloaded update, but now that the machine isn't booting, I don't know how I can apply it.
  • Limnos Level 8 Level 8 (41,470 points)
    Normally I wouldn't recommend cross-posting but I would also put this on the Older Mac/G3 hardware forum. It's almost a hardware question and there's a group of helpers who just hang out in the older Mac section and wouldn't see this in this forum.

    It seems that failing to update firmware before installing Panther usually results in a dead monitor, and not what you are seeing.

    [http://www.macintouch.com/panfirmware.html#query] - discussion on what to do if you haven't upgraded firmware after installing Panther - dead monitor

    Try typing your error message into a web search engine, and/or the Search Discussions. I did that and found many hits. I'll let you plow through and see if one matches your situation. Some of them suggest it may even be something as simple as a bad battery. There may also be open firmware commands that will let you proceed beyond the error screen and let you get to doing the OF upgrade. Somebody mentions "boot".

    http://forums.macosxhints.com/archive/index.php/t-17751.html

    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1034796
  • rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (6,175 points)
    So I installed OS X on it. And now, it won't boot. It comes up to a grey screen with the following message:

    bootr, unknown word
    Failed to boot
    Apple iMac open firmware 3.0.f10 built on 03/05/99 at 21:14:19
    Copyright blah blah
    All rights reserved
    ok
    0>

    Ok, it hits me that this machine is the same as the other one, and I probably needed to update the firmware. Missed that step.

    So I put in an OS 9 install disk, turn the machine off and back on while holding the C key. it doesn't work, just the same message as before. I try 2 or 3 times, no luck.


    NO. You need to boot an 8.x disk to install the fireware.

    For a tray loading iMac ( iMac 333 MHz, iMac 266 MHz, & iMac 233 MHz), you need to use MAC OS 8.0. Or the version of Mac OS classic that came with your machine.
    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=60384



    Robert