Power Mac G4 Cube not working well
  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Hello,

    I'm trying the latest MorphOS on my good old Cube (450 MHz, 1.5G RAM). After a few attempts to install (probably CD drive problems), it is running now. I haven't been able to test it well, in order to decide about purchase, because it hasn't worked reliably. It often hangs for 10-20 seconds. When it isn't hung, I can't get folders to show contents (such as System) nor get applications to run. Nothing seems to happen, and then it hangs worse, with the mouse cursor movable, but no menus and no actions from clicking on folders, applications, menus.

    Does anyone have one of these working? It is a supported system. That is, should it work? If affirmative, then I will start looking at hardware problems in my Cube. I hope I can get it working, because it would be great to have a modern OS running on my Cube.

    Thanks.
    ==Leonard
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »27.05.17 - 02:21
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  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    amigadave
    Posts: 2440 from 2006/3/21
    From: Lake Shastina,...
    Quote:

    lsitongia wrote:
    Hello,

    I'm trying the latest MorphOS on my good old Cube (450 MHz, 1.5G RAM). After a few attempts to install (probably CD drive problems), it is running now. I haven't been able to test it well, in order to decide about purchase, because it hasn't worked reliably. It often hangs for 10-20 seconds. When it isn't hung, I can't get folders to show contents (such as System) nor get applications to run. Nothing seems to happen, and then it hangs worse, with the mouse cursor movable, but no menus and no actions from clicking on folders, applications, menus.

    Does anyone have one of these working? It is a supported system. That is, should it work? If affirmative, then I will start looking at hardware problems in my Cube. I hope I can get it working, because it would be great to have a modern OS running on my Cube.

    Thanks.
    ==Leonard


    The G4 PowerMac Cube is listed in the MorphOS supported list, but there is a note that the bundled USB audio is not supported, so I guess you will not have any audio support with that system.

    It should run fairly well, as it runs pretty well on the Efika, which is slower than your G4 Cube, and has far less RAM. That being said, I have not heard from others who have been running MorphOS on a G4 Cube, and I don't personally own one, so I can't offer any help.

    Does MacOS9 or early versions of MacOSX run okay on your Cube? If the answer is yes, I would suggest that you reinstall MorphOS, just in case you have some corrupted files that are causing your problems.

    MorphOS won't be a screaming fast OS on your 450MHz G4, but with 1.5gb of RAM, I think it should run well enough. Your problems might be related to the video card built into your G4 Cube, and low VRAM. If that is the case, there is not much you can do to improve the performance.

    Edit: Just looked up the specs for the G4 Cube on Wikipedia, and it shows them to have a standard AGP slot with either an ATI Rage 128 Pro w/16mb VRAM, an NVidia w/32mb VRAM, or an ATI Radeon w/32mb VRAM. If you have the ATI Radeon w/32mb VRAM, you might need to reduce the color depth and turn off the enhanced features of the graphics system in MorphOS, but otherwise, it should work okay, like the 32mb VRAM G4 MacMini's. Can you upgrade the video card to a better one with more VRAM in the Cube, or is it impossible to find short length video cards for it that are newer than the original ATI Radeon card?

    [ Edited by amigadave 26.05.2017 - 20:16 ]
    MorphOS - The best Next Gen Amiga choice.
  • »27.05.17 - 04:08
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Thanks very much, AmigaDave. I have the 450 MHz Cube with the ATI Rage 128. I'm looking at video upgrades now, and it appears that the easiest to use are the NVIDIA GeForce 3 or ATI Radeon 9000. Both of those have 64MB. I don't see much here about compatibility, but I will look further and see if I can locate one of those boards.
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »27.05.17 - 13:32
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Okay, I found the hardware compatibility page and see the ATI Radeon 9000 on it. I have a source for that, so I think I will give it a try. Meanwhile, I'll go back to OS9 and make sure the Cube hardware is good.
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »27.05.17 - 14:10
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  • Acolyte of the Butterfly
    Acolyte of the Butterfly
    Debaser
    Posts: 129 from 2005/7/12
    From: Syracuse, NY, USA
    I hope you get your cube a better video card and you get a chance to report back how you make out.

    I have often wondered if there are any Cube-Morphos users out there. Consider buying a license as well once its upgraded - it is really the best way to enjoy Morphos and avoiding the 30min trial slowdowns.
  • »27.05.17 - 14:39
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Quote:

    Debaser wrote:
    I hope you get your cube a better video card and you get a chance to report back how you make out.



    Better card than the original, the ATI Rage, or better than the ATI Radeon? Can I do better than the Radeon 9000? (BTW, does anyone know how significant the difference is between the Radeon 9000 and the Radeon 9000 Pro?). Some of the other graphics boards that I read about for the Cube need to be flashed. I don't want to get into that. I probably need a Windows PC to put it in in order to flash it, and I don't have one of those.

    [ Edited by lsitongia 27.05.2017 - 11:32 ]
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »27.05.17 - 18:32
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  • Order of the Butterfly
    Order of the Butterfly
    Korni
    Posts: 323 from 2006/2/23
    From: the Planet of ...
    You can reflash using a program under Mac OS X. Also it's enough to run DOS on a PC. From R200 series, 8500 is better than 9000PRO, but with this CPU it will not matter that much.
    http://korni.ppa.pl/modkowypaczek/ | My Rifle, My Bunny, and Me
  • »27.05.17 - 19:35
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  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    amigadave
    Posts: 2440 from 2006/3/21
    From: Lake Shastina,...
    Quote:

    Korni wrote:
    You can reflash using a program under Mac OS X. Also it's enough to run DOS on a PC. From R200 series, 8500 is better than 9000PRO, but with this CPU it will not matter that much.


    I have often thought that the Radeon 8500 is better than the 9000Pro, but I think that others on this forum have disagreed with me. I don't think the 8500 is much faster than the 9000Pro, but slightly faster. Under MorphOS, I don't know if the 8500 speed difference is significant to choose one over the other.

    @isitongia, if you can get a 9000Pro with 64mb VRAM that fits into your Cube, and your Cube has no other hardware problems, it should work fairly well as a MorphOS computer. Also, I have read that some people have upgraded their G4 Cubes to 1.8GHz G4 CPUs, but I don't know how that is done. Other than the sound problem, which I don't think there is any solution while running MorphOS, a G4 Cube running at 1.8GHz and using a Radeon 9000Pro with 64mb VRAM, would be a great stylish and small MorphOS system.

    Good luck, and please keep us posted on your progress with your G4 Cube as a MorphOS system.

    [ Edited by amigadave 27.05.2017 - 13:03 ]
    MorphOS - The best Next Gen Amiga choice.
  • »27.05.17 - 21:01
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    I've ordered the Radeon 9000. I don't see the same quality of 9000 Pro to order. Also going to put a 120GB disk drive in it.

    As it is now, it isn't running well. I have the original G4 Cube Hardware Test CD. I've run all the tests in extended mode and they all pass.

    I can't install OS9, as the disk drive doesn't appear to install onto. Perhaps that's because of the MorphOS disk format? Anyway, I don't want to install OS9. I've reinstalled MorphOS, and I still have the same trouble.

    The symptom is that about a minute after booting, the mouse cursor starts hanging. I won't be able to move the mouse or do anything for about 10 seconds. Then, control returns. After I go through this for about a minute or two, the whole system is hung. The mouse cursor can be moved. The cap lock light on the keyboard can be turned on and off, so the keyboard is still alive. I can't do anything to get control back. I have to power it down.
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »27.05.17 - 21:53
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  • Order of the Butterfly
    Order of the Butterfly
    Doffo
    Posts: 371 from 2010/10/14
    Random suggestion: unplug the cd drive. I have had bad CD drives in which my MDD Mac would crawl or freeze the system.

    I never tried a cube. In all honesty least acquire a Quicksilver mac or MDD. :) But if you can unplug the cd drive try that. Surely the hard drive isnt going bad. Memory could be a culprit I suppose. Try swapping around the memory if unplugging the cd drive didnt work.
    -=-=-=-
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  • »27.05.17 - 23:02
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Quote:

    Doffo wrote:
    Random suggestion: unplug the cd drive. I have had bad CD drives in which my MDD Mac would crawl or freeze the system.

    I never tried a cube. In all honesty least acquire a Quicksilver mac or MDD. :) But if you can unplug the cd drive try that. Surely the hard drive isnt going bad. Memory could be a culprit I suppose. Try swapping around the memory if unplugging the cd drive didnt work.


    I'll give that a try.

    Another thought: could a bad battery cause this? I think I need a new battery.

    Another: I haven't bought the licensed MorphOS yet. Although I haven't gotten to the 30-minute crawl, could that be the cause of these hangs?

    Thanks, everyone!
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »28.05.17 - 00:29
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  • Jim
  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    Jim
    Posts: 4134 from 2009/1/28
    From: Delaware, USA
    Quote:

    lsitongia wrote:
    Quote:

    Doffo wrote:
    Random suggestion: unplug the cd drive. I have had bad CD drives in which my MDD Mac would crawl or freeze the system.

    I never tried a cube. In all honesty least acquire a Quicksilver mac or MDD. :) But if you can unplug the cd drive try that. Surely the hard drive isnt going bad. Memory could be a culprit I suppose. Try swapping around the memory if unplugging the cd drive didnt work.


    I'll give that a try.

    Another thought: could a bad battery cause this? I think I need a new battery.

    Another: I haven't bought the licensed MorphOS yet. Although I haven't gotten to the 30-minute crawl, could that be the cause of these hangs?

    Thanks, everyone!


    No, at about 30 minutes it just slows down to close to intolerably slow, it doesn't hang up.
    I'd check the system out thoroughly.
    And an Apple G4 Radeon 9000 should run perfectly in your system (AND they are cheap).
    There ARE some space constraints with the 8500 and 9000 you should be aware of.

    http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/powermac_g4/faq_cube/power-mac-g4-cube-video-card-hacks-geforce-3-5500-6200-radeon-9000.html

    BTW - The Radeon 9200 is also a possibility, AND a few people have been crazy enough to figure out how to install a few of the smaller Radeon 9800s (I would NOT recommend that as solution though).

    [ Edited by Jim 27.05.2017 - 20:46 ]
    "Magnetic was troubled by my avatars and 'satanic' references" - Jim Igou

    "Never attribute to malice what can more readily explained by incompetence"
  • »28.05.17 - 01:02
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Quote:

    Doffo wrote:
    Random suggestion: unplug the cd drive. I have had bad CD drives in which my MDD Mac would crawl or freeze the system.



    Doffo, your fix works! I removed the CD drive and the system is speedy! No more hangs. Wonderful! Thanks!
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »28.05.17 - 02:28
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    I could use an external USB CD-RW/DVD-RW drive, but I'd like to have a slot-loading drive in the Cube. But, in using MorphOS, should I not connect a CD drive in the Cube? The one I had in there mostly worked. It was weak in ejecting disks. Sometimes, in MorphOS, I would put a disk in the CD drive and it would become inaccessible, with MorphOS acting like there wasn't anything in the drive. But, outside of MorphOS, the CD drive generally worked. Should I get a new CD/DVD drive to install in the Cube or should I forgo that to keep MorphOS running well?
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »28.05.17 - 05:22
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  • fmh
  • Cocoon
    Cocoon
    fmh
    Posts: 55 from 2012/8/23
    I did try MorphOS on my Cube when I had it. It did run and besides no audio I believe there was another problem that was a show stopper which I believe was Ethernet. I may have posted my results here so if you scan messages you may find it.

    Where are you located? I have a DVD-ROM Drive from a G3 iMac which should fit in the Cube.
    PowerMac G4-500DP, 1GB RAM, ATI 9000, Sound Blaster Live
  • »28.05.17 - 11:49
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  • Jim
  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    Jim
    Posts: 4134 from 2009/1/28
    From: Delaware, USA
    Yes, it shouldn't be too hard to replace the drive.

    Being focused on hacking, I'd try to find a writable drive (preferably DVD and CD writable, but DVD read and CD write could be acceptable).

    Great to hear that you have troubleshooted the problem.
    "Magnetic was troubled by my avatars and 'satanic' references" - Jim Igou

    "Never attribute to malice what can more readily explained by incompetence"
  • »28.05.17 - 12:13
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Quote:

    fmh wrote:
    I did try MorphOS on my Cube when I had it. It did run and besides no audio I believe there was another problem that was a show stopper which I believe was Ethernet. I may have posted my results here so if you scan messages you may find it.

    Where are you located? I have a DVD-ROM Drive from a G3 iMac which should fit in the Cube.


    Ethernet is working for my Cube. I also have an Airport card, but I haven't tried that yet. I have it taken apart now while I wait for parts that I've ordered.

    Thanks for offering that drive. I'm in Colorado, USA.
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »28.05.17 - 16:20
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  • Jim
  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    Jim
    Posts: 4134 from 2009/1/28
    From: Delaware, USA
    @fmh:

    Neat webpage, btw.

    Nice of you to offer him the drive, the only thing I have still around are drives from iBooks and Powerbooks.
    "Magnetic was troubled by my avatars and 'satanic' references" - Jim Igou

    "Never attribute to malice what can more readily explained by incompetence"
  • »28.05.17 - 16:39
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  • Yokemate of Keyboards
    Yokemate of Keyboards
    Andreas_Wolf
    Posts: 9218 from 2003/5/22
    From: Germany
    > Perhaps that's because of the MorphOS disk format?

    MorphOS on Mac uses the original Mac partition layout (APM) because that's what OpenFirmware requires.
  • »29.05.17 - 01:19
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  • fmh
  • Cocoon
    Cocoon
    fmh
    Posts: 55 from 2012/8/23
    Quote:

    lsitongia wrote:
    Quote:

    fmh wrote:
    I did try MorphOS on my Cube when I had it. It did run and besides no audio I believe there was another problem that was a show stopper which I believe was Ethernet. I may have posted my results here so if you scan messages you may find it.

    Where are you located? I have a DVD-ROM Drive from a G3 iMac which should fit in the Cube.


    Ethernet is working for my Cube. I also have an Airport card, but I haven't tried that yet. I have it taken apart now while I wait for parts that I've ordered.

    Thanks for offering that drive. I'm in Colorado, USA.


    Message me your address and I will mail it to you this week.
    PowerMac G4-500DP, 1GB RAM, ATI 9000, Sound Blaster Live
  • »29.05.17 - 13:33
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    I want to use this same thread since this is still related to my Cube. I ordered a 120GB disk, not knowing if MOS would support a larger drive that OS9 supports. They sent me a 160. I booted the MOS CD and it cannot find the drive. Booting the OS9 CD to install that also didn't find the drive. I put the old drive back in, and it works fine. So, there's something wrong with this disk and I will return it.
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »05.06.17 - 02:23
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  • Moderator
    Kronos
    Posts: 1661 from 2003/2/24
    a) 160GB spinner? Get an SSD

    b) might be a firmware issue, check wether the Cube is up to date in that regard

    c) there is nothing stopping you from useing xTB drives with MorphOS

    [ Edited by Kronos 05.06.2017 - 06:45 ]
    --------------------- May the 4th be with you ------------------
    Mother Russia dance of the Zar, don't you know how lucky you are
  • »05.06.17 - 05:43
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    lsitongia
    Posts: 28 from 2017/5/27
    From: Colorado, USA
    Quote:

    Kronos wrote:
    b) might be a firmware issue, check wether the Cube is up to date in that regard



    It doesn't have the latest firmware. I'd like to update that. That might also help with a new problem:

    I got an Apple Cinema Display 20-inch display (the one with clear plastic border) to be stylish with the Cube. :-) It should be able to do 1680x1050 with the old ATI Rage 128 Pro video card, and that's what I've been using with the Samsung LCD display I have connected to the Cube now. But, the Cinema remains blank and its power light flashes three times short, which is the error code for video signal mismatch. I tried a couple of other resolutions in MOS (connecting the Samsung, changing the video setting, saving it, removing the Samsung and plugging in the Cinema, and booting) but I can't get it to work.

    The odd thing is that the Cinema remains blank when I boot the OS9 install CD that came with the Cube, but the power light doesn't flash. Then, when I boot up the official Apple Hardware Test CD that came with the Cube, it shows on the Cinema fine and reports that the resolution is 1680x1050.

    So, the Hardware Test CD is the only one that works with the Cinema connected.

    I've read that in order to update the firmware, a booted partition needs to be running OS9.1. I will have to blow away the MOS install, but that's okay.
    Power Mac G4 Cube, MorphOS with Style!
  • »07.06.17 - 23:24
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  • Order of the Butterfly
    Order of the Butterfly
    Korni
    Posts: 323 from 2006/2/23
    From: the Planet of ...
    Quote:

    lsitongia wrote:
    (connecting the Samsung, changing the video setting, saving it, removing the Samsung and plugging in the Cinema, and booting) but I can't get it to work.



    This will not work as MorphOS uses settings per monitor. Press Ctrl when booting MorphOS to start in a different screenmode or Shift / F1 / LMB to show the bootmenu. You can also connect via VNC and then go to monitor settings.
    http://korni.ppa.pl/modkowypaczek/ | My Rifle, My Bunny, and Me
  • »08.06.17 - 00:13
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