General Question

Evol's avatar

How much longer can i get by with my 2004 Powerbook (Power PC G4,1.5 Ghz, 1GB)

Asked by Evol (84points) December 2nd, 2008

and what is the highest operating system i can update to? (currently running 10.4.11) Thanks!!

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7 Answers

lefteh's avatar

It’s still running? Wow.
I’d recommend updating ASAP. Intel is the new black.

Evol's avatar

She is a tank :)

joeysefika's avatar

@lefteh, no need to upgrade, it can run Leopard. A couple of my friends have iBooks and PowerBooks that are still running fine. I have a 1.5Ghz, 1G ram Toshiba from 2003 and it still runs fine. Of course its always nice to have the latest technology and the new Intel MacBooks are fantastic and very fast. But if you’re only using it for e-mail, work and surfing the net then why bother buying a new computer.

But back on the original question, it will run 10.5. However some people have had some trouble installing it. I.e. Kernel Panics etc

lefteh's avatar

I mean, yeah, if all you’re doing is email/word processing, I guess there’s urgent need to upgrade. If you’re doing much more than that though, I’m not sure how long those PowerPCs will last you.

artificialard's avatar

That’s definitely still a highly usable computer. My primary computer is still a 1.33GHz PowerBook 12” because I like the form factor so much.

Some tips from my experience:
-You may have to give up the latest versions of software, most obviously MS Office 2008. Office 2004 is pretty snappy but 2008 is a dog. And if you run it with Mail, a web browser, then it gets completely bogged down. Stick to 2004.

-This doesn’t apply to Mac OS 10.5. Newer Mac OS X releases actually tend to get better on older hardware (assuming it’s supported, which your PB is). Install it!

-Get more RAM if you can – that’ll provide the greatest boost in system performance for you. But keep in mind it can’t be used in a new computer in the future.

-Make sure you have enough hard drive space free (at least 5GB, 10GB if possible). If you don’t the computer will have to ‘page’ more and that will also significantly reduce your performance.

-If you haven’t for 2–3 years, do a clean installation (backup your data, erase the HD, and install from system discs). It will once again help keep it snappy and minimize problems. If you’re going to Leopard 10.5 that’s a great time to do this.

In any case it’s not terribly fast but your PowerBook can run virtually all the software on the market today and thus has similar functionality, just not speed of a current computer.

richardhenry's avatar

I’ve always bought the most expensive computer I could, and then stuck with it for as long as I possibly can. It doesn’t sound like you need a new machine yet.

Evol's avatar

Artificialard you are awesome! Thanks for the time and effort!!!

Richard thanks for the shout out on usability. That is exactly what I did.

I was thinking with the current economy i might be able to snag something new. Tho all the upgrades will probably cost as much :) since I’m planning to replace my hard drive. It’d be nice to have something relatively cheap, light, and modern. I’m just gonna get an airbook and use it like a big iphone – hold it up to my ear…

and keep the baby at home for anything for which i need any power or my old programs. Can I get the two to play together? Any difficulty with 10.5 and CS1 or other programs?

Also – my power and headphone jacks are loose…

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