Power Mac G4 Mirrored Drive Doors (MDD)

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Model Identifier:PowerMac3,6
Model Number:M8570
Order Number:M8787LL/A
Built Date:12/2002

Processor:PowerPC G4
Speed:866 MHz

Memory:1,5 GB
Graphics Card:ATI 64MB
Harddisk:120 GB (SSD via ATA)

Ethernet:1000BASE-T, RJ-45
USB:2 Ports (USB 1)
Firewire:400 MBit/s

Serial Number:CK249H1MNLP
Installed OS:Mac OS 10.4.11 (Tiger) / System 9.2.2

This is supposedly the loudest Power Mac. And indeed it is. Research on the internet shows, that the main source for the noise is the main (big) fan cooling the cpu. So, maybe this is a future project to find a noiseless replacement.

Since there were two ATA hard disks installed in this computer, I was introduced to the master/slave concept. But I decided to run this machine with only one disk.

Installing Mac OS 9 was a bit tricky. I tried to boot from a CD. But the process would always fail. It seems this computer is not capable of booting OS 9 from CD/DVD. So I divided the drive in 2 partitions and installed Mac OS X 10.4 on one partition. It is important to check the option for installing OS 9 drivers during the partitioning process! After that, I downloaded the special OS 9 version for the MDD (from Macintosh Garden) and copied the folders to the OS 9 partition while running OS X.

The computer is now able to boot into both OS from hard disk.

Strange behavior: After booting OS 9 for the first time from hard disk, there is some setup program running. The monitor resolution seems to be changed for that. After the setup is finished I had no menu bar at all. I only had the drive icons on the desktop. I couldn't find any application to restart the machine. So I had to do it the hard way.

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The G4 was turned of for a few months. When I tried to start it, it wouldn't. The hard disk will spin up and then die after a few seconds. Seems it is broken.
So I bought an SSD and installed it.

More trouble. Can't boot the computer more than once. It boots fine the first time. But the next time it boots but there is no monitor signal at all. When I opened the case I saw a capacitor on the bottom of the case. Seems to have 'fallen of' the logic board. So I took the computer apart and soldered the capacitor back on to the logic board (attached with two cables, since there was not enough room to solder it directly to the board.

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Unfortunately, the problem with booting persists.

Found an identical computer on eBay with some problems related to the power supply (on/off-switch, fans). I extracted the mainboard and switched it with the one missing the capacitor. And now the computer is up and running again.