advertisement
Deals | News | Forums

The Forum is sponsored by 
 

AAPL stock: $96.97 ( -0.22 )

*Cached every 60 seconds. For live updating, Click Here

You are currently viewing the Tips and Deals forum
Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 27, 2008 03:17PM
This morning, accessing the Quicksilver's boot drive from my MBP via Firewire Target Disk Mode, I deleted the recommended preferences*

*/Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver.plist

/Users/[username]/Library/Preferences/ByHost/
com.apple.windowserver.[some number].plist
(There may be several of these files.)

Power it down. Reboot and zap PRAM *ONCE* on startup."

-----------------

and....

No luck at all. Still does the same thing. Won't adapt to my 20" Apple DV display! Screen goes blank again after a few seconds.

Still displays just fine when I boot from Hardware Test disc.

Back to plan B., work with the previous owner, with a borrowed Tiger disc and a different (VGA) display, see if we can reset it that way...

I really thought that preferences deletion would do it.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: Monster
Date: January 27, 2008 04:44PM
refresh my memory, why couldn't you just do a fresh install to see if that would work?





The Taoist Zhuangzi said, "Good order results spontaneously when things are let alone".
The sociologist, and historian, Adam Ferguson described the phenomenon of spontaneous order in society as the "result of human action, but not the execution of any human design".
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 27, 2008 05:38PM
Quote
Monster
refresh my memory, why couldn't you just do a fresh install to see if that would work?

Well...

Okay, try this. Put a blindfold on. Then completely reinstall system software on your computer. No peeking. Do it completely without being able to see anything on your display to respond to anything with your mouse or keyboard.

Now you get the idea...
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: GGD
Date: January 27, 2008 06:19PM
Quote
guitarist
Quote
Monster
refresh my memory, why couldn't you just do a fresh install to see if that would work?

Well...

Okay, try this. Put a blindfold on. Then completely reinstall system software on your computer. No peeking. Do it completely without being able to see anything on your display to respond to anything with your mouse or keyboard.

Now you get the idea...

Are you saying that when you boot off of the OSX Install DVD, you also don't get any video. If that's the case, then it seems very unlikely that reinstalling will make any difference, and you've got some sort of hardware problem or video card / monitor incompatibility.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 27, 2008 06:43PM
UPDATE: I finally can see.

I borrowed an old, old 15" VGA monitor. At least I can see! Finally got to get into the display preferences.

After trying several different settings, I'm unable to get it to a setting where it'll display on my 20" Apple Cinema Display. Not one of the resolutions match.

One possible reason: This Quicksilver's graphics card is not the stock card, it's an old ATI Rage Pro. Not the card the machine shipped with, looks like it was swapped out at some point by a previous owner.

The Quicksilver shipped with either the ATI Radeon 7500, NVIDIA GeForce4 MX, or GeForce4 Ti. It looks like someone swapped out the video card with one from an older mac, or something, 'cause this one doesn't want to play nice with a modern DV display.

But--good to know the G4 boots just fine, and is in good working order. Now I can begin to tune it up (stick a different graphics card in there, for example, and a dose of RAM) and give it gainful employment.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 27, 2008 06:52PM
"Are you saying that when you boot off of the OSX Install DVD"

This used G4 didn't come with the install DVD. Often the case. And I don't have a generic OS X disc to use with it. Just the (Tiger) set that came with (and exclusive to) my MacBook Pro. So, I have no System DVD to boot from.

I never suspected the Operating System anyway, and never had any intention of reinstalling the System Software, right from the beginning recognized it as more likely being a hardware problem. The "OS Install" recommendation emerged in discussions here.

" ... If that's the case, then it seems very unlikely that reinstalling will make any difference, and you've got some sort of hardware problem or video card / monitor incompatibility"

Exactly. Installing the OS wasn't the direction I was going, it's not necessary. Not sure why it was introduced as a way to solve a hardware problem.

Bugs me that the graphics card in there doesn't communicate well with my Cinema Display. I'll play around with it and see what I can come up with.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: January 27, 2008 07:47PM
The fact that your video card was swapped out was something that all the posters needed to know to figure out your issue. IF you had the stock card, their advice was all correct because it should work. If you had said, I can't get this stock Rage128 card to work with my cinema display and then described the issue everyone would have told you that card doesn't support the resolutions you need. Everyone's advice was spot on, you just left out the important info. So don't go complaining about the advice you got.



C(-)ris
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Throwback Thursday Signature:
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: JoeH
Date: January 27, 2008 08:00PM
I missed the mention in last night's post that the video card you found once you could run the AHT disk was the Rage 128 Pro instead of the stock Radeon 7500. The Rage Pro is definitely not compatible with most if not all 16:10 wide screen displays. A list of available resolutions is here: [docs.info.apple.com]. Sounds like time to find an inexpensive card that is a little bit newer. The original was probably pulled by someone looking to upgrade their video card.

P.S. Tech specs for the 20" Cinema display list just three resolutions, lowest was 1024x640. In theory that is available from the DVI port of the Rage 128 Pro, but there might be another incompatibility involved.







Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/27/2008 08:28PM by JoeH.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 27, 2008 08:31PM
Quote
C(-)ris
The fact that your video card was swapped out was something that all the posters needed to know to figure out your issue. IF you had the stock card, their advice was all correct because it should work. If you had said, I can't get this stock Rage128 card to work with my cinema display and then described the issue everyone would have told you that card doesn't support the resolutions you need. Everyone's advice was spot on, you just left out the important info. So don't go complaining about the advice you got.

I do appreciate the suggestions here, sorry if that wasn't communicated. My last post reflected my frustration with the "System Reinstall" advice, perhaps some arrived late, and had suggestions that had been addressed already.

I take exception to your finger wagging lecture, c(-)ris, because I stated early on that the graphics card was the primary suspect. Because there was no display image, there was no practical way to reinstall System Software. It's not an easy thing to do on a blind computer. With no system discs to begin with, it's even harder. And it's questionable to do a complete System reinstall until other methods had been tried first. The graphics card was always the most likely concern, all evidence pointed in that direction.

The graphics card-swap theory is new, it came to light after I plugged in a VGA monitor, finally was able to view at least some working image, and could see the System Profile. Yesterday, when I'd inspected the machine internally (I've had it for only 24 hours) seeing an ATI card in there, with both a VGA and DVI port, there wasn't a compelling reason to suspect the G4 wouldn't eventually see a DVI display it's plugged into, even if it's been out of use for several months and the settings weren't adjusted for a DVI display. Then when I looked up the original three cards the Quicksilver shipped with, earlier today, I discovered that they were different than the one currently installed. That may be the answer to the mystery, but it may not be. That alone is still not a reason to exclude this card from being able to display reliably on an Apple DV display.

It's interesting that even with the ATI Rage card--which as both a VGA and a DVI ports--isn't displaying a stable image, more puzzling is that it actually does display on the Apple Cinema 20" quite well, but under certain special conditions. (when booted from the optical drive instead of the boot drive) So, it was an unexpected irregularity, and still not quite clear. It's been a while since I've had hands-on experience with G4 Towers and 5-10 year-old graphics cards.

I notice in the System Profiler that the Rage128 Pro installed doesn't support Core Image, or Quartz. Not sure if that's a factor.... Also curious if it's capable running two displays at once. And what DVI displays does a Rage128 Pro work with, if not an Apple one?
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 27, 2008 08:44PM
Quote
JoeH
I missed the mention in last night's post that the video card you found once you could run the AHT disk was the Rage 128 Pro instead of the stock Radeon 7500. The Rage Pro is definitely not compatible with most if not all 16:10 wide screen displays. A list of available resolutions is here: [docs.info.apple.com]. Sounds like time to find an inexpensive card that is a little bit newer....

The most sensible option I've looked at is the GeForce4 MX. Of the three the QS shipped with, it's the "middle" choice. I used to own one of these, and remember buying it new, to customize my Sawtwooth to run two monitors, and got years of use out of it. At the time, I recall it being $100+, maybe more. Now they can be had easily for $10-20.

I didn't realize the ATI Rage128Pro wasn't compatible with the Cinema (widescreen) Apple displays. Not sure if there's some other incompatibility at work. But it does seem likely someone hijacked the stock card and replaced it with the ATI one. Since it's most likely not going to be set up connected to a display anyway, investing in a modest replacement card (that was considered powerful in its day) for low price seems like a safe enough bet, to see if it all works okay.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: Harbourmaster
Date: January 27, 2008 11:44PM
Pretty sure I stated in my post yesterday that the problem was the RagePro Card likely would not display at the native RES that you display needed...



Aloha, Ken


“I have developed significant attachments to several members even though I wouldn't recognize them if I sat next to one on a park bench. I'm often tempted when in an airport to walk around, hollering "The Løpe", to see if anyone other than the Homeland Security people will acknowledge me. ” - The Løpe
Options:  Reply • Quote
Re: Update re: G4 Tower (Quicksilver) video issue
Posted by: guitarist
Date: January 28, 2008 07:31AM
Quote
Harbourmaster
Pretty sure I stated in my post yesterday that the problem was the RagePro Card likely would not display at the native RES that you display needed...

And I'm pretty sure I stated that It displays just fine under certain conditions. That's the puzzle, Ken. When booted from a volume other than the boot drive (a AHWTest cd for example) it looks great on my 20" Apple Cinema Display, resolution no problem at all.
Options:  Reply • Quote
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login