I bought an iMac…

…for £80, and discovered that it was not only one of the earliest models, but also deficient in the memory and hard disk categories: only 32 MB RAM and 6GB hard disk. So, I bought, in quick succession:

  • 512 MB RAM, which I discovered was too much for this computer, so I returned it;
  • 128 MB RAM, for one of the memory slots;
  • 256 MB RAM, for the other memory slot; and
  • an 80 GB hard disk drive.
  • Then, of course, there was the hassle of actually putting the stuff in the computer. For someone who is familiar with Intel PCs, fooling with the inside of an Apple iMac is something like doing a cholcystectomy through a keyhole slit in a patient with one hand tied behind your back and no light with which to see inside the patient. Well, maybe not that bad…

  • First you have to open the case, unplug three cables, and take out the motherboard/CDRom drive/Hard disk drive assembly.
  • Next, you have to take the daughter card off the motherboard, take out the original memory, and fit the two new memory boards.
  • Then, you have to take the motherboard itself off the assembly. This is fiddly, including unplugging 5 cables and taking the side panel off.
  • Then, take out the CD Rom drive.
  • Then, remove the old hard drive and the jig that holds it in place.
  • Put in the new hard drive, screw it into the jig, and put the jig back.
  • Reverse everything else and put the whole thing back together again.
  • Plug the computer back in, turn it on, put in a CD-Rom with MAC OS 9.2 on it, and pray.
  • I luckily had some help in the form of printed-out instructions on a website devoted to souping up your iMac. I was astonished when it worked, first time! The CD-Rom drive (the absolute original one with the tray rather than the slot opening) is a bit off-centre, and sometimes has to be coaxed into opening, but the computer booted up, OS 9.2 installed first time, and the computer now works! Hurrah!

    Our friend Win from Australia (former flatmate, great guy, was here on a 2-year tourist working visa) is going to send us a G3 tower via a friend of his who’s visiting in January. Then we’ll be a full Mac operation here. I will probably use it as a server to deal with the mountains of spam and the attacks that are constantly annoying us in PC-land.

    Now to get it connected to the Internet.

    Update! While the computer connects fine to the internet, I now find that it won’t run OS X and, of course, everything now available for the Mac is supposed to run OS X. I shall find out more about this later on from my friend Rob, who is a Mac-a-holic.

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