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#101 2015-01-08 20:37:16

cc333
Member
From: North S.F. Bay Area, CA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Posts: 600

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

OS 9 (or indeed, OS 8.1, 8.5 and 8.6) handles USB keyboards and mice fine (as configured on the original iMacs and B&W G3s), so probably not.

And, incidentally, I have an A1106 PowerBook G4 (which shipped with 10.3.7), and I got OS 9 as far as when the "Starting Up..." progress bar just gets to the top (it freezes there, however). This, to me, indicates that it should work fine, if we can figure out why it freezes and fix it (it is probably something in the System file, as I doubt the ROM would be in play that late in the bootup sequence).

Can anyone with an A1106 PBG4 confirm?

c

Last edited by cc333 (2015-01-08 20:43:17)


Main Macs: Early '09 Mac Pro, Mid '12 MacBook Pro 13"
Secondary Macs: Early '08 Mac Pro, Mid '12 MacBook Pro 15"
Playthings: Mac SE/30, 3.0 GHz Mavericks-based HackServe, Many others....
Desired: Lisa, Kanga PowerBook G3, Apple IIc, Apple II, Spare parts, etc.

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#102 2015-01-08 23:32:09

Centris
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 2014-12-29
Posts: 9

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

I have exactly the same problem as cc333 on my eMac 1.25. You can install Mac OS 9.2.2 Unsupported G4s on it. But when its finish starting up. Then it halts. Removing all the Ati extensions doesn't help. Starting Mac OS 9 with extensions off also doesn't help. I think the Macintosh computers with PowerPC 7447a is hard to get working with Mac OS 9.

And to cc333. I have a PowerBook G4 A1139. Which has exactly the same hardware as yours (except mine use ddr2 ram). Maybe you have read earlier in the topic. That if I boot the Mac OS 9.2.2 Unsupported G4s on my PowerBook G4. Then it turns off and the pram is zapped. You are lucky that you can boot it.

Last edited by Centris (2015-01-09 22:20:57)

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#103 2015-01-09 06:51:51

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

cc333 wrote:

OK, here you go:

Built-In display card Identifier: ATI,Jasper_A (or ATI,Jasper_B, as there seems to be two entries)
Machine ID: PowerBook5,3

I hope this helps!

It certainly does! I'll start looking into the that particular card and see if I can get a working NDRV for it.

For what it's worth, these two entries are there for a reason. ATI,Jasper_A is the internal display, ATI,Jasper_B is for the external display port. The GPU itself is just called ATI,Jasper, and in Open Firmware it identifies as ATY,JasperParent (as the parent of the A and B interfaces in the device tree).

While under the OS it is called ATI,Jasper, under Open Firmware and in the Extension it's called ATY,Jasper. I'm not sure why ATI chose this naming scheme.


mcdermd wrote:

I downloaded the CD from the previous link, performed the Open Firmware CPU version hack but boot was immediately halted and the system shut down with:

, checksum error
Loading ELF

DO-QUIESCE finished

15" PowerBook G4 1.67 GHz, High Res (PowerBook5,8)


~

I think you're probably right. Did Sonnet ever have an enabler or firmware patch to use the newer CPUs on older OS levels?


Both PowerLogix and NewerTech used exactly the same "cpu-version" fix, so I would be on Sonnet having done the same. I have another theory though, which I'll outline below.

That said, the PowerBook5,8 is a much newer machine and architecture than OS 9 was designed for, and the behaviour sounds the same as what I've experienced while attempting to boot Mac OS 9 on the Mac Mini. These newer machines still require additional research and investigation.


cc333 wrote:

And, incidentally, I have an A1106 PowerBook G4 (which shipped with 10.3.7), and I got OS 9 as far as when the "Starting Up..." progress bar just gets to the top (it freezes there, however). This, to me, indicates that it should work fine, if we can figure out why it freezes and fix it (it is probably something in the System file, as I doubt the ROM would be in play that late in the bootup sequence).

Can anyone with an A1106 PBG4 confirm?

The Mac OS ROM seems to be constantly in play, actually. A number of hardware drivers are contained within the ROM, so it certainly does more than just bootstrapping the system.


Centris wrote:

I have exactly the same problem as cc333 on my eMac 1.25. You can install Mac OS 9.2.2 Unsupported G4s on it. But when its finish starting up. Then it halts. Removing all the Ati extensions doesn't help. Starting Mac OS 9 with extensions off also doesn't help. I think the Macintosh computers with PowerPC 7447a is hard to get working with Mac OS 9.

This is particularly intriguing. The Macintosh ROM and System Suitcase on the Mac OS 9.2.2 Unsupported G4s CD is a full version of the system, so if it can boot from that disc, then it should be possible to boot Mac OS 9.2.2 on these machines. There's something being installed that holds up the startup process. Something that is in the installed system folder, but not on the CD.



This brings me to the following question.

Have you ( owners of newer CPU machines ) tried deleting /System Folder/Extensions/Multiprocessing/Apple CPU Plugins ?

It was a common issue with processor upgrade cards back in the day. If you used the Open Firmware cpu-version fix, you also had to remove that Multiprocessing folder from the Extensions folder, otherwise the Mac OS would encounter problems.

The Multiprocessing folder is not present on the bootable installation CD, however it is installed with the full system. This could explain why the CD boots, but the installed OS doesn't.


After you've finished installing 9.2.2 using that disc (or just boot from the disc again), open the System Folder on the HD and trash or move the Multiprocessing folder out of the Extensions folder. Start the machine up normally ( still use the OF cpu-version command ) and see what happens.

Since unsupported G4s only have Single Processors (every Dual Power Mac G4 is supported, including the FW800 with 7455s), I doubt you will miss this extension anyway.



Cheers,

iMic.


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#104 2015-01-09 07:57:33

ClassicHasClass
Member
From: Electron Alley
Registered: 2014-05-26
Posts: 1,118
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

mcdermd wrote:

I think you're probably right. Did Sonnet ever have an enabler or firmware patch to use the newer CPUs on older OS levels?

Nope. My MDD Encore 1.8, for example, will not work at all in 10.2 and Sonnet's tech guy said it wasn't possible. The magic version was 10.3.5 also. (It does work in 9.2.2 with their firmware patch, which is basically the same as the one here, but it doesn't fix OS X.)

I suspect there is some aspect of later G4 boards that OS 9 just can't initialize, even when hinted about the CPU, and I'm betting early versions of OS X are the same way.


Machine room (updated for 2019!): http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

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#105 2015-01-09 08:00:09

ClassicHasClass
Member
From: Electron Alley
Registered: 2014-05-26
Posts: 1,118
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

It was a common issue with processor upgrade cards back in the day. If you used the Open Firmware cpu-version fix, you also had to remove that Multiprocessing folder from the Extensions folder, otherwise the Mac OS would encounter problems.

I'm not sure if this is always true. I need to verify (I'm about 500 miles away), but my MDD with DP 7447A Encore 1.8GHz card has Multiprocessing enabled.

But since so little took advantage of it, certainly can't hurt to get rid of it.


Machine room (updated for 2019!): http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

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#106 2015-01-09 08:09:29

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

ClassicHasClass wrote:

It was a common issue with processor upgrade cards back in the day. If you used the Open Firmware cpu-version fix, you also had to remove that Multiprocessing folder from the Extensions folder, otherwise the Mac OS would encounter problems.

I'm not sure if this is always true. I need to verify (I'm about 500 miles away), but my MDD with DP 7447A Encore 1.8GHz card has Multiprocessing enabled.

But since so little took advantage of it, certainly can't hurt to get rid of it.


I haven't had a machine to test this theory with. I know NewerTech and PowerLogix recommended it in the user guides, but there's no explanation as to why this occurs.


Someone released a patched version of the Apple CPU Plugins extension, but no explanation was given as to what was changed. I do have the supposedly "patched" extension, so I'll look into it further at some point.


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#107 2015-01-09 08:50:29

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

cc333 wrote:

OK, here you go:

Built-In display card Identifier: ATI,Jasper_A (or ATI,Jasper_B, as there seems to be two entries)
Machine ID: PowerBook5,3

I hope this helps!

c


I've extracted the Jasper driver from OS X Panther and added it to a system extension. This extension may or may not work as I haven't been able to test it with a Mobility Radeon 9600 myself, but you're welcome to test it and report back.


https://app.box.com/s/vr9qwnewcg6ft6zws516 (65KB)


Cheers,

iMic.


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#108 2015-01-09 14:55:56

Centris
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 2014-12-29
Posts: 9

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

I removed the Multiprocessing folder. And now it can boot to desktop. Its quick and the sound also works. But the eMac only supports mirroring. So the screen picture is small.

But we can call the eMac 1.25 a bootable to desktop model.

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#109 2015-01-09 15:34:46

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

I believe that 1.25GHz eMac has an ATI Radeon 9200 in it. ATI released drivers for the Radeon 9200 - perhaps they could be modified to work with the eMac (resolving the small screen picture issue)?

Think you could open Apple System Profiler from within OS 9 on the eMac and retrieve the ATI model identifier? I'll see if an extension can be made for it.


Screen_Shot_2015_01_10_at_1_57_54_am.jpg


The model identifier would also be handy. Since only one model of eMac had 1.25GHz processor, I'm assuming it's a PowerMac6,4.

Last edited by iMic (2019-07-01 18:16:02)


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#110 2015-01-09 16:38:17

Centris
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 2014-12-29
Posts: 9

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

It has a ATI,Merlin_A. The model is a PowerMac6,4. Also the Ethernet works.

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#111 2015-01-09 17:01:30

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

https://app.box.com/s/30yftsfsk9b8s9o9t2u4 (43KB)

That's the ATI Merlin extension, extracted from the same OS X driver as the Via and Jasper extensions. As with the extension above, I haven't been able to test it personally so it may or may not work.

This one seemed to be much smaller than the Via and Jasper extensions, and it doesn't seem to have the necessary properties for brightness control, so it's anyones guess as to how it will perform.



Centris wrote:

I removed the Multiprocessing folder. And now it can boot to desktop. Its quick and the sound also works. But the eMac only supports mirroring. So the screen picture is small.

I didn't address this earlier, but thank you for confirming this. We're now certain that the Multiprocessing extensions can result in an inability to complete startup on machines with newer CPUs.


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#112 2015-01-09 20:41:10

cc333
Member
From: North S.F. Bay Area, CA
Registered: 2014-05-23
Posts: 600

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

OK, I got the ATI Jasper Extension and tried loading it into the Extensions folder. Maybe I'm not installing it correctly, because it isn't working.

Maybe it could be incompatible? Is there some sort of log I can check? If so, how do I get it?

Thanks,

c


Main Macs: Early '09 Mac Pro, Mid '12 MacBook Pro 13"
Secondary Macs: Early '08 Mac Pro, Mid '12 MacBook Pro 15"
Playthings: Mac SE/30, 3.0 GHz Mavericks-based HackServe, Many others....
Desired: Lisa, Kanga PowerBook G3, Apple IIc, Apple II, Spare parts, etc.

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#113 2015-01-09 22:41:40

Centris
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 2014-12-29
Posts: 9

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

The extension did not work properly. The screen is still small. But there is one difference. Now Mac OS 9 report the internal screen to be 1024x768 instead of 640x480. ATI Video Accelerator extension is not present as I removed it previously because you written I should try it. Also ATI Merlin extension is present in extension manager after I copied it to the extension folder.

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#114 2015-01-10 08:06:42

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

cc333 wrote:

OK, I got the ATI Jasper Extension and tried loading it into the Extensions folder. Maybe I'm not installing it correctly, because it isn't working.

Maybe it could be incompatible? Is there some sort of log I can check? If so, how do I get it?

I don't believe that Mac OS 9 logs information like OS X does. That's made this process rather difficult since it only leaves trial and error.


Centris wrote:

The extension did not work properly. The screen is still small. But there is one difference. Now Mac OS 9 report the internal screen to be 1024x768 instead of 640x480. ATI Video Accelerator extension is not present as I removed it previously because you written I should try it. Also ATI Merlin extension is present in extension manager after I copied it to the extension folder.

It's installed correctly, so there must be an issue with the driver.


Producing a functional video driver is extremely difficult. The iBook Via driver took several weeks to get right, and that was with the machine in front of me to retrieve values and probe for information.

If I come across some other leads on drivers, I'll post revised versions of these extensions. Otherwise I'll need some hardware to test with. Maybe I'll write up some instructions on how I managed to make the Via Driver work and let some others at it.


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#115 2015-01-10 08:12:45

Diehard
Member
Registered: 2014-11-17
Posts: 2
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

Hello iMic,

I will have (2) more Xserve G4s arriving this week for further Mac OS 9 testing, I scrapped the last one prematurely to steal the CPU for an MDD.  I will report results.  If you remember, the first tests did not go so well on the single 1.33 Ghz.;  This time, I will be removing some parts of the server to hopefully thin down the OF tree (and lessen some of the hardware variables); hopefully this will yield get a stripped down unit that makes it to the desktop.

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#116 2015-01-11 05:16:08

retrorandy
Member
Registered: 2015-01-11
Posts: 7

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

I too have the emac 1.25ghz and I'm at the desktop in mirror mode. Whoo HOO! Thanks iMic and others for getting me this far. I picked this baby up for $20 a local thrift store awhile back. I was about to give it away, but thought to check the internet again for recent developments. Would be cool to get the driver running correctly. Like others I have a dinky, mirrored mode screen at 640 x 480 on the desktop. Need to try the driver mentioned. LOVE how zippy OS 9 is on this machine.

OS X on the PowerPC is cool and all, but ya especially with games Classic Mode is way buggy. Before this I had a G3 Clamshell running OS 9 which is decent, but the 800 x 600 screen just doesn't do it for me.

Hope there's some more progress eventually with the eMac. This is promising. smile

Last edited by retrorandy (2015-01-11 05:18:19)

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#117 2015-01-11 07:27:39

mcdermd
Member
From: Corvallis, OR
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 1,022
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

If you wanted some hackery, later clamshells can be screen-swapped with a 1024x768 LCD panel.


Daily Drivers: 27" iMac 2.8 GHz Quad-Core i7 (Late 2009), 21.5" iMac 2.7GHz Quad-Core i5 (Late 2013), 11" Macbook Air 1.6 GHz i5 (Mid-2011)
See the restored heroes here.

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#118 2015-01-11 18:34:56

ClassicHasClass
Member
From: Electron Alley
Registered: 2014-05-26
Posts: 1,118
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

Welcome, retrorandy. Make an introduction thread and tell us about your collection.


Machine room (updated for 2019!): http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

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#119 2015-01-12 20:22:57

Centris
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 2014-12-29
Posts: 9

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

I have good news. Now my eMac 1.25 can boot Mac OS 9 without you need to enter the open firmware commands every boot. And it also use the whole screen now. Not the tiny one at the middle of the screen. But to make it boot like that. You need to enter this open firmware commands.

nvedit

" /" select-dev

00000000 " graphic-options" get-my-property 2drop !

unselect

dev /cpus/PowerPC,G4@0

80010201 encode-int " cpu-version" property

ctrl-c (press ctrl-c do not write it as a command)

nvstore

setenv use-nvramrc? true

reset-all

This will save the cpu command and the full screen command to nvram. So you don't need to enter them at boot.

If something goes wrong just reset the nvram.

Last edited by Centris (2015-01-13 15:03:01)

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#120 2015-01-13 02:00:07

iMic
Administrator
From: Adelaide, Australia
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 948
Website

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

Time for another release. I wanted to release these now in their current form since I won't be able to commit to a time-frame for another release. Significant life events and recent difficulties have moved development of these down the list of priorities somewhat.


Macintosh ROM 10.2.1v1 "Generic"

This release replaces the "Mac OS ROM 10.2.1 (Generic)" ROM.

These enhancements for the Macintosh operating system allow for the installation and use of Mac OS 9 on hardware released after Apple ceased support for Mac OS 9, henceforth referred to as unsupported machines.

Release 10.2.1v1 allows some unsupported Macintosh models to boot into Mac OS 9. This "Generic" release does not have any hardware-specific optimisations, and works best on machines like the Power Macintosh G4. While it can be used across a number of models of Macintosh desktops and notebooks, some features like notebook-specific power management or built-in display backlight control may not function correctly on some systems.


Changes

10.2.1v1 introduces a number of revisions from the standard Macintosh system, including:

    Mac OS ROM

    - Enables OS 9 as a valid boot option on MacRISC3 systems
    - Bypasses supported machine checks to attempt startup on unsupported models
    - Added model identifier names for Apple System Profiler:

            - PowerMac6,1 iMac
            - PowerMac6,3 iMac
            - PowerMac6,4 eMac
            - PowerBook6,3 iBook G4
            - PowerBook6,5 iBook G4
            - PowerBook6,7 iBook G4

    - Updated ROM version in About This Mac to Macintosh ROM 10.2.1v1
            - Previously Mac OS ROM 10.2.1
    - Updated Package Info to Macintosh System Component
            - Previously Mac OS CPU Software 5.9

    Insomnia

    - Prevents computer from automatically entering sleep mode (see Known Issues in included Read Me First)

               
This release is also recommended for users of the Mac OS ROM 10.2.1 (Generic) release as it contains a number of bug fixes:

    - Fixed incorrect string length for PowerBook6,3 iBook G4 in ntbl resource
    - Fixed incorrect number of ntbl entries


Download

https://app.box.com/s/tuxehb7wpx8tracbuzbz (2.7MB .SIT)



Macintosh ROM 10.2.1r1 "iBook"

This release contains the complete set of files from my PowerBook6,3 iBook G4.

These enhancements for the Macintosh operating system allow for the installation and use of Mac OS 9 on hardware released after Apple ceased support for Mac OS 9, henceforth referred to as unsupported machines.

Release 10.2.1r1 is specifically intended for use on the iBook G4. It contains a customised version of the Mac OS ROM with improvements specific to the iBook G4, system extensions to provide limited support for the iBook's built-in video hardware and display, and a ColorSync profile to correct gamma for iBook displays that appear overly bright or "washed out".


Changes

10.2.1r1 introduces a number of revisions from the standard Macintosh system, including:

    Mac OS ROM

    - Enables OS 9 as a valid boot option on MacRISC3 systems
    - Bypasses supported machine checks to attempt startup on unsupported models
    - Patched backlight NDRV to enable brightness control with mnca backlights
    - Added model identifier names for Apple System Profiler:

            - PowerBook6,3 iBook G4
            - PowerBook6,5 iBook G4
            - PowerBook6,7 iBook G4

    - Updated ROM version in About This Mac to Macintosh ROM 10.2.1r1
            - Previously Mac OS ROM 10.2.1
    - Updated Package Info to Macintosh System Component
            - Previously Mac OS CPU Software 5.9

    ATI Via Driver

    - Custom NDRV extracted from OS X Panther enables basic framebuffer support
    - Resolution Switching Enabled (640x480, 800x600, 1024x768 on iBook)
    - Color Mode Switching Enabled (256 Grays, 256 Colors, Thousands and Millions on iBook)
    - Hardware Scaler (Lower Resolutions scale up to fit the entire LCD)
    - Backlight Control (when used in conjunction with 10.2.1r1 ROM on iBook)
    - Display Sleep and Backlight Dimming Enabled
    - VRAM amount detected correctly

    ATI Resource Manager

    - v3.1.6, Mac OS CPU Software 5.9 included (unmodified)

    Insomnia

    - Prevents computer from automatically entering sleep mode (see Known Issues in included Read Me First)


This release is also recommended for users of the Mac OS ROM 10.2.1 (Generic) release as it contains a number of bug fixes:

    - Fixed incorrect string length for PowerBook6,3 iBook G4 in ntbl resource
    - Fixed incorrect number of ntbl entries


Download

https://app.box.com/s/zyoqh8asu38upemez4rq (2.9MB .SIT)


Resident Professor of Alternative Methodology
Faculty of Electronic Restorations & Modifications - "It works, let's fix it!"

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#121 2015-01-13 06:39:33

retrorandy
Member
Registered: 2015-01-11
Posts: 7

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

Centris... that's AWESOME news on the eMAC! I'm kind of a newbie when doing this stuff. I've tried your nvedit text and commands a few times and I can't get it to boot. It just goes to a gray screen. I must be typing or doing something wrong. Dunno. Let me know if others have success. smile

I can still get it to boot with the original firmware text in the beginning, but of course it's still in mirrored mode & I have to do it each time I boot the computer.

Last edited by retrorandy (2015-01-13 06:41:02)

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#122 2015-01-13 11:03:48

Centris
Member
From: Denmark
Registered: 2014-12-29
Posts: 9

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

It was also hard for me to get it working. I was trying it many times. But after I tried several times. It booted without need to enter the commands.

Update. I did reset my nvram. Then I entered my nvram commands. And it booted. So if someone try this. Be careful. You will not get feedback from open firmware when you save commands to nvram. So be sure you have entered the commands correctly.

Last edited by Centris (2015-01-13 15:10:38)

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#123 2015-01-14 05:18:51

retrorandy
Member
Registered: 2015-01-11
Posts: 7

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

Centris thank you again for the information.

I kept messing with it and for me I finally got it to work, but I had to do it in this order (see below... your same text/different order)... with the dev /cpus command first and it did the trick. So cool to have OS 9 so zippy, and finally full screen on this eMAC.

Now I just have to figure out some of the smaller things that might be missing. As said earlier sound and Ethernet are working great. This is going to be fun. I LOVE the Macintosh Garden website and it's cool to have a more zippy machine to run the OS 9 programs on. smile

nvedit

dev /cpus/PowerPC,G4@0

80010201 encode-int " cpu-version" property

" /" select-dev

00000000 " graphic-options" get-my-property 2drop !

unselect

ctrl-c (press ctrl-c do not write it as a command)

nvstore

setenv use-nvramrc? true

reset-all

Last edited by retrorandy (2015-01-14 05:19:30)

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#124 2015-01-19 23:43:29

Nukkus
Member
Registered: 2015-01-19
Posts: 1

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

This is pretty freakin awesome. I just lucked into an iBook G4 today, gonna try this out!

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#125 2015-01-25 19:31:11

muttztfz
Member
Registered: 2015-01-25
Posts: 1

Re: Mac OS 9 on Unsupported Hardware

Hello!

This is just awesome! More than a decade ago Apple buried (yes, literally) Mac OS 9. And here we are, trying to boot it on "modern" = a decade old yet unsupported machines... Great!

I have a Mac mini Late 2005, silent upgrade, 1.5 GHz model with SuperDrive+WiFi+BT. I got it to boot Mac OS 9 as far as the gray screen. So, not very far really, no success. But then I found this thread and I noticed you guys have gotten much further: if not on the Mac mini, so on the iBook, iMac, eMac! Congratulations!

I used the Open Firmware encode-* method to make my Mac pretend to be some other Mac.

  • Even thou my Mac mini comes with Mac OS X 10.4.2,

  • I managed to install 10.3.3 (an eMac version from 2004), which surprisingly worked with graphics glitches, no sound and no WiFi. Updating the resulting Panther installation to 10.3.9 fixed all issues.

  • I then tried to install Jaguar from 2 original 10.2 installation CDs. That did not work. I then restored a backed up 10.2.8 installation. Again, surprise!, booting 10.2.8 works on a PowerMac10,2 Mac mini, but with issues:

    1. the fan is constantly on at a medium to relatively high setting (but not maximum)

    2. no graphics acceleration i.e. no graphics driver. Like some of you mentioned for Mac OS 9, the last good graphics setting from a working Mac OS X (10.3.9+) is used, so it can be set using another Mac OS X.

    3. no sound

    4. no WiFi (but Bluetooth, which is on the same riser card! Bluetooth is named "USB Bluetooth" in network connections...)

  • Mac OS 9.2.2: no luck at all:

    1. I formatted a volume with "Mac OS Extended" (no journal)

    2. I installed using a "Power Mac G5 Additional Software" DVD containing Mac OS 9 (in German)

    3. I booted changing "MacRISC3" to "MacRISC" and "MacRISC2" into Mac OS X 10.4.11, opened System Preferences start-up volume pane and selected Mac OS 9.2.2 as boot device (which not only stores this selection in NVRAM for Open Firmware to boot the selected OS, but also blesses the required bootloader and corrects file attributes and permissions if necessary...)

    4. Still with "MacRISC" + "MacRISC2" I wanted to boot Mac OS 9 (it is also shown when holding down the option key), but this only leads to a gray screen and hangs

My thoughts:

  • In Mac OS X, you can use "ioreg" to display almost all Open Firmware variables and values.

  • Using ioreg -l in Terminal, I can see that not only the "cpu-version" contains the PowerPC 7447A PVR, but also the variable "cpu-info"

  • Also, I think that you should use one method of setting the nvramrc, and not multiple. I.e. " /<dt-path>" select-dev ... unselect is a good way to change settings, and you avoid having to hit Ctrl+C

ioreg -l
...
  +-o PowerMac10,2  <class IOPlatformExpertDevice, registered, matched, active,$
    | {
    |   "model" = <"PowerMac10,2">
    |   "compatible" = <"PowerMac10,2","MacRISC3","Power Macintosh">
...
    | }
...
    | +-o PowerPC,G4@0  <class IOPlatformDevice, registered, matched, active, b$
    | | | {
    | | |   "cpu-info" = <8410c0bc800000008003010500000000000000000000000000000$
    | | |   "cpu-device-type" = "MacRISC2CPU"
    | | |   "name" = <"PowerPC,G4">
    | | |   "cpu-version" = <80030105>
...
   | | | }

As can be seen, the int value 80030105, which is the PVR of the PowerPC 7447A, is also embedded in variable cpu-info: 8410c0bc800000008003010500000000000000000000000000000. Maybe this needs to be changed as well for Mac OS 9 to be convinced that it's running on a supported PowerPC 7445.

Anyway, here is my script:

#!/bin/sh
echo "Storing MacRISC compatible strings into NVRAM..."
echo "Type your password when prompted:"
echo

# Use nvram command to setup nvramrc with script to make open firmware changes.
echo "[1] Setting compatible to MacRISC and MacRISC2 (for Mac OS 9)..."
echo "[2] Setting CPU version to report PowerPC 7445 v3.3 (for Mac OS 9)..."
sudo nvram nvramrc='" /" select-dev
" PowerMac10,2" encode-string " MacRISC2" encode-string encode+ " MacRISC" encode-string encode+ " Power Macintosh" encode-string encode+ " compatible" property
unselect
" /cpus/PowerPC,G4@0" select-dev
80010303 encode-int " cpu-version" property
unselect
'
echo "[1] Ok."
echo "[2] Ok."

# Enable use of nvramrc on boot. Change to "false" to disable again or just clear/reset NVRAM.
echo "[3] Set use-nvramrc to true..."
sudo nvram "use-nvramrc?"=true
echo "[3] Ok."

echo "Done."
echo
echo "Reminder:  If something goes wrong, try"
echo "    1) reset the NVRAM: Option + Command + N + V"
echo "    2) zap the PRAM:    Option + Command + P + R"
echo "After that, select the desired (supported) boot device by"
echo "    holding the Option key at the chime..."

As you can see, I haven't tried to modify "cpu-info" yet... Anyway, I hope this helps others as well, and maybe the Mac OS X 10.2.8 case also has some impact on the Mac OS 9.2.2 investigation, since it is also unsupported and lacks drivers.

What I also found very helpful so far, just in case you didn't read it yet:

  1. https://github.com/tycho/pearpc/blob/ma … r_list.txt

    • Note: PVR 80030105 for PowerPC 7447A v1.5 is missing...

    • PowerPC 7445 and 7455 use the same PVR. AFAIK the only difference is the L2 cache...

  2. http://osxbook.com/book/bonus/ancient/w … _boot.html

  3. http://support.apple.com/kb/TA44318

Cheers,
muttztfz


UPDATE:
It did not work. I changed the cpu-info value as mentioned, but that doesn't make Mac OS 9 get past the gray screen. I tried this directly in Open Firmware (Option + Command + O + F):

dev /cpus/PowerPC,G4@0
.properties
8410c0bc encode-int 80000000 encode-int encode+ 80010303 encode-int encode+ 00000000 encode-int encode+ 00000000 encode-int encode+ 00000000 encode-int encode+ 00000000 encode-int encode+ 00000000 encode-int encode+ " cpu-info" property
.properties
mac-boot

I don't know if using encode+ is the correct way to do it, but it worked. The command .properties will display all variables with their values in the selected device-tree directory (/cpus/PowerPC,G4@0). Note: in Open Firmware, these are 8 groups of 8 digits, the last 5 are 00000000 (8x zero), and only the first 3 contain a non-zero integer value.

However, it must be something else, since it didn't work. BTW, I'm using an unmodified version of Mac OS ROM D1-10.2.1 (Mac OS CPU Software D-5.8) from the Mac OS X installer package for Classic; the D at the beginning of the version number stands for "Deutsch" i.e. German. Someone earlier asked how to see the version number: in Mac OS X, go to you Mac OS 9 volume in Finder, select "System Folder/Mac OS ROM" and hit Command+i (or right-click, select "Information")...

So, no success yet for the Mac mini...

Last edited by muttztfz (2015-01-25 20:01:09)

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