iBook G4 14" 933 MHz-1.33 GHz Hard Drive Replacement

Featured Guide

Featured Guide

This guide has been found to be exceptionally cool by the iFixit staff.

  • Author: iRobot
  • Difficulty: Difficult

You can install hard drives up to 9.5mm thick.

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Edit Step 1 Battery  ¶ 

  • Use a coin to rotate the battery locking screw 90 degrees clockwise.

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Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • Lift the battery out of the computer.

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Edit Step 3 Keyboard  ¶ 

  • Pull the keyboard release tabs toward you and lift up on the keyboard until it pops free.

  • If the keyboard does not come free, use a small flathead screwdriver to turn the keyboard locking screw 180 degrees in either direction and try again.

  • Flip the keyboard over, away from the screen, and rest it face-down on the trackpad area.

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Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • If the computer has an AirPort card installed, follow the next three steps to remove it.

  • Push the wire clasp away from the AirPort card and toward the display, then rotate up to free it from the RAM shield.

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Grasp the clear plastic tab on the AirPort card and pull toward the display.

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Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • Hold the AirPort card in one hand and use your other hand to remove the antenna cable.

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Remove the four silver Phillips screws that secure the RAM shield.

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Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • Grasp the metal bracket on top of the RAM shield and pull upward to remove the shield.

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Pull the keyboard cable up from the logic board, holding the cable as close to the connector as possible.

  • Make sure that you reconnect the keyboard cable before replacing the RAM shield.

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Edit Step 10 Lower Case  ¶ 

  • Use a pin (or anything you like) to remove the three rubber feet from the lower case.

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Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • Remove the three newly-revealed Phillips screws.

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • Use a spudger or small flathead screwdriver to pry up the three metal rings that housed the rubber bumpers.

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Remove the three hex screws using a T8 Torx screwdriver (or Allen screws using an Allen key if these are used).

  • The shorter screw is in the center of the computer.

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Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Remove the two Phillips screws on either side of the battery contacts.

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Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • Breathe deeply. Trying times are ahead, but we promise the lower case does come off.

  • Push the thin rims of the lower case surrounding the battery compartment in, bending them past the tabs, and then lift up to free that corner of the lower case.

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Edit Step 16  ¶ 

  • There is a slot on the wall of the battery compartment that locks the lower case in place. Use a small flathead screwdriver to pry out the slot's lower rim and pull up on the lower case to free the slot from the tabs holding it.

  • Be careful not to break this clip!

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Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Run a spudger along the seam between the lower case and upper case on the front of the computer to free the tabs locking the lower case. Pull up on the lower case and continue to use the spudger as necessary until you hear three distinct clicks.

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Edit Step 18  ¶ 

  • Continue to run the spudger around the front, right corner. There are two tabs on the port side of the computer, one near the front corner and one near the sound-out port.

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Edit Step 19  ¶ 

  • There are three tabs over the optical drive that must be released before the lower case can come off. Slide the spudger into the lower case above the optical drive and run it toward the back of the computer until you hear three distinct clicks.

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Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • Once the front and sides of the lower case are free, turn the computer so that the back is facing you and pull the lower case up and toward you until the back tabs pop free (it may be helpful to jiggle the case up and down).

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Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • Remove the small greasy springs with white plastic caps from either side of the battery contacts.

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Edit Step 22 Bottom Shield  ¶ 

  • Remove the following 10 screws from the bottom shield:

    • Six 3 mm Phillips

    • Three 7.5 mm Phillips

    • One 14 mm Phillips

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Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Lift the bottom shield off.

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Edit Step 24 DC-In Board  ¶ 

  • Remove the single Phillips screw securing the DC-In board.

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Edit Step 25  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the DC-In cable from the logic board.

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Edit Step 26  ¶ 

  • Deroute the cable from around the optical drive, removing tape as necessary, and angle the DC-In board out of its compartment.

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Edit Step 27 Upper Case  ¶ 

  • Remove the following 11 screws from the bottom of the computer:

    • Three 3 mm Phillips around the battery compartment. (Some models may only have two screws.)

    • Three 4.5 mm Phillips along the optical drive bezel. (a magnetic screwdriver may help to lift these screws out)

    • One 11 mm Phillips in the lower right corner. (if present)

    • Four 14.5 mm Phillips.

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Edit Step 28  ¶ 

  • We recommend placing the computer on a soft cloth from this point on to prevent damaging the logic board.

  • Turn over the computer and open it.

  • Remove the 2 Phillips screws (3mm) from the edges of the keyboard area.

  • Remove the 4 mm Phillips screw from the lower left corner.

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Edit Step 29  ¶ 

  • Before you can yank the upper case off, you must disconnect the trackpad connector, the blue and white power cable, and speaker cable as described in the next steps. Be especially careful with these cables; never pull directly on the cables, but use a spudger to pry up the connector directly.

  • Lift the upper case and use a spudger or your finger to disconnect the trackpad connector hidden beneath the white plastic tab. Due to model variatons your trackpad connector may be different than the one pictured.

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Edit Step 30  ¶ 

  • Carefully lift the upper case about half of an inch and move it so that you can access the power and speaker cables.

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Edit Step 31  ¶ 

  • The connectors at the ends of the cables are attached very firmly to the sockets on the logic board. Pulling directly on the cable will either separate the cable from its connector or the socket from the logic board.

  • Lift the upper case enough to disconnect the blue and white power cable from the logic board. Using your fingernails or a dental pick, carefully pry the connector from its socket. Make sure you're pulling only on the connector and not on the socket.

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Edit Step 32  ¶ 

  • Carefully disconnect the multicolored speaker cable from the logic board. As before, make sure you're pulling only on the connector and not on the socket.

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Edit Step 33 Top Shield  ¶ 

  • The screw circled in orange may not be present in some models.

  • Remove the following 16 screws:

    • Thirteen 3 mm Phillips.

    • One 3 mm Phillips. (actual screw not present in image)

    • Two 4 mm Phillips.

  • Be sure to fit the screw near the left hinge through the loop in the display data cable, securing the cable to the upper case.

  • Missing in this photo is the Bluetooth antenna present in some iBooks. It is located at the upper right corner of the battery compartment, just above the 4mm screw. You can see the bracket for the antenna in the photo. It is the two I-shaped holes just above the 4mm screw that must be removed in this step. To remove the antenna, slide it toward the LCD, and tilt it vertically back towards yourself.

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Edit Step 34  ¶ 

  • Lift the top shield up from the right side, minding the upper left corner, which may catch on the metal framework.

  • If your iBook has Bluetooth, as discussed in the previous step, you will need to slide the antenna through the lower I-shaped hole in the shield before completely removing the shield.

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Edit Step 35 Hard Drive  ¶ 

  • Turn the computer over and disconnect the orange hard drive cable, removing tape as necessary.

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Edit Step 36  ¶ 

  • Remove the four Phillips screws securing the hard drive to the metal framework.

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Edit Step 37  ¶ 

  • Lift the hard drive up, carefully guiding the cable through the slot in the lower case.

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Edit Step 38 Hard Drive  ¶ 

  • Remove the hard drive brackets from the left and right sides of the hard drive.

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Edit Step 39  ¶ 

  • Remove the two black T8 Torx screws from either side of the hard drive (four screws total).

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Edit Step 40  ¶ 

  • Use the transparent orange loop to disconnect the large orange ribbon cable from the hard drive.

  • This is a bit tricky. Try rocking the cable gently from side to side while applying even pressure. If you bend the pins, do your best to straighten them, using the hard drive cable as a guide.

  • If you are installing a new hard drive, we have an OS X install guide to get you up and running.

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

For more information, check out the iBook G4 14" 933 MHz-1.33 GHz device page.

Required Tools

TR8 Torx Security Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Spudger

$2.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Flathead 3/32" or 2.5 mm Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Coin

$2.95 · 1 In stock

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Comments Comments are onturn off

isit really possible change 320gb hard drive to ibook g4 1.33 14". i heard motherboard doesnt support bigger than 128Gb?

chacal, · Reply

I put one in and now the machine doesn't recognize the drive.

I'm gonna just pull it out and use it as an external until I can figure it out.

olefaithfull,

Quote from chacal:

isit really possible change 320gb hard drive to ibook g4 1.33 14". i heard motherboard doesnt support bigger than 128Gb?

I just went through the whole process and it worked fine. Used super duper to copy the original drive then restored using target disk mode and my MBP

sapugh, · Reply

Make sure that you print out the screw sheet (PDF), and lay out all the screws on the 3 sheets of paper. It makes it easy to keep track of all the screws, and you won't make a mistake when putting every thing back. Also, go slow and take your time. You don't want to rush on the HD replacement. It took me about 2 hours. The hardest part was take the case apart. You may want to look at a youtube video called "iBook G4 Hard Drive Swap", by smalldog.com. The video shows how the case comes apart, and puts your mind at ease when you hear the cracking sounds as the tabs are released. The instructions on the ifixit.com web site were awesome.

ticzon, · Reply

Quote from sapugh:

I just went through the whole process and it worked fine. Used super duper to copy the original drive then restored using target disk mode and my MBP

I too installed a 320 gb WD Hard Drive in a iBook G4. No problems. However, I did test the drive with one of my hard drives utilities to make the sure there were no write errors before installing the drive.

ticzon, · Reply

just installed a new hard drive AND optical drive in our ibook G4 1.33. No big deal if you take your time. Strained the heck out of my old eyes. Everything works like new! Just look carefully at wire routings especially around upper and lower shields.

bob, · Reply

Just follow the instructions step by step and take your time, it all worked - it took me four hours but I moved very slowly and cautiously. Two things worth mentioning:

- Somewhere I read a note from someone who suggested using a guitar pick for working around the edge of the case to get it open. Turned out to be an excellent idea. The guitar pick plastic is a little softer than the case so there is no chance of nicking or gouging the case.

- The three screws along side the optical drive are deeply recessed. A magnetic screw driver is a necssity.

Paul Goldman, · Reply

Tried using a deviled egg plate to put the screws in as I took them out, a fresh spot for each step and size of screw, made it easy to go backwards for re-assembly.

raisin cain, · Reply

ok, works. but why are steps 24 thru 26 necessary? I did not remove the DC cable and it worked out anyway. Why should one remove it? Otherwise, everything turned out to be exactly as described, except the screw in step 33, next to the display, it was not there, but a different screw in a different place. I left it, bent up the shield carefully to access the HD. Used a Linux based machine to dd the old 40GB Fujitsu MHT2040AT drive to a 64GB Supertalent IDE SSD FHM64GW25H, which might waste some 15GB of the new device, but with no TRIM command around it's a good idea to keep the SSD partially unused for performance reasons.

Schirmer, · Reply

I have done this twice now - once to install a 80 gb 7200rpm drive which promptly failed... <sigh>. I disassembled it and added a 60 Gb ATA SSD, which seems to be working fine. Installing Leopard now.

tjod, · Reply

On the 1.33 Ghz and 1.42 Ghz, there is a different hard drive connector, and is easier to remove. Also on these two specific models the airport card is not above the RAM, it is to the left of the heatsink, on the logic board. Pretty great guide! I always love ifixit's guides.

Jonas Kvale, · Reply

Why use a T8 Torx when these screws are metric hex 2? The T8 didn't work at all. Other than that this was a very easy repair. It cost $29 instead of the $150 that I paid the last time a Mac shop made the same repair.

dalekaty, · Reply

Quote from dalekaty:

Why use a T8 Torx when these screws are metric hex 2? The T8 didn't work at all. Other than that this was a very easy repair. It cost $29 instead of the $150 that I paid the last time a Mac shop made the same repair.

Had the same issue with a T8, although I blamed that on my T8 being quite stripped. Finding an appropriate bit was quite a challenge... but I'm pretty certain a T8 isn't correct. The screws have a hex head, not a Torx... maybe T8 is the closest thing that tends to fit...

Matt Falcon, · Reply

The screw on the left wasnt able to get tight for some reason

Helena, · Reply

Not Torx, but allen key (British wrench), 2mm

alicelittle, · Reply

I printed these instructions out, and this one was at the top of page 2. I found the first paragraph amusing enough that I had to show my boss.

Kristoffer Bisher, · Reply

For me, this was really the toughest part! Trying to find/get a good grip on the iBook and really *forcing* that spudger around. All without scratching the display.

bccreative, · Reply

Once you loosen the the front the seam is very tight. I was able to slide the spudger in the middle of the port side instead of starting at the corner.

Robert Oliver, · Reply

This was the scariest part for me. I had to wiggle it a lot as it seemed to be stuck. But it did come loose.

Robert Oliver, · Reply

My 1 GHz iBook G4 only had the two 7.5 mm Phillips on the right and the two 3 mm Phillips above the battery compartment.

geekspeak, · Reply

The front of the foil cover has a lip divided into four separate tabs. Use a blade to loosen each as they can be easily bent.

geekspeak, · Reply

My dc board had 2 screws. for some reason when i tried to screw them both back in only one got tight. the other one just kept twirling so i left it out. i didnt want to have a loose screw rattling around in my computer.

also had trouble laying down the wire to the dc board. it wouldnt lay flat but i was able to get it flat enough. overall it worked and the computer is now up and running!

thank you! it was pretty easy

Helena, · Reply

This is the first screw of the many on this part of the tear down that really needs the Phillips #00 screwdriver.

turtlejp, · Reply

At this point alternate hard drive can be connected to logic board for testing. Alternate hard drive and drive cable req'd. Remove hard drive cable from logic board. Plug in alternate cable and drive.

A81Sturmer, · Reply

My 1 GHz DC board had two Phillips, one on the far left and one next to the Z10B label.

geekspeak, · Reply

My entire black woven cable cover was stuck down pretty well w/ 2x stick tape.

bccreative, · Reply

On this iBook, the DC board had a small Phillips screw on it.

adamprall, · Reply

Woops - never mind - neglected the screw from previous step.

adamprall, · Reply

Went pretty smoothly as described. I used an egg crate marked for each step where screws were removed to keep them all sorted out (OCD vs. old age). Only other tip was that in step #5 the rings and screws at the corners of the back seemed to be integrated and came out together, the rubber feet came up by pulling from the side - didn't really require a thumb tack. Otherwise, having the right tools (described) made it a snap.

drscole, · Reply

Quote from drscole:

Went pretty smoothly as described. I used an egg crate marked for each step where screws were removed to keep them all sorted out (OCD vs. old age). Only other tip was that in step #5 the rings and screws at the corners of the back seemed to be integrated and came out together, the rubber feet came up by pulling from the side - didn't really require a thumb tack. Otherwise, having the right tools (described) made it a snap.

I agree - having the right tools is the key to this going smoothly. It would have useful to have more detail around where the long and short screws go on the heat shield. This is minor niggle and overall good instructions.

jlwatts1, · Reply

Oops! I hit the wrong button. I did not mean to "Flag as inappropriate".

geekspeak, · Reply

Quote from drscole:

Went pretty smoothly as described. I used an egg crate marked for each step where screws were removed to keep them all sorted out (OCD vs. old age). Only other tip was that in step #5 the rings and screws at the corners of the back seemed to be integrated and came out together, the rubber feet came up by pulling from the side - didn't really require a thumb tack. Otherwise, having the right tools (described) made it a snap.

The egg crate is a good idea. I use a piece of cardboard and I label each step and layout the screws visually as I pulled them out.

geekspeak, · Reply

The middle screw along the optical drive got sucked sideways into an opening by something magnetic and proved impossible to get out with a bit of blutack on the end of a screwdriver. In the end turning it over and giving it a smart tap worked.

tatterjack, · Reply

bottom right philips head screw removed just fine. Upper and lower left don't seem to fit any of my philips screwdrivers. What size are those screws?

jimryan, · Reply

The "two 3mm" screws are actually 4mm and the 4mm (orange) is the 3mm

tjod, · Reply

I have pulled it off, now what?????

Ester, · Reply

I have fixed it!! Whooohooo!!

Bought a soldering bolt and wire, and fixed it in 10 minutes myself, I'm so proud of me..... ;)

But I hope I won't have to open it again! And the 3 screws which are left.... hmmmm never mind. :D

Ester, · Reply

Yup. Take off that shield first. I'm lucky my father in law is good at soldering, because I'm not, and that power switch connector fell off the moment I touched it....

Jaddle, · Reply

I skipped this and the next step altogether. Instead of taking the risk of breaking the power and/or speaker sockets, I left them connected. I put a stack of big books just to the left of the iBook. I swiveled the top case off and let it lean against the books. I removed the top shield and carefully swiveled it off and to the left, so it is now leaning on the top case. I had to move the power cable out of the way, and re-orient the top case so it's resting on it's back edge while the shield was resting on it's left edge. Then I slid the iBook towards the edge of the table and disconnected the HD ribbon from below! I then proceeded with removing the HD and putting in the new one.

Hilal Malawi, · Reply

When putting the rings back you will need to figure out their correct orientation. Just rotate each ring until you find the position that will make it flush with the case. There are three possible positions but only one of them is the right fit.

Hilal Malawi, · Reply

As the other comments make plain, you can't overemphasize that the power connector is in tight, and it is much easier to pull the connector off the board. That's what happened to me -- I'm really bad at soldering, so I will be looking for a replacement board. Oh well.

Don Solomon, · Reply

these connectors can be very loose and break from the logic board. I have left this one connected until after the next step, at which point I can pull it out more carefully and easily.

-Dan "The Berkeley Mac Guy"

Dan Fries, · Reply

I second Dan's method. The top shield makes it impossible to pry between the connector and its socket. The socket is so poorly affixed to the logic board that you must be very careful to apply leverage between the connect and socket.

Kent, · Reply

now you tell me!! So then what if you have pulled it off? How very depressing.

kerry, · Reply

If you pull it off, find a place that does micro-soldering. What a pain!

Check your local Chinatown, you might find someone who worked in an electronics factory, like I did. Or scrap the thing and check on craigslist.org for a replacement.

Dan Fries, · Reply

haha - doubt I will ever open up this baby again. That was gruelling. Lucky it was only the built-in speaker cable - I use headphones or a portable speaker if I need sound now.

kerry, · Reply

Missing in this photo is the Bluetooth antenna present in some iBooks. It is located at the upper right corner of the battery compartment, just above the 4mm screw. You can see the bracket for the antenna in the photo. It is the two I-shaped holes just above the 4mm screw that must be removed in this step. To remove the antenna, slide it toward the LCD, and tilt it vertically back towards yourself. In the next step, where the shield is removed, you will need to slide the antenna through the lower I-shaped hole.

Sean Brannon, · Reply

The shield on this iBook had a small sensor threaded through the opening directly above the battery compartment opening, on the right near the edge of it. I just carefully threaded the sensor through that hole in order to remove the shield.

adamprall, · Reply

On my iBook, the hard drive was much easier to deal with than it appears in the Guide. My hard drive was connected to the board with a ZIF-type connector, held in place with a gray plastic bracket secured by two screws. After removing the bracket, I just had to ease the drive up and out. Then the gray plastic connector had to be pulled off the pins and transferred to the new drive along with the bumpers, etc.

Don Solomon, · Reply

What size are the screws?

Moorgan Hart, · Reply

When you replace the new drive, and before you close up the case again, make sure that the ribbon connector is pushed firmly onto the correct pins on the HD. Check that the jumpers on the drive (if it has any set) are set to Master. Also make sure that the other end of the ribbon connector is pushed well onto the socket on the main circuit board. You may find that the drive isn't seen if the connections aren't correct. Best to check before you put all those screws back in!

rumblefish, · Reply

These instructions were perfect. A bit tricky, this spudger-ing thing; but great instructions. Success!

Jerry, · Reply

I was doing great, right up to the point where I realized my new HDD was SATA, instead of EIDE....Sigh.

David Wilker, · Reply

I follow everything, and

It's Work !

Take care of the mouse pad before of re-assemble everything.

I just change the Hard Drive with a 933 MHz with 640 Mo with 10.5 and it's work perfectly.

Thanks’ a lot for iFixit!

Laurent Kling, · Reply

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