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Released in 1999, successor to the original PowerMac G3, 300-450 MHz, 64 or 128 MB of RAM, 6 or 12 GB HDD

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Power Macintosh G3 Freezes on Startup—What Should I Do?

I bought a fully functioning Power Macintosh G3 a few months ago that came with an OS 8.6 CD, and booted up again for the 2nd time today to try and connect to ethernet wifi. I got the error that "Internet Setup Assistant" isn't installed and I didn't know how to install it. Ran disk utility on the hard drive and said it had minor errors so I repaired it, and while I was running disk utility on the CD after it froze so I restarted. Seemingly everything was working fine when I started it again, but it froze when I tried to open Extensions Manager so I restarted it again. This time I got a message upon startup saying that it was doing disk utility on my hard drive since it detected a crash, but the progress bar hung in the middle so I restarted it again. And this time (and every attempt I've made at starting it after that) It just freezes on startup like with a blank box over the words "MAC OS 8.6". I'm sorry for the longwinded explanation but I'm freaking out here and don't know what I should do. I've tried holding down the C key as well as the Command + Option + P + R key while restarting (don't know if I did it properly) but it hasn't worked. Please let me know if you have any idea what I should do please, and thank you so much for taking the time to read this!

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5 Comments:

I am not the resident Mac expert but since no one has responded to you I will try to help. I do have some Mac experience from years ago and did work with your model about 20 years ago. You do know it is a very old computer - 1999 I believe.

Did the Wi-Fi work when you bought it?

You say "Ethernet Wi-Fi" but they are two different things. Ethernet is the port that uses a cable and Wi-Fi is well wireless.

Perhaps try running the Disk Utility again several times.

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@racheljiang Have the capacitors on this board been replaced? Has the backup battery been replaced?

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@andrewsawesome No but I did open the computer to take a look and they didn't look damaged or anything

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@aactech There was no wifi when I bought it, only ethernet. Do you know how I can run disk utility if my computer freezes on startup?

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Hi @racheljiang

Run it again from the CD, as you mentioned in your Question. Sometime running these utilities a few time fixes the problem, at least temporarily. Sound like you may just have bad sectors on your hard drive. Do you have important files on the drive?

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1 Answer

If the computer came with its original IDE hard drive, that disk could be at the end of its useful life and causing the errors you're seeing. Booting the Mac off an install CD and running Disk Utility may catch and repair errors, but for a hard drive that old, I'd strongly recommend replacing it with a newer solid state drive which will be more reliable and also faster.

The G3 B&W can use a modern 2.5" SATA SSD, but will require an IDE-to-SATA adapter like this. Also note that this machine is limited to drives 128GB or smaller.

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Rachel Jiang will be eternally grateful.
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