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Corsair911
May 21st, 2012, 07:24 PM
I recently acquired a Macintosh Portable (Back-lit) over the internet. The person told me that the battery was dead and I was going to have to replace it, so when I got the battery, I hooked it up to the mac portable, and got it running. The thing is that I cant seem to boot from the hard-drive when it turns on, it has to spin up and down about 10 times at the least to get the hard drive to "Click", and start to boot up. Usually if it cant get the hard drive to boot in a certain amount of time, it shows the "?" Disk sign. Is this usual for this to happen? What can I do to make it boot up faster and in less time?

Also, sometimes when I power it up the hard drive makes squeaking noises. Could this correspond with the question above?

hope I posted in right spot

barythrin
May 21st, 2012, 08:53 PM
That's lovingly referred to as the 'click of death'. Several things can cause it though such as the power supply going to the drive, but generally it means the circuitry or circuit board on the drive is having a failure and the drive keeps resetting and thrashing the read arm around.

You don't happen to have the setup disks for the system do you? Others here might have some better knowledge about the portable, I've only seen them but never bought one or had one to play with myself. If it was me I'd be looking at what type of drive it takes (probably standard SCSI) and a replacement and OS disk images somewhere.

Corsair911
May 27th, 2012, 05:56 PM
I Believe my hard drive has failed, like you said. So i'm gonna have to try and find a replacement hard drive. Probably not gonna be a Conner 3045 drive. Also it has a different pin number than other SCSI drives I believe. So if anyone can to make a connector please PM me. Also, didn't the first Apple power-books have SCSI? If i could find one that has a Un-Repairable motherboard or some thing that is hard/costly to repair without effecting the Hard drive, couldn't I just hook that hard drive up with the 50 to 34 pin SCSI connector and boot up(if it has a System on it)?If you have either of these, please PM me if you have either of these, and I will try to negotiate with you. Also, if anyone has any other hard drive suggestions, id be happy to know

RWallmow
May 27th, 2012, 08:00 PM
The mac portables used a one of a kind hard drive connection, no other mac(or PC to my knowledge) used a 34pin SCSI/Power connector like it, but the signals are plain SCSI, so a converter CAN be made, I have done it, but it is tedious as hell. I wouldn't offer to make one without having a portable around anymore to test it on, there's just SO many wires to do one at a time, its REALLY easy to mess up, and without one to test it on I couldn't guarantee my work (I had to rebuild my cable 2 times before it was working).

If you wanted to build your own, you need a 34pin IDC connector, 50pin IDC connector (I would buy a few of each, they are cheap, and unless you have VERY good eyesight and a steady hand, you will mess up a few), some 34 conductor ribbon cable, an IDC crimper, and a drive molex power connector (I robbed mine off a dead ATX PSU).

Here is the pinout if you want to build a converter: http://web.archive.org/web/20080705022723/http://www.antinode.org/mac/port_scsi.html

Here is what I made long ago for the portable I once owned: http://wallmow.com/photos/index.php/Vintage-Computers/Macintosh_Portable/DSCN0069

Corsair911
May 27th, 2012, 09:47 PM
I'm new to collecting computers, and I haven't been around long enough to learn any of that. So Im gonna just wait until someone is able to do it in their spare time, and have the patience to do it. Thank you anyways.

RWallmow
May 27th, 2012, 10:28 PM
If I ever add another portable to my collection I will make and test a few more adapter cables, but I just wouldn't be comfortable making and selling anything I couldn't first test out myself. I would just hate to build it and charge someone for it (plus shipping) and have it not work right, I am just not one who likes to sell untested items.

I would love to see you get that portable working, What part of the world do you live in Corsair911? In the unlikely event you are in the Twin Cities metro in Minnesota, I would offer you to come by with your portable, and we could build and TEST a SCSI cable for your portable (I would need to order some more IDC connectors first, but I have ribbon and crimper tools on hand).

Its not for lack of time and patience, its purely that I don't want to sell an untested product.

RWallmow
May 27th, 2012, 10:40 PM
Also, FYI, your stock HD may NOT be bad.

I thought mine was dead too initially but it turns out that if you try to boot the portable on external power only (IE no charged internal battery), it will exhibit the click-of-death behavior on the HD, my stock HD started miraculously working like brand new the day I rebuilt (and charged) my main battery.

It will have other power related problems if you try to run it without internal battery charged, like really bad screen flicker, random crashes, and inability to access the floppy drive (usually crash upon disk insertion).

The way the power system is designed on the portable, it was never designed to be run without its battery.

RetroHacker_
May 28th, 2012, 04:52 AM
I know the hard drive in mine was well and truly dead. The rubber seal all the way around the drive had deteriorated into a goo, and gotten on the media. It was completely junk.

Building the adapter cable is quite easy - a little tedious, but not at all hard to do. The connector that mates with the motherboard is 34 pin - I just cut a few inches off a floppy cable, separated the wires, and rearranged/crimped them into the necessary pins on a 50 pin IDC connector for SCSI. Leave out the wires for power - and solder those onto a molex plug for the SCSI drive.

-Ian

Corsair911
May 28th, 2012, 06:37 AM
Being in Arkansas, l am a little to far away from you, and I am absolutely sure the hard drive is dead, but thanks for the offer RWallmow. Retrohacker_ let me tell you how much skill I have in building computer components. I got the PSG 650 battery for the Macintosh portable and got in on!....and that's all I've done before.

NeXT
May 28th, 2012, 09:32 AM
Another thing also is that the Mac Portable requires a recap. Unless your has previously had that done in the last few years, it needs to be done now. Just like with the Classic, Classic II, SE/30 and the likes, all bets are off on troubleshooting until those caps are replaced.

twolazy
May 28th, 2012, 01:14 PM
Hey now I have a mac classic that works 100% perfect, and the caps have yet to leak! >.<

I think alot of reason for caps to be replaced is bad storage or just being near their end of lifespan for usage.

Corsair911
May 28th, 2012, 04:47 PM
Ok, I'll keep that in mind, and will do the recap when I have everything setup. Btw, can I use any 3.5 in scsi hard drive I can find? Or only apple hard drives? And if I can do any hard drive, can I hook the hard drive to more modern computer, get system on it, and hook it up to Mac Portable, and be ready to use it. How would I format system disk on hard drive is what I am saying.

RetroHacker_
May 28th, 2012, 08:00 PM
You can use any SCSI drive, but I remember running into issues with some types of drives drawing too much current and refusing to spin up. But, for the most part, any normal SCSI drive should work.

To install a system on the disk, boot a Disk Tools floppy, then format the hard disk. Now, the default Apple HD Setup will only see an Apple branded drive, but if you use a patched version, or the version that shipped with A/UX, you can format any SCSI drive. Once the drive is formatted, you can install the system using the installation floppies. Once a hard drive has been formatted, it'll work on any Mac without special software, even if it's not Apple branded. That restriction is ONLY when formatting with the original, unpatched HD SC Setup, which checks the ID string and ignores anything that wasn't an Apple drive.

-Ian

RWallmow
May 29th, 2012, 04:48 AM
Hey now I have a mac classic that works 100% perfect, and the caps have yet to leak! >.<

I think alot of reason for caps to be replaced is bad storage or just being near their end of lifespan for usage.

I second that, my Portable I had was still in near-perfect condition, no leaking caps, but I do not believe it was hardly used or ever abused by its previous owner (I got it in about 1998 ), and I stored it properly, booting it up and using it every so often. It was still in perfect working condition when I sold it in about 2010.

I also have a SE/30 that does need caps though, so it can easily go both ways, could very well need to be re-capped.

Corsair911
May 29th, 2012, 07:05 PM
Are there any places to download these patched versions of Disk tools onto floppy? Also, RWallmow, on the picture labeled Custom SSD and SCSI cable, I gotta ask some questions about that. Was that SSD hookup more expensive/harder to make? what are the pro and cons of it?
Thanks you all for info so far, helping alot.

RWallmow
May 30th, 2012, 04:48 AM
Are there any places to download these patched versions of Disk tools onto floppy? Also, RWallmow, on the picture labeled Custom SSD and SCSI cable, I gotta ask some questions about that. Was that SSD hookup more expensive/harder to make? what are the pro and cons of it?
Thanks you all for info so far, helping alot.
1. The patched software is floating around the net, as well as instructions to patch it yourself with resedit on another Mac, I don't recall where I got mine from, and my internet connected Mac isn't setup right now so I cant send you my copy at this moment, but maybe I will have a chance next weekend to hook it up.
2. The SCSI to IDE converter was expensive (~$100), but the SCSI cable I made was exactly the same as what would be used to connect up a plain SCSI hard drive (cable was about $5 in parts and 2hours work). The main pro for me putting an SSD in it was no more mechanical HD to fail, plus the SSD (even with SCSI>IDE converter) draws a lot less power than a hard drive, thus putting less load on the portable, and extending battery life (though I never did any measurements to battery length).

EDIT: The rest of the SSD setup was cheap too, IDE>CF adapter ~$5 and 256MB CF card ~$10.