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Just Updated 9/2/2001

OS 9.2.1 ships but, should we use it?: I downloaded and installed it on my B&W G3 and the install went very smooth. I don't notice much from OS 9.1 but I suspect, as Apple has stated, that many of the changes are for use as Classic under OSX. But, and this is a big BUT, OS 9.2.1 is not supported on Macs older then the Beige G3 :( It is supported on Mac OSX supported systems only. Many people have tried to install it on older Macs and they then get an error that the system is not compatible with there Mac. I hear if you remove the 9.2.1 system file and replace it with the 9.1 system file that it will boot OK. But most all these people had to trick the installer to make it think it was installing on a real G3 Mac and not an older upgraded Mac. Another trick is to use Tomeviewer to extract all the files and drag and drop them where they belong.

Still, even after all of this, there are reports that the system is very unstable and several people have reverted back to OS 9.1. For those that stick with 9.2.1 even on supported Macs, they report many issues with sleep, MS Office, third party utilities, HD utilities, and so on. For a minor update, according to Apple, this one seems just as big as going from 8.1 to 8.5 or from 7.5.5 to 8.0.

Personally I only intend to use it on my B&W G3 till an issue with the new iBooks is resolved. It turns out that 9.2.1 will not allow new iBook to run with an external monitor attached and the lid closed. This worked fine in OS 9.1. I have no plans on placing 9.2.1 on my 6400. It seems that 9.2.1 is very finicky and reminds me of the OS 7.6 and 8.0 days where 6400's just became unusable!

So, should you upgrade? I have to say no. Since OSX will not run on our Macs and Apple intended OS 9.2.1 to be a better classic layer, there really is no reason to install it on older Macs. OS 9.0.4 is going to be the last OS on my 6400 it seems ( I would use 9.1 but I hear lots of issues with AppleShareIP 6.3.3 and OS 9.1 so I am sticking with 9.0.4 and ASIP 6.3.2 which get along just fine. My 6400 has become the family file server and web server).

I know this is going to upset a lot of people as it does me but Apple has to move on to get OSX running or they might as well just stop everything!

MacFixIt's OS 9.2.x info page: here is a link to MacFixIt's OS 9.2.x info page. They have gathered quite a bit of info on 9.2.x already.

USB HD has copy issues if Geo modem software is installed: Marc sends word that he had issues when trying to copy items to a USB connected HD. He tried USB card support 1.3.5, 1.4.1 and the drivers supplied by the drive manufacturer without success. He then did a clean install and did not install the Geo software and now his USB HD works fine. Thanks Marc. If anyone else is having USB HD issues with the Geo modem software installed and removing the Geo software fixes it, please email me the details. Thanks

[A friend of mine gave me the 8.5 install CD, so I could install a new clean system. At that occasion I discovered the source of my problems with USB. My external USB HD worked good with the new clean system. What do I mean with good? I only have sometimes minor problems with big folders composed of multiple files: the finder reports an error "unable to copy because there is a problem on the disk". Unplug and replug the USB HD. And relaunch copy. If using Speed Doubler 8 the copy begins where it had stopped. It worked good until I installed Apple Telecom 3.1.3 again. After installation I had again the same problems I reported before. There seems to be an incompatibility between Apple Telecom and the USB card support software or (probably) between Apple Telecom and the Keyspan software (possible conflict around the serial port). I should make further tests but the simplest solution is to create two extensions sets: one for USB, one for AppleTelecom.]

I wonder if this problem is similar to the floppy drive issue? Does Apples USB card support software stomp on more software then we though? I think printers still work fine but it sure seems that there is a fight going on in our systems for who has the right to control the ports! It sounds like USB is winning too as I don't see Apple trying hard to fix the issues we have once a USB card is installed?

Accessing iDisk from a PC or any WebDAV browser: Apple promised that it would allow users to connect to their iDisks without it timing out and logging off. To do this they configured their iDisk service to allow users to connect via WebDAV. What is WebDAV? Well I don't really know other then it works like a web browser but for shared disks and not web sites. Web browsers only communicate with the sever you linked to until it has all the info to display in your browser window and then its disconnected, but you don't see that. To the end user it is like you are connected to that sever until you click on a link to visit another server (website). This is how WebDAV works with shared disks such as iDisk. It logs in and downloads the file names and folder names and then is logged off but it appears to still be connected since the window does not vanish from your desktop as it would when you disconnect from iDisk when its connected the normal way which is using AppleTalk over TCP/IP. AppleTalk must maintain communication with the shared disk or it assumes the connection is lost and removes the window from your desktop so you no longer have access to it. WebDAV browsers are disconnected as soon as they retrieve all the info just like a web browser works. If you need to copy a file to or from the shared disk, the WebDAV browser will reconnect in the background and do whatever task it was told to do and then disconnect again, still leaving the window on the users desktop all the time. WebDAV is also faster then AppleTalk over TCP/IP so all this connecting and disconnecting is seemless.

I am glad Apple has implemented this feature. So you ask how can you access it now this way? OSX is suppose to support WebDAV natively in 10.1 but for now you can access it with a free where called Goliath and even from any PC running Windows ME or 2000. Here is where you can get Goliath from and below are instructions for PC users.

[You can access WebDAV servers, including iDisk, with Win ME and 2000 without third party software.

1.Go into my Network Places and double click Add Network Place.
2.Enter the URL for your iDisk for the location, example http://idisk.mac.com/username.
3.When prompted, enter your username and password.
4.Your iDisk should appear as a "Web Folder" within My Network Places.]

So not only is accessing iDisk faster now, but it won't remove the window from you or complain about not being used in 10min and you can now access it from a PC. I even got to my iDisk through my companies proxy server/firewall! I could never do that before, from my Mac at work let alone a PC.

Let me warn you that the interface of Goliath may look similar to a Finder window but there are some extra files that get displayed that have the same names as the files you upload but start with "._"? Not sure why these files with the ._ are there but the author of Goliath thinks that they may be the resources forks in Mac files? I see these from Windows 2000 also so its not a bug in Goliath.

Farallon 10/100 etherfast 2.4 drivers do not affect shutdown for everyone: VRic wrote to say that he has the 2.4 version of Farallons drivers and they do not affect shutdown on his 6400 as I posted in my last update but he does have a wake from sleep issue that he has not found the cause of yet? Thanks VRic.

[I use a Farallon ethernet 10/100 COMM slot II card with v 2.4 driver on my 6400/Sonnet G3 under Mac OS 8.6 and have no problem shutting down.

It can't seem to wake from sleep though, but I still had no time to find what is causing this: I just don't let it sleep anymore, which is no big deal since it's a server anyway. I didn't suspect the Farallon card. There are also a Formac Proformance III video card and a FW/USB combo card similar to the one from Evertech in this mac. I'd rather put the blame on the FW/USB card or it's FW drivers from 9.1, maybe someone has ideas to share about wake from sleep issues? I found some PCI cards having trouble with the deep sleep feature in G4s.

Tiong also wrote to say that he has zero problems with the 2.4 version. Thanks Tiong.

[I have been testing the Farallon 2.4 drivers since the problem was noted in your forum. No shutdown or wake from sleep issues for me in both OS 8.6 and/or 9.1

Sonnet lowers prices on L2 G3 upgrades: Jason sent word that Sonnet has lowered its pricing on the L2 G3 upgrade. Thanks Jason. The 300Mhz model is for the 4400 and starmax systems. It will not work on the 6400/6500. I thought the 500Mhz card was discontinued as well? Maybe they have some to sell still?

I really enjoy your site, and it has become my main source of info for my 6500/225. While I was at the Sonnet website, I saw a press release about L2 G3 upgrades coming down in price.

Sonnet's new lower prices in the Crescendo/L2 upgrades are as follows:

Crescendo/L2  G3 300/512K $149.95 (was $169.95)*
Crescendo/L2  G3 400/512K $229.95 (was $249.95)?
Crescendo/L2  G3 400/1M $279.95 (was $299.95)?
Crescendo/L2  G3 500/1M $349.95 (was $399.95)?

When did they start making the 500Mhz upgrade again? I thought it was discontinued.

More info on Apples TV/Video system for the 6400/6500: Carl sends word that the TV system does not do video out by itself. You have to also purchase the Avid Cinema card or Apples Presentation system. Thanks Carl.

[I don't actually have one of these, but I've been doing research on them. My understanding is that this system does not include a video out. It is only for viewing video on the computer. If you wish do digitize video, you also need the Avid Cinema Card. I recently picked up the Apple Presentation System ( http://til.info.apple.com/techinfo.nsf/artnum/n18523 ), which does allow you to output video. Carl]

Update on dual video cards in the 6400: Charlie wrote me in response to my last update where I posted info from a user who said to not run 2 highend video cards in the 6400 for fear of frying your motherboard as he did. Charlie states he has an ATI 3D plus and a Voodoo3 running together just fine. Thanks Charlie

[Hey Tom,
Just to let you know.. I use my ATI 3D plus card and my Voodoo 3 card without issues for over a year now.
It's in a 6400 with a Sonnet 400/1M No problems ever from the get go! I must be pretty lucky because I have not experienced one hardware problem with my 6400 that others seemed to be plagued with. No sound issues, no heating issues, no random lockups.. nothing.. Pure perfection. I am using OS 8.6 and I am sticking with it. My motto, If it's not broke, don't fix it!

The Voodoo3 is a 16M card and the ATI 3D plus is an 8M card so the ATI card is not a highend per my last posting. Highend today starts with 16M and goes up to 32M or 64M with 32M being standard on highend cards. These cards have too high of a power demand to run 2 of them in the 6400.

IDE CDRW drives connected to 6400 with IDE to SCSI adaptors, work!: Bill sends word that he tried several SCSI CDRW drives with some success but an IDE CDRW attached with an IDE to SCSI adaptor not only worked the way a stock Apple CDROM would work but it was cheaper then SCSI ta boot! Thanks Bill.

I have used three CDRWs with my 6400: Ricoh 6200s (2x2x6) and Ricoh 7060s (6x4x24) - External (never tried to install internally as this makes little sense to me). Not Bootable with "C" key, but will boot with selection in Startup Disc CP or 4-finger salute.

Now here's the cool one- Lite-on 1210 (12x10x32) IDE - installed externally using iodata's IDSC20 IDE to SCSI bridge (from blackfire.com). Bootable with "C". Works flawlessly with Toast Deluxe 4.1.2. Paid $79 for the drive, $20 for a SCSI case, and around $60 for the idsc20. Hell of a deal for an external SCSI drive with burn-proof.

I also tried (once) to install a Pioneer 32x slot loaded CD internally. It fit, and worked for data discs, but had problems making the audio hookup, so I abandoned it. (Installed it in my 6100 instead.) Not Bootable with "C" key, but will boot with selection in Startup Disc CP or 4-finger salute. BTW, Pioneer is about the only company I know of with a Mac CD driver for download from their website.]

This really brings the CDRW world much closer to us pricewise then it ever was before!

6400/6500 owners better start watching those wattage requirements!: Ralph sent me some power consumption info from his 6500 which was spinning its fan very fast after he added a SCSI HD. It seems he is pushing his power supply to far and I bet many other users are as well! I think I did it when I installed a PC compatibility card that shot my fan up to full speed as soon as the PC card was activated. Thanks Ralph.

[Hi Tom, I went through my PM6500 manual and the power consumption is listed at 140watts. It states the maximum continuous DC output is 98 watts, with a max 12 volt of 4 amps and 3.3 volts of 5 amps with the max 5 volt and 3.3 volt combined not to exceed 10.7 amps.

It also states a 300Mhz PPC processor with hard drive, modem, L2 module and CD-ROM pulls 47 watts input. If I proportion it to figure the power supply output that is about 33 watts output from the supply.

The Apple video board draws 4 watts. The Tango card draws, assume its 15 watt max. The ATI with TV draws assume its 15 watt max. The stock Apple drive pulled 3.25 watts and the Seagate ATA HD pulls 9.6 watts, a 6.35 watt increase. The SCSI Quantum pulls 14.4 watts at 12 volts but is probably a little less. If we assume the G3 pulls 4 to 6 watts over the L2 alone.

So with only ATA drive upgrade we are up to 33 + 6.35 or 39.35 watts than add the G3 over the L2 alone at another 6 watts we are up to 45.35. Add the SCSI HD we are up to 59.75watts and if each PCI card is drawing its max of 15 watts we are up to 89.75 watts. Add the apple video board of 4 watts we are up to 93.75 watts. I have added the pentium fan over the sonnet card at 2 watts and the extra case exhaust fan at 2 watts and we are up to 97.75 watts.

So if I added the max power draws, we are up to the max the PM6500 power supply can handle. I can reduce the fans I guess by replacing the stock 0.7 amp fan with another socket 7 pentium fan reducing the consumption by 6.4 watts. That might be enough to get things under control. The 12 volt current draw is probably the most important being so close to its spec. limit. The only thing I can reduce is changing the stock PPC fan to a slower socket 7 pentium fan knocking off 6 watts from the 12 volt draw.

I was using the max watt numbers listed on the HD cases. For some reason the SCSI Seagate draws 4.5 watts at 5 volts and 14.4 watts at 12 volts. Must be a wasteful voltage devider circuit in it. The Quantum ATA draws 3.5 watts at 5 volts and 9.6 watts at 12 volts. I am assuming the PM is putting out 12 volts to the drives. These drives are rated at a max temp of 60 deg C BTW.

So I am at the wattage limit or within 10 to 20 watts of it. Oops I upgraded it too much!

SCSI HD's typically spin at higher RPM's then IDE drives. This is of course changing now but this could be why his SCSI drive pulls more watts then the IDE drive? It might be time to find away to install another power supply? I know it would not be hard at all to use another cheap PC power supply externally to run drives only, which could be enough to reduce the demand on the stock power supply. It just won't look pretty :(

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CD containing The 6400 Zone plus past history for sale 9/3/1999

I was wondering if anyone would be interested in purchasing a CD with my entire up-to-date site as well as my 6400 Take Apart Manual? Plus, many of the past Just Updates included! I think this would be a great idea for anyone who hasn't been able to keep up or never saw my site until recently. Also for those of you with Sherlock the CD is even better cause you can tell Sherlock to index the CD and then you can do a search on any topic, and if I ever talked about it, you'll find it! I have info as far back as mid 1997. I'm asking $15 which includes shipping for US residents (not sure what the price for international shipments would be yet?) and I will even include a few surprises! To make this offer even juicier I can add some download that you've been trying to get but just couldn't for some reason. Lets put my cable modem to work :) I will accept personal checks but I won't mail out the CD till it clears.

Please include your shipping address and email so I can let you know the CD is on its way.

amazon.com, books and more 7/2/98

I found a great way to earn some money while getting great deals to you on Macintosh books and software plus they have all kinds of other books, music, and more. Please click on the amazon.com link on the top of this page whenever you feel like purchasing something to help sponsor this site. If you're unsure of what you want and wish to get a list of Mac related items, just type Macintosh in the search field on their home page and you will be presented with many choices to select.

The 6400 Zone is created to help you gain access to useful software updates and great shareware programs that add functionality to your system. It is also a one stop road map to other informative sites for answering your questions. Most of the info here is geared towards the 6400, but it is useful for all PCI Performa models and even the 6500 and all-in-one Macs based on the same. It's even useful to other MAC systems. I will be referring to my 6400/200 clocked to 220Mhz as just 6400/220, OK.

I will keep it updated as often as I can but I don't have much free time to work on it, so I suggest you check back at least once every a week. That should be sufficient. If you don't see something you would like to see here or have your own software / web site that would benefit the Mac community, please write to me at zone6400@mac.com and I will check it out.

I use a Performa 6400/Vimage G3 320 OS 9.0.4 and ASIP 6.3.2, B&W G3/350 OS 9.2.1 / OSX 10.0.4, iBook Dual USB OS 9.1 / OSX 10.0.4, PowerBook G3/233 OS 9.1, PM 6100 G3/240 OS 9.0.4, and a PowerBook DUO 270c OS 7.5.5. All of the software updates posted here are currently running on one or the other with minimal problems. If I do encounter a problem, I will post it for all to read and respond to. If you are having any problems and would like help just email me and if I can answer it I will, or I will post it here for others to read and respond to.

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This page last updated 9/2/2001

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