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Old September 9th, 2004, 02:37 PM   #1
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HELP! FCP3/G4 problems - startup and external device

Hello everyone -

Here in Haiti waiting for Hurricane Ivan, trying to clean up my HDs.

Anyway all of a sudden I cannot startup my G4 while it is plugged into our JVC mini-DV/DV/SVHS deck. If it is plugged in and on, the computer never starts. If I plug it later and then open FCP 3, the program does not "see" the deck. If I then try to shut down, the computer will not shut down until I turn off the deck it supposedly does not see.

I have been at this for four hours now... deleted preferences, repaired permissions, tried starting up from a backup copy of OSX (10.2.3 is what we have).

Nothing works.

As usual any wisdom from beyond the confines of this island would be great. I passed desparation and tears point a while ago and now am a little calmer.

Jane Regan
Port-au-Prince HAITI
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Old September 9th, 2004, 02:41 PM   #2
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Do you have a copy of Disk Warrior? What OS are you using, Jaguar? Do you have the Jaguar Install disks?
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Old September 9th, 2004, 02:46 PM   #3
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Hi Jeff -

I do have disk warrior and no I don't think I have on Jaguar, do I? I run 10.2.3 but when this hurricane is over I will update to 10.2.8 (it is a 100MB download which will take 8 hours overnight!)

I am testing to see if it is a general firewire problem and I suspect it is because now I am trying to startup with the external HD attached, and see the same delay. I reach over and turn off the HD, and the machine pops on...

Ideas?

Jane
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Old September 9th, 2004, 02:53 PM   #4
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Try Disk Warrior and see if it finds any directory errors. You'll need to start-up from the disk to work on the start-up drive. Your OS (10.2.x) is Jaguar. Panther is 10.3.x and the current version is 10.3.5 If you don't have your OS install disks, do you have the last OS update you did? It would be the last update to 10.2.x that you downloaded from Apple. It does sound like a problem with the FireWire port, cable or drivers. Have you tried a different cable?
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Old September 9th, 2004, 03:16 PM   #5
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Hi -

I tried switching cables.... no difference. It is definitely a firewire problem that came out of nowhere.

I am going to try what you have suggested. I have the original OS disks so I can start from there. I'll also try MacJanitor if I can download it through the clouds here.

The computer started acting funny about a week ago... taking a long time to startup, blue screen, etc. I tried a million things and it seemed "all better," and after that I even did some editing on a little project (see "ex-soldiers" video on our website).

But now all of a sudden, the same thing is happening.

Okay, here goes...

Jane
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Old September 9th, 2004, 03:22 PM   #6
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Worse comes to worse you can do an install and archive. This installs a new copy of the system etc., archives the old system and then copies your application etc from the old system to the fresh installed system. This would put new copies of the FireWire Drivers etc. in place. However, you would still need to update to 10.2.8 when you have the time.
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Old September 9th, 2004, 03:27 PM   #7
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Hi Jeff -

Thanks. This is a great idea. I'm going to do that now.

I'll post the results...

Jane
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Old September 9th, 2004, 04:51 PM   #8
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Well, I did reinstall OSX but the G4 still did not want to see the FW devices. So I turned everything off, unplugged, chilled, and then when I turned everything back on, it was solved!

Now just have to wait for Hurricane Ivan to pass (and hopefully not leave too much damage here) and then do an all-night download via satellite of 10.2.8.

Thanks again Jeff

Jane
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Old September 9th, 2004, 04:57 PM   #9
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Your welcome Jane, glad I could help.
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Old September 9th, 2004, 05:33 PM   #10
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Do you really think it is "solved" at this point? Jeff, have you heard of something like this before? The only thing similar to this that I have heard of was weird stuff happening because the RAM was no longer being properly recognized by the Mac OS. Worse still, I've seen it only manifest itself after even a full 6 months where the Mac was running just fine. I doubt it is connected in any way, but if it comes up again and you have 3rd party RAM installed, removing it might help...

The fact that you even booted off of another OS on another disk makes me think that there is something weird going on with your hardware. The "turned it off and when it came back on it works" part makes me think it even more. A cold boot, allowing for all residual charge to dissapate from the system and particulary the RAM might be connected.... MAYBE.
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Old September 9th, 2004, 06:36 PM   #11
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I've seen some strange things, but not anything quite like this. I had a G4 that started doing a variety of strange things and I kept monkeying around trying to figure it all out. Then about 3 weeks after purchasing this new machine the internal drive failed catastrophically without warning (making a scraping noise). Fortunately everything important was backed up. Afterwards I realized that all the other problems were probably coming from corrupted system files on the dying drive. After installing a new internal drive the machine has been stable for the past year.

My first thought would be to do the 10.2.8 upgrade as soon as you can download. Those earlier versions of 10.2.x had lots of bugs. Funny, just this morning we installed Office 2004 on a machine at work. When we tried to open a Word doc it refused saying that it needed 10.2.8. Funny... I thought that's what we had! But in checking, that machine was at 10.2.6 which required a 43 MB download... something pretty trivial at broadband speed. Is there somewhere you can take your mac to plug it into a high speed connection? Or maybe install the system on a firewire drive, then connect it to a broadband-enabled Mac for the upgrade?

I wish you luck in the impending storm, stay safe. Glad to see you're backing things up!
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Old September 9th, 2004, 06:48 PM   #12
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I've heard of FireWire drives and devices doing weird things at times. It could be corrupt FireWire files or directory errors. Running Disk Warrior might have shown some directory errors that caused the problem. Doing a clean install of the OS would have fixed the directory errors. I hear of this type of problem more frequently with devices such as decks and cameras rather than drives. If the problem comes back I would suspect the ram or the bugs with pre 10.2.8 versions of Jaguar.
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Old September 9th, 2004, 10:12 PM   #13
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I had trouble w/ a dual G4 tower a few months ago. I experienced similar firewire problems, the G4 wouldn't recognize the ext. hard drive then seemingly it would. A few trips to the apple store and 3 logic boards later problem solved. This was all in the midst of editing my first doc. Good luck and patience - I know exactly where you're coming from.
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