Upgrading an old iBook G4 to MacOSX Leopard (10.5.6)
A friend of mine bought a used iBook G4 on ebay and asked me if I could
"upgrade" it to 10.5.6. I thought this can't be that complicated and
said yes, which turned out to be a bad decision after all. He gave me a
disk image file of the MacOS X 10.5.6 Install DVD (6.2GB in size) and the first
thing I wanted to do is to burn this dmg onto a dual layer DVD+R recordable.
Of course, I did not have such a medium at home and after all, they're not
really cheap (~€4 for a good quality disc). Burning dmg files directly
onto discs is no possible on Windows as it seems and I don't think that k3b
allows for burning dual-layer discs currently, well, I haven't really tried
though, so if anyone can confirm that this would have worked, please tell
I tried several tools to convert the dmg file to a format which is
writable with Nero or any other burning tool on windows, like dmg2iso, dmg2img
successor of dmg2iso), MagicISO
, ... None of them worked. dmg2i* complained about
a corrupt plist in the dmg file, MagicISO said that the file is damaged and
can't be read or cannot be found (that's an oxymoron, if you ask me, how does the
tool know that the files is damaged if one of the possible error causes is that
it cannot find the file?), PowerISO said quite the same.
I then wanted to verify the
dmg file by trying to mount it with MacDrive
, which worked out of the box and I could access
all the files in the disk image.
I then booted the old Mac, copied the dmg over there and verified that it
really works. I then played a bit with "hdiutil" just to find out that it
actually is able to convert the dmg to a CD/DVD Master image (.cdr) with the
hdiutil convert /path/to/filename.dmg -format UDTO -o /path/to/savefile.cdr
After I did that, I had an about 6.2GB .cdr file which I then in turn copied
back to my windows machine to burn it there to the DVD DL medium (the iBook G4
did not have a DVD writer, that's why).
After burning the disc I verified
with MacDrive that the disc is accessible and plugged it into the iBook then.
To my surprise, nothing happened. Well, nothing is not correct, it just spat
the disc out again as if it would be unable to read it. I know that the drive
in the iBook is capable of reading DVD DLs because my friend burned the dmg
file onto the disc and tried to boot off of it
(which of course didn't work
I then tried to tune the settings of
my burning tool, created another .cdr file now with Disk Utility instead of
hdiutil which resulted in a 7.2GB .cdr file (the dmg was compressed, mhm) but
nevertheless, this image also didn't work on the iBook after I burnt it onto
After having wasted 4 DL discs, I restored the dmg file on the Mac onto my
brand new 16GB usb flash disk and tried to boot from it, which didn't work as
the firmware of this specific iBook model doesn't seem to support booting from
USB devices (firewire would have been possible, but hey, who has
OK, as a last resort, I wanted to somehow install the new version from the
harddisk, meaning that I'd have to re-partition it but of course, there was
just one partition on the 30GB disk and this partition held the system
partition and was not resizable. Duh.
OK, reinstalling with the old MacOSX version (10.3, I think), changing the
partition layout to have a spare 8GB partition after the system partition and
after the installation has finished, I restored the dmg to this partition and
from that point on, everything went smoothly.
After the installation has
finished, I removed the second partition again and resized the volume on the
first one to extend to the maximum physical space and everything was good
1 DL disc and a breakfast
Next time, say no.