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PowerBook back, finally

I finally got my PowerBook back. I have been using my mother’s old PowerBook G4/400 for the past few months while it’s been away, and had upgraded to a 40 GB hard drive because I couldn’t live with the stock 10 GB one. The old PowerBook felt a lot subjectively faster starting up than the G4/800 I had been using, so when I got it back, I did a quick test.

PowerBook G4/400 with Samsung MP0402H drive (40 GB, 5400 RPM, 8 MB cache), from power on to my last startup item finishing under Mac OS X 10.3.9: 2 minutes. It would have been a few seconds faster if I had set the boot device properly in NVRAM.

PowerBook G4/800 with Toshiba MK4018GAS drive (40 GB, 4200 RPM, 2 MB cache), Mac OS X 10.3.8: 3 minutes, 40 seconds.

Aside from the differing hard drive speeds, the lack of fragmentation in the G4/400’s filesystem could have been a factor, too. I never realized that my drive only had 2 MB of cache; Apple putting that into their “high-end” PowerBook at the time was quite a cheap move. I’ll be swapping the Samsung drive into the G4/800 later today.

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