Move my Maxtor!
February 5, 2005 9:17 PM   Subscribe

MacFilter: Finally upgraded from my old 400 mhz G4 to a 1.25 ghz dual processor G4. I'd like to move the maxtor ata hard drive that I installed in the old machine to the new machine. Will I lose the data in the process? Or can I just take it out of one, put it in the next, and continue to access all my files as if nothing has changed?
posted by fingers_of_fire to Computers & Internet (19 answers total)
Just make sure that when you connect the old drive in the new computer that you either set the drive to cable-select, or you get the master/slave jumper set correctly.

Otherwise, you should be able to access the old drive with no issues.
posted by tomierna at 9:19 PM on February 5, 2005

There's always some tiny risk of data loss, due to factors like mishandling. Do a backup before you swap the drive, but otherwise yes go for it. The manuals for the Macs should have some very easy to follow directions for the extraction/installation. It's an easy DIY.
posted by nakedcodemonkey at 10:18 PM on February 5, 2005

I think the real issue unless I'm mistaken is if you're moving from OS9 to OSX. I might be wrong but I thought the two operating systems used different disk formats and would not necessarily be able to read each other's disks...
posted by pwb503 at 10:57 PM on February 5, 2005

Response by poster: OSX to OSX, so no fear there. I tried the installation, with no luck, unfortunately (when I booted up the computer, the drive wasn't there. It should just show up on my desktop, right? I mean, if it has been installed properly?).

The mac instructions were simple enough, although (just in case any of you are familiar with this particular model of G4) they did not specify whether or not it makes a difference which drive bay I install the new drive in. Also, the maxtor instructions were confusing about what jumper configuration was cable select - they just said that most of their drives were set to cable select by default, and since I don't remember changing the jumpers last time I installed this drive, I didn't this time either. Didn't work, though. Now I've re-installed it into my own machine - try again tomorrow.
posted by fingers_of_fire at 11:25 PM on February 5, 2005

If cable select doesn't work then make it a slave. All G4s have two ATA buses, one that hangs off the hard drive and another one that leads to the optical drive. Those drives are always set to 'master'. So just make your 2nd drive a slave and plug it into the spare ATA connector on the cable that the main drive is attached to. You probably already know you can see the jumper diagrams on Maxtor's website if you know the drive model number.

If the drive doesn't show in the finder, then use Disk Utility to see if the computer actually sees the drive hardware or not. If there's a discrepancy then there's something wrong with the formatting or the disk is damaged, which I doubt will happen since it works fine in your old G4.
posted by sammich at 3:15 AM on February 6, 2005

if its a NEW new mac, when you first started it up you should have been given the option of connecting a firewire cable between the two, start the old comp in target disk mode and a small app on the new one would transfer all yr data to the new one. so at that point you dont have to worry about losing anything.
posted by ShawnString at 6:41 AM on February 6, 2005

whoops sorry didnt read the whole question....but the question is, is the older oner faster bigger then what is in there now?
the new macs use serial ATA which apparently has faster transfer rates, etc.
posted by ShawnString at 6:43 AM on February 6, 2005

I've never swapped hard drives myself, but XLR8YourMac probably has what you're looking for. You may also want to check out their drive compatability database, and their illustrated guides for hardware upgrades.
posted by Sibrax at 8:16 AM on February 6, 2005

fingers, to be clear, do you want to boot the dual G4 off the old drive? Or just access the files as a second drive?
posted by AlexReynolds at 8:38 AM on February 6, 2005

Response by poster: I do not want to boot the computer off the old drive - it's got 10.2.8 installed, the new computer is running 10.3.7, so I'd just as soon stay as current as possible. I want to install it in the new machine for the extra storage space and as an easier way of transferring files from my old computer to my new computer. I figure, once I get it installed, I'll gradually move everything over to the new drive, or burn it onto a cd (my old cd burner, when it works, is painfully slow).

Still no love from the new mac. The new drive just isn't showing up, disc-utility doesn't recognize it. Is there a step that I'm missing - or is it really just as simple as you install it, connect the cables, and turn on the computer? Does it matter which drive bay you use?
posted by fingers_of_fire at 8:44 AM on February 6, 2005

fingers, thanks for the clarification. You must change the jumper assignment on the old drive from master to slave.

When the old drive was in the old computer, it was set to master so that the old drive would boot the old computer.

Now that you are using the old drive in the new computer as a second hard drive, plugged into the same cable as the new drive, you need to "slave" the old drive to the new drive (the new drive is the new computer's "master").

If you look between the power slot and the IDE data cable slot on the old hard drive, you will see two rows of small pins, with a little black rectangle around one column. You'll need to take a pair of needlenose pliers and remove this rectangular "jumper", moving it to another column.

The top of the drive will tell you which column to use. Generally you will use the column immediately to the right of the column that the old drive is using already.

Changing this jumper setting sets the drive from master to either slave or "cable select" -- either slave or cable select will make the drive visible.
posted by AlexReynolds at 9:18 AM on February 6, 2005

Agree with AlexReynolds that you should try jumpering the old drive to slave.

On the other hand, you miight consider getting a firewire enclosure and put the drive in there instead. These (ME-320) are not expensive and have been very reliable for me. I still have some OS9 apps which I rely on; Classic runs fine on my old drive's OS9 partition housed this way.

If you go this way, you do not need to change the jumpers.
posted by omnidrew at 9:38 AM on February 6, 2005

Response by poster: OK - tried jumpering the drive to cable select, per instructions in the mac manual and the drive documentation (and tomierna, above). No luck. Returned drive to old machine, it wasn't recognized. (Begin hyperventilation, deep sense of regret, heartfelt promises to repent for any transgressions, past, present, future). Reset jumper to original setting, which, strangely enough, doesn't match any of the recommended settings in any of the drive documentation (master, slave, cable-select), reinstalled drive, it all works. Wondered why anyone ever would want to upset the status quo, sheepishly posts to metafilter in the hopes that one of it's kind, wise, experienced members might be able to shed some light.
posted by fingers_of_fire at 10:10 AM on February 6, 2005

A and B do not correspond to any specific naming convention on the motherboard of the G4. By A and B I just mean that they are the two different IDE connections on the Mac.

Note that you can also slave or CS the old drive to the optical drive, and it will work the very same way.

It does not matter where the drive is located inside the computer, physically. The drive bay choice does not matter.

As a general rule, you do want to keep the two drives as far apart as the cable will reasonably allow though, to keep them from overheating and dying.
posted by AlexReynolds at 10:27 AM on February 6, 2005

Oh, the drive order does matter wrt to master-slave assignments. The master drive must come first in the chain; see the diagram.
posted by AlexReynolds at 10:29 AM on February 6, 2005

So the drive is back in the old machine now, but it works? Weird. But good.

Alex, IMO the easiest place to install the 2nd drive is directly above the original one (Assuming the computer's internal layout is the same as my old dual-500 G4, there is a double height bracket and an extra IDE connector so that the 2nd drive installs directly on top of the original.) I never tried installing a HD on the "A" IDE bus that has the optical drive.

fingers, try the Firewire target disk mode to get the data onto the new machine. Shut down old machine. Hold the "T" key on the old machine while starting up. Connect FW cable between the 2 machines. Move data to new home. Breathe sigh of relief.

Then you can try the reinstall again.

If all you want the old HD for is extra storage, a new HD will not be expen$ive, and then the old machine is still useable as is.

Also, you may want to access the old drive's SMART data - this will tell you how reliable it will be going forward, i.e. if there are any unrecoverable bad blocks. TechToolPro can do this.
posted by omnidrew at 10:36 AM on February 6, 2005

Response by poster: omnidrew - I assume the new machine needs to be on in Firewire target disk mode? IE, one needs two monitors?

GREAT suggestion! Thank you - thanks to all for the help.
posted by fingers_of_fire at 11:03 AM on February 6, 2005

No, put the old machine into target mode. You can start it up with the monitor connected, then switch the monitor to the new machine. Your old drive will show up on the desktop of the new one.
posted by omnidrew at 11:07 AM on February 6, 2005

fingers, here's an Apple-written set of instructions for putting your old computer into Firewire target mode.
posted by AlexReynolds at 11:20 AM on February 6, 2005

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