Yesterday, when I went down to the shack, the hard drive in the Mac iBook G4 that I’d been using in my shack for logging and PSK31 was making a terrible noise. I turned off the computer and turned it back on, but just more of the same.
This wasn’t totally unexpected. A couple of months ago, I had some hard drive problems, and I had to get somone to “repair” it with some heavy-duty software. Although the hard drive seemed to be work OK, I always suspected that it was just waiting to go. Yesterday, it went.
I called the shop where I bought the thing (I bought it used), and asked what it would cost for them to put in a new one. They told me “$80 for the drive, $120 for the labor.” Yikes! I don’t think the computer is even worth that much, even with a new hard drive. For one thing, the battery is probably going as well, and since the computer is only a G4, it can’t run the latest Mac OSX.
I Googled around for some guidance on perhaps replacing the drive myself. After all, $80 for a new hard drive isn’t such a bad deal. I came across the page, “Installing iBook G4 12″ 800 MHz-1.2 GHz Hard Drive Replacement.”
Now, I see why it costs $120. This Web page describes 42 different steps— and that’s just to get the drive out. You have to repeat those 42 steps in reverse to get the computer back together again! None of them seem really hard, but I’m not sure that I want to spend the two or three hours to do this.
So, my “Mac in the shack” days may be over for now.