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My daughter has had a G4 Ibook laptop for about 3 years. It has always been fine until the last few months when it's started doing some strange stuff.

The first symptom was when my daughter strted getting messages that the machine was short of memory whenever she tried to save anything. She deleted loads of pictures but it didn't seem to make any difference. More recently it forgets the time and date, thinking it's 1969. The latest thing, which started tonight, was that, when she opened Safari to browse the internet, she immediately got an error message saying that Safari had a fault and needed to shut down. It offered the opportunity to send an error report to Macintosh, which she did once. She restarted the computer but it still would not open Safari.

Anyone know what's going on?

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE


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I have no Apple experience so you might want to check the validity of what I'm about to suggest.

First back up all the data, all the pictures all the documents address books, everything your daughter has created. If you have a network back it up to another system if there is sufficient space. If not back it up onto CDs or DVDs. Make sure you get it all because there is no going back.

Next reformat the hard drive and reload the operating system and software, then restore your data from the CDs.

This is exactly what I would do with a system of mine displaying those symptoms, but please make sure you back up the data first because after reformatting it's gone for ever.

It also sounds like the cmos battery is running flat, but I cannot offer any advice one where it is located or how to change it.

Best I can offer, but don't take my word for it.


Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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theres no CMOS battery in the iBook, just a large capacitor

sounds like it could be a PMU (power management unit) fault,

if you havent tried already resetting the PMU, then have a go...

you could also try resetting the PRAM, if the PMU reset doesnt help

another check, is to use Mac OSXs "Disk Utility" which as an option to verify &repair disk and disk permissions, which could be worth a shot.

might help safari.

how much disk space is now free? have you tried "Reset Safari" , or will safari no longer start

apart from that, as Roger says, backup everything and try a fresh install

hope this helps, good luck


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I must admit, Roger, that my first thought was that the CMOS battery was flat.

Thanks for your help, Mark. My daughter is going to get some more stuff off the hard drive before we try your suggestions. The first makes a lot of sense as the computer has stopped charging the battery. I had thought the battery had had it but if the power manager is screwed up, that would explain that.

I'll let you know how it goes.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE


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My daughter removed a load of photos to free up disc space and I tried both tricks but with no improvement. When I try to open Safari, the icon bounces up and down for a while and then disappears. If I look at the system information it tells me that the battery is not charged to full capacity. It knows whether the charger is plugged in but tells me that the charger is not charging.

I think we will take it to the Apple store in the local Best Buy tomorrow to see what they say.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE


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