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Steven Bristow
Hardware Issue
on Dec 21, 2010 at 10:56:03 pm

So, I don't know if this is the proper place to post this, but kind of in a panic right now to figure out what has gone wrong.
I was using my PowerBook G4, and the application I was using froze. I went to force quit, and even that froze. I wasn't able to do anything so I did a hard shutdown. After rebooting, it kept getting stuck on the Apple "Grey screen." I ran a hardware test and this is the error it gave me: "2MEM/1/4: SODIMM1/J23REVERSED" I had nothing plugged into the MAC but the power cord. That error, would it be a harddrive error, or a failure of one of the RAMs? Thank you very much for your help!


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Peter Sartwell
Re: Hardware Issue
on Dec 21, 2010 at 11:09:55 pm

Just googling using your error "2MEM/1/4: SODIMM1/J23REVERSED" suggests that your RAM may be to blame. RAM is relatively cheap and easy to replace.

That said, you can try to simply remove the RAM, wiggle it in the slot to clean the contacts, and put it back in.

Or, if you have two sticks, try running only one at a time with AHT to pinpoint the troubled stick. It may complain that you only have one installed (where the OS really runs best with both).

If you haven't done a RAM swap before, beware- it takes some precautions to avoid harming the RAM or other components.

Ifixit and other sites have info on how to do this, just google powerbook g5 ram replace and you'll get close to the how-to's.


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Steven Bristow
Re: Hardware Issue
on Dec 22, 2010 at 12:31:33 am

Thanks for the quick response.
I took one memory stick out at a time, and ran the AHT. The computer passed after taking out one of the memory sticks, so it was the issue. So, I'm happy about that. My only concern right now is that it appears the computer is still not booting up, will it not boot with only one memory stick?
Thanks again for your help.


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Peter Sartwell
Re: Hardware Issue
on Dec 22, 2010 at 1:18:03 am

Sorry I forgot to say- I don't know if having only one stick of RAM will make it fail boot. No RAM will fail, I know that.

Did you try one "good" stick in each of the two slots? Maybe one slot is dodgy?

Once you've identified the bad RAM, it's best to replace that first before doing much else, unless you can confirm that it'll boot from one stick.


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Peter Sartwell
Re: Hardware Issue
on Dec 22, 2010 at 1:08:54 am

Ah well now you're in troubleshooting mode.

My suggestions:

1. Swap the ram and run the AHT again to verify your fault
2. reset the PRAM and NVRAM
3. Try starting in safe mode( startup holding shift key).

Do you have another mac? If so that opens up your fixing options because you can run your mac in target mode if any of the above point to trouble with the hard drive. At the very least you can move your data to another drive.

You are not the first person to have this problem, so there are resources on the web that detail how to fix your PowerBook G5.

Don't know your tech level, but if you're new to this kind of thing, and this machine is important to you, and none of the above get you near a fix, I'd hand it over to a mac tech to fix. That will save some grey hair.


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Steven Bristow
Re: Hardware Issue
on Dec 28, 2010 at 10:33:38 pm

Thank you again for your help... Here is the latest update:

I got the new RAM today, plugged it in, and ran the AHT. Everything passed, but she still will not boot-up. Next, I guess I'll try to reset the PRAM and NVRAM. I do have another MAC, and if push comes to shove, I'll connnect the two and see what I can do from there.


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