Experience with OS X Tiger on G4 iBooks? - updated

by Steve Mallett

How has Tiger been for you on your G4 iBook? I'd like to upgrade, but fear a performance loss. What has performance been like for you since upgrading to Tiger?

Update: Thanks everyone for your responses. I went out and picked up Tiger this morning and am running it now. Things do seem more peppy!


2005-05-23 17:47:35
Slices and dices okay
On an 864 Mhz Powerbook with 384 MB of RAM, it slices and dices okay.
2005-05-23 18:07:49
No performance hit.
Running an 800 MHz iBook G4 here. No performance hit whatsoever. In some cases, it even seems somewhat snappier. I'm a little disappointed at Core Image not being supported in the iBooks, but it's not like you're losing something you had before.
2005-05-23 18:33:24
iBook G3 + Tiger is good
I don't have an iBook G4 to test but I upgraded an old iBook G3 and it works great... even a little snappier perhaps.

Tim Flight

2005-05-23 18:45:57
Fine, with some slowdowns
Being a little lax on cleaning out the hard disk, I don't have much space left. I also like to load up every app I can. That said it can - infrequently - make for slow response when switching apps. Nothing I can't live with. But I really gotta clean out that hard drive.

The only annoying slow down is widgets. They can take a bit of time to wake-up and get to work, as a group, when I hit F-12.

Other than that, installation was a breeze, and the thing runs fine. Another hit for Apple.

2005-05-24 05:15:54
Tiger improves performance
I have a first generation 12" aluminum PB (867MHz), with 640M RAM. My judgment is that Tiger is significantly faster than Panther, once you get past the interminable initialization of Spotlight's database. Virtual PC under Panther was almost useless; opening an app in Windows took forever. Under Tiger, it's almost usable. At least, I can use it for what I bought it for, i.e. checking on how websites look under IE on Windows. Performance on iPhoto is also noticeably faster, and apps seem to launch a little more quickly. On some graphics apps, e.g. Photoshop, performance improvement is a little harder to see, but I think that it's there.
2005-05-24 07:07:39
Tiger on iBook G4

I use my iBook G4, 14", 1,33 GHz, 1.25 GB RAM, 80 GB HD on a daily basis with Tiger on it. It came with Panther and I immediately upgraded to Tiger when it came out. No problems at all, except for a few minor software incompatibilities due to the new OS. In fact I did a clean install, which I would highly recommend to do.

The performance is better than with Panther (speed in gereral) and the startup time is noticeably shorter than Panther.

Go and get a copy of Tiger and make the switch... :-)


2005-05-24 10:13:08
1.33GHz PowerBook OK But Not Great
I upgraded to Tiger the first weekend it was out. (Note that I didn't do a clean install...) There has been a reasonable performance gain in the Finder but sometimes I find my PB is sluggish. It's possible that some of my widgets are misbehaving in the background. Also, my PB seems to run hotter and the fan runs a lot more than it did in the Panther days. I'm going to install a 100GB drive and run a clean install with hopes that it will resolve the problems descibed above.
2005-05-24 11:45:14
800 MHz iBook
My wife and I both have 800 MHz G4 iBooks with 640 MB of RAM.

The initial indexing for spotlight slows the machines to a crawl, but the actual performance of tiger seems as good as, or perhaps a bit better than Panther. We're both happy with the results.

It also "feels" good on a friend's 512MB, 667MHz Titanium PB.

2005-05-25 08:10:43
Tiger improves performance
Will be using the same configuration - PB model, memory, etc. Am currently quite happy with 10.3.9, which was done originally (i.e., 10.3) via Upgrade install, which I would like to do again. Which kind of installation did you do? Was that your previous approach to upgrading versions?
2005-05-26 10:20:05
Tiger runs great on my Powerbook G4 1.25 Ghz
I'm running Tiger on a 15" Powerbook G4 with 512 MB of RAM.

At first, as others pointed, when Spotlight's index is being compiled, performance lagged but as soon as it ended, my mac is faster than what it used to be on Panther. Booting is much faster.

One thing I noticed though, is that the internal fan turns on more frequently, or is it just me?

My .02 cents worth,

Jose Lucero,
Happy Mac convert for over a year now and not looking back!

2005-05-31 14:32:30
Tiger on 1.2ghz G4 iBook (768mb)
Works great. Installation was a breeze and even the initial indexing for Spotlight finished in about 10 or so minutes (faster than was estimated by the OS itself). Very, very happy with it. My boot up times are much quicker now, too. Of course, with OS X, there are not nearly as many 'required' restarts, but still when one has to - it's way quicker.

Also running on an 800mhz G4 eMac w/Superdrive (768mb, too)and it's working very well. Overall we are quite happy with it. The Spotlight lag is a bit more apparent on the eMac but still not even remotely close to being a deal breaker or anything like that. Loving Tiger.


2005-06-04 00:58:35
1.0 G4 iBook and Tiger (768mb ram)
i first did an archive-install and did not like it...after a clean install, my iBook feels peppier than panther. my fan runs LESS than before, but the bottom still feels pretty hot. i do feel like the 32mb video is the limiting factor...and dashboard feels a bit sluggish at times. all in all, i'm happy with tiger on this iBook.
2005-06-28 09:16:09
Tiger running hot
I have Tiger 10.4.1 on my 1.5 GHz PowerPC G4 15", 512 MB, and it definitely runs hotter. The fan seems to be on all the time, and it burns through the battery charge much faster when I am not plugged in. The widgets are cute (but do they really bring me new information...?) and the Spotlight useful, but I'm not convinced that the tradeoff is worth it for the laptop.
2005-06-28 09:37:53
Tiger cooling off
Quick follow-up from last message: for me it turned out to be the widgets - Mapquest in particular. According to the Activity Monitor it was using 35% of the CPU (and doing nothing...). Within a few seconds of taking it off the Dashboard, the fan went off - and I cooled down, too...
2007-04-18 04:03:56
I just got a Power Mac G4 867 MHz with no HDD. If I buy OS X Tiger and do a clean install will it load all of the drivers or do I need the original restore disks?
2007-09-20 15:45:37
I need help, I'm trying to install tiger on my G4 ibook but every time I restart to install some weird script shows up saying that they can't find a platform or something of the like...and then at the end it says "panic: we are hanging here" and the only thing I can do is press the button for some time until it turns off and I can take the installation CD out. Has anyone had this problem before?
2007-11-27 18:00:56
Hello Maya! I got the same problem while trying to install Tiger on my G4 tower. I used FireWire to connect to my MacBook Pro, and restarted my G4 in Target Disk Mode. Then, I inserted the Tiger DVD into my MacBook Pro, the DVD opened, I double-clicked on "Install Tiger". The MacBook Pro then restarted. I chose the English Language, but instead of going further with the next steps, use Disk Utility and erase and partition the G4 with the GUID Partition scheme! I found the following website really useful.
Found the website because I was getting "You cannot install Mac OS X on this volume..." alert in Installer. Hope that helps. If any problems just email me... fauzan.azzam@googlemail.com