PowerMac G5

Welcome to G5 Center!

The Power Mac G5 was one of the last PowerPC machines Apple produced and sold. It remains a capable computer today. This website is dedicated to the venerable machine, providing users with information on available hardware and software choices for their G5.

Enjoy! -- Nathan

Welcome & Where to Start

Did you just pick up a Power Mac G5 via eBay, CraigsList, or locally? Are you interested in souping up that old G5 sitting in your garage? Do you need to squeeze more life out of your office or home G5?

The apps linked under our nifty categories above are sort of curated by me and, in some cases, from other great blogs. These apps do not represent an objective "best of" but should be taken as a starting point to find what works best for you.

If you need a place to begin, check out the Hardware page and then proceed to the System page to get your machine up and running quickly.


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About My Power Mac G5

Power Mac G5 About Screen

My Power Mac G5 has been modified from its stock state with a 120GB OWC Mercury 3G solid state drive, a 1.5 TB Western Digital drive, 10 GB of RAM, and a GeForce 7800GT video card.


About This Website

This website was built on my Power Mac G5, using the following software:

  • Espresso 1.1.2
  • CSS Edit 2.6.1
  • Pixelmator 1.5.1
  • Snapz Pro 2.3.3

The CSS code and layout are from Bootstrap (3.3.7), an elegant and responsive framework for creating awesome websites. Find out more at the Get Bootstrap website.

Bootstrap is released under the MIT license and is copyright 2014 Twitter.

Contact

Drop me an email here - nathan @ g5center.net.


G5 Center Blog Notes, updates, and thoughts about our G5s

Speedtest Your Internet Connection

Published on May 15, 2017


On the positive side of things, despite the ongoing reopening of the Net Neutrality battle, my internet just got upgraded to near gigabit speeds. Of course, it's probably temporary, since I'm not sure why I need that much raw throughput and most of my devices use wifi anyway. Still, it has led to me do some testing to see what speeds I am getting.

For example, on my 5ghz connection on my iPhone 7, Speedtest shows 76.35 Mbps down and 111.09 Mbps up. Not bad. This probably echoes what my AppleTV, iPad, and other devices get.

For my Dell connected via gigabit ethernet to the router, I cleared 600 Mbps up and 900 Mbps down. Very, very nice.

For my Mac Mini G4, also connected directly to the router but via a 10/100 Ethernet port, I only managed a measly (relatively) 80 Mbps up and 90 Mbps down. Is this also bottle-necked some by the CPU or older hardware in general? Perhaps.

For my Power Mac G5 which is connected via ethernet through an inexpensive TP-Link 500Mbps powerline adapter, I unfortunately had the worst performance so far - 43.99 Mbps and 34.52 Mbps. These powerline adapters are a decent alternative if you have flaky wifi and need something more robust, but they are a bit disappointing. At this point, I'm rethinking whether or not to use these powerline adapters at all and just hook a long cable from the router into my G5. We'll see.

If you want to test your speed, unfortunately, you can't use the classic flash version of the Speedtest site but it does redirect to a beta HTML5 version which TenFourFox handles well. Alternately, use the command line. You will need Python 2.4 or later, so I'm not sure if Tiger users are out of luck or not.

1. Install the python Speedtest script.

sudo easy_install speedtest-cli

2. Run it.

speedtest-cli

3. Share your results in the comments section below.

-- Nathan

Starcraft Is Still Awesome

Published on April 26, 2017


In anticipation of an updated or remastered Starcraft, Blizzard made the big news of releasing the classic version for free. Here's the bad news: It works on newer Macs but not on older machines like my G5.

I still have both an original Starcraft disc, Brood Wars expansion disc, and original key, so using the carbon installer, I was able to get Starcraft back on my Mac and in action. And you know what? The game still rocks.

Some games do not age well, but Starcraft still feels spry, fun, and gripping. The story line is fine, but it's the way the missions are put together and the difficulty grows bit by bit. Multiplayer is a blast, although I doubt I'll try to find a game. The graphics actually still look good and have a ton of charm, even while the cut scenes look pretty awful by today's standards.

I've been asked to toss up more games on the site, so look for me to do that in the coming weeks, including Diablo II which is another classic that still works great on our Macs.

-- Nathan

Enthusiasm

Published on April 24, 2017


One of the great Youtube links for Power Mac machines lately comes via ItsMyNaturalColor, a guy with a ton of enthusiasm and love for old Macs. He has a series about putting together the fastest Blue & White G3 tower ever, including an upgraded CPU, SSD drives, RAID drives, ATI 9200 Radeon Card, and Bluetooth. It's a monster machine, and even if you think it is a waste of time, his enthusiasm will get you in the end.

While that is Video 5 of the series, start from the beginning if you want. It's a fun waste of an afternoon.

As a followup, I enjoyed this video as he unboxes a G5 quad and then absolutely gets devastated when he sees what a mess it is in.

Enjoy! -- Nathan

Here's a fun link.

Published on March 21, 2017


Here's a quick brief update. I stumbled across a mirror of some G5 resources from an old version of Apple's Developer Connection. Great links here with developer information about Power Mac G5s and optimization resources. If you find something cool, share it in the comments. Now, go read.

http://mirror.informatimago.com/next/developer.apple.com/hardware/g5/index.html

-- Nathan

App Stores Come to the G5

Published on February 11, 2017


The world has felt a little more apocalyptic as of late, so maybe it makes sense that all of a sudden we have a couple of "App Stores" for our PowerPC Macs running Leopard or Tiger. Is this something we need? Maybe. Maybe not. You get to decide.

PPCAppStore - https://ppcappstore.wordpress.com/

PPCAppStore

The coder of this simple but effective app posted here on the site, so I am happy to share a link. The app is apparently built in RealBasic (like my own SimpleMarkPPC) and handily categorizes and links to a variety of useful software. The app is not going to be the most stylish one in the world, but it is effective and well-organized. I did notice a link or two pointing to Macintosh Garden, which might be something to frown up if you are a deeply ethical-minded person. Granted, this is the state of software for us PowerPC folks, so I'm not too concerned. But something to note. Keep an eye on his website for updates or to post suggestions.

PPCStore - http://www.leopardrebirth.net/

PPCStore

Folded in as a part of LeopardRebirth, a PPC theme to make Leopard look more like Sierra, PPCStore is a little more elegant but sparse "app store". I keep putting those words in quotes because I'm not really sure you can buy any apps in these stores. They are essentially just handy collected links to some useful software to grab. PPCStore is much more sparse than the previous entry, but it looks more like the typical App Store you may come to love or despise in later versions of Mac OS X.

As usual, these apps may or may not be useful to you, but I am grateful that fellow PPC heroes are trying their hand at software tools to make our G5s (and G4s) useful for a while yet. Awesome.

-- Nathan