Getting back to my PowerMac G5


Since I got, 8 years ago, my PowerMac G5 DP 2.0GHz Early 2005 from a dad's emigrating friend who needed to give it away, due to having issues with my previously mained Hackintosh I have repeatedly resolved to long-term maining it in times between 2014 and even 2017.

I have since emigrated from my hometown and the G5 has so far rested behind at my parents' in a desk-corner of mine in the living room.

Due to a mess I have in there, and above all a failure to find a DVI cable here each time I tried looking into it on a visit, it hasn't been since 2018 that I powered this PowerMac on.

But this time I stumbled upon a DVI cable in dad's room that has surfaced more than they usually do in there. So after being inspired to clean up some of the mess on the desk and on top of the Mac in order to be able to access everything more easily, I got it running.

The previous times I had also been getting sidetracked by needing to find an Ethernet switch/router in order to be able to connect both the once-FreeBSD i3-540@dh57jg machine that i have here at this desk on the left and the PowerMac, but this time i was going to main the Mac solely.

At first I connected one Mighty Mouse of the two that had once suffered some unknown accident (i remember suspecting something my family done and were all dirty from some sugary dirt (iirc I have more Mighty Mice but I have them with me in Poznań). The cleaner one was working but I think the trackball was sticky so that it was pressing the middle button constantly, and that way I ended up being first logged into the Guest account. Garage Band pinned on the dock, huh.

The keyboard I had at hand was a Logitech K290, there was later an issue that I had the keyboard variant set to ISO and not ANSI which caused trouble with entering tildes and backticks.

Also despite having my mouse preferences set on the fast side for my Mighty Mouse, for the Steelseries Rival 110 I borrowed from my brother I had to set it to maximum and it's still not too fast.

One of the first things i got into was looking at the desktop and the dock. On the desktop I had a plethora of screenshots that i needed to put in a directory, as well as some 2014 backups of my phone memory card and a few OmniGiraffe drawings. On the dock I had the Applications folder set to be shown as a pile instead of as an icon which was just making Adium the chat client (as first by name) show up on top and so I had my Dropbox folder which is 100% very old stuff these days (just checked and it turned out Dropbox is no longer autostarting on here and no longer can connect even). I only left the Documents and Downloads folders to be shown as piles, although the Documents folder wasn't previously shown in "fan" mode but in "grid" mode which i don't quite understand why i would have had wanted.

I tried launching Adium and it successfully connected to Google Talk (Hangouts), asking me to "Authorize and add" two friends. It also "went online" with the Bonjour "account". It failed to connect to Polish GaduGadu though.

I also had, on dock, a folder with several screenshots depicting how a patch to Diablo II: Lord of Destruction made it no longer support my PowerMac once, disabling me from playing on Moved it into that "past mess of the desktop" folder. I shortly later ended up sidetracking into some 20min of gameplay on single player.

Making the Applications and Dropbox folders icons and not piles, as well as removing these older folders made it easier to distinguish the "djinn" minimized-to-dock windows from the folders.

Both on the Desktop and in Downloads I found a lot of installation disks images for 2013's Elementary OS stable, Xubuntu 12.04 i386, L(X)ubuntu 13.10 i386, Ubuntu 13.10 amd64, 2018's Arch Linux, as well as a bunch of custom ROM zips: Paranoid Android for Nexus 4 v4.5-ALPHA3 from 2014, CyanogenMod 10.2.1 and 11 (Feb 2014 nightly) for Nexus S, pa_gapps-full-4-1.3 from 2013, pa_gapps-stock-4.4.2 and pa_gapps-stock-4-1.4.2 from same day of 2014. Cleaned up all that mess so as to not to waste space in the data takeouts I plan to do someday from this Mac.

In the Trash I found a lot of things, like some valuable-these-days Palm programs prc files, although i emptied it after ensuring they all seem to have copies somewhere else around the filesystem.

On the upper bar I found Flux (f.lux) the "better lightning for your Mac" app, Growl the notifications daemon, a Spaces switcher, a Bluetooth PPP connection settings icon (?), a MobileMe sync icon, a display settings icon, a Time Machine settings icon, a "Sharing Preferences" binoculars icon, an eject icon and an Ink Write Anywhere icon (i used to connect a drawing tablet although the one I had back in the day wasn't too good).

The terminal app, iTerm(2), first presented me with my once-preferred amber-on-black Input Mono 15pt, with it being the variant with "Powerline" promptline aesthetic characters support. I changed it to black-on-white Monaco 12pt with the variant Input Mono 11pt as "Non-ASCII" fallback font for the characters that my Powerline-style old promptline.vim setup that I found here used.

TenFourFox launched on me informing me about an update available to 45.9.0 but the link to was dead, although later my partner linked me and so i found both the SourceForge downloads as well as the repo (when it was the wiki that had the release announcements and not the linked Releases page). At least before the update, for all sites it was complaining about an expired/invalid certificate.

At some point I tried using the weird messed-up GrowlSafari and WebKit and renamed-Safari (?) installation I found on here but they weren't working too well.

The late allowed me to log in, accept the new end user agreement, but was glitching between a connection error (code 112, link dead) and an announcement that "In a few months, Spotify updates will no longer be available for my platform." with a link to click, and then repeatedly showing me the end user agreement popup.

In MacPorts when I searched for Syncthing it shown me that there is v0.14.45 available, although it prompted me to update port definitions so I had an update from MacPorts 2.4.2 to 2.7.1. Later Syncthing turned out not to be supported on ppc despite showing up in search, because of course as it's in Golang.

After `port selfupdate` I went on to perform `port upgrade outdated` and that resulted in some absurdly long build times. At one point it threw an error asking me to temporarily force-deactivate libunwind-headers so as to allow it to build libgcc7. Then the building step of libgcc7 wasn't completing after 5 hours so I decided to abort it and lose the sunken cost.

To find out the start date of the process I learnt I can use `ps -o start <PID>`.

I realized I have an SFTP client "Fetch" installed from seeing I have a bone-shaped widget from it saying "Drop files here to upload them" with a once-preset address in my Mac OS X Leopard's Dashboard. It at first (after being cute with the running doggie cursor) confused me by being single-pane and by default downloading to Desktop as well as defaulting to renaming colliding files, on drag&drop as well. But not on uploading, where the default was to replace. That made be able to publish to Flounder easily (I am typing this now in TextEdit set to Helvetica 13 for plain text).

But I also manage my Flounder capsule with Git and I wasn't sure where I had the newer commits now, on sourcehut git where I started pushing since I thought about migrating my capsule to sourcehut pages, or on Github. I added my public key to both – in TenFourFox having not been able to use Github after logging in (first the Github mobile app authentication ended up not redirecting me but I used OTP, and then nothing was loading in the panes after logging in) I had to transfer my public key to phone with a QR code and add it to Github from there, although sourcehut was perfectly usable). But then it turned out I wouldn't be able to write to sourcehut's git remote as trying to connect with ssh resulted in ssh's "no hostkey alg" error. GitHub's remote worked just fine with ssh.

I also experimented with TextEdit rich-text mode for composing HTML pages in place of a proper Seamonkey Composer alike. Peculiarly, it at first made the document have background-color #000000 which was making it be black-on-black in TextEdit after reopening the saved-as-HTML document. That I fixed by opening it in TextWrangler (my once editor of choice on there) and setting the background color to #ffffff, TextEdit could then edit the file further.

I also wanted to read Usenet newsgroups so I installed Xnntp "for 10.6, 10.4+" version from SourceForge. It also exhibited peculiar behavior: at first not the whole list of newsgroups had been fetched from (thank god it still has non-SSL ports as Xnntp seemed not to support SSL) and I couldn't find the likes of comp.infosystems.gemini. But then I managed to refresh it further and I could find the desired newsgroups. Besides adding the comp.infosystems.gemini as well as,, netscape.public.mozilla.seamonkey, I also discovered comp.infosystems.www.authoring.html.

The further peculiarity was that it at first didn't show me the any messages being present sometimes, having me have to switch back and forth to a newsgroup to have it load the headers finally. It did so for c.i.www.authoring.html, but also made me repeatedly try reloading comp.sys.powerpc.[advocacy,misc,tech], perl.macosx and alt.html.editors.enhanced-html which seem to be actually empty.

Another buggy behavior was that on clicking a message the body often wasn't showing up, and i had to go back-and-forth between messages repeatedly, or even attempt refreshing the whole headers list or restarting Xnntp, for the message body to show up.

And it was funny that opening a link in a message made the website display in place of the message body with seemingly no option to go back other than going back-and-forth between messages.

I also wonder why does it display the date in the headers list in a format consisting of non-padded day-of-month and four-digit year undelimited by even a space character, and then HH:MM:SS after a space.

I hope to find some better Usenet newsreader for this Mac before next time.

I can't seem to find an Xcode installation on there but maybe next time I'll be there I will develop myself a Cocoa application for something.

Also hoping to install myself some Lisp (or maybe APL!) IDEs on there back from the time where software was neat windowy and bundled batteries-included (and maybe pirated sometimes).

And if I get myself a working serial port adapter by next visit and start using my Palm IIIxe, I will come to this Mac looking for the hard-to-find PRCs of applications to load onto it!

Committing that one with GitX!