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10.1.5 Corrects Beige G3/Radeon Incompatibility

In researching and tinkering with various system configurations, I learned that the Radeon 7000 32MB PCI Mac Edition video board had an inconvenient incompatibility. The board does not work in Beige G3 systems with Mac OS X. It is also incompatible with older unsupported systems for that matter. With the 10.1.5 update, Apple has corrected this problem with one notable limitation.

Attempts to install Mac OS X 10.1 on a Rev.2 Beige G3 Mac with the Radeon 7000 32MB PCI board result in a black screen as soon as the system begins booting from the CD. Installation runs normally when using the onboard video hardware (Rage Pro in my Rev. 2 G3, Rage IIc in the original models). Installing the Radeon card after installing the OS ends up with the same blank screen upon bootup.

This is a known-issue and is acknowledged by ATI in an INFO-BASE document on their website.

The problem can now be corrected by installing the 22MB Mac OS X 10.1.5 update. Once the update is complete, the Radeon card can be put back in the machine and it will function almost flawlessly.

2D video performance between the Radeon 7000 and the onboard Rage Pro seems roughly equivalent on this G3/300 thanks to Apple's inclusion of accelerated drivers for the Rage Pro family of cards in the 10.1.5 update. The Radeon, however, proves its worth with 3D applications. OpenGL games like Tranquility are completely unplayable with the Rage Pro hardware under Mac OS X which isn't surprising as Apple's update notes specify that the acceleration is limited to 2D and Quicktime support. While the Radeon 7000 installed in this old system won't rival a nice G4 system with a GeForce 4 card, it does provide acceptable performance under 10.1.5.

The one glaring bug appears when the machine is allowed to go into sleep mode. The display becomes completely scrambled upon waking up and there is no way to recover aside from rebooting the machine.

It is worth noting that that Jaguar pre-release distributed at the Worldwide Developer Conference also contained a fix for the Radeon incompatibility. The 6C35 build contains the same scrambled-video-after-sleep bug as the 10.1.5 release and it also has one additional problem relating to a garbled mouse pointer on the screen. We can hope that Apple manages to iron out these issues before the final release of Jaguar late this summer.

:: posted by Matthew Sparby @ 06/04/2002 10:46 PM CST [hard Link] ::


Regarding the problems experienced with the ATI Radeon 7000 video card and beige G3. I have a 7000 installed in my Blue and White G3 and run one monitor from it (LaCie 19" blue). I had no problems whatsoever until I installed 10.1.5 yesterday. Now I am experiencing the same scrambled video on wake from sleep as described by beige owners. This is a step backwards. I now face the unpleasent task of reinstalling my operating system back to 10.1.4. Thanks Apple for testing this before releasing it.

:: posted by Peter Lindsay @ 06/05/2002 10:07 AM CST ::

Well with the release of ati rage pro drivers this really has to put to sleep that frivolous lawsuit against Apple for not supporting their machines. It also shows the shortcomings of a rage pro. Also I was wise enough to have purchased the slightly older ATI Radeon pci 32mb ddr ram video card, previous to the radeon 7000, which has all the performance of the 7000, with none of the issues. Runs like a champ in MY beige G3>G4/500, 768mb ram 40gb ata. And there's nothing like a good external firewire burner with oxford 911 chipset. Get em over at www.alinamicro.com. They easily outspeed anything Apple installs in their machines, and are 100% OS X 10.1.5 compatable when you buy a Mac model burner drive, in a rev B rom or later. On a rev a any firewire device causes a startup bomb in classic, so the trick is to turn on the burner after startup if you wish to use it in classic on a Rev A rom......

:: posted by Christopher J. Smith @ 06/05/2002 04:21 PM CST ::

MacFixIt posted my email to them today (6/05/02) about wake-from-sleep problems with the ATI Radeon 7000 card on a dual monitor setup. Had to do hard resets/restarts with 10.1.5 even though I never had any problems before the 10.1.5 'update' with waking from sleep.

Had to reformat my OS X partition and reinstall OS X 10.1.4 from a backup.

Apple... did you even test this pathetic excuse for an update?

:: posted by Ronald Lanham @ 06/05/2002 04:52 PM CST ::

Some points:
a) While it's nice to see Apple adding OS X suuport for Rage Pro - that still leaves Rage II (Rev a Beige G3s and Rev a iMacs out in the cold). So the lawsuit still has some merit, but I'm hoping Apple catches up Rage II support in next update.
b) There's no claims by Apple that 10.1.5 fixed the Radeon 7000 support problem in Beige G3s. While it does appear that there's some improvements there, it's incomplete (as as a few have noted, this partial fix actually breaks support for others). Again, I'd expect Apple to complete the fix and announce Radeon problem resolution in a subsequent update. (Or maybe we need ATI to release updated drivers to mesh with Apple's 10.1.5 fixes). And yes, Apple should have tested this config - both on systems where Radeon is working and those where it wasn't. There's no excuse for, causing folks to have to downgrade-reinstall previous OS versions.
I have faith/trust it'll get better. Radeon PCI will end up fully supported, and ATI Rage II/Pro will end up accelerated to degree possible.

:: posted by TomL @ 06/05/2002 05:47 PM CST ::

Ronald, for the meantime can you just change the system to sleep whenever it is inactive for: setting to Never. Instead of reinstalling the OS.

:: posted by NeXTian @ 06/05/2002 06:01 PM CST ::

Actually, according to an Apple Knowledge Base Article the 10.1.5 update "Improves compatibility of Power Macintosh G3 (Desktop and Mini-Tower) computers with ATI Radeon 7000 video cards."

:: posted by Matthew Sparby @ 06/05/2002 06:30 PM CST ::

I purchased a Radeon 7000 as opposed to the older model specifically because it supports dual monitors. I now have my system set to never sleep because Apple has clearly broken something. I am not going to reformat my OS X partition and reinstall all the way back to 10.1.4 and I am certainly not going to wait for ATI and Apple to get their act together. I can live with this situation for a couple of months until the next update.

To their credit, Apple has improved other aspects of the OS with this update. Applications open noticeably quicker and the Quartz graphics in Office are a joy.

You win some, you loose some!

:: posted by Peter Lindsay @ 06/05/2002 08:21 PM CST ::

All I can say about 10.1.5 is... "whoa dude!"

Running on a G3/500 iMac, the speed increase is considerable. I love the new font smoothing, and, by golly, I think scrolling is FASTER with it turned on. It certainly does feel quicker in Netscape 6.2. Office finally doesn't look crappy. I got Unsanity Silk and activated smoothing for everything, rather than wait for updates!

:: posted by Jim Champlin @ 06/13/2002 03:11 PM CST ::

I have a PowerBook Lombard running Mac OS X 10.1
Well it doesn't have a DVD Player for Lombards and Wallstreet PowerBooks.
In OS 9.2 and 9.1 the screen crashes so I can't use them.
In OS 9.0.4 the DVD Player skips.
So I'm back to Mac OS 8.6 for DVD Playback and Mac OS X for other Applications.
I think myself really stupid for trusting Apple.
My PowerBook (2000) is too old for them.

:: posted by Alejandro Carlos Bermejo @ 06/22/2002 03:38 AM CST ::

After upgrading to OsX 10.1.5. the Radeon finally came alive in my 7300/166 with G4/500mhz cpu upgrade card. The strange thing is, however, the monitor connected to the Radeon only lights up after I hooked up a little Mac/VGA adapter on the onboard video-out. Without this adapter the monitor (connected to the Radeon) still is black in OsX 10.1.5. The monitor control panel in OsX doesn't mentioned there are two monitors (one real monitor on the Radean and one adapter on the onboard video-out) hanging out there.

Is there anybody who knows how to solve this problem, which isn't really a problem ......beside (I think) the Radeon is using only 16mb in stead of 32mb.

:: posted by peter de snoo @ 09/03/2002 05:04 PM CST ::

�copyright 2002, 2003 matthew sparby