What the fuck is going on with Apple’s aluminum-case G4 Powerbooks? I’ll tell you what: they’re dropping like flies, and it’s pissing me off.
Work bought a slew of them back in ‘03 for our project engineers; this was after the “Massive Mac Migration ™” whereby the majority of the Windows and Next machines were purged from the network in deference to Apple products, much to my delight.
Over a recent ten-day time-span, five of these Powerbooks had complete, utter, and fatal hard disk failures. All names have been changed to protect my co-workers’ identities.
The OfficeCrackwhore was first; his shit took a header, but—fortuitously—after letting it cool down, he was able to mount the dying HDD and transfer all of his shit to an emergency Powerbook that I gave him. There were horrible noises coming from the disk drive.
Next, was NewKid; he came to my office asking “What does the blue screen of death mean when it happens on a Mac?”. His Powerbook was completely fucked. It wouldn’t even make the startup chime. Also, constant “clicks of death” from the HDD.
Then came HungarianNavyGuy; his Powerbook was just as fucked as NewKid’s. At that point, I put out the A.P.B. to all at work who had these devil-spawn laptops saying “backup everything, backup now, backup ASAFP… and, by the way, you’re pretty much screwed if you never had me install the email backup script on your shit like I offered”.
Fourth came PoshSpice; he approached me in the common area near the couches at the same time I was discussing the burgeoning Mac plague with one of the owners. “Hey Gary, my laptop won’t start up.” Fuck! Luckily, he had the good backup action.
Finally, having spoken with PoshSpice about his dismal situation last Friday, GolfFreak was good and paranoid about the data on his POS-G4-PB and started backing up all his shit on Saturday. During the backup process… guess what happened? Yup. His shit self-destructed; luckily (again) he was one of the Blessed who had let me install my kickass backup script on his machine.
There haven’t been any new deaths since Monday. I have an idea why this is happening.
Apple conducted (is conducting?) a laptop battery replacement program because some of the batteries shipped with Powerbooks of this very model have a tendency to run too hot, and—yes—have a risk of catching fire. I wasn’t in town when the announcement came out (either honeymoon or grandmother’s funeral), so communicated back to the office that people would be responsible for checking the status of their own shit and sending things back to Apple as required. This is why I cannot be certain that all five of these boat anchors had overheating batteries.
But what I know for sure is that these Powerbook G4s run hotter than Satan’s cock. I cannot bear to touch the aluminum case directly to the left of the touch-pad (directly over the power supply) during my resuscitation efforts. Hot hot hot. New battery or not, Apple made a critical design flaw by putting the battery and power supply so close to the disk drive, and making the aluminum case of these laptops part of the heat-sink.
Due to the mass extinction currently in progress, I can only conclude that the perpetual high-temp environment that the cheap-ass HDDs that Apple installed in this particular model—while possibly not exceeding the operational temperature tolerance of the drive—has had an ongoing deleterious effect on the drive assembly itself. Shits run hot, hard disks fail en masse.
I know for a fact that OfficeCrackwhore exchanged his battery for a new (flame-retardant?) one. Free new battery? Sweet! How’d that work? Fucked laptop!
I don’t think I have the pocket scratch to pay for a class-action against Apple… but keep your eyes open and let me know if some other rich motherfucker has the balls to stick it to Steve and the boys…
I’ll get us on board.