A very sunny and hot day in Luxembourg

Friday, May 29, 2020

It is a sunny day and the daytime high is expected around 20 to 22 degrees Celsius. A nice day for a new beginning. One of my very favorite songs is Billy Idol's White Wedding and the lyrics go like;

It's a nice day to start again
It's a nice day for a white wedding
It's a nice day to start again

Yes, it is a good day to start our life, work, economy again. It is Friday and a lot of businesses (especially entertainment, food and other services) are reopening their doors to the customers. Somehow the cities look lively again.

PowerBook 100 etc.

There are new PowerBook 100s on the market (ebay).

There is one seller from the Netherlands. Some items from this seller is very interesting. It is a mainboard (of PowerBook 100) with 2 MB memory board installed with an extra unknown PSRAM board. The description says it was pulled from a working unit but listed as only parts - non working.

It there was a working unit, why was the mainboard pulled from it? Why not sell that "working unit" as a working unit and get more? Was the case severely damaged?

That extra bonus PSRAM board seems to be a 4 MB board. I google-searched its model number and vaguely found that it indeed seemed to be a 4MB board for the PowerBook 100.

Should I bid for it when the right time come? Yes.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [A very sunny and hot day in Luxembourg]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/29(金) 15:27:37|
  2. Info Luxembourg
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Ubuntu Studio 19.10 gone bad (after updates)

Ubuntu Studio 19.10 gone bad

It was Wednesday, May 27, 2020 that I let the "Software Update" run and had my Ubuntu Studio 19.10 up-to-date. The installation process seemed to have gone very well. No error messages and no fuss. I rebooted the machines as it was required after kernel updates and others.

It booted and the desktop appeared. It prompted me to login. I did and the screen went to black for a moment. Then the login window appeared again.

Did I not type the correct letter sequence? Was the caps lock on? I kept typing and pressing the return key for several times but the machine behaved exactly the same.

I intentionally typed a wrong password and saw what would happen. The login window showed a message that I typed wrong. Yeah, I knew.

So I am eternally stuck with the login window.

Now my Ubuntu Studio 19.10 is somehow broken; it would not let me in.

Is it only my Ubuntu Studio 19.10 or somebody else is also having this issue?

It does not really matter because I was planning to upgrade it to Kubuntu 20.04 and then Install Ubuntu Studio as an add-on. This process will replace the kernel (normal kernel to the low-latency kernel) and others and then install additional software programs.

Kubuntu to come (and Xubuntu to go) soon

I read that Ubuntu Studio is leaving Xubuntu behind soon. 20.04 LTS will stick to Xubuntu for a while but non-LTS will be adopting Kubuntu soon (as soon as 20.10?). It was written that even Ubuntu Studio developers were using Ubuntu Studio on Kubuntu.

I was a bit frustrated with Xubuntu 19.10 when I found out that the demon (or something similar) for Internet-time server scheme did not work and I could not make the Japanese Input Method work.

I think the situation (Japanese Input Method framework support) would be similar but I am hoping that Kubuntu handles it better.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Ubuntu Studio 19.10 gone bad (after updates)]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/28(木) 15:45:06|
  2. Linux
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3, 2, 1, zero and it is mine!

PowerBook 100 fever is peaking out?

I am not talking about actual disease but my infatuation with this 29 years old Apple product.

In short, I outbid other two bidders and won the auction. A PowerBook 100 (not working, of course) with a defective screen with an Italian keyboard is now mine.

The bonus part (maybe it is also broken and not working) of this PowerBook 100 is its mysterious second serial port in the back. The PowerBook 100 came with only one serial port (Modem/Printer). There is an internal serial port on the mainboard but it needs a dedicated device like Apple genuine slow modem board.

There was a company who sold a serial port adapter for the PowerBook 100 (or 150, who is based on Duo 230 or something) who has only one serial port. I don't know much about the MIDI interface but it takes two to tango (or it takes two dedicated serial ports to use the MIDI interface) and some people installed it.

The picture clearly shows an additional serial port where some modem equipped PowerBook 100s show a phone line plug.

I also bid for the Floppy Disk Drive that the same seller had and also won it.

Now I will have a complete PowerBook 100 who can be functional after recapping the old leaky capacitors. A complete PowerBook 100 for me is a US keyboard equipped one. I had purchased a non working rather rundown PowerBook 100 with a US keyboard with seemingly a good screen.

Here also it takes two to tango. I mean merging those two PowerBook 100 to make a complete one.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [3, 2, 1, zero and it is mine!]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/27(水) 18:29:28|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Hannah is in a quarantine state (not for COVID-19)

Hannah is in quarantine

I know she likes outdoors and the fresh aire but I have been keeping her inside for a week. This quarantine is not because of the COVID-19 but ticks that crawl under her coat. I have used those drop medicines for some time now but when she wonders in the forest she attracts more.

She had been scratching herself rather frequently and I had been trying wiping those nasty ticks out. She has developed some small scabs where she scratched too hard and too often. I found them and decided to fight those ticks and keep her inside until I prepare other means of getting rid of them.

I am going to prepare biggish plastic cases that I can use as bath tabs for her. I would prepare two of them, one for bubbling bath (with bug repellant shampoo) and one for rinsing bath. This way I can bathe her immediately after coming home from a walk in the forest (provided she is cooperative).

The good time and the bad time chimes

A while ago I wrote about the Apple Macintosh boot chimes. when a Mac boots and its ROM checks out the health of the board, it happily announces its feeling by beeping the happy chord. When it is under the weather, it exprsses its feeling by beeping the sad chime.

In my experience, I have heard the happy chord thousands of times. On the other hand, I have heard the unhappy chime only a few times.

Back in late 1990s or early 2000s (I left Japan Semptember 2003) I acquired a Quadra (might have been Centris) 610 at a recycling / used shop for almost nothing as it was sold as only for parts without any guaranties.

After bringing it home, I checked its inside before booting it. I found an Apple PowerPC 601 Upgrade card in its PDS (Processor Direct Slot). It was complete with RAM modules, a HDD and others so I turned it on.

What I heard was a faint (maybe the volume was set low) but strange sound out of the machine. This was the first time I heard this chime of death. The Quadra 610 was sad and so was I. When I pulled the PDS card out, it booted happily. The failure of this PowerPC Upgrade Card must have been the direct cause of its host being neglected and abandoned on top of the fact that faster PowerPC euipped Macintosh machines were being introduced into the market (and also Apple products were being replaced by cheaper Windows PCs).

Actually it was not a chime but an emulated car crash sound (of hard skidding tires followed by a bang). I remember this and I don't think I imagined it.

I found one or two video showing the chimes on YouTube. One of them is titled, "ALL APPLE COMPUTER CRASH CHIMES" by "Windows Expert".

It showed me the usual "All systems (are) GO" chord and two kinds of "abort, abort!" sounds. One of the "abort!" sounds was this car crash emulation and the other was sad chime.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ
[Hannah is in a quarantine state (not for COVID-19)]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/23(土) 19:37:51|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Embassy of Japan Luxembourg and PowerBook 100

PowerBook 100 fever

I use this Andoroid ebay app by ebay. I save the search results for several words like "PowerBook G4" or "PowerBook 100" among others.

It is fun to see them (favorite items) surface on ebay for sale/auction.

Yesterday, two separate PowerBook 100 appeared, one from Belgium and the other from Germany. Both of them up for auction bids but not with "Buy It Now" options.

Both of them are described as non-functional units, quite normal for a personal computer that is 30 years old.

I don't expect them to work out of the box. I just want them by me for the moment and later I will have them repaired by skilled repairman in Japan (and use them).

The German unit looks OK but scratches on the unit can be seen in the photos. It has a German Keyboard on it. The auction does not include any accessories like FDD unit or AC adapter.

The Begiam unit has develped that infamous pink moldy spot but otherwise the overall appearance is OK. It has an Italian keyboard on it. The auction does not include any accessories but this seller has put up matching FDD unit and the AC adapter for auction all separately.

The starting bid for the Greman unit is set at € 185, which is too high for me. The starting bid for the Belgian unit is set at € 29.99, which is still OK for me but the actual bids would rise up to who know how much.

I will try to get the hold of the Belgian unit as much as I can. The FDD unit and the AC adapter are attractive but I will not bid for them.

There are people selling PowerBook 100 and buying them here in Europe after all these years. Who sell them? Or maybe the questions should be what not who.

I have no doubts that some are barn finds (sometimes the sellers put in "job lots" or similar words) and others are presumably "finally decided to sell after storing for several years in the attic" units.

People and some organizations (schools, companies or ect.) move. Whey they do, some people are asked to clean up the places. That when those job lots surface. Some people clean their attic or cell and find dust-collection cardboards containing stuff.

Who are buying them? I know one person, me but who are those people? What do they want? What do they accomplish with this, PowerBook 100?

Me? I want to have it with me as it was among my first love Mac that I met around 30 years ago. It is definitely cheaper to buy PowerBook G4 units than PowerBook 100 units and the former is in a way still viable today.

Japanese Embassy in Luxembourg

I am going to visit there Tomorrow. I have some business to do.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Embassy of Japan Luxembourg and PowerBook 100]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/21(木) 16:03:17|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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PowerBook 100 and PowerPC first close encounter

PowerBook 100 fever is not over but the reality sets in

Re: My non-functioning PowerBook 100

I did not find any AC/DC converter that can produce 7.5 DC in my possession. I guess I have to get one of those AC/DC converter with variable output voltage settings (3 V to 12 V) that I can find on Amazon (Germany).

The output setting dial has 3 V, 4.5 V, 5 V, 6 V, 7.5 V, 9 V, 12 V positions. It has 6 different plugs. I hope one of them fits the PowerBook 100 but it is a minor annoyance that I can easily overcome.

I want to test it how it reacts. Does it ring that OK chime, boing (that sad dismal chime of death) or does it keep silent? The photo that the ebay seller put up showed a bluish lit blank screen. Does the SCSI 2.5-inch disk drive whine at all?

Speaking of the chime of death from Apple Macintosh computer, I have had once one encounter with it. Back in early 2000's I bought a Centris (or was it Quadra) 610 for almost nothing (used unit as is status). It had Apple PowerPC upgrade card in its PDS. I was elated to see it there. I was eager to see it boot. When I booted it up, it made a faint unusual sound. I don’t recall it exactly but I think it included a hard breaking (skidding) sound immediately followed by a bang. Was it only my imagination? When I take that card out, it booted normally with its native Motorola 60400 CPU.

This was the first close encounter (but not actual contact) with a PowerPC Mac in my possession. I toyed with some PowerPC Macs that belonged to a friend of mine back then (late 1990's) but never owned one (until finally I owned a Mac mini G4 in 2019). You see that upgrade card was non-functional so it did not count.

I know that I have to recap the deteriorated capacitors if I want to see it boot and get operational.

I saw someone putting a recapping service for old Mac mainboard from Russia while looking for some ancient computer parts on ebay. Are there others near me doing the same service. For example the PowerBook 100 on that ebay auction had a recapping operation. The seller is based somewhere in Central France (Ile-de-France). There must be some people doing it around there.

How is COVID-19 different from other so-called influenza viruses?

As the President Trump himself once said that actual death toll from "ordinary" Influenza was way bigger than the death toll from COVID-19 (calculated from its projected death rate). For most people COVID-19 is just like a common cold. I catch a cold once in a while. I was infected with a rather serious flu in 2018 and it was really heavy blow. i did not die but really sick for several days. I did not see a doctor nor did I take any medicine. I hate medicine.

Why does this strain of virus get the royal treatment? I don't understand. Could someone explain it to me?

Summer tires on

I changed them. It is almost the end of May now. I did it myself. I like changing tires.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [PowerBook 100 and PowerPC first close encounter]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/20(水) 01:01:36|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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PowerBook 100 additional notes

The guts

One of the three screws that fix the lower case was missing. Actually the one thread (right side close to the DC power port) was broken. This is why one screw is missing. Some one overtightened it and broke the thread and eventually lost the screw.

I made a brief quick look inside. There was no visible capacitor leak on the mainboard. The CPU daughter board seemed to be OK. The memory expansion card seemed also OK. There were no visible damages anywhere.

I will buy a small bottle of nail polish (or what is it called?) and repair the cracks so that they won't grow bigger. It should work.

The broken thread can be also fixed with the same method.

Are there many PowerBook 100 machines on the market?

I continue to look for PowerBook 100 and related parts on ebay. I find some on sale. I see some from the USA (out of reach for me because of the outrageous shipping charges) or Europe. Some are expensive and other are a bit cheaper.

At this moment (as of Monday May 18, 2020) there is a French seller who sells a functional PowerBook 100. You can buy it for € 347 (Buy It Now). In the description it states that it had been refurbished and capacitors on the motherboard had been recapped. This is why it work. It comes with the external floppy drive and a non-genuine power adapter. The appearance is OK but its LCD screen has developed a blemish on it. It does not have a internal modem. It is attractive but the price is not.

By the way, the seller does not refer to the tote bag that vaguely appears in the background. Is it included?





This moldy spots are not repairable according to a seasoned professional repairman. You have to swap the screen.

There was a PowerBook 100 there (ebay) just a day before from Germany. The seller wrote it had not been tested and the price was around € 190. Since it was also a Buy It Now item, it was snatched up in a matter of a few hours. Untested PowerBook 100 for € 190?

Yeah, if I were a skilled recapping technician, I would buy it and put it up for sale at € 400 after recapping it. Somebody might buy it. I would get around € 150 of profit for a work of 1 hour after spending for new capacitors around € 30 or €40?

There are items coming and going. I am amazed to see they are going. Some people want them! Why? What do people expect a almost 30 years old PowerBook 100 to do? Any recent smartphones are by far, way way more powerful. It (PB 100) can not display any colors not even shades of grey. It won't do YouTube, any SNS applications nor netsurfing.

I don't see many working PowerBook 100s on the market. It must be rare. Without recapping (those deteriorating capacitors), almost none of them will work.

I don't have much money so I won't buy any of those expensive ones. I have eyes only on cheaper bargains. Someday I will get the missing parts.

1) tilt feet
2) back port lid
3) track ball button
4) power adapter
5) (optionally) floppy drive

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [PowerBook 100 additional notes]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/18(月) 17:01:56|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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PowerBook 100 has landed (after 29 years)!

Apple PowerBook 100 (1991) has landed!

I first touched the Apple PowerBook 100 back in early 1990's probably 1992. At that time I was living in the USA (San Fernando Valley and later Santa Monica).

I fell in love with it. Along with 100, 140 and 170 were also being sold but PowerBook 100 appeared to most appealing to me.

After 29 years, it came to me. Wow 29 years! I am happy and I am determined to repair it and use it.

It does not boot according to the ebay seller. Its LCD screen glow when switched on according to the ebay seller. It shows its age as it has some cracks and missing parts.

I have not seen the guts but I expect some capacitors are leaking. It does not matter at all.

I will have it fixed in the future and will use it.

In the meantime, I will keep my eyes on the ebay auctions to look for parts and accessories to make it complete.

I can not boot it as I have no AC/DC adapter. Back home (Japan) I have at least one power adapter (for PowerBook 145B). I have SCSI cables and others (System CD, LocalTalk devices and so on) so I can immediately play with this PowerBook 100. The plug (power adapter plug) seems to be the one universally used for DC 12V plugs. I can easily make a compatible adapter for it. DC 7.5 V and 2 A is the rated specification.

One thing I have to write here before stopping is that its keyboard's springs are a bit too weak. When I type (touch-type), the keys stay depressed a bit too long before they spring back. This makes typing quick a bit difficult. OK, no problem. I will type on it gently.

Disassembling the battery seems very hard.
(image from 68kMLA forum thread "Powerbook 100 Battery Rebuild)

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [PowerBook 100 has landed (after 29 years)!]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/18(月) 12:02:27|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Retro Wifi SI - RS232 serial port Internet computer modem

Retro Wifi SI - RS232 Serial port Internet computer modem

Simulant (http://www.simulant.uk/)

I found a line on their site like the following;
... aims to be a cheaper and more open alternative to .... Wifi232 (by Paul Rickards)

Is this product good for me who want to connect old Macs like Portable or PowerBook 100 to a Linux machine or outdated MacOS X (Tiger / Leopard) machines?

The scenario:
When I get my old Portable or soon-coming PowerBook 100 operational and kicking, I want to move files (mostly text files) from Motorola 68000 Macs to latter-day Macs or a Linux machines.

It is clear that M68k machines are not capable of surfing the net (accessing sites that require "https://"). Even though composing and editing simple paragraphs for this blog but M68k machines won't upload them on the blog site.

There has to be another modern computer to do the final process.

Got the picture?

I know that Asanté Micro EN/SC would do it (or any other Asanté EN/SC products).

These clever devices use the SCSI port to emulate the Ethernet port but they are expensive now (maybe more so than they were still in production).

I sought for cheaper solutions and stumbled upon a YouTube video that showed the Wifi232 (by Paul Rickards).

It seemed promising but they were out of stock (if the maker was still restocking).

I sought further for a similar solution and then I found the "Retro Wifi SI" actively sold from a site based in the UK (how convenient!).

It is a modem emulator in my understanding. From a computer it looks like an old phone line modem attached to its serial port. Instead of dialing some phone number, it connects to a Wifi spot (router).

I can set up a "File sharing" on my OS X (Tiger / Leopard) computers and let M68k machines write to and read from the shared folder. System 7 can handle TCP/IP protocol. So it is feasible.

The device (Retro Wifi SI) will cost me around € 40 so this is way cheaper than Asanté products.

I don't have the proper cable for the moment and I don't think I will buy it and use it anytime soon. Remember that my soon-arriving PowerBook 100 is not supposed to function.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Retro Wifi SI - RS232 serial port Internet computer modem]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/17(日) 22:40:11|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Umidigi F1, SLIP and WIFI232


I have been using it for about a year. How do I think of it? It works fine and its built-in memory capacity is generous 128 GB.

The downside of this relatively unknown and obscure manufacturer's products is that it does not get security updates often. I had only one update until now and the update is really old.

I don't think it will ever get Android 10 update. I am almost sure.

As I had already known before I got it, its camera is really a disappointment. It boasts a huge megapixel resolution sensor but the resulted images are not up to my expectation.

I would like to get a new Google Pixel 4a but I don't think I can't.

How to exchange files among old Macs and newer Macs

OLD MACS: Let's define what old Macs are! They are often referred as vintage classic Macintosh computers. They featureMotorola M68000, M68020, M68030 and M68040 CPUs. Anything before the personal computers were celled Macintosh are Apple II series, Lisa or something.

Old Macs don't don't have USB ports. Some have built-in modems and others have built-in AAUI Ethernet ports. If they have any kind of Ethernet ports, networking is way easy.

Among my possesion (most of them are in Japan), Portable, Plus, PowerBook 145B, Mac IIsi, Mac IIcx, LCII, LCIII, LC475, LC630, Centris 610, PowerBook 550c

NEW MACS: Let me define what newer Macs are here! What I mean by newer Macs here are anything having an OS before macOS (OS X) 10.6 Snow Leopard. Snow Leopard changed the networking scenes because (from what I read) from Snow Leopard onward, file sharing schemes were only made possible through TCP/IP scheme.

All PowerPC models are fall into these categories. Earlier PowerPC models are without USB ports and called OldWorld Macs and those with USB ports are called NewWorld Macs. My PowerBook G4 and iBook G4 machines belong to the latter but their maximum OS version is 10.5 Leopard (Recently I found a YouTube video where a person demonstrated the installation of beta version of Snow Leopard that got never released to the public on a PowerBook G4. Does this version of Snow Leopard have any use?)

Among my possesion (most of them are here with me) PowerBook G4, iBook G4, Mac mini G4

Intel models like my Mac mini, MacBook (Lat 2009) and MacBook Pro 13 (Mid 2010) are relatively latest Macs.

If I can successfully resurrect the PowerBook 100 (or other old Macs), I want to use it (them) as much as possible and have fun. Writing some paragraphs for my blog will be fun. The problem is if I can not extract the files (text files) out of PowerBook 100 and transfer them to other newer Macs (like PowerBook G4, iBook G4 or MacBooks), it won't make it to the blog.

There are ways. It seems that easier the methods, pricier the needed devices.

If I am enough money to buy Asanté Micro EN/SC right now, I can do it so easily. It (Asanté Micro EN/SC) will be perfect for the job. It is so neat that it draws power from the adjacent (a SCSI port and an ADB port are neighbors) ADB port.

I don't have much experience with SLIP but it should work.

By the way, SLIP is Serial Line Internet Protocol (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serial_Line_Internet_Protocol)


WIFI232 (http://biosrhythm.com/?page_id=1453), is it viable? Currently out of stock if it ever gets restocked.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Umidigi F1, SLIP and WIFI232]の続きを読む

テーマ:日記 - ジャンル:日記

  1. 2020/05/16(土) 17:45:52|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Random thoughts

Random thoughts

I once lived in the USA for a while. It was an exciting time, literally, really.

I saw the coverage of Presidential election process the entire year and in the end I watched Bill Clinton and Al Gore with their spouses dance on the stage on TV live.

I had the opportunity of experiencing a curfew (or two of them) on the day when Rodney King trial verdict (the second one) was going to be handed in.

The first verdict led to so-called LA riot but I was not living in Los Angeles Down Town area so I did not see anyone shooting around me or rooting any businesses around me. I only saw them on TV.

I survived so-called Northridge (afterwards referred as Reseda-Northridge as the real epicenter was in Reseda) Earthquake. I was living (sleeping at that time) just a few miles from Northridge and only 7 or 8 miles from the epicenter. I did not get hurt by the tremors but had to persevere the subsequent inconveniences that followed.

I was there when O.J. Simpson was arrested and tried. I did not see the end (or the first verdict) of the trial butI remember the off and on court drama and the disturbances caused by the event.

I guess Honorable Judge Lance Ito has already retired by now but his name along with Marsh Clark and Johnnie Cochran will certainly last until the day I die. That big white Sony CRT monitor was also a memorable piece in the trial.

Well, what are these uninteresting paragraphs leading to?

The Trump campaign 2020, of course.

I was not aware (or woke in the sense of socially aware of what is going around) that Donald Trump (at that time Presidential candidate) was a someone different, something huge back in 2015 or 2016. It way later around 2017 when I realized what he had represented.

When I got woke, I purchased an audio book "Trump's America" by Newt Gingrich and also sought the Net for more information.

Newt Gingrich was not a stranger to me. His name was big when I was living in the USA back in the early 90's. He was once a candidate for the Republican Party but eventually conceded to whoever won the party nomination. Who was it back then? Who was against Bill Clinton? Bob Dole?

Who will win in November? I hope that DJT does.

TenForFox feature parity release 22

TenFourFox (FPR 22) is the browser on my precious PowerBook G4 (A1106 1.5 GHz / 2 GB) but why does it take up so much CPU resources? I am not browsing now but just writing this so it is not rendering any images, transferring any data (almost none) or translating any frames but it it is eating so much CPU power. Why?

I appreciate the efforts of the man (or people) behind the project. It is an amazing piece of work. I just want it to be just a tiny bit less resource hog.

Adélie Linux

I am expecting to download its RC-1 edition and install it on one of my many PowerPC G4 Mac. The installation process is rather complicated. I am going to prepare a cheat sheet for me by downloading the Guide and editing the content so that I can read it easily with added tidbits of Mac specific details found in other documents.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Random thoughts]の続きを読む

テーマ:日記 - ジャンル:日記

  1. 2020/05/14(木) 19:13:02|
  2. Diary
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Asante Micro EN/SC


Assané Micro EN/SC will be perfect for the PowerBook 100 to gain functionality of Ethernet port.


On the other hand, the price that the seller is asking is astonishingly out of my budget! How much did it cost back then when it was released? Has the price gone up since then because it is rare and being actively sought after from some people like me who have a weakness of falling in love with old vintage Macintosh machines?

What is this dangling (seemingly a serial port) cable for? A power supply line from the serial port? Anyway, I have to search for the specs of this mysterious product.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Asante Micro EN/SC]の続きを読む

テーマ:日記 - ジャンル:日記

  1. 2020/05/11(月) 21:50:58|
  2. Diary
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It's time that I clean it.

I am cleaning my room

It is way way past that time. My room has accumulated enough trash and unnecessary stuff so that it has come to the point that I can not live normally. So it is time!

This is being written on one of my PowerBook G4 (A1106) machines. I have three of them. This one (number 3 in the order of purchase) is clocked at 1.5 GHz and was a good deal cosmetically and functionally. It was really cheap. It has a German keyboard (purchased from Lithuania) and the latch mechanism on the lower case (next to the palm rest) is broken. Otherwise this is working beautifully and I am very pleased with it.

I purchased (from either the Bookyard or PowerBookMedic) a US keyboard and the needed part to fix the latch mechanism. I am lazy and have not done the swap nor repair.

I am waiting for another new (used, of course) PowerBook. This time it is the PowerBook 100 from the UK. It won't boot at all! I guess more than 90 % of what is still standing (in other words, those that have been already thrown away) are not functioning because of capacitor leakage.

I am Japanese by birth. I can find almost handful of repair shops who specialize in old classic vintage Macintosh machines or are willing to repair them in Japan. If I were in Japan now, I would take many of my old Macintosh machines to them and have them repaired. The Portable, IIcx and others.

This time I decided to buy this broken PowerBook 100 because I thought if I don't now I won't be able to own them. This particular PowerBook 100 has missing parts or a cracked case part. It seems to have 2 MB PSRAM card inside. I will keep buying yet other PowerBook 100 machines so that I will be able to accumulate enough spare parts so that I can assemble at least one complete machine.

I am now looking into a method or methods to transfer file from the PowerBook 100 to other capable machines. I want to use this PowerBook 100 as much as possible. I may use it to write this, i.e. blog entries on it. Finding a minimum editor or word processor for it so that I can spell check them won't be too hard.

What is puzzling me is HOW. How do I transfer the files (mostly text files or rich text files) to another machine that can access the Internet freely. I can think of an easy setup to exchange files with other Motorola 68K Macintosh machines. Apple LocalTalk or its derivative PhoneNet (is it the correct name?) will do but those 68K machines are also not viable anymore in surfing the Net freely.

The PowerBook 100 is capable of handling basic TCP/IP internet connection (it can handle up to System 7.5.5) but won't be able to cope with "https" sites. I won't be able to use its internal analog modem to get online. Where do I find an analog port for a modem nowadays?

How do I connect the PowerBook 100 to a viable network via Ethernet device? There seems (seemed) to be some LocalTalk-Ethernet bridge devices or SCSI-Ethernet adapters on the market but they are by now not easy to get ones or very expensive because of their rarity.

I keep my eyes on those devices on ebay or elsewhere. If I don't get any of those devices, a PowerBook 100 will be like an isolate island who no bridges or ferries services to the mainland (for example my MacBook or PowerBook G4).

It would be nice if a SCSI-Ethernet adapter is still available for a reasonable price and it can support System 7 and the TCP/IP connection on a M68000 machine.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [It's time that I clean it.]の続きを読む

テーマ:日記 - ジャンル:日記

  1. 2020/05/11(月) 18:57:04|
  2. Diary
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Apple PowerBook 100

PowerBook 100 (1991 - 1992) Model Identifier: 24

It is a little brother of the Macintosh Portable (1989 - 1991).

(images gracefully filched from lowendmac.com)

PowerBook 100 was normally sold like this, i.e. with an external Floppy disk drive.


Macintosh Portable and its little brother PowerBook 100 side by side.

******** On Portable ********
According to my trusty MacTracker on my MacBook Pro 13 Mid 2010, there are two models of Macintosh Portables, one is M5120 (Model Number), which is the original and the other is M5126, which is with backlit LCD.

Around 1999 to 2002 (I guess as my memory does not serve me) I bought a Macintosh Portable. It cost me a lot. It was a used one and according to the registered owner's name, I figured that it once belong to a gentleman from some English speaking countries, most likely the U.S.A. It did not contain any sensitive information on him but the user name suggested distinctively a male person.

I played it for a while before it stopped booting at all. If it is with me and if I live in Japan where it still is, I would take it to some repair shop and get it fixed. I know that some or all of the capacitors on it are defect.

I don't remember whether it had a backlit LCD or not.
******** End *******

Back to PowerBook 100.

It shares a lot with its predecessor (Portable), in fact, one of the Apple technical documents (PDF floating on the Internet) that I found and scanned contained expressions like it (some internal scheme) is basically the same as the Portable, so let us skip the details and go on to the next topic or so.

The fact that Sony Inc. was commissioned to design (internally, I guess, while Apple designed it externally) and manufacture it may make them half-brothers (from different mothers).

When it came out originally in the US, I was there. I was living there. Alas I could not afford it. I wish I had purchased it back then.

It is one of the Apple products that I wish that I had with me or that I can get one day.

Why just with so when I can get it (working or not working)?

So I bought one on ebay right now. It is broken internally (blown capacitors) and cosmetically (cracked case, missing parts). It does not matter almost all of them in existence don't function properly without recapping those nasty capacitors anyway. As for the broken and missing parts, I will keep looking for them.

Missing parts:
1. no AC adapter
2. no external floppy drive
3. no backside flap door (covering the IO ports)
4. the lower trackball click button is gone
5. right side tilt stand is missing its foot
6. right upper corner of upper case is chipped off
7. three rubber feet (covering the screws) are gone

(possible) Remedies:
1. There are some genuine or compatible adapters sold widely
2. Floppy disks are available nowadays?
3. It is only cosmetic but I will look for other PowerBook 100s to get parts from
4. ditto
5. ditto
6. ditto or I may try to fix it
7. ditto but those rubber parts have deteriorated by now so I should make them out of some rubbery material.

I don't think I can get anything from any online stores. For example, The Bookyard lists only a handful of parts for it and PowerBookMedic does not have any at all.

The Bookyard lists 3. back flap and 5. feet (although as "foot") but they are out of stock as of now (May 10, 2020). They are so expensive so I won't bother to click on the "Notify" button to let them know that I want them when those are in stock.


The only way that I get any parts is keep looking for them on auctions like ebay or other sources.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Apple PowerBook 100]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/10(日) 18:46:22|
  2. Bike Races
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PowerBook G4 Titanium gone with wind

ebay auction

We (4 people including me) bid for the Apple PowerBook G4 Titanium (either A1001 or A1025) but in the end nobody got it although I was the highest bidder!

The reserve (the minimum amount that the seller wanted) was not met. So the deal was gone. I thought it might be re-listed soon. It has not come up so far (after a couple of days) so the seller might have found anther buyer elsewhere.

Anyway, I did not really need it so not a big deal. As a great Jazz musician (one of my favorite) Eric Dolphy once said, "When you play the music, it is gone in the air and you can never recapture it."

ebay fun

I like looking at those old classic Apple products on ebay. My particular favorite Macintosh products are Quadra 700 and PowerBook 100. The shape of them haunts me for some reason. They surface on ebay from time to time. Because the insane shipping fees and custom charges (on top of the devaluation of Euro in recent years), I don't intend to buy them from outside EU (or outside Europe) these days.

Sometime I see them on ebay. I am tempted to bid for them. Alas I am not rich.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [PowerBook G4 Titanium gone with wind]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/09(土) 20:42:30|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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They are like bread spreads in your computer

Walking Hannah

I was out in the forest with Hannah. It was a sunny day here in Luxembourg. We were out there over 3 hours. I hope that Hannah was happy.

The paragraph above was written on Wednesday (May 6, 2020).

I was again out in the forest with Hannah on Friday (May 8, 2020) but she was not herself for some reason. I let her on the ground as soon as we were at the safe drop point in the forest (away from cars and etc.).

She seemed happy first but she stayed within 25 meters radius all the time. In the end after 2 hours and 30 minutes she threw up a bit. So I picked her up and came home. It was a sunny day. She might have eaten too much before we set off for a walk.

She ate after she came home and now she is sleeping. I think she is OK.

Like spreads, only they are not edible

There are two (roughly) kinds of thermal paste for hobby DIY overclockers.

One is silicon base grease with some material (metallic power?) and the other is liquid metal based.

Nowadays some manufacturer (or manufacturers) came up with high end thermal pads but could be comparable to high grade thermal compounds.

I am planning to delid Intel Core 2 Quad Q9500 in near future so I am planning to buy some high grade thermal compound (MX-4) and Thermal Grizzly (liquid metal) product.

I am also thinking of applying one of the products on PowerPC CPUs. My iBook G4 is waiting to be assembled but I should apply a better thermal compound instead of a cheap one that I bought years ago.

Here are some images that I downloaded. I have fiddled with these back in the past when Windows 95, 98, Me and 2000 were around.

(image 1)
Pentium 100 MHz or 133 MHz were typically found in this package. Their core was wrapped in some plastic. Old days before I started building my own PCs on my own.

(image 2)
AMD K6 series (266 MHz or 333 MHz) CPUs were typically found in this package. I remember buying one of those myself. I think I took this heat spreader off following the advice found on the Internet for better cooling (my memory is not so solid but I am almost sure).

(image 3)
I bought this AMD Athlon 1 GHz for myself. By use of a conductive ink pen, I overclocked it to 1.1 or 1.2 GHz (my memory is not solid). One could easily toy with the multiplier settings back then. Good old days!

PowerPC G4 (7450, 7447a or 7448?) CPUs found in my Mac mini G4, iBook G4 or PowerBook G4 machines. They look similar to the first generation AMD Athlon CPUs.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [They are like bread spreads in your computer]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/08(金) 19:03:22|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Post COVID-19 race calendar at least provisionary

If they materialize

I only read this article (https://www.cyclingnews.com/news/uci-reveal-new-mens-and-womens-post-covid-19-race-calendar/) on cyclingnews.com.

They (not only UCI but all other organizers, teams, riders and so on) are expecting to get back to business by August. I really hope so.

[Post COVID-19 race calendar at least provisionary]の続きを読む

テーマ:自転車ロードレース - ジャンル:スポーツ

  1. 2020/05/05(火) 17:03:50|
  2. Bike Races
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Conflicting information or a clear explanation? PowerBook G4 Titanium

So what is it, anyway?

I sent out a message to the ebay seller asking the quote for the shipping (to here Luxembourg) and at the same time why the seller gave two different "Model numbers" for just one PowerBook G4 Titanium?

He sent me the quote in precise amount. He seemed to forget to (or not to bother to) attach the currency unit. But since he is living and working in the UK, I have to assume that he meant British Pounds. I have to convert it to €. This is a tiny bit confusing piece of information, isn't it?

I had also written in the inquiry asking where he (I assume) got the Model Number and that he could check the "Model Identifier" from "About This Mac" / "More Info..."

The seller wrote to me that A1001 was printed on the bottom of the PowerBook and also he gave me the "Serial Number" so that I could track its identity myself. (I guess that the serial number came from the sticker in the battery compartment)

There are places on the Internet where you can check Apple products' identity by their serial number. So I visited everymac.com to check it out.

The serial number checked out beautifully and I was told that it belonged to either of 867 MHz or 1 GHz PowerPC equipped PowerBook G4 Titanium. It seems that this serial number belongs to a model A1025 but NOT A1001.

This is a bit confusing, isn't it? Hahaha!

Now what should I make out of this? Is it really A1025 (the last of the TiBook clan)?

The difference between A1001 (667 / 800 MHz) and A1025 (867 MHz / 1 GHz) models is mainly the GPU inside. The higher spec models in each group are equipped with the AirPort Express card as standard.

Why does the model number A1001 appear on the bottom whose guts seem to be from model number A1025?

If I must give a logical explanation, I have to say that the previous owner damaged the bottom cover of his/her A1025 and swapped it with the one from A1011.

Is my reasoning convincing?

Actually, the seller's description includes yet another suspicious spec mention that it has a 30 GB HDD.

I understand that the specifications listed on those sites (lowendmac.com or everymac.com) or given by MacTracker do not exactly match the those of Macs distributed in Europe. So I totally ignored this "30 GB HDD" but A1025 with 1 GHz PowerPC should have 40 GB or more.

It could be that the previous owner (one of the owners) had to swap the faulty HDD with another one from a doner PowerBook G4 Titaium, which happened to be a A1001 model. Could the mix-up of the bottom cover have happened then?

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Conflicting information or a clear explanation? PowerBook G4 Titanium]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/04(月) 18:26:54|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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May 1, 2020 was Friday and I did not notice it

Adélie Linux

I have just learned that there is a relatively new Linux distribution called Adélie ("https://www.adelielinux.org/").

Its initial release candidate (1.0-RC1) has been just made public. The amazing thing about this newcomer is that it includes PowerPC (32-bit and 62-bit) port. Since Debian ceased supporting PowerPC platform, I was a bit disappointed by the trend.

Sure it is true thatFreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD still support PowerPC platform. Fenix Linux is mainly for PowerPC G5 (64-bit) but said to work on G4 Mac if the kernel is swapped.

I was watching various videos on YouTube when an installation video was suggested to me. The author of the video shows his struggle with the installation on his eMac G3 (or iMac G3?). In the end he could not run X11 on it but he seemed to have rather extensive knowledge about Linux in general by the way he annotated his actions.

It seems that installation takes a lot of steps as any user friendly (graphical interface) installer is absent. Years ago when I was fiddling with Slackware in its early years, I installed it on my PC by doing something like that.

Should I jump on it right now? Maybe I should wait a bit.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [May 1, 2020 was Friday and I did not notice it]の続きを読む

テーマ:Mac - ジャンル:コンピュータ

  1. 2020/05/03(日) 19:04:42|
  2. MacBooks and Macs
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Cooking gear review

What is my favorite camping cooking gear?

Short answer:

Trangia (https://trangia.se/en/) 25 (I don't know what "25" refers to but it means that the bigger sized one as opposed to 27, which is the smaller one)

Long answer:

Trangia 25 basic set:
Consisting of
A (1) bigger pot and a (2) smaller pot
A(3) flat pan, which also serves as a lid
A set of one stove (4) lower and (5) upper body
A (6) alcohol spirit burner
A (7) grip handle to pinch everything that's hot (as pots and pan do not have any handles attached)
A (8) strap that ties the entire kit down when tacked together

I bought this set back in 2006 (maybe?) and at that time I was living in Germany.

I bought additionally a plastic plate (a genuine accessory part named "multi disc") that you can use as a cutting board, as a lower guard on snow surface so the stove won't sink in as it melts the snow under or as a utensil to discard the cooking water while keeping the food inside the pot.

I bought other items later to fit my need.
A non-genuine compatible Gas burner
A non-genuine fit-any-smaller-pan-pot-kettle adapter
A genuine pan handle
A genuine lid
Two genuine "Covers" (carry bags)

I used to use the original alcohol burner for years before switching to the gas burner.

I think the Trangia (should be pronounced "tran-gear" as is so pronounced by a Swede in a YouTube video but not "tran-jeer". I frequently hear English-speaking people call it "tran-jeer") is pretty much a bullet-proof cooking gear.

I used it on Mont Ventoux just, say, 100 meters (altitude-wise) down the summit on a very very windy day effortlessly. If you know what I mean by the preceding sentence, I don't have to explain any more to back my testimony up.

The genuine gas burner and also the non-genuine compatible gas burner are capable of liquid feeding. A preheating mechanism is built in the burner. This liquid feeding (as opposed to evaporated gas feeding) capability is essential under cold environment, in other words, Winter time. Even though my camping (during the road bike racing season) is limited to Spring to Fall period, sometime I encounter near zero (Celsius) or subzero conditions.

I should shoot a video and upload it explaining the above on YouTube. OK, someday soon.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ
[Cooking gear review]の続きを読む

テーマ:アウトドア - ジャンル:趣味・実用

  1. 2020/05/02(土) 19:35:58|
  2. Camping in Europe
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The Tour de France 2020 starts where on earth (if it ever does)?

I wonder where it starts in 2020

Before this COVID-19 hit the us, we were supposed to see this year's Tour de France kick off in Nice, France in June (because it has to finish before Tokyo Olympic Games start in late July or early August, which I did not really care).

It is now highly likely that it (the Tour de France) will starts in July or August. There's a slight chance that it could start in September.

If it gets cancelled this year, what will happen in 2020 (if it ever is held in 2020)?

Would it be considered a postponed version or a new version? Will it start in Nice or Denmark?

MacBook Pro 13 Mid 2010 woe

`I have been having a problem with my `(otherwise) trusty MacBook Pro 13 Mid 2010 for some time now.

It came with the original box, power adapter and almost everything that had come when it came out in 2010 when I bought it from the USA in 2013. The missing thing could have been those Apple logo stickers if (only if) it had originally been shipped with ones.

I was happy with the purchase and the price was also good.

The problem is the power adapter. It came with US-style plug cord, of course. It had shown it age by 2019. The thin cord (the one leading to the Magsafe port) began to fray and it eventually shorted itself out at the point where the cord meets the brick.

I knew I could repair it as I had done it before. This site (www.ifixit.com) is a very useful one.

I repaired it with generous use of soldering iron and heat-shrink tubes. It began to work again at least at that time.

By the end of 2018 the internal battery, which I had swapped at the time I got it, had shown a sign of aging. The battery life had become shorter and the battery diagnostic utilities had began to warm me that tis time had come.

So I swapped it again recently. I thought I could use my MacBook Pro would work well. Not so faaaast! I noticed that the battery was not charging so well. Even though the Magsafe connecter is on, the battery is not charging and/or losing its charge quickly.

Now I think it ceased to function as it is supposed to. I think that either the internal guts have deteriorated (I don't know maybe its capacitors or others) or the soldered wires have been shorted slightly.

I have another power adapter but it is also not working as its cord is broken.

I need a working adapter! Fixing them or buying a new (but not genuine) one?

I am writing this on one of my PowerBook G4 machines because their battery is old and have lost their original capacity but PB G4 machines have a (unsafe?) secure snugly plug not like the Magsafe style plugs.

The Magsafe connection may be safe in case of sudden unintended disconnection because it is unlikely that either of the connecting parts can be broken because they snap off so easily and at the same time it is unlikely that the MacBooks would be flung off the table in case someone's leg gets tangled on the cord.

The Magsafe connection may not be so safe in terms of electrical conductivity. When the tips of those thin pins get eventually smudged, they get in the way (of electricity).

You get the point, right? PowerBook G4's connector may not be accident-proof (or may be accident-prone) but at least the electric conduction is very secure.

PowerBook G4 Titanium (1 GHz)?

I like old computers. I have a lot of M68K (Motorola 68000, 68020, 68030 and 6040) classic Macintosh computers at home (A.K.A. at my parent's in Japan).

I have rather a lot PowerPC and Intel Macs here in Luxembourg. PowerPC-based Macs are obsolete (so people think) but they are cute in a way.

I am currently (as of May 1st, 2020) watching an item on ebay. It is a PowerPC PowerBook from the UK. It is old, from year 2002 and does not have much computing power by now (2020). I don't know if I want it but watching. The seller sets a minimum reserve price on it and I don't know how much the seller wants for it. I might bid at the last moment if the price has not gone too far.

The description the seller put up is a bit puzzling or confricting so I did some research and reasoned so far like this.

The photos the seller has given are one (1) screenshot clip and six (6) photos showing the physical conditions of the item.

The sreenshot clip show that "About this Mac" info and it says that it has 1 GHz CPU and 512 MB of RAM on board.

One of the latter 6 photos also shows its screen and several open windows in it. I can not make out the details but there seems to be no wireless network working (no AirPort icon on the top bar).

The description says that it is "A1001" model.

Here comes the puzzling part. A1001 is a model number given to PowerBook (A.K.A. Titanium or TiBook) G4 (DV1) Early 2002 models. They have either one 667 or 800 MHz PowerPC G4 (7455).

Then why does it have a 1 GHz CPU inside?

I searched around and found one YouTube video where its author mentions just in passing that modding the mainboard's (belonging to some of TiBooks) resisitors to overclock it to 1 GHz was popular back then.

Should I conclude that it is a modified A1001 (originally 800 MHz)?

Or alternatively should I conclude that it is actually a A1025 (Late 2002 model) but somehow the seller read "A1001" off something (most likely the bottom panel)?

The auction ends in 5 days or so.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [The Tour de France 2020 starts where on earth (if it ever does)?]の続きを読む

テーマ:自転車ロードレース - ジャンル:スポーツ

  1. 2020/05/01(金) 17:21:24|
  2. Tour de France
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