How to Update Your Power Mac G4 Firmware to Version 4.2.8
If you have a Power Mac G4 or a Macintosh Server G4 with AGP graphics, you may want to update your firmware to version 4.2.8. This update includes improvements to starting up Mac OS X from the local hard disk, FireWire target disk mode, network startup, gigabit networking (on systems with gigabit hardware), and system stability. This update also adds support for additional security options that allow the Open Firmware to be password-protected.
To update your firmware, you will need to have Mac OS 9.1 or later installed on a local hard disk (not a CD or network disk). If you are using Mac OS X on your Power Mac G4 or Macintosh Server G4, you must start up from a local Mac OS 9.1 or later writeable partition before following the update instructions.
Here are the steps to update your firmware:
Download the PowerMac G4 Firmware Update 4.2.8 file from Macintosh Repository [^1^] or Pure Mac [^4^]. The file size is about 1 MB and it is compressed with Stuffit.
Double-click the downloaded file to expand it and locate the G4 Firmware Update 4.2.8 application.
Open the G4 Firmware Update 4.2.8 application and follow the onscreen instructions.
When prompted, restart your computer.
Press and hold the power button on your computer until you hear a long tone or see a flashing power light.
Release the power button.
Your computer will start up and update the firmware automatically. Do not interrupt the process.
When the update is complete, your computer will restart again.
Congratulations! You have successfully updated your firmware to version 4.2.8.
If you have any problems or questions, please refer to the Apple Released PowerMac G4 Firmware Update 4.2.8 article [^2^] or the g4 Powermac AGP firmware 4.2.8 (4.28fl) updater needed discussion thread [^3^] for more information.
Why should you update your firmware Firmware is the software that controls the basic functions of your hardware, such as booting up, loading the operating system, and communicating with other devices. Updating your firmware can improve the performance, compatibility, and security of your computer. For example, the firmware update 4.2.8 for Power Mac G4 and Macintosh Server G4 models with AGP graphics fixes some issues with starting up Mac OS X from the local hard disk, which can speed up the boot time and prevent errors. It also enhances the FireWire target disk mode, which allows you to use your computer as an external hard drive for another Mac. Additionally, it improves the network startup feature, which lets you boot your computer from a network server. Furthermore, it enables gigabit networking (on systems with gigabit hardware), which can increase the data transfer rate and reduce the network latency. Lastly, it adds support for additional security options that allow you to password-protect your Open Firmware, which can prevent unauthorized access to your computer.
How do you password-protect your Open Firmware Open Firmware is a standard that defines how your computer interacts with its hardware and software components. It also provides a command-line interface that you can use to modify some settings or troubleshoot problems. However, this also means that someone with physical access to your computer can use the Open Firmware interface to bypass your password or erase your hard disk. To prevent this, you can set a password for your Open Firmware that will be required whenever you start up your computer or enter the Open Firmware interface. To do this, follow these steps:
Start up your computer and hold down the Command-Option-O-F keys until you see a white screen with black text.
Type password and press Return.
Type a password of your choice and press Return.
Type the password again to confirm and press Return.
Type setenv security-mode full and press Return.
Type reset-all and press Return.
Your computer will restart and ask for the Open Firmware password.
Note: To change or remove the Open Firmware password, you will need to repeat these steps and enter the current password before setting a new one or typing setenv security-mode none. aa16f39245