Cannot upgrade from 10.3.9 to 10.4


Hi everyone (first post here)

I did some searching through the forums and I couldn't find an answer to my problem, so hopefully this will work out well. I just recently switched over to macs, and I feel like I've gotten the hang of things. Soo...

I'm running a 15" powerbook with 10.3.9 on it and I'm trying to upgrade to 10.4. The thing is I didn't really buy the software upgrade, but rather my friend who just purchased a new laptop gave me the install discs (2). When I put the first install disc into my laptop it pops up with a list of languages to choose from. Once I chose English an Alert popped up telling me it can't install 10.4 on to my computer.

I have no idea what's going on, and why it's doing that. Is it because this isn't a purchased upgrade disc? Does that really matter? Please help.

Thanks a lot! :)

First, check those install disks. Does it have a specific model on it? If so, you will not be able to use them as they have the specific software for that particular model.

There are some specific requirements to install 10.4. Memory (256 MB) , and free disk space (3 GB).

Is your powerbook a G4 or older? Does it have a firewire port? If not, you will not be able to install Tiger.
Apple ships machine specific disks. They may or may not install on a different machine.
If your PB is an old one, it might need a Firmware upgrade, the only ones that do are the two early G4 models, the 500 MHz and the "Gigabit Ethernet", who need version 4.1.8 and 4.2.9 of the Firmware respectively to work.

If you have other devices connected (FireWire or USB), especially storage devices (hard disks in particular), disconnect them. They may sometimes interfere with the Installer.

As you have a 15" screen, your PowerBook is new enough to run Tiger, so that's not a problem here.

You need at least 256 MB RAM, and it has to be the right kind. As you're running 10.3, that shouldn't be a problem here, but I can't say for sure.

You need at least 3 GB of free space if you want to install a fresh system, less for an upgrade.

Use Disk Utility to repair any problems you might have on your start up volume.

If the disks your friend has are for an iBook they might not work with your PowerBook, but the other way around usually seems to work.
Thanks for all the replies guys.

Well, this is a newer PB. It's 1.5Ghz, with 512 RAM, with a Firewire port but nothing plugged into it :). I've also got more than 30GB left on my drive to install. I've looked at the discs again, and it doens't mention anything about any specific machine. All it says is
"Mac OS version 10.4, AHT version 2.5, Dsic version 1.0, 2Z691-5433-A"

Is that last number a specific model the discs are meant for? I'm positive my firend has a powerbook also, just the newere 15" model where it's 1.67Ghz.

Thanks again.

Does that disk say upgrade or restore?

Your best bet is to get your own copy of the full install Tiger.

AHT = Apple Hardware Test
My 2¢w: Run Disk Utility first, and let it repair any problems it might find. Run it at least twice.

Next up, I'd have a look at the RAM modules if I were you. It might be that one or more of them isn't up to par. From your description of your PB and the disks, you should be able to install without any problems.
It neither says upgrade nor restore on the disc. (Man... I'm starting to sound dense, lol) It simply says "Mac OS X Install Disc 1". Maybe this is because it's just the standard install disc that comes with your powerbook when you buy it? It's not an upgrading disc so it won't work on mine?
As long as it does Not say restore or upgrade - you can use it to install.

Start up with it - and make sure you use the power adaptor on your powerbook before you start up.
Before you click on the installer screen - go to the Installer Menu and select Disk Utilities. When that opens, click on the second hard drive icon in the side bar, then click on Repair Drive.

Watch the activity screen. If it does any repairs, hit the Repair Drive button again when it is done. You want no reference to repairs and Appears Okay to show up.

When that is done, click on the repair permissions. When that is done, quit Disk Utility and continue with the installer.
Select Archive (and preserve) and you should be okay.
Thanks so much for you help Cheryl! But it STILL isn't working out! This is getting pretty frustrating. I did as you told me to above, but after I repaired the disk (didn't need any repairs after all) and repaired the permissions, I still got the alert message "This cannot be installed on this computer..."

I don't understand what it could be because I've double checked the system requirements for Tiger 10.4 and my laptop satisfies all the requirements.

Has anyone else had this trouble before?
What is the hard drive formated in? It should be Mac OS Extended (journaled is okay).
To check that open Disk Utility that is in Applications>Utilities. Click on the first hard drive icon in the side bar, then click on the Erase tab. Everything will be grayed out, but you will be able to see what format the drive is using.

Do you have File Vault turned on? If so, turn it off.

Do you have the drive partitioned?
Easy to fix. Buy the retail version of the Tiger disk. The one's you have obviously won't work on your machine.
The drive is formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled). No the drive is not partitioned, and FileVault is off.

Boy, this is crap. Thanks so much for your help Cheryl, I think I'm just gonna give up on these discs.
It could be those disks are for a particular model (your friend's) and just not marked as such. You are better off getting the retail version - like Bob says. :)