Pismo Weird Symptoms...


Hello, I'm new to this forum and hope someone will have a suggestion to help.

I have an old Powerbook Pismo. I like it a lot, despite its lack of speed. Lately, it has demonstrated a perplexing set of symptoms and, after some attempts to find the answer, now must ask for help.

This is a 400MHz unit with 256MB of RAM. Until yesterday, it was completely stock - I'll get back to that in a minute.

Symptoms - at least half the time (more often if the unit has not been recently used), I'll press the power button, there will be no Mac boot sound, but the gray apple screen will start. It will get to the point with the spinning circle, then move to a light gray screen and stay there - it will not boot farther.

If, however, the OSX install disc is in the CD drive and I press the C key as I press the power button, then the Mac boot sound will occur, I can then release the C key, and the system will boot completely up from the hard drive.

As the hard drive had developed a peculiar sound, and I was planning to upgrade from the 6GB unit anyway, I replaced it yesterday with a 30GB drive. After installing OSX, all seemed normal. I booted it up this morning - and the same symptoms occured. No change - although the Hard drive is now quiet and fast.

Secondly, possibly unrelated, possibly related - sometimes the battery icon will tell me there is no battery attached to the computer - this despite the fact that there is no A/C cord and the system is running off the battery - and will continue to do so for some 3 hours on a full charge.

I am beginning to suspect the sound/ AC card, but am not sure how to test it.

Any help would be much appreciated.