Can't find a Mac compatible serial PCI card~!

By macx ยท 11 replies
May 8, 2007
  1. Gave my wife's old G3 Blue & White to some friends
    WAY out in the country, dial up only.

    They wanted out of the PC malware business.

    Anyway, discovered the G3 has neither an internal
    modem nor a serial port. Their Earthlink software
    will only recognize and set up with a serial port.
    Hooked the modem to a USB port but the software
    didn't give USB as an option to hook to, only serial

    Did find a mac compatible serial modem, but even
    checking with MacMall, MacWarehouse, etc, NO
    PCI cards with a simple serial port! They both did advertise
    one (same make/model) as being mac compatible, but the
    mfg answered my customer service email saying it isn't (!)

    Anybody know of one that doesn't cost more than
    the old G3 is worth?

    OSX 10.4

    Thanks much!
  2. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

  3. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 3,485   +45

    Usually the mac people dont do upgrades themself, Customer Support is calling for you to get that nice 500 usd upgrade charge from you!
  4. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    I thank you for all those leads!

    I did several Google searches, worded different ways,
    got no useful links (?)

    I'm gonna hang onto that list!
  5. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    Well, hmmmm.

    Not only couldn't I find anything with a number of differently
    worded Google searches, I checked every one of those on
    that list and not a single PCI serial port card for a Mac G3 - !?

    All kinds of Serial ATA, but I'm not looking for that.
    Just a simple PCI card with a regular serial port.

    If you "buy them all the time" maybe you could show me where?

    I DID find one place that had an internal 56k G3 modem, but it said
    for boards that had some type of comm port and it worked with
    the 9.xx operating system, didn't mention OSX. How can I tell
    if it will work with the board we have? (The computer is 1,000
    miles away - would need a picture or some type of illustration
    or SIMPLE description - those folks are not computer savvy.)
    It's a version 2 of the G3 board.

  6. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    Some B&W G3s shipped with 56k modems, All B&W G3s shipped with OS 8.5 or greater, most with 9, they are also officially supported through OS X 10.4 so my educated guess is that if you get the 56k that came with the thing it will work. Doubt Apple would make upgrading to OS X kill off their dial up users.

    Nice job on the revision 2 board, those were far superior to the revision 1s. They can put up to 2 120 gig hds in it without the data corruption or simply not working issue that the revision 1 boards had.

    supersmashbrada - The B&W G3 is a Power Mac and also had a server edition, these aren't even in the same class as something like an iMac. They are by far the easiest personal computer to work on that I have ever came in contact with. The right panel flips down exposing the motherboard, so you have the whole thing lying in front of you, adding RAM, overclocking, adding a hard drive, replacing cd/dvd/zip drives, all extremely easy and well thought out.
  7. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    Unfortunately, this particular one did not come with an internal modem.
    Glad to see they are supported upwards, just makes sense.

    Long ago before I bought this (used BTW) I researched and discovered the
    Rev2 board, so sought one out with that board. Glad I did, was a good machine.
    Have just recently replaced it with an iMac G5 (not the dual machine) that's pretty
    much loaded. Wife LOVES it! Got the daughter one, too, she's also very happy
    with it - she kept her G4 for her little boy. I had built a fairly well equipped PC a
    couple years ago cuz I use mine for work sometimes, REALLY wishing I had one of
    those G5's instead! Absolutely sick of all the security problems and related expenses
    and HOURS of scanning/fixing, etc! Our family has a combined about 15 years of Mac
    use, starting nearly 10 years ago, and not problem ONE with security!!!

    Agree with it being easy to work on, we replaced virtually everything but
    the board itself.

    My daughter's later G4 is essentially the same.

    Now - just wish I could find a simple PCI card with a serial port for it!
    Did find one on ebay that claims to work with Mac, have emailed the seller to see if he'll guarantee that it will.

    If not, we might have to get that G3 internal modem and hope the board
    is configured to accept it.
  8. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    It looks like the internal modem for the computer isn't a PCI modem, but rather something that attaches to the board itself. That kinda sucks, thought they'd be PCI. Hopefully that serial thing will work out for you.

    I've been looking on ebay for the G4s that look similar to the G3s, but man, those things are still going for a lot of money. I got my G3 450 off ubid for $55 but with like $40 shipping about a year and a half ago and was concerned I paid too much, but it seems I could sell it on ebay today and make a decent profit.

    Edit: $10, ending in 38 minutes, not sure if you'll see it in time.
  9. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

  10. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    Nope - wont' work hooked to a USB port
    (per above 1st post)*-p-2130.html

    That's what the internal modem looks like - have read in other places that the
    cable that hooks it to the board has to be attached under the board.

    Note it also says something about some comm slot - with all the other things
    that G3 board does not have, I wouldn't bet the farm it has that either.

    Plus, that's way beyond the ability of the folks that have it and that we're
    trying to get hooked up, and they're 1000 miles away from me.
  11. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    I read the first post. The adapter turns an USB port into a serial one, it would be like plugging the modem into a serial port.
  12. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    We tried that - got an adapter, plugged it in to USB, their Earthlink
    setup software wouldn't recognize it and wouldn't dial the modem.

    I was working a power plant job North of Denver till a week ago,
    so made a number of trips to them North of Casper WY trying to
    get them going. Now I'm home, 1000 miles away. I showed them
    how to plug in a PC card thinking I'd be able to find a regular serial
    port PCI card that would work on a Mac.

    So far striking out bigtime.
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