Oh dear, it's been almost three years now since I started this thread. Scott, I'm really sorry about not replying to your request for information regarding the installation process of the new hard drive.
The least I can do to honor the time and effort you put into giving advice on this forum is to give you feedback in return. Of course, another thing I can do is to buy your books, which I do. I purchased Upgrading and Repairing PCs, 22nd Edition almost as soon as it was released. I feel really ashamed about failing to provide you with the requested information in a timely manner, but now I don't want to let my pride get in the way of making up for my negligence.
Your idea of purchasing the larger 250 GB drive was a good one, but I decided that in this specific situation it was not the best solution, because my friend doesn't have much of a clue about technical matters. Therefore there was always a slight possibility that the larger hard drive might have caused confusion for him in some unforeseeable scenario. I know this sounds weird to us technical folks, but I know this person well enough to judge that it is best to avoid even the most innocuous technical complication. If it would have been my laptop, I definitely would have followed your advice and returned the smaller capacity hard drive and purchased the larger capacity one instead.
After reading so much about the idle timer issue that affected the WD Scorpio drive that I had purchased, I finally decided to turn off the idle timer completely using Western Digital's wdidle3 utility. The drive must be connected directly to the PATA interface of a computer in order to do this. I ran wdidle3 off of the Universal Boot CD. Before disabling, wdidle3 showed the timer status as “Idle3 Timer is enabled and set to 8.000 seconds.” This is the default setting. After disabling, wdidle3 showed the timer status as “Idle3 Timer is disabled.”
I didn't make any changes to the AAM or APM settings; just left them at their factory defaults. I did read out the AAM and APM settings with CrystalDiskInfo. “APM Level” was “0080h [ON]” and “AAM Level” was “80FEh [OFF]”. These settings were identical before and after disabling the idle timer. So apparently the idle timer setting is independent of the AAM and APM settings.
Now on to the installation of the new hard drive.
The first thing that needed to be done was to mirror the contents of the old hard drive onto the new hard drive in such a way that the new hard drive would be able to boot Mac OS 9. (When I say “Mac OS 9” in this post, I specifically mean Mac OS 9.2.2.) I installed the new hard drive in an external 2.5” hard drive enclosure. It's a no name enclosure with the model number HD-227-COMBO. Click on this link
for details. I chose this enclosure because it was the only one available at the time that was reasonably priced and also had a FireWire 400 port, and therefore it could be used for booting an Apple Mac OS from an external hard drive in the future. (As far as I know, the PowerBook G3 Pismo only supports booting from an external drive if the drive is connected via FireWire.) It uses the Prolific PL-3507 chip set.
After I had connected the hard drive to the PowerBook via FireWire for the first time, I ran the Drive Setup utility that is part of Mac OS 9. Drive Setup immediately recognized the new hard drive. I chose Mac OS Extended as the file system type and then invoked the initialization procedure. Everything went smoothly.
Next, the old hard drive (still installed in the PowerBook) had to be cloned onto the new hard drive. For this task I used the program SilverKeeper from LaCie. The version used was 1.1.4 for Mac OS 9. There's not much to report here; the program did the job without any problems.
During the first attempt at cloning the old hard drive onto the new one, a glitch occurred – the old hard drive wasn't working reliably anymore, and I was worried if the cloning process would even complete successfully – that prompted me to abort the cloning process and start over. I decided I would delete everything on the new hard drive. This presented me with the first problem. I found it impossible to get rid of the partitioning structure (apparently Mac OS 9 creates several hidden partitions on the hard drive) that was present on the hard drive using standard Mac OS 9 deletion procedures. It might be possible, but I couldn't do it. So I connected the drive to a Windows machine via USB and ran Parted Magic off of the Universal Boot CD. Parted Magic offers several different hard drive erasing routines. I used one of the quicker variants to erase the drive. Then I again connected the drive to the PowerBook via FireWire. I thought I could now once again use the Drive Setup utility to partition and initialize the drive. But, this time Drive Setup did not recognize the drive. I unplugged and replugged the drive into the PowerBook's FireWire port several times. Nothing. I plugged the drive into the PowerBook's other FireWire port. Same result. For some reason, which to this day remains unknown to me, Drive Setup would not recognize the drive after I had erased it.
I decided to try the program Silverlining Pro from LaCie, version 6.5.8 for Mac OS 9, to see if it was possible to partition and initialize the hard drive with this program. And … it was! Silverlining Pro immediately recognized the external hard drive! I didn't have any problems partitioning and initializing the new hard drive with this program! Brilliant!
I then cloned the old hard drive onto the new hard drive for a second time. This time the cloning process proceeded without any problems.
Next, I booted the PowerBook using the Mac OS 9 installation now present on the new hard drive, just to make sure everything was working fine before installing the new drive in the PowerBook. Mac OS 9 booted from the external hard drive without any problems, so all was well.
I then removed the new hard drive from the drive enclosure and installed it in the PowerBook. Then I booted up the PowerBook several times to see if everything worked properly, which it did. So the job was completed successfully and my friend is using the PowerBook with this hard drive to this very day.
Idle noise levels of the old and new hard drive were more or less the same. I should mention that the old hard drive, a Toshiba MK8025GAS (HDD2188), only ran at 4200 rpm, while the new Western Digital hard drive runs at 5400 rpm. I listened to the new hard drive while it was idling, and it sounded ever so slightly louder than the old hard drive, but the difference was barely discernible in a very quiet environment while concentrating on the hard drive's sound only. During operation the Western Digital was quieter than the old Toshiba hard drive. So effectively, under normal operating conditions, the faster spinning Western Digital hard drive is quieter than the slower old hard drive.
My friend noticed a remarkable difference in the computer's speed with regard to hard drive related operations after the new hard drive was installed. I doubt that this was solely due to the difference in rpm of the two drives. I suspect that the old hard drive, which was making intermittent grinding noises, had experienced a progressive loss in operating speed because of the defect that had befallen it. So the drive probably became slower and slower, and because this was a gradual process, it wasn't easily detectable by the user.
I should mention one more thing. My friend uses Claris Organizer 2.0 for organizing his appointments, notes, and the like. One day he asked for my help because he was no longer able to open the Claris Organizer file that contained all of his appointments, notes, etc. This problem first appeared after he had used the search function to search for something in the notes category of Claris Organizer, but the search was aborted by an I/O error. (I can't reproduce the exact error message here, because unfortunately my friend did not document it.) So now, when he tried to open his Claris Organizer file, an error message appeared which basically said that the program had been terminated unexpectedly because error 2 had occurred. My friend had a copy of his Claris Organizer file, but it was old and therefore didn't contain the information that he had saved recently and which he needed most. I tried all sorts of things to get this file to open in Claris Organizer 2.0, but it was to no avail. He ended up having to make do with his old Claris Organizer file. This happened before I installed the new hard drive.
After installing the new hard drive, I decided to try and see if I could open the Claris Organizer file that had persistently refused to open while the system was still on the old hard drive. Unbelievably, the file now opened without any problems! My friend then switched back to using this Claris Organizer file and has been using it up to the present time without it ever having caused problems again! How is this possible??? I conjecture that the old hard drive had developed a read error such that some of the bits that comprised the file in question could no longer be read reliably from the hard drive. For some reason, SilverKeeper, the program I used for the cloning process, was able to read the file completely and the file was written without error to the new hard drive. However, somehow this explanation doesn't satisfy me. How could it be that Claris Organizer 2.0 wasn't able to read the file properly but SilverKeeper was? I just don't know what happened that allowed the file to be opened again. I would be delighted if someone could shed some light on this mystery.
I hope this lengthy and detailed description will be helpful to at least one of the Classic Mac aficionados out there.