Magsafe connector teardown
Place it inside the same folder as the Mini vMac application and the whoopis. Launch Mini vMac. You should get a small window with the Mac's flashing question mark diskette icon. If that doesn't happen -- if the program fails to run, or gives an error message -- check that the ROM file is named exactly "vMac. Drag and drop the whoopis. The emulated Mac Plus should boot rapidly.
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Open the "whoopis" diskette icon and browse the various repair flowcharts and whatnot. They are all standalone applications, though HyperCard Player is included as well, just in case. HyperCard stacks operate rather like web pages -- there are buttons and text that you click to navigate.
While Mini vMac is running, hold down the ctrl key to see "control mode" allows for zooming, etc. See the Mini vMac website's documentation for more info. Please let me know.
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Visit the Mini vMac website for a wealth of information on what else you can do with Mini vMac. Go to Jag's House classic Mac HQ for all the software and information you could possibly want for an old Mac including how to make a Mac Plus webserver! If you want to view any of Jag's old HyperCard stacks, get 'em onto a disk image as per Mini vMac's documentation and drop that image into the window while running off the whoopis disk image -- then you can use HyperCard Player to view them. Quadra so that the Apple Spec Database and Service Parts database standalone FileMaker databases can be made available along similar lines.
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Tools you will find handy: Phillips and flat head screwdrivers large and small -- not a multi-bit driver, the shafts are too fat to fit down the plastic screw wells in many cases. Grounding wrist strap or pad -- my favorite kind, which I think I got at Radio Shack, has a Velcro wrist part with a flat metal plate that makes skin contact, and a snap-on connecter to a long wire which ends in a female connector that fits a standard computer power cable. This means you can plug it in wherever the computer normally sits, and you can disconnect it when you need to walk away. The little disposable straps are annoying and tear or fall off too quickly.
Even if you're working in a well-lit room, focusing extra light on where you're working will help you spot cracked solder joints and other tiny details. Canned air -- dust and dirt are the most common causes of electronics problems. An air compressor with a nozzle is good too, but be aware that the compressor motor's movement generates static electricity and could discharge through the nozzle and zap your components. So I prefer the canned air with the little straw. But DON'T hold it upside-down or it will squirt liquid!
Cotton swabs and rubbing alcohol -- there are better swabs, with foam instead of cotton, which are less likely to leave cotton fibers behind on whatever you're cleaning. But if you're careful, Q-tips are sufficient. Rubbing alcohol is a good cleaning solution to use with electronics because it evaporates quickly. Tweezers -- for everything from retrieving fallen screws to removing the cotton fibers left behind by Q-tips. They're invaluable for disconnecting delicate ribbon cables and lifting bent components as well as scraping corrosion off of small parts. Tool demagnetizer -- Radio Shack again, probably.
It's a small brown square-ish thing made of two halves fastened together with two rubber bands. It forms a donut with two indentations on the outside, and if you slide a screwdriver through the middle a couple times, it becomes magnetic; if you slide a screwdriver through one of the indentations on the outside, it DE-magnetizes it.
This is very important when you're doing video adjustments, for example -- if the screwdriver's magnetized, and you bring it near the CRT, it will distort the video, making adjustments very difficult. Mirrors -- I have a small dental-style one, with an articulable neck and an insulated handle, again probably from Radio Shack. Extremely handy for working in small spaces or connecting things that are out of sight.
But an everyday makeup mirror will do in a pinch too. Try to find one that's encased in plastic or rubber so it's less likely to short things out or break when you drop it. It's a small pair of alligator-style clips, mounted on a small iron base, and the clips are on the ends of little metal arms with ball joints so they can articulate quite freely. Sometimes there's a magnifying glass mounted on there too. I thought these looked stupid when I first saw them, but they really are great, especially when you're trying to solder a couple of wires together and you need both hands for the iron and solder.
Multimeter -- get one that has a continuity test feature. I've used that WAY more than the voltmeter setting. If you want to know if a battery's any good, you can take a Christmas light and some spare wire and get some idea that way -- or, one of those little pocket testers. But a decent multimeter can be very handy.
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Keep in mind that many computer power supplies will read nothing unless they're under load; in other words, you might plug it in, flip the switch, put your probes on one of the power connectors, and read nothing, because your multimeter isn't drawing enough current to Or something. Electricity is bizarre. General repair tips: Sticky floppy drives: Cleaning and lubing fixes 90 percent of floppy drive issues, in my experience.
If you search around, you can still find those old floppy head cleaning kits, which are basically a floppy with a cleaning pad where the actual data disc would be. You drip their cleaning solution rubbing alcohol on the pad and shove it in the drive, it makes a terrifying sound, and the heads are clean. You can put Scotch tape over the top for k drives because those only have a head on the bottom, and where the top head would be, there's a small cloth pad -- a cleaning floppy will tear this off!
Repeatedly insert and eject the diskette until the action smoothes out. Hard drive issues: An old computer with a hard disk, left in storage for an extended period of time, will frequently not boot up later. Sometimes you can stop the cooling fan stick something through the slots, THEN turn on the machine , and listen closely; if you can't hear the hard disk spinning up, or if it's making a click-click sound, then its internal lube may be sticky.
There's no safe way to take apart a hard disk unless you've got a clean room, but you can often get the drive to spin up at least one more time by doing the following: If the computer is small e. With your upper hand, carefully but briskly give the machine a partial twist, like a spinning-top motion, several times. Do this over a couch or other cushioned surface in case you drop the Mac. You're trying to "torque" it in such a way as to try to get the hard drive to rotate in its shell slightly, to get it past the "sticky part" so it can get enough momentum going to actually spin up.
This method can be applied more effectively if you remove the drive itself and do the same roto-motion to it directly. Rinse, lather, repeat until it works or until you get sore.
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Over the years, repeated heating and cooling of the internal components can cause the solder joints to "crack" from the temperature-related expansion and contraction. If you can do basic soldering, take the case apart and remove the plastic shield on the upright power supply.
Locate the circular ring of solder points near the center of the upright power board; this is where the flyback transformer is connected to the board. Look closely, with a bright light and magnifying glass, at each solder point; if you see any tiny hairline cracks in the solder, then heat and remove the old solder and replace it with new, and try firing up the machine again.
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More likely than not, your problem will be solved. You can obtain replacement caps very cheaply from Radio Shack or other electronics suppliers -- just match the info printed on the old cap, desolder and replace. Make sure you note the polarity and get it right on the replacement, it does matter with electrolytic capacitors though not with ceramic ones.
If you have an older Mac with screen geometry or blur problems, you can sometimes make adjustments to fix it. You will need a set of TV repair tools Radio Shack , which are a cheap set of small plastic screwdrivers and hex drivers about the same size as Jewelers' screwdrivers, BUT they are made entirely of plastic. This is key for screen adjustments, because metal tools -- even if they're demagnetized -- will interfere with the screen appearance when you move them close to the CRT, and you need the screen to be "true" while you're working on it. When you remove the case, you will see a bunch of markings on the thin white plastic shield that covers the solder side of the power supply board.
Avoid the one labelled, I believe, "CUTOFF" -- this affects the overall voltage levels, and you can blow the logic board if you don't know what you're doing. The others, however, are safe to play with, and are labelled -- "height", "width", "focus", "contrast" etc. Turn up the front panel brightness control to the max before you touch anything, then adjust the internal brightness control so that the outermost visible edge of the screen is just barely black or until there are no visible diagonal scan lines. Thus, much of the AC charger information presented by the Mac is actually low-level information about the 1-Wire chip.
The 1-Wire chip inside a Magsafe connector has a bit ID code. This ID maps directly onto the charger properties displayed under 'About this Mac'. There are a few complications as the diagram below shows. Later chargers use the family code 85 for some reason. This doesn't indicate an 85 watt charger. It also doesn't indicate the family of the 1-Wire device, so it may be an arbitrary number. For Magsafe 2 chargers, the customer ID is 7A1 for a 45 watt charger, for a 60 watt charger, and AA1 for an 85 watt charger.
It's strange to use separate customer IDs for the different models. Even stranger, for an 85 watt charger the wattage field in the ID contains 60 3C hex not 85, even though 85 watts shows up on the info screen. The Revision is also dropped from the info screen for later chargers. In a Magsafe 2 connector, the bit ID maps onto the charger properties displayed under 'About this Mac'.
For some reason, the 'Customer data' gives a lower wattage. The circuit to access a 1-Wire chip from an Arduino is trivial - just a 2K pullup resistor. Touching the ground wire to an outer ground pin of the Magsafe connector and the data wire to the inner adapter sense pin will let the Arduino immediately read and display the bit ID number.
The charger does not need to be plugged in to the wall - and in fact I recommend not plugging it in - since one interesting feature of the 1-Wire protocol is the device can power itself parasitically off the data wire, without a separate power source. The bit ID can be read out of a Magsafe connector by probing the outer pin with ground, and the middle pin with the 1-Wire data line. To make things more convenient, the serial number can be displayed on an LCD display.