WallStreet PowerBook G3 Series

The PowerBook G3 Series, code named WallStreet, was designed around the same PowerPC 750 (aka G3) processor as the original PowerBook G3 – but don’t confuse it with the original. Although they bear a similar name, this was a whole new computer. Available at three different speeds (233, 250, and 292 MHz) and with three different screens (it was the first PowerBook to offer 13″ and 14″ screens), WallStreet has a lot of options.

WallStreet PowerBook G3Note that the entry level 233 MHz version (sometimes called MainStreet) has no level 2 cache, which significantly diminishes performance (see benchmarks for the replacement version with a cache to verify this). Because of this, the original PowerBook G3/233 earns Limited Mac label. (The later PowerBook G3/233 has a level 2 cache and is not considered limited.)

Although Apple lists the G3 Series as supporting only 192 MB of memory, many users have been able to exceed that limit, sometimes reaching a total 512 MB installed RAM.

  • Got a G3 PowerBook or iBook? Join our G-Books Group or PowerBooks and iBooks Forum.
  • Our Mac OS 9 Group is for those using Mac OS 9, either natively or in Classic Mode.
  • Our Puma Group is for those using Mac OS X 10.1.
  • Our Jaguar Group is for those using Mac OS X 10.2.

In the field, a single battery typically yields 2.5-3 hours of use with Apple’s original 49 Watt-Hour battery. Using two fresh Apple batteries could increase that, possibly boosting it into the 5-6 hour range, and NewerTech’s 64 Watt-Hour NuPower battery should extend those times by 25% – close to 4 hours with one fully charged battery and 7.5 hours with two. (Running DVD movies will run your batteries down much faster.)

If you have a hard drive larger than 8 GB, you should partition is so that the first partition is under 8 GB in size (for simplicity, we suggest 7 GB). Failure to do this could eventually result in an unbootable computer, as all System files must be within the first 8 GB of drive space. These Macs can work successfully with larger drives for some time, but once a System files goes outside of the first 8 GB of space, you’ll have nothing but problems.

Mac OS X

If you have a hard drive over 8 GB in size, you must partition it or you will not be able to install Mac OS X. If you are creating the partition within OS X, it must be smaller than 7.45 as reported by Disk Utility (because sometimes a GB is billion bytes and sometimes it’s 1,073,741,824 bytes); we suggest simply setting it at 7 GB to avoid having to redo the whole installation if the partition ends up bigger than specified (it happens). Mac OS X must be completely within the first 8 GB of space on your hard drive or you will not be able to run OS X.

Non-Apple upgrades and peripherals (such as replacement drives and third-party memory) may cause problems when installing or booting into Mac OS X.

Be sure to read and follow Apple’s “Read Before You Install” install instructions to increase the likelihood of getting OS X installed and running on the first try.


According to Accelerate Your Mac, many WallStreet owners have reported problems with IBM/Hitachi Travelstar drives where the computer will not wake up from sleep. This is due to a magnetic sensor that responds to a magnet in the Travelstar drive. This problem does not impact other PowerBook G3 models, only WallStreet.

According to the Road Warrior, the drive controller in G3 PowerBooks is incompatible with some ATA-6/Ultra ATA-100 hard drives. When replacing the internal hard drive, you should be sure to obtain an ATA-5/Ultra ATA-66 compliant drive or an ATA-6 or ATA-7/Ultra ATA-133 drive known to work with WallStreet.

PowerBook G3 series with battery and DVD-ROM Apple’s DVD drive for WallStreet (the first for a PowerBook) supports five region switches, and this number is tracked in PRAM. Resetting the PRAM will clear the switch counter and let you start all over. (Resetting the PRAM may change other computer settings.) To reset the PRAM:

  1. With the computer off, press Fn-Shift-Ctrl-Power.
  2. Startup with extensions off (hold down the Shift key during startup).
  3. Restart the computer with extensions enabled.


  • introduced 1998.05.04; discontinued 1998.09.01
  • Requires Mac OS 8.0 or later; Mac OS 9.2.2 recommended; 10.2.x officially supported, 10.3.x and 10.4.x can generally be installed using XpostFacto 4
  • CPU: 233, 250, or 292 MHz PPC 750 (G3)
  • Bus: 66 MHz (233) or 83 MHz (250 and 292)
  • Performance: 445/881/1030 (233/250/292 MHz), MacBench 4; 686/967 (250/292), MacBench 5
  • ROM: 4 MB (2 MB on 12″ model)
  • RAM: 32 or 64 MB, expandable to 512 MB using 256 MB 100 MHz 144-pin SO-DIMMs (one must be low profile) in both slots. Most low profile 256 MB modules use high density memory and are not compatible; low density 256 MB modules are compatible.
  • Level 2 cache: 1 MB backside with 250 and 292 MHz models, none on 233 MHz model
  • Video: ATI 3D Rage LT
  • VRAM: 2 MB on 12.1″ model, 4 MB on 1024 x 768 models
  • displays:
    • 12.1″ 16-bit 800 x 600 83 ppi color dual-scan passive matrix, 8- and 16-bit only
    • 13.3″ 24-bit 1024 x 768 96 ppi color active matrix (bad news); 8-, 16-, and 24-bit
    • 14.1″ 24-bit 1024 x 768 91 ppi color active matrix; 8-, 16-, and 24-bit
  • Video out: VGA port
  • Hard drive: 2, 4, or 8 GB EIDE
  • expansion bay: specific to WallStreet/PDQ
  • CD-ROM: 20x, removable
  • expansions bays: two
  • ADB: 1 port for keyboard and mouse
  • serial: 1 DIN-8 RS-422 port on back of computer
  • SCSI: HDI30 connector on back of computer
  • ethernet and modem standard
  • PC Card slots: 2
  • infrared: supports IrDA 1.1 and Apple’s IRtalk protocol
  • size: 10.4 x 12.7 x 2.0″ (51 x 32.3 x 4.3 cm)
  • Weight: 7.2-7.8 pounds with battery
  • Model identifier: PowerBook1,1
  • family number: M4753

Accelerators & Upgrades

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