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7.6.1 or 8.1 is probably the sweet spot for this machine. It's essentially a slightly faster mobile 6200/6300, but they lopped off the L2 cache, so whatever usability a 6300 had over a 6200 in 8.5 or 9 is going to be removed.

 

That said, as always, I'd say to get a bunch of different versions and put your apps on them and see what you like. The features and connectivity of 8.6 or 9.1 might be worthwhile as a trade-off to the speed, especially if your'e primarily running really old software. (Like, Office 2001 would run poorly on this machine, I bet.)

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I would've gone for either 7.6.1 or 8.1 as well as a first guess. Cory's suggestion of trying out the others is good. It may very well be that 8.6 runs really well.

How much much RAM do you have on the machine?

 

On a different note, I wonder if a faster solid state hard drive would work and make much a difference?

By faster, I mean IDE-to-mSATA adapter or an 32GB IDE SSD (from, say, Transcend).

It does on my Mac Mini G4 but then it came 10 years after the PB 2300c. The ATA controller may not recognise or accept the newer ATA-device.

 

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8.5+ will run fairly poorly unless you have more than 32 megs of RAM, so 7.6.1 or 8.1 is probably going to be the sweet spot for you. On slow PPC machines, 8.5 and 9.1 are noticeably slower than 7.6.1 and 8.1, on a 6100/66 (I know, different platform) 9.1 turns in consistently lower MacBench 4 numbers than 7.6.1, for example. (I'd have to go sign into vtools to check what they are, I don't remember how big the delta was.)

 

In terms of floppy disks, yes, if you use a version of Mac OS X old enough to read/write HFS, or you use FAT formatting, you should be able to transfer information that way. If you don't have an ethernet dock, then localtalk networking would also work great for a duo. I'm using my 6200 that way.

 

Faster storage should make the machine feel faster, but it won't really make up for not having enough memory to run newer software and it won't make up for not having L2 cache.

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It just occurred to me: when you say download the files, are you looking at writing installation floppies?

 

If so, yeah, the right kind of floppy image files should be writeable with dd or rawrite on windows 10 or a mac. DC42 files should work, I don't remember if DC6 ones will, plain .img files oriented toward use on an emulator will probably work.

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14 hours ago, Cory5412 said:

DC42 files should work, I don't remember if DC6 ones will, plain .img files oriented toward use on an emulator will probably work.

 

Minor clarification—dc42 files won't work unmodified, they have a special Apple header at the beginning and they store tag as well as data bytes.  Fortunately tools are available to do the modification: https://www.bigmessowires.com/2013/12/16/macintosh-diskcopy-4-2-floppy-image-converter/ has both a GUI and a command line tool to do it.  You can also just lop off the header with the right options to dd, if I remember correctly, but I can't remember precisely how.

Edited by cheesestraws
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