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Dual USB iBook battery replacement

Message #1 - Posted 2004/03/04 - Dan Becker

Dual USB iBook 500Mhz G3.

What experience do folks have with replacement batteries for these puppies?

Should I just go with the Apple branded replacement, or are other manufacturer replacements equal? It saves a little, but not a lot...seems like about a $20 difference. Not worth it if the battery is inferior.

Thanks,
Dan

Message #2 - Posted 2004/03/05 - germ

Previously, Dan Becker wrote:

Dual USB iBook 500Mhz G3.

What experience do folks have with replacement batteries for these puppies?

Should I just go with the Apple branded replacement, or are other manufacturer replacements equal? It saves a little, but not a lot...seems like about a $20 difference. Not worth it if the battery is inferior.

Thanks,
Dan

After looking at the alternatives, I just ordered one from Apple two weeks ago. They quoted 2-4 weeks for delivery!
Hope that they are fresh....

germ Remove "nospam" to reply

Message #3 - Posted 2004/03/12 - C Walters

On 2004-03-05 02:30:45 +0000, germ said:

Previously, Dan Becker wrote:

Dual USB iBook 500Mhz G3.

What experience do folks have with replacement batteries for these puppies?
Should I just go with the Apple branded replacement, or are other manufacturer replacements equal? It saves a little, but not a lot...seems like about a $20 difference. Not worth it if the battery is inferior.

Thanks,
Dan

After looking at the alternatives, I just ordered one from Apple two weeks ago. They quoted 2-4 weeks for delivery!
Hope that they are fresh....

I received one from the Apple store about 3 weeks ago. The iBook now gets a respectable 3.5 - 4 hours again, after having dropped to something like 5 minutes on the old battery.

I tried everything - resetting PMI, battery update patches, etc. - but the new battery seems to have done the trick.

Message #4 - Posted 2004/03/12 - matt neuburg

C Walters wrote:

I received one from the Apple store about 3 weeks ago. The iBook now gets a respectable 3.5 - 4 hours again, after having dropped to something like 5 minutes on the old battery.

What gets me is: What happened to the good old days when a dialog came up to warn you that the battery was drained and the computer was about to put itself into emergency sleep, so you had a chance to shut down your apps in good order? I was sure surprised last week on the airplane when the screen just went black suddenly. m.

matt neuburg, phd = matt@tidbits.com, http://www.tidbits.com/matt/ AppleScript: The Definitive Guide
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596005571/somethingsbymatt Read TidBITS! It's free and smart. http://www.tidbits.com

Message #5 - Posted 2004/03/21 - Peter Renzland

Previously, matt neuburg wrote:

C Walters wrote:

I received one from the Apple store about 3 weeks ago. The iBook now gets a respectable 3.5 - 4 hours again, after having dropped to something like 5 minutes on the old battery.

What gets me is: What happened to the good old days when a dialog came up to warn you that the battery was drained and the computer was about to put itself into emergency sleep, so you had a chance to shut down your apps in good order? I was sure surprised last week on the airplane when the screen just went black suddenly. m.

Unfortunately, when the computer's idea of the battery's capacity is very incorrect, it can think you have 800mAh left, and 5 seconds later it thinks you have 0mAh. So, it may drop from 40% to 0 in an instant. Similarly, when charging, it may jump from 60% to 100% full.

"calibration" "should" fix the computer's idea of the battery's capacity.

Part of what I think may be happening is that when the voltage is very low, the computer goes into coma-sleep. Very low is about 10.700V on my iBook.

Batmon now talks to you when there is a problem, including low voltage. It says things like (feed this to your shell to hear it):

say -v Bad Battery Voltage is very very low.

But there are two problems -- it's no use if your sound is off or there's too much ambient noise, and under some conditions it hangs inside the "say" command. Works fine on my iBook, but on a new PB it sometimes hangs. Not ready for prime time. Sigh.

I wonder if there's an easy way to make an alert message pop up from an applescript?

-- Peter

Message #6 - Posted 2004/03/21 - matt neuburg

Peter Renzland wrote:

Previously, matt neuburg wrote:

C Walters wrote:

I received one from the Apple store about 3 weeks ago. The iBook now gets a respectable 3.5 - 4 hours again, after having dropped to something like 5 minutes on the old battery.

What gets me is: What happened to the good old days when a dialog came up to warn you that the battery was drained and the computer was about to put itself into emergency sleep, so you had a chance to shut down your apps in good order? I was sure surprised last week on the airplane when the screen just went black suddenly. m.

Unfortunately, when the computer's idea of the battery's capacity is very incorrect, it can think you have 800mAh left, and 5 seconds later it thinks you have 0mAh. So, it may drop from 40% to 0 in an instant. Similarly, when charging, it may jump from 60% to 100% full.

"calibration" "should" fix the computer's idea of the battery's capacity.

Part of what I think may be happening is that when the voltage is very low, the computer goes into coma-sleep. Very low is about 10.700V on my iBook.

Batmon now talks to you when there is a problem, including low voltage. It says things like (feed this to your shell to hear it):

say -v Bad Battery Voltage is very very low.

But there are two problems -- it's no use if your sound is off or there's too much ambient noise, and under some conditions it hangs inside the "say" command. Works fine on my iBook, but on a new PB it sometimes hangs. Not ready for prime time. Sigh.

I wonder if there's an easy way to make an alert message pop up from an applescript?

There is: display dialog "voltage is low". But under OS 9 the system itself used to do this. A dialog would appear saying: Battery voltage is extremely low; the computer will put itself to sleep in a few seconds. Please save all your work. What I was bemoaning was the loss of this dialog. If OS 9 can do it, there's no reason on earth why OS X can't do it. I should not need any third-party utility here.

As for "calibration" - according to the instructions I'm able to find, what happened to me on the plan *was* calibration (I ran the computer until the battery ran out of juice). m.

matt neuburg, phd = matt@tidbits.com, http://www.tidbits.com/matt/ AppleScript: The Definitive Guide
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596005571/somethingsbymatt Read TidBITS! It's free and smart. http://www.tidbits.com

Message #7 - Posted 2004/03/21 - Peter Renzland

Previously, matt neuburg wrote:

Peter Renzland wrote:

Previously, matt neuburg wrote:

C Walters wrote:

I received one from the Apple store about 3 weeks ago. The iBook now gets a respectable 3.5 - 4 hours again, after having dropped to something like 5 minutes on the old battery.

What gets me is: What happened to the good old days when a dialog came up to warn you that the battery was drained and the computer was about to put itself into emergency sleep, so you had a chance to shut down your apps in good order? I was sure surprised last week on the airplane when the screen just went black suddenly. m.

Unfortunately, when the computer's idea of the battery's capacity is very incorrect, it can think you have 800mAh left, and 5 seconds later it thinks you have 0mAh. So, it may drop from 40% to 0 in an instant. Similarly, when charging, it may jump from 60% to 100% full.

"calibration" "should" fix the computer's idea of the battery's capacity.

Part of what I think may be happening is that when the voltage is very low, the computer goes into coma-sleep. Very low is about 10.700V on my iBook.

Batmon now talks to you when there is a problem, including low voltage. It says things like (feed this to your shell to hear it):

say -v Bad Battery Voltage is very very low.

But there are two problems -- it's no use if your sound is off or there's too much ambient noise, and under some conditions it hangs inside the "say" command. Works fine on my iBook, but on a new PB it sometimes hangs. Not ready for prime time. Sigh.

I wonder if there's an easy way to make an alert message pop up from an applescript?

There is: display dialog "voltage is low".

Hm.

$ osascript -e 'display dialog "voltage is low"' 0:31: execution error: No user interaction allowed. (-1713)

Looks like I'm missing something.

But under OS 9 the system
itself used to do this. A dialog would appear saying: Battery voltage is extremely low; the computer will put itself to sleep in a few seconds. Please save all your work. What I was bemoaning was the loss of this dialog. If OS 9 can do it, there's no reason on earth why OS X can't do it. I should not need any third-party utility here.

That's _exactly_ what happens in OS X.
And, with the same battery, under the same conditions, I would expect the exact same behaviour. It'd be interested in reports to the contrary, though.

The computer did not warn the user, because it believed the untrue report _from_ _the_ _battery's_ _firmware_, which claimed there was lots of charge left, when there wasn't. The battery's report was incorrect because the battery's idea of it's own capacity (and therefore its remaining charge) was no longer correct. It was in need of calibration.
A reality-check. "Sudden coma-sleep is nature's way of telling the user that the battery needs calibrating." :-)

As for "calibration" - according to the instructions I'm able to find, what happened to me on the plan *was* calibration (I ran the computer until the battery ran out of juice). m.

If you had checked the battery's Capacity *before* and *after*, you would have found that the battery was in fact re-calibrated, i.e. the battery's firmware's idea of the battery's capacity was adjusted. (Unfortunately re-calibration is not retroactive. ;-)

So, after charging fully, you would have gotten the warning, under similar conditions, the next day.

BTW, you do know how to check your battery's capacity, or?

If not, there's a nice program called XBattery. There's also a very nicely crafted shell script called battery. And for curious intrepid Unix users, batmon. :-)

Another BTW -- last week I actually watched a battery recalibrating itself as it was discharging. Previously, I had only seen a Capacity adjustment within 3 minutes of being plugged in after coma-sleep.

-- Peter

Message #8 - Posted 2004/03/21 - Peter Renzland

Previously, Peter Renzland wrote:

Previously, matt neuburg wrote:

Peter Renzland wrote:

I wonder if there's an easy way to make an alert message pop up from an applescript?

There is: display dialog "voltage is low".

Hm.

$ osascript -e 'display dialog "voltage is low"' 0:31: execution error: No user interaction allowed. (-1713)

Looks like I'm missing something.

O.K. I figured it out (-:

osascript -e 'tell app "Finder"' \
-e 'activate' \
-e 'display dialog "Hello World" with icon STOP giving up after 10 ' \ -e 'end tell'

cool!

-- Peter

Message #9 - Posted 2004/03/22 - matt neuburg

Peter Renzland wrote:

There is: display dialog "voltage is low".

Hm.

$ osascript -e 'display dialog "voltage is low"' 0:31: execution error: No user interaction allowed. (-1713)

Looks like I'm missing something.

Yes, and my book tells you what it is (p. 368). m.

matt neuburg, phd = matt@tidbits.com, http://www.tidbits.com/matt/ AppleScript: The Definitive Guide
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596005571/somethingsbymatt Read TidBITS! It's free and smart. http://www.tidbits.com

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