aerlingus330
Posts: 812
Joined: Tue Nov 30, 2004 2:21 am

Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 3:01 am

Hi,
Ok, I have this old computer (year 2000) lying around, which I dont use anymore. So, I dont know what to do with it, cant use it...to slow...cant sell it...to out-dated. I figured out that I could upgrade it (hopefully) and I kinda stopped there....Im no computer Scientist, but I know enough about them. I am stuck on how to upgrade it to a standered of todays computers, here are the specs-

Compaq Presario
Windows 98
AMDK6-2, 550HMz
64mb RAM
15GB Harddrive
56K Modem
DVD Drive

So, Is it possible to upgrade to todays standards and should I do it myself or give it to PC World, if so how much would it cost?

Thank-You,
AerLingus330
Aer Lingus Airbus A330-300
 
Euclid
Posts: 324
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 3:42 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 3:22 am

Hi there!

Short and sweet answer would be no, you are pretty much stuck with it as is. You will not be able to fit a faster processor, as each new type of processor requires a motherboard specific to it, and fitting a new motherboard with a new processor in the existing case is also not possible as most motherboards these days has extra power connectors on the board that needs a power supply to match.

The memory format has also changed from SDRAM to DDR format, so you will very likely not be able to upgrade to more memory except if you can still find some old SDRAM chips somewhere.

Fitting a bigger hard drive may be the only thing left to do, but be careful as some PC's from this era may not recognize a hard drive that is bigger than 40GB.

My advice would be to leave it as is and do what I did at home. I took an old Pentium 3 650MHz machine, networked it onto my own PC, and use it to back up all my data once a week, plus my girlfriend uses it to access the Internet through Internet connection sharing on my machine.

Regards

Euclid
 
ohthedrama747
Posts: 244
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 3:59 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 3:22 am

If you give it to PC world it will cost you a bomb probably.

It all depends what you're going to use the machine for. There's no point in spending tons of money on a machine if you're not gunna get the use out of all the components.

Download a program called Everest (google it) and it'll tell you what you're motherboard is and what you can expand on etc. If not take it to PC World and ask them to give you a quote after you tell them what you want done.

Hope this helps,

G
 
Go3Team
Posts: 3156
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2004 1:19 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 10:48 am

I'll slide ya $20 to post it to me.
Yay Pudding!
 
MrChips
Posts: 933
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 2:56 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 11:30 am

You can upgrade that PC easily.

If you consider tearing out all the guts and putting in new ones upgrading.

Seriously, that's about all you can do. Now before you race off to a computer shop to get new parts, BEWARE:

1) Most Compaqs of that era are MicroATX format...modern MicroATX motherboards and PSUs are expensive compared to their standard format cousins...so much so that it would cost almost the same to buy a new case with a standard mobo and PSU. Also, MicroATX components can be hard to find as well.

2) You get what you pay for: Don't go buy that $25 HELLO AWESOME motherboard from Korea...stick with reputable manufacturers like Gigabyte, ASUS and MSI.
Time...to un-pimp...ze auto!
 
HT
Posts: 5857
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 6:20 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:19 pm

Quoting Aerlingus330 (Thread starter):
Ok, I have this old computer (year 2000) lying around, which I dont use anymore.

If you don´t use it anymore, why do want to spend any money on it ? I assume you´re using another computer now ...?! So you will have no need to use that old machine to access the internet - and using it only for backups would be a waste of space; a external HDD via USB 2.0 is a much better solution for this !

Also: Compaq has been using very small cases that make any alterations / additions rather difficult !

My advice:
Sell it, throw it away or donate it to some charity (any elementary school around that might want such a machine ?).
-HT
Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
 
LOT767-300ER
Posts: 8526
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2001 12:57 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:41 pm

Quoting MrChips (Reply 4):
1) Most Compaqs of that era are MicroATX format...modern MicroATX motherboards and PSUs are expensive compared to their standard format cousins...so much so that it would cost almost the same to buy a new case with a standard mobo and PSU. Also, MicroATX components can be hard to find as well.

Not really. A MicroATX standard size motherboard is something like $40 on which happens to be my supplier of choice. (Especially since their worldwide warehouse distribution outlet store is out of Naperville, 20 miles from me)

But you are right, no one in their right mind would upgrade this computer, we are talking about $40 for a Soyo or Shuttle MicroATX board, then if you want say a Socket 478 P4 2.6ghz thats another $140. Then you have optical drives and just a simple 40GB IDE WD HDD and your up to somewhere near $320 Already starting at $200 you could have a better machine than what you got.

Quoting MrChips (Reply 4):
2) You get what you pay for: Don't go buy that $25 HELLO AWESOME motherboard from Korea...stick with reputable manufacturers like Gigabyte, ASUS and MSI.

Ive built many desktops, and I just built my own 'super computer' and I do sell them) but I generally will agree with you here too. I have a DFI Mainboard in my machine right now (4 DDR Dual Channel slots 4GB Max DDR, 800 FSB, 5 PCIs, 1 AGP 8X standard outfit and it works pretty good coupled with a Socket 478 P4. I have found Shuttle and Soyo motherboards to be f'in crappy. On the other side along with Asus I must recomment Chaintech..they make some good boards.

MrChips: Id like to hear what the specs of your machine are and what you got hooked up to it though.
 
rossbaku
Posts: 643
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 6:06 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 6:23 pm

You could always turn it into a mini-server in your home, linking it with your main computer by network cables or wireless. Also, if your lucky enough to own a laptop as well, you can connect it to that wirelessly as well.

Just a thought.

Regards,

RossBaku  Smile
 
LOT767-300ER
Posts: 8526
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2001 12:57 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Mon Aug 15, 2005 7:09 pm

Quoting Rossbaku (Reply 7):
You could always turn it into a mini-server in your home, linking it with your main computer by network cables or wireless. Also, if your lucky enough to own a laptop as well, you can connect it to that wirelessly as well.

Rather pointless as you can buy a switch/hub/router/bridge/access point for less than $40  Silly
 
MrChips
Posts: 933
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 2:56 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Tue Aug 16, 2005 10:47 am

Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 6):
MrChips: Id like to hear what the specs of your machine are and what you got hooked up to it though

Most certainly.

This is about the seventh or eighth computer I've built for myself over the past 5 years...I've sold all the others to other people, and almost always with a profit as well (mind you, it helps that I did't keep some of them long).

Anyhow:

-Athlon64 3500+
-ASUS A8V-E Deluxe (VIA Chipset, PCI Express w/built in 802.11g + gigabit LAN and SATA)
-1 GB Kingston HyperX DualDDR RAM...probably upgrade that to 2 GB soon.
-2x Western Digital 200GB SATA HDDs
-LiteOn SOHC-5232K CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive - BAD BAD BAD BAD...I had a LiteOn LTR52327S CD-RW drive as another optical drive, but it failed two weeks ago. This drive is starting to fail now, I give it a month before it pushes up daisies. Probably going to get one of those Plextor Dual layer DVD writers next.
-ASUS Extreme N6800 video card - 256 MB GeForce 6800 PCI-Express - this is the most solid video card I've ever seen, and its good enough that I won't need a new one for a LONG time.

All these goodies are wrapped up in a very heavy (read: quiet) Antec case with one of their solid TruePower 480W PSUs. OS is currently WinXP 64 edition...yet another thing I'm not pleased about. There are still more than a few bugs to work out of this OS...should have went for the WinXP SP2.

My recommendation - if you want hardcore performance, and you have the bucks, ditch AGP and get PCI-Express...it is quite an improvement. Also, stay the heck away from Maxtor HDDs...When I was a partner in a computer business, for every failed Maxtor HDD we'd see, I'd take two Tylenol, because I knew that we had a major headache coming up.
Time...to un-pimp...ze auto!
 
LOT767-300ER
Posts: 8526
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2001 12:57 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Tue Aug 16, 2005 12:01 pm

Quoting MrChips (Reply 9):
My recommendation - if you want hardcore performance, and you have the bucks, ditch AGP and get PCI-Express...it is quite an improvement. Also, stay the heck away from Maxtor HDDs...When I was a partner in a computer business, for every failed Maxtor HDD we'd see, I'd take two Tylenol, because I knew that we had a major headache coming up.

LMFAO I know the deal with Maxtor. I once made the mistake of having one. I cant get a PCI Express because my mobo has no slot for it. However Im gonna acquire an ATI X800XL 256mb AGP for $179 at my works benefits (yay!)

Basically my setup right now is the following:

-P4 3.2ghz with HT
-DFI PT880 Mobo w/ VIA PT880 Northbridge chipset 10/100 LAN, 2xSATA
-3x512mb Kingston PC3200 DDR RAM
-1xWD 250GB IDE, 1xSeagate 80GB IDE 1xWD 120GB External 1xWD 80GB Ext.
-2x Samsung TS-H552U DVD+-RW Double Layer Burners (Yea this is sweet)
-ATI Radeon 9700 Pro 128mb AGP
-Fanmaster Ultra 7 Fan Digital Controller w/full color LCD
-Linksys 802.11g USB Wireless Adapter

My net goes like this from my card ---> D-Link Wireless G Router thats connected to a Linksys Wireless G Access Point thats connected to a Linksys Hardwire Ethernet VPN Router  Silly

Im not a big fan of SP2, im still running Windows XP SP1. Its actually Windows from my HP Laptop haha.

PCI Express isnt a costly thing for me, im looking at my CircuitCity accomodations here and I get 60-50% off on any ATI card I desire, and a mobo for another $80-90

I got a BenQ Dual Layer DVD-+RW sitting here unused by me paired with Sonic so if you want it...heheheh
 
DeskPilot
Posts: 704
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2004 8:02 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Tue Aug 16, 2005 12:05 pm

Quoting MrChips (Reply 9):
-Athlon64 3500+

Yep, just recently upgraded to this processor, board, etc. Nice machine. Fast, but noisy when the fan starts spinning ! Sounds like a jet getting ready to take off.

Quoting MrChips (Reply 9):
OS is currently WinXP 64 edition...yet another thing I'm not pleased about. There are still more than a few bugs to work out of this OS...should have went for the WinXP SP2.

haven't bothered with WinXP 64 edition. Most advise I've received is not to bother yet unless you have specific needs.

Quoting Aerlingus330 (Thread starter):
Compaq Presario
Windows 98
AMDK6-2, 550HMz

Back to the original topic, I've got a similar speed machine at home. Upgraded the RAM to 256M, added an 80M HDD, and installed XP. Set it up a s a music server located in with the stereo. All our music is now digitised, served up by this machine over the home network. No need for a screen or keybaord, remotely controled via Remote Desktop from any machine on our home network (even got a copy of Remote Desktop on an iMac at home !)
By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
 
LOT767-300ER
Posts: 8526
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2001 12:57 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Tue Aug 16, 2005 1:10 pm

Quoting DeskPilot (Reply 11):
Yep, just recently upgraded to this processor, board, etc. Nice machine. Fast, but noisy when the fan starts spinning ! Sounds like a jet getting ready to take off.

Why dont you change the fan?  Silly

Quoting DeskPilot (Reply 11):
Back to the original topic, I've got a similar speed machine at home. Upgraded the RAM to 256M, added an 80M HDD, and installed XP. Set it up a s a music server located in with the stereo. All our music is now digitised, served up by this machine over the home network. No need for a screen or keybaord, remotely controled via Remote Desktop from any machine on our home network (even got a copy of Remote Desktop on an iMac at home !)

Thats tight! Might I ask how this is connected to your receiver though? A simple 3.5mm Mini jack from line out doesnt give true sorround sound but virtual. Do you have an Audio Card with an Optical output?
 
DeskPilot
Posts: 704
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2004 8:02 am

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Tue Aug 16, 2005 1:49 pm

Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 12):
Thats tight! Might I ask how this is connected to your receiver though? A simple 3.5mm Mini jack from line out doesnt give true sorround sound but virtual. Do you have an Audio Card with an Optical output?

LOT, it's a mini jack to RCA convetors - just plain stero output to an amplifier.

Haven't gone down the optical/coaxial output stage as my amplifer doesnt support his. May add a decent sound card to the PC later (eg. SB Live!) to improve the sound. Not entirely happy with AC97 mobo based sound.
By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
 
LOT767-300ER
Posts: 8526
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2001 12:57 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Tue Aug 16, 2005 2:22 pm

Quoting DeskPilot (Reply 13):
LOT, it's a mini jack to RCA convetors - just plain stero output to an amplifier.

Yea thought it was just a standard mni jack to double RCA  Smile
 
B744F
Posts: 2927
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2006 4:52 pm

RE: Computer Upgrade Question

Wed Aug 17, 2005 2:44 am

Do this...
put linux on it

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