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Old 2010-07-08, 19:18   #1
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Default Update computer, buy new one, or wait?

I have a 5 year old computer, and its specs are:

- Pentium 4, 3 GHz
- 512 MB RAM
- 70GB hard drive
- 32 bit, Windows XP

Should I upgrade the computer, buy a new one, or wait for faster PC's to come out?
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Old 2010-07-08, 22:15   #2
Uncwilly
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What are your main considerations? What are going to use it for? How much do you want/plan to spend? What are you going to do with the old one?
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Old 2010-07-08, 22:28   #3
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Originally Posted by Uncwilly View Post
What are your main considerations? What are going to use it for?
A mix of uses. There'll be some gaming and distributed computing, but those aren't my main priorities. On the other hand, I want a PC that allows me to do more than check emails and write "Hello, World!" statements in Notepad. So a mid-range computer would be fine.

Quote:
How much do you want/plan to spend?
About $1000 for a new PC (including the monitor). For individual components, I'd say about $300 on a new processor, $100 on RAM, and $100 on the hard drive

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What are you going to do with the old one?
If I get a new computer instead of an upgrade, I'll recycle my old PC or donate it.
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Old 2010-07-08, 23:59   #4
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Hello, more than an update of the computer, i would change the O.S, a lightweight distro of GNU/Linux, like AntiX, Slax or VectorLinux, and that old computer will fly.
cheers!!!!!
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Old 2010-07-09, 02:56   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Should I upgrade the computer, buy a new one, or wait for faster PC's to come out?
Re: faster PCs

Right now, PCs have hit a sort of thermal barrier. (Going 4 GHz or faster makes them run too hot.) Until the manufacturers figure out how to get around that, what you're going to continue to see is chips with more and more multiple sub-4 GHz cores, not an above-4 GHz speed on any one core.

4 or 6 or 8 cores at 3.2 GHz each can do quite a lot.

... or you can take Pegaso56's advice and get faster performance from your current CPU by switching to Linux.

Last fiddled with by cheesehead on 2010-07-09 at 02:58
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Old 2010-07-09, 03:04   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheesehead View Post
... get faster performance from your current CPU by switching to Linux.
Eh? I don't think that is correct. It depends upon lots of things right? Sometimes faster, sometimes slower. Situation dependant.
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Old 2010-07-09, 03:39   #7
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Eh? I don't think that is correct. It depends upon lots of things right? Sometimes faster, sometimes slower. Situation dependant.
Oh, okay, you're right. pegaso56 didn't say faster performance.

pegaso56 said it would fly!

Like that Swiss solar-powered plane that putt-putts along at 79 mph or something like that.
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Old 2010-07-10, 03:58   #8
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jajja, THx Cheesehead and Retina. Need to say that english is not my native language, what i'm trying to explain is that in old computers (Celeron 300 Mhz and below, 256 Mb RAM or less) running GNU/Linux makes a difference in perfomance. By the way, if you want to donate a Pentium IV you are more than welcome, i'm working at school with Pentium I and 32 MB RAM. Bad news, i'm living in Argentina,
Best regards to all of you!!
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Old 2010-07-10, 05:04   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheesehead View Post
Re: faster PCs

Right now, PCs have hit a sort of thermal barrier. (Going 4 GHz or faster makes them run too hot.) Until the manufacturers figure out how to get around that...
The problem has been solved, in a sense. We'll probably be moving to carbon nanotubes in the next decade or so. Why haven't we already, you ask? My guess is that Intel and AMD want to hit our wallets as hard as possible, and sticking with transistors is probably way cheaper.
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Old 2010-07-10, 08:48   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pegaso56 View Post
Need to say that english is not my native language, what i'm trying to explain is that in old computers (Celeron 300 Mhz and below, 256 Mb RAM or less) running GNU/Linux makes a difference in perfomance.
Oh, we understood that all along. :-)

I just made a pun on "fly" for lighthearted humor -- no insult to your language fluency. You have communicated quite clearly all the way.

Quote:
By the way, if you want to donate a Pentium IV you are more than welcome, i'm working at school with Pentium I and 32 MB RAM.
I work my computers until they die, so I have no usable old ones. Maybe others do.

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Bad news, i'm living in Argentina,
"Bad news" refers to shipping costs from the Northern Hemisphere, I presume. :-(

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Best regards to all of you!!

Last fiddled with by cheesehead on 2010-07-10 at 08:53
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Old 2010-07-10, 08:52   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong View Post
Thread hijacking alert(mea culpa)
You're more polite than I.

Quote:
My guess is that Intel and AMD want to hit our wallets as hard as possible, and sticking with transistors is probably way cheaper.
... but you're oh, so cynical. Is nanotube-technology computer circuitry really ready to be ramped up to reliable production at mass-industrial scale now?
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