None of which may be of any _real_ value, but it doesn't really make any
difference, either...just delete anything you don't want (altho w/
_minimum_ enry-level systems supporting 1000 GB drives or larger one is
unlikely to ever care that a few MB are taken up. Only real issue ime
may be some things in Startup folder you'll want to remove but at least
I've seen nothing that would make me refuse to buy from a given vendor
for that reason for the advantage of the bundled deal pricing...
This machine is roughly same age as OP's (a Dell) that bought when went
out on own consulting back in '99 -- it was
decently-middle-to-upper-half at the time. I just added 2GB memory last
week to bring it to 4 total and it made a lot of difference w/ the new
release of Matlab The Mathworks offered. I've since retired from the
consulting gig so there's no incentive/justification for upgrading
otherwise so I don't see anything at all against just getting the new
drive and perhaps another GB of memory and goin' on. This also is XP
and I don't give a hoot about the "end of service life"--it's
stable-enough there's no need to change OS.
Computers of that age have another common failure mode that slows them
to a crawl - leaky caps. Take a good look at all the electrolytic caps
on the motherboard. They all have score marks in the end. If the end
is convex instead of flat or slightly concave, the cap has failed. The
K marked caps are generally less likely to fail than the X marked
ones, for some reason.
You CAN replace the caps with new Low ESR caps to salvage an otherwise
good board but at $2 and change a piece for the caps,I often question
if it is worth while. Generally 1000 and 1500 mfd caps in 10 and 16
volt DC ratings - minimum 85C temp rating. Using 16 and 25 volt caps
extends the life if you have the physical space on the board.
Virtual XP IS a VM.
It comes standard on Win7 Pro, and can be downloaded for free from
Microsoft if you need it on a "lesser" OS.
Personally, I ALWAYS buy Pro, so it's not an issue for me (I need the
network capability of Pro - lesser OS cannot join a domain)
On Mon, 31 Mar 2014 13:38:36 -0400, Stormin Mormon
It is still available - I downloaded and installed it last week to
resurrect a little Toshibba Portege R200.
You DO need to make sure you are only downloading SP3 and not 1001
other programs the download sites try to stuff in on you.
Can you clarify how a leaky cap will "slow them to a crawl"?
If the PLL controlling the clock signal doesn't lock at the
target frequency, the processor will never leave reset. I suppose
that qualifies as "slow", for some value of "slow".
A VM (Virtual Machine) is a "container" that appears to software as if it
were running on bare-metal. The "container" usually runs under an
hypervisor (or an existing OS that has hypervisor functionality). Common
hypervisors include VMWare and Xen (Citrix), and both Windows and Linux have hypervisor
functionality using HyperV and KVM (kernel Virtual machine) respectively.
All modern processors (Intel, PowerPC, ARM, Itanium, PARISC, et alia)
have hardware support for virtualization to make virtualization significantly
more efficient than if the processor didn't have the extra support
(often implemented via an additional privilege level, more privileged than
the the operating systems being virtualized (SVM on AMD, VT-X on Intel,
Exception Level 2 on ARMv8)).
Any x86 operating system can be run in a x86 Virtual Machine (VM) including
MsDOS, OS/2, Linux, Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8, etc.
Some of us build very large, very fast, very expensive computers for
a living. Some of us even write hypervisors for a living.
| > But XP is zippy on old hardware, and does just fine with 256
| > MB RAM for most uses.)
Interesting reasoning. :)
| The biggest mistake people make is to view a computer as if it is a
| major appliance. Sure, ovens and fridges don't change much over time,
| so they'll still perform their basic functions just fine even when
| newer models are on the market. But computers are dynamic devices. The
| software and peripherals that run on/with them are constantly
| changing. They gradually lose efficiency, and eventually lose
| compatibility. At some point, they won't be good for much anymore.
In practice that's often true, and in Jerry's case
it might be easiest to just buy a new machine,
especially considering how cheap they are now.
But if you know how to re-install the system and
manage your software -- or if you have a friend
who can help -- then there's no reason to have the
problems you describe. Software doesn't "lose
efficiency", and most people rarely if ever change
their software. But if you don't manage startup
programs, if you allow browser toolbars to be installed,
etc then the system will get bogged down.
I was working on a friend's PC just yesterday.
He had wanted to download an audio file. The only
option was iTunes. In order to download he had
to install the iTunes software. For one audio file
he ended up with *4* nonsense Apple programs
running at startup. Most people don't understand
about such things. Even if the Apple installer provided
a choice about installing their junk (which I doubt)
my friend would have just gone along with the
suggested default install, as most people do. That's
the kind of thing that causes what appears to you to
be ageing and "lost efficiency".
So there might be a question as to whether it's
feasible for Jerry to "revivify" his old PC. But it
probably is a realistic option. I stress this point because
I think it's a shame that people waste so much money
out of ignorance. I've got a number of PCs that I
hold onto in case someone needs one. I get them
from people who think the way you do: Their system
gets mucked up, they think it must be dying of old
age, they go and buy another PC, then they give the
old one to me for parts. I do a factory restore in 30
minutes (which most PCs can do) and I've got a PC
as fresh as the day it was bought.... in most cases
still far more powerful than the person in question
On Monday, March 31, 2014 4:07:30 PM UTC-4, Mayayana wrote:
Really? People don't change software? Not in my experience.
Who for example is still using the same version of a web
browser from 12 years ago? And for what? A browser from back them
would be incompatible with most websites today.
Try to open a new document with Adobe Reader that's 12 years old,
play a newly created video with a 12 year old video player app, etc.
It's rarely going to work. Software is constantly evolving. You
can almost always open an old file with the new app, but not vice
But if you don't manage startup
Perfect example of why new software gets installed all the time.
For one audio file
That can certainly contribute to decreased performance, sure.
But it still doesn't
mean that a 12 year old XP machine is up to what most people typically
want or find acceptable today for their PC. And if he wants to stick
with XP, he's going to find less and less software that runs on it.
If he uses Windows Explorer, IDK when the last version was that runs
on XP. It's sure not the last couple versions, so he can expect increasing
compatibility trouble there. I'm sure someone will say he can use
some other browser, which is true, but it's an example of the kind of
frustration,work arounds etc that are going to become more common
with an EOL OS.
On Mon, 31 Mar 2014 19:57:54 GMT, firstname.lastname@example.org (Scott Lurndal)
I'm not a computer engineer, but I have experienced computers slowing
to a crawl with bad caps, that came right back to life when I replaced
the caps. It's not just the processor clock - it's the IO from the
hard drive, the refresh rate on the RAM, and the output to the video
that can all slow down. The processor misses clock cycles if the
voltage goes off spec too, from what I've been told.
Some bad caps will also make the computer not boot. Or make the
computer crash when it gets warm.
It all depends which part of the logic the cap is located. Until
you see some thing caused by any component going bad you wouldn't
believe things happening in the field(real world). Bad cap even scres up
critical rise and fall time of a clock pulse. My job as a Sr. systems
support specialist was looking at this sort of things with multi channel
logic analyzer set up to catch things when it happens. Some things
glitch once in a blue moon but we know it is happening and we have to
catch it to generate engineering mod. with design engineers.
Some problems originates from poor quality control. Bad batch of chips
or parts will incur wasted expenses. Purchasing agent at logistics has
big responsibility in this regard. Timing I was dealing with was nano
seconds or fraction of it. Ordinary O'scope is unable to display it.
Storage scope captured signals had to be displayed in sort of scaled
slow motion to analyze it. x86 PC was used as a diagnostic tool to
trouble-shoot large scale multi layer logic board down to component
level. Any one heard of checking logic circuits by serial bit shifting
On Tuesday, April 1, 2014 1:00:21 PM UTC-4, Tony Hwang wrote:
I agree with the above analysis. But we're talking about a failing leaky
electrolytic cap causing the system speed to slow down. AFAIK, the
uses for electrolytic caps in a PC are either in the power supply or on
the MB, I/O boards, etc where power enters the board to serve as a
source to smooth voltage variations, ie supply current to meet transient
switching needs. At least for anything to do with logic. They would
also be used on say an audio or video card for the analog section.
But in the case of the digital logic portion, I can see how a bad cap
could easily make the system lock up, give a blue screen of death, etc.
But like others here, I'm having a hard time understanding a mechanism
whereby it just slows it down. I suppose maybe a failing cap on
some I/O board or something could cause that to behave erratically,
causing the same interrupt signal being tripped constantly, which the
CPU then has to respond to. That might explain it I guess.
Slowing things down can mean increased error rate which require retries.
If cap is leaky(not total failure yet), it can sag voltage rail
potential. You're talking in terms of PC in general? Like BSOD? There
was such a logic board with CML logic which used to draw couple hundred
Watts of power, in this case little leaky cap is not detrimental for
system failure but it can cause all kinda funnies. In a situation like
this years of actual field experience combined with superior basic
knowledge is the only way to tacckle it. Engineers
with green horns don't even have a faintest clue encountering this kinda
issues when customer(big corporations, government, military, etc.) is
breathing down on his back asking when system will be up.
Literally I saw a young kid breaking down in tears in total loss.
Remembering I was once like that I always tried to be nice to them
giving every thing to their credit. But there were types who tried to
live their lives only with BIG mouth. I hated those kind. Usually big
liars to cover their a**. This type is the worst one to bail out.
Because of those stupid lies. I am glad I am retired now. I have a 100%
track record. I never failed to solve a problem in the field(all over
the world) I encountered for almost 40 years.
Here's some information. I did have 53 updates to download and install!
Still 3 to go. Thank you
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Profile Date: Monday, March 31, 2014 8:56:08 PM
Advisor Version: 8.4
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Operating System System Model
Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 3 (build 2600)
Install Language: English (United States)
System Locale: English (United States)
Installed: 2/17/2003 1:10:30 AM
Boot Mode: BIOS (Secure Boot not supported) Dell Computer Corporation
Dimension 2350 A01
System Service Tag: F9GXC21 (support for this PC)
Chassis Serial Number: F9GXC21
Enclosure Type: Desktop
Processor a Main Circuit Board b
1.80 gigahertz Intel Pentium 4
8 kilobyte primary memory cache
512 kilobyte secondary memory cache
Not hyper-threaded Board: Dell Computer Corporation 07W080 A00
Serial Number: CN708212CRD170
Bus Clock: 400 megahertz
BIOS: Mitac International A01 12/17/2002
Drives Memory Modules c,d
29.97 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
5.88 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space
HL-DT-ST CD-RW GCE-8481B [Optical drive]
SAMSUNG CD-ROM SC-148C [Optical drive]
3.5" format removeable media [Floppy drive]
IC35L030AVV207-0 [Hard drive] (30.00 GB) -- drive 0, s/n VNVA02G1G0SRSH,
rev V21OA63A, SMART Status: Healthy 768 Megabytes Usable Installed Memory
Slot 'A0' has 256 MB
Slot 'A1' has 512 MB
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Guest 2/16/2013 4:42:31 PM
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Intel(R) 82801DB Ultra ATA Storage Controller - 24CB
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DELL 1504FP [Monitor] (14.6"vis, s/n XX-05R108-XXXXX-31H-DGA1, January
Bus Adapters Multimedia
Intel(r) 82801DB/DBM USB 2.0 Enhanced Host Controller - 24CD
Intel(R) 82801DB/DBM USB Universal Host Controller - 24C2
Intel(R) 82801DB/DBM USB Universal Host Controller - 24C4
Intel(R) 82801DB/DBM USB Universal Host Controller - 24C7 SoundMAX
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These security updates apply to this computer but are not currently
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03/11/2014 Microsoft Security Bulletin Summary and bulletins from other
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severity security updates must be installed.
Hotfix Id Severity Description (click to see security bulletin)
APSB14-10 Critical Adobe Shockwave Player security update for Shockwave
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Microsoft - Internet Explorer 84876-600-0011903-00102
Microsoft - MediaPlayer 69808-412-0670717-04414
Microsoft - Office 2000 Disc 2 50158-029-3449976-02371
Microsoft - Office 2000 Premium 50106-029-3449976-02815
Microsoft - Picture It! Photo 7.0 69328-OEM-0400003-00000 (Key:
Microsoft - PowerShell 89383-100-0001260-04309
Microsoft - Reference 60490-OEM-1714404-84618
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a. Processor clock speed is measured at computer start-up, and on laptops
may be impacted by power option settings.
b. Data may be transferred on the bus at one, two, or four times the Bus
c. Memory slot contents may not add up to Installed Memory if some memory
is not recognized by Windows.
d. Memory slot contents is reported by the motherboard BIOS. Contact system
vendor if slot contents are wrong.
e. This may be the manufacturer's factory installed product key rather than
yours. You can change it to your product key using the procedure at
f. The full product key is not stored on this computer. However, the
characters shown uniquely identify your product key.
g. You can have Windows save the full product key using the procedure at
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