Daily Wisdom

September 03, 2009

My New Computer

Well, I finally took the plunge and bought a new computer. "Oooooh! Look at the pretty lights!" [Sorry about the picture quality, but in full daylight you can't hardly see the lights.] I got what they call a "bare bones kit"... in other words, 'some assembly required'. For $249.99 plus $1.99 shipping, I got a case with the power supply, a motherboard, a CPU (central processing unit) and fan, 2 gigabytes of RAM memory, and a 1 terabyte (1,000 gigabyte) hard drive. I supplied the monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers, amplifier, DVD burner, front panel USB ports and floppy disk drive. They were left-overs from previous computer projects.

For those who are interested in such things, the CPU is an AMD Athlon™ II X2 running at a little over 2.8 GHz. The motherboard is a Gigabyte™ brand unit with built-in graphics and sound (so I didn't have to buy a video card or sound card). I'm running Windows™ XP Service Pack 2 as my main operating system, but I've set up the computer as a dual-boot machine running Linux (Ubuntu version) as an alternate operating system. I don't know much about Linux, but I want to learn.

The computer boots up noticeably quicker than my old computer, which is nice. It is also quieter. When I first turned on the machine, I thought something was wrong because I didn't hear anything. I had to put my hand over the fan outlet to make sure air was coming out. That's kind of nice too. Actually, there's nothing wrong with my old computer. It's been operating trouble-free for 6 years now. I built that one too, and (only by coincidence) it too is an AMD Athlon™ CPU on a Gigabyte™ brand motherboard. I bought this new computer mainly because I thought it was a great deal.

According to the website 'PCpitstop.com', my old computer ranks in the bottom 5% of all computers in the world. My new computer ranks in the top 17% of all the computers in the world. Quite a jump, eh? Frankly, it seems hard to believe that there's that much of a difference in the two, based on a side-by-side performance comparison. I think it simply boils down to a matter of statistics. My old computer is, well... 6 years old! And it wasn't 'state-of-the-art' when I built it. CPU's are now 3X faster. Video graphics are faster. RAM memory of 1, 2, or 4 Gigabytes is relatively common (versus 512 MB). Hard drives are WAY bigger, etc.

I've loaded most of my favorite programs onto the new computer and will slowly be transitioning from the old computer to the new computer. One program I will not be using on the new computer is Incredimail™. When I tried to install it on my new computer, it wanted me to pay for the 'Premium' version, even though I've already paid for the Premium version. Despite entering a valid license number, it refuses to allow me access to the benefits of the Premium version. Well, sorry! I'm not paying twice for a program I've already purchased. As a result, you may notice a difference in my future e-mails. There will be no emoticons, etc. Instead, I'll be using a free e-mail client called Thunderbird™ from Mozilla™, the same fine people who brought us the Firefox™ browser. It may be a bit boring, and my e-mail responses may be at the bottom instead of the top, but it's free (you can't beat the price), and it has a nice clean user interface.

OK, 'nuff for now. Happy computing y'all!


At 9/07/2009 3:57 PM , Blogger Beerme said...

Looks pretty wild!
My old computer was a DIY model with lights and a plexiglass side panel to reveal more...lights! I opted for a new one when the hard drive began to waver. Sounds like you got a great deal!

I've been using Thunderbird for years. I like it.


At 9/08/2009 8:52 AM , Blogger Hawkeye® said...

Yeah, I think I got a good deal too. Since it was a kit, I wasn't particularly interested in the fancy lights, but it's a nice touch.

I've had some problems with Thunderbird not reproducing images. In fact, I got a couple of e-mails from Comcast that I thought were spam because the images wouldn't show up. They were legit. So as a result, I've now switched over to Outlook (sigh...)

(:D) Best regards...


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