Need a New Desktop

Discussion in 'Technical Corner' started by Fallsrider, Jan 26, 2020.

  1. murphey

    murphey Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    If you're a Costco member, take a look at the desktops there. Usually not the latest & greatest, but one version back (less than a model year). Good prices and warranty. But if you're going new, as mentioned by MarkH - SSD drive. You can always add more memory on your own (and cheaper too). For memory, I use Crucial.com, never had any problems over the 20 years I've been keeping other systems running. (I manage a couple non-profits' systems & network as a favor) Crucial also has a great app that you download, it analyzes your system and lists exactly what memory and SSD you can install in your system. A big advantage to a desktop over a laptop is that it's trivial to add an SSD in an open slot in the bay. Just like adding a DVD R/W if you don't have one already installed. My Windows systems have always been towers just for this reason. Of course I also do wierd things to my Mac laptops but we won't go there....
     
  2. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    I'm not sure. I'll have to look into that.
     
  3. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    Sounds like a good idea. Would you recommend I add RAM, as well, if possible?
     
  4. bobmrg

    bobmrg En-Route

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    I hav en't bought a name-brand desktop in years. I go to my favorite computer shop, tell them what I want, and they build it for me. Definitely specify a solid-state drive...no moving parts.

    Bob
     
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  5. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Yes. If you are a business customer, you can order the system without most of the bloatware. The only things that come preinstalled is a backup utility and a software their support can use to get on your box. I have ordered a good number of their products and never had a problem that I didn't cause (e.g. by leaving a couple of little subcompact units sit on the dusty floor for 8 years until the fans clogged up and their little brains fried).
     
  6. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Upgrading memory is really easy:



    Your computer only has 2 memory slots, which may be filled with 2x4GB modules or 1x8GB.

    Because upgrading memory is so easy, I would install the SSD, and while it is open look at the current memory configuration. If it is just one module (like in the circle in the picture), then you can just buy another 8GB module. But if there are 2 modules then you will have to buy 2 8GB modules to upgrade it. Kingston shows the 8GB modules at $43 each, so if you only need one, you can still keep the upgrade under $100.

    Either way, I would run it with the SSD upgrade first to decide if it is needed.
     
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  7. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I forgot the photo, memory location on your system:
     

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  8. Tom-D

    Tom-D Taxi to Parking PoA Supporter

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    I Mac, love it :)
     
  9. Let'sgoflying!

    Let'sgoflying! Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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  10. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    We're not, but I would at least check them out if we were. My wife had a membership through her last employer, but she lost that when she left. The few times we've been, the parking lot was a mad house, and it wasn't much better inside. Trying to push a shopping cart through the throngs of people required more patience than I was willing to have.
     
  11. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    I'm going to give this a whirl. I ordered the Kingston drive, but in 960GB. That's what the current HD is, and we've used about 260GB of that. I'll make a recovery disk (I happen to have a 32GB USB Drive) and see what happens.

    Thanks for the tip!

    I remember doing this years ago on another Gateway or Dell computer. I added an additional drive. Once I get this new HD installed, I will have to install the OS on the new drive, and then figure out how to make it boot up to that new drive. I'm sure it's simple, I just don't remember how to do it. But Google is my friend.

    I remember how nice it was having all my existing files still residing on the old HD. I could go anytime I wanted and copy files over to the new drive. That was nice.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2020
  12. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Just enter the bios setup by pressing F2 repeatedly when you see the Dell Splash screen on boot (it's the first screen you see).
    Then find the "Boot Sequence" page and ensure that the SSD is listed above the HDD.
     
  13. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I don't know what Dell is like these days, but I quit ordering them for the company years ago because they went south as a company. Cases were getting shoddy and falling apart, and sometimes desktops would show up with internal cables disconnected. And then there customer support became so bad, I would order a unit, and it would take two weeks to ship, and some orders would get lost altogether. We've gone with HP since for desktops and servers, and Lenovo for laptops.
     
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  14. Crashnburn

    Crashnburn Line Up and Wait

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    Better yet, but a SSD at least the size of your current HDD and an external drive caddy. Use the free version of Macrium Reflect to clone your HDD onto your SSD and replace the HDD with the SSD. You’ll be amazed at how much faster your computer is. You can even pay someone to do it for a lot less than a new CPU. You should also get a new malware scanning program. I am really impressed with Norton’s Anti-Virus program.
     
  15. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel Pattern Altitude

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    Not for nothing but saying you only buy HP and Lenovo PCs because Dell's support sucks and their machines can show up with sub par quality is kind of like saying you only smoke Marlboro 100's because Camel's can cause cancer.
     
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  16. DocTrussell

    DocTrussell Filing Flight Plan

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    I will throw my 2 cents in.
    I would recommend staying away from the NUC. Bought 5 for my office about 18 months ago but am replacing them now as they are starting to shutdown randomly due to overheating issues. We have had them apart to make sure fans are working and they are clean (all is clean and working). Had one this morning shot down 5 times just trying to do updates, also shut down doing payroll this afternoon.



    Sent from my XP8800 using Tapatalk
     
  17. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'm not going to disagree about staying away from the NUCs, many of them have overheating issues. I don't know exactly the situation at your work, but NUCs are infamous for sloppy thermal paste causing high temps. I have seen reports on the internet (so take it as you will) of 5-10C temp drops by cleaning off the old thermal paste and applying a higher quality paste.
     
  18. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    No, I smoke Marlboro 100's because Camel packs are coming up short and the stores aren't carrying them.
     
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  19. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    They’re fine now. The micro desktops are just laptop motherboards in a little case.

    Which is what I usually recommend for someone who just has to have a brand new home machine they aren’t going to need a massive graphics card for gaming on.

    With the internal M2 SSD slot, they boot Win10 in less than 3 seconds from cold and are faster than most people need. On sale or buying last year’s used ones they’re just over $600. New about $800 decently equipped with 3 year warranty and on the business side, on site repair that we’ve never used on that model.

    We buy the Optiplex 7000 Micro series. Depending on processor needs the 3000/5000 could also be fine. The 9th gen i3/i5 smoke even older i7s. Intel’s reindeer games.

    As someone else pointed out in this case, however, a regular SATA SSD will make the OP’s i5 machine plenty fast for most home users.
     
  20. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    I ordered this drive back on January 31st...
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B079XC5PVV/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    It still has not shipped. They say they will send me an email when they have an estimated delivery date. Can anyone recommend a similar product that I could order instead? I can cancel the above order since it hasn't shipped.

    Thanks.
     
  21. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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  22. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    BestBuy sells those.

    Usually in stock at stores but rarely out of stock online.

    Strange to recommend WorstBuy over Amazon, but worth a look.
     
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  23. murphey

    murphey Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    I avoid Costco Friday - Sunday. Yes, a madhouse. But early in the week, it can be almost empty.
     
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  24. murphey

    murphey Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Crucial has a downloadable app that scans your computer and recommends upgrades - memory and drives. Harmless, I've been using it for years on customer and my systems. Never had a problem with Crucial memory direct from the company.
     
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  25. weirdjim

    weirdjim Ejection Handle Pulled

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    10 doctors tried Camels. Nine of them went back to women.

    Jim
     
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  26. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    I canceled the Kingston and ordered the SanDisk. It is being delivered tomorrow. Thanks!
     
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  27. flhrci

    flhrci Final Approach

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    If Bast Buy has something in stock locally and it is cheaper on Amazon, I will have Best Buy price match it. I prefer anything to Amazon. Thanks to Amazon, there is little choice of stores to buy clothes without driving 25 miles to the more affluent part of the area.
     
  28. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel Pattern Altitude

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    Misdirected hate. Amazon did not put a gun to anybody's head and force them to be customers against their will. Amazon offered the buying public a choice and the buying public made their decision. If you're looking to place blame, at least place it correctly.
     
  29. flhrci

    flhrci Final Approach

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    You are right but I also see them as becoming a monopoly soon that will need to be broken up. Amazon is in too many aspects of our lives and with the competition going away, the choices are more limited.
     
  30. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    Amazon is in all sorts of wonderful things in my life. That’s why I pay them money instead of going to a mall.

    I mean, my fridge has less options than the food court, so Bezos needs to figure out how to fix that... but in general he’s doing a great job around here!

    Seriously though. Not kidding. More than happy he’s an “evil billionaire”. Most products on my doorstep in two days. Instant refunds via mouse click for stuff that doesn’t work? No parking lots, no standing in lines...

    But forget that. If I could cheer him for one thing it would be taking away the suckiest parts of building and operating data centers from my company, at 1/4 the price of his closest competitor, so we can spend time doing more useful things.

    And I built 18 data centers. I know exactly where the suck resides in those.

    Pretty damn awesome.

    If Amazon is abusing me, hand him another flogging tool. I’m not ready to use my safe word yet.

    I’m probably close to using my safe word on Google though. They’re touching me inappropriately. LOL.
     
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  31. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    Hard to be a monopoly when you’re allowing everybody to sell through your platform.

    Tons of sales are from Amazon Marketplace. No extra effort required and Amazon will even show you that a Marketplace seller has a better price than they do.

    One minor downside. You have to watch it when manufacturers mess around with who “authorized resellers” are.

    However if Amazon is aware of such shenanigans they’ll even warn you about it on the main product page.

    My wife wanted a particular fitness gadget. She searched Amazon for it and not one but SIX Marketplace sellers were cheaper than the first truly authorized reseller per the device maker.

    She could choose the unauthorized refurbished ones and trust the seller to make any problems right, buy from the cheapest authorized seller for full factory support, or spend even more than either of those for one sold directly from Amazon who was one of the listed approved resellers.

    Amazon made all of those choices possible. And the price difference wasn’t inconsiderable either. About $70 buck different from bottom to top with shipping included.

    They’re not even close to a monopoly. At least four of those sellers also had their own websites with the same product for sale at the same shipped price. We could have not bought it through Amazon at all.

    Just for completeness: She ended up using the lowest priced authorized seller through Amazon for payment convenience.

    Definitely not a monopoly.
     
  32. smv

    smv Line Up and Wait

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    Who else remembers what was cdnow.com before Amazon bought them out and destroyed them? Think of imdb.com but for music.
     
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  33. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    Wikipedia says they were bought by BMG. Who are generally a scourge on music, true.

    BMG contracted Amazon to run it. They could contract anyone else to do it if they like.

    Not exactly an Amazon problem.
     
  34. chemgeek

    chemgeek Cleared for Takeoff

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    In the lab and at home I build my own, either small form factor desktops or NUCs. For now, a fast Intel Core i5 or i7 with an SSD (256-512 GB) and 8-16GB of RAM will run Win10 or Linux very well. If you have a lot of data, a second spinning drive or SSD is useful.) For my nonprofit org, I purchase refurb computers with SSDs and can get very good ones for $200-$300 that I can fix myself. Usually the weak point is the power supply, and those are easily replaced for most machines. A dedicated graphics card is not important unless running graphically intensive programs like games, science applications, or complex image editing programs.
     
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  35. Ghery

    Ghery Final Approach

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    I have an Intel NUC that I got while still working for Intel - 6 years ago. It still works fine, and has been turned on and running 24/7/365 since I finished putting it together. No complaints at all. However, keep in mind that the tradeoff with the small form factor is that you don't have a bunch of room to add stuff to it. That said, if it meets your space needs, go for it.
     
  36. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    Not sure about the NUC hate. They are “fine”. Tad overpriced for what they are but not terrible. Just have to keep up on the latest ones, since there’s newer faster ones all the time.

    I think you get more for the buck with the Dell micro form factor and friends in IT forums say the little Lenovos are even higher spec for the buck if you need three or more monitors. Dell forces you to use USB-C now for the third one, which is a recent change.

    But the Dell and the NUCs are both crippled by the on board Intel graphics, for anything more than normal business use. Anything with Intel graphics is crippled and has been for a while now.
     
  37. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    OK, I got the new SSD installed, formatted, and a name given to the drive. So now my computer recognizes the drive in File Explorer.

    I'm unclear, however, how to install Win10 from the recovery disk (USB) onto the new SSD. Can someone walk me through that? I tried searching online, but haven't found an answer I understand yet. Will I be given an option of the drive to restore to? I don't want to go too far into it and I lose my original hard drive because it starts restoring to that drive instead of the new one. Thanks.
     
  38. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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  39. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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  40. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    My suggestion to most people trying this for the first time is unplug the old hard drive, and plug those connections into the SSD. Then reinstall. After windows is installed, connect the old hard drive to the system.

    This ensures that you cannot overwrite your data, and it eases the connections because you just have to move them to the SSD and make the new connections on the hard drive after the install worked.