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It's about time I update my office desktop, as the one I'm on now struggles to meet our needs. I'm seriously short on RAM and speed. So it's time to upgrade...

Now I've asked other for help on this, because although I'm not computer illiterate, I do find there's alot thats changed since I got my last unit 8 years ago.

So I'll start with what I've narrowed it down to. I don't mind to spend a couple extra $$ now, if it means I don't have to replace it in another 8 years again. I'm leaning towards something rather powerful, with lost of expandibility and flexibility. I've been using Dell for quite some time, and am happy with what they've given me. Although I've heard of some reliability issues with the new ones, I do feel comfortable getting another Dell.

So I'll post the build sheet, and what ?s I'm struggling with. Input is appreciated. Please don't be offended if I premise this with one disclaimer - I have been in too many stores, and have heard from too many 'experts' that I don't need this or that, or I'll never use this to it's potential. I like my computers like my plows - overbuilt, no glitches. What I struggle with is knowing what pieces fit best together.

I'm looking at Dell's Vostro series - they are well built, powerful machines. Lots of USBs, expandability options, etc.:

Intel® Core™ i7-860 w/VT (2.8GHz 8MB L3 Cache)

Genuine Windows® 7 Ultimate 64 bit edit - Will I be able to tranfer files from XP (2002)?

Microsoft® Office Small Business 2007 (Basic + PowerPoint and Publisher)

1TB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™

8GB Dual Channel DDR3 SDRAM 1333MHz - 4DIMMs

1GB NVIDIA GeForce GTS240® (DVI, DVI, S-video)

Dual Drives: Blu-ray Disc (BD) Combo (BD-ROM; DVD/CD Burner) and 16xDVD-ROM

Creative Sound Blaster® X-Fi Xtreme Audio

IEEE 1394a Adapter

1 Year ProSupport for End Users and 1 Year NBD Onsite Service

McAfee10 SecurityCenter with anti-virus, anti-spyware, firewall, 36 Month


Vostro 430 BASE,MNTW,NPFC,VOSD,430,CTO
Documentation and Power Management Vostro 430 Documents and 110 Volt Power setting
Network Interface Integrated PCIE 10/100/1000
Resource DVD Resource CD and DVD contains Diagnostics and Driver for Dell Vostro Systems
Quick Reference Guide No Vostro System Quick Reference Guide
Dell Energy Smart Dell Energy Smart Enabled
Adobe Software Adobe Acrobat Reader





That's it.
 

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Not a computer guru either, Dave. How much does that package run? I think you'll still have to replace in another 8 years if not sooner. That's a pretty long time by computer standards the way technology changes.

Seem like you picked a pretty good package, lots of memory both hard drive and RAM.

What do you do for back up? (That's my down fall as well, really need something user friendly for regular backup)
 

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What do you do for back up? (That's my down fall as well, really need something user friendly for regular backup)
you can buy an external drive that will "Ghost" the internal drive and will seemlessly back up all data without having to do a backup "session". backups are everyones downfalls too. I've been thinking of upgrading to a better computer too. With all the scheduling/billing/outlook and weather logging software i run 24x7 plus the internet browsing my box crawls along at times. Most of it is just the quickbooks and database software for my scheduling software that kills my speed.

Dave, sounds like you know what you want. AFAIK windows 7 does migrate data from xp without much issue. I played with a beta version this summer for a few minutes on a collegues computer and it was pretty nice. much more of the "apple" look and feel. I don't know the specs but he said 4gb ram is a minimum now for win7
 

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Ok
I have a dell vostro 200.
for me it works great.

I'm not a gamer so the graphic card was not as critical. i could have easily up graded if i had wanted too.
It runs XP.
not sure about 7 but i do know most if not all of my programs and accessories would not work on vista. Drivers were not available.

Vista was a memory hog and unless they have streamlined 7 i don't see any good from a NEW system. If microsoft had a brain, transfering your files would not be to much of an issue. I would research and ask a lot of questions about 7 to be sure.
I have had 0 issues with this setup. i did have to do a f/disk due to a virus that snuck in between 2 antivirus programs. Not the computers hardware fault...
 

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Dave,
I have 4 pc's in the house. 1 desktop & laptop are running xp pro 32 bit, 1 Laptop running Vista 32 bit (upgrading to win7 soon) and my main pc is running Win 7- 64 bit.
I really don't play with the other 3, but i'm willing to do anything to my rig.

I started with XP 64 bit & it suked, went to Vista 64 bit & it was even worse. Win 7 64-bit is freakin awesome. No issues or glitches. My old 2004 printer works and it wouldn't in xp 64 or Vista 64. All my programs and hardware work.
I did upgrade my Quickbooks to 2009 because I couldn't update my 2006 version anymore, but 2006 did install and worked.
You need to chose XP compatibilty when installing some programs or hardware.

The pc you picked out will do probably everything you need it to except for extreme gaming (vid card upgrade). The video card will work for dual monitors which is an awesome option, I have 3 actually.
Remember only 64 bit will use all 8 gigs of ram. 32 bit only reads and uses 3.8 gigs.

If your worried about some of your programs working, tell us what programs your trying to use.
 

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I just replaced my Dell Dimension 9400 with a new a new HP 9260 has all the same things you listed except I have win7pro instead of ultimate, Ultimate and pro are the same except ultimate can read in many languages, and other languages isn't something I have use for, Yes, I can read and use my old 32 bit XP programs, and thus the pro and not ultimate,, $1250 at staples with a 25" HDMI screen.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What do you do for back up?
I've got an external hard drive that I save all my files to - which works fine, but is slow because my current machine doesn't have 2.0 USBs.

Remember only 64 bit will use all 8 gigs of ram. 32 bit only reads and uses 3.8 gigs.

If your worried about some of your programs working, tell us what programs your trying to use.
Keith - this is where I'm having difficulty. I have no clue about 32 bit vs. 64 bit. I just figure more has to be better. This is where I'm getting lost in the jargon - I know I want serious RAM, because that's what is crippling me now. But not sure what Dual Channel & DIMMS are.

My current software (mostly using Office bundle, and Simply Acc.) is what I'll be using on the new machine. I'm not a gamer, but spend time on-line. So there's a good chance I've got way more machine than I need - but that's okay.


$1250 at staples with a 25" HDMI screen.
Good price!
 

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I just upgraded my old dog of an acer 1.8 ghz laptop (4 years old) to Win 7 and what a differance... My dads computers have vista on them and there are so slow i cant stand it... Win 7 is wicked fast so far... But then again I formatted both my harddrives and there pretty much blank still... I just run off an external drive for all my company stuff...

Good luck with the Dell, but I prefer HP and they usually got some good deals on at bestbuy...
 

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Good luck with the Dell, but I prefer HP and they usually got some good deals on at bestbuy...
I Myself have actually had good luck with dell. Well, I only have one, But that one that i have has lasted for at least a good 6 years with no problems at all. I'm not a big fan of HP, they just dont seem to last.
 

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I'd rather buy my computer from a local computer store, they generally have the same pricing or just a little more but you have someone to call when you have a problem. My computer guy is in Cobourg now and I would never purchase another computer from Best Buy or Future shop. JMO Good Luck Dave
 

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Puters

Dave, With the luck you've had in North Carolina I can hook you up with my IT guy. He has me on 3 puters with 1 working as a server all are connected and work together. My quickbooks runs well no problems at all Huge graffics card for our google eath pro great clearity. the ram is pretty deep. In all he can built you an assum machine and will answer all your question to your satifaction. I've been with his 5 years now and he has never let me down. if you'd like his number PM me I'll be glad to share him with you and anyone else in need. Hell you have my number give me a call be nice to chat for a few minutes...
 

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Honestly I have played the Dell/Gateway/HP game far too long and finally decided to look outside of the box for my latest PC.

I am upgrading a dual hard drive Dell unit that I spec'd out about 5 years ago built to the hill and ran very well for me. This time I am going with a local guy who has done all of my PC repairs for years. He is building me one hell of a machine for about $1200 bucks.

He is using:

Windows 7 Home Premium 64Bit
640GB Hard Drive
500 watt power supply
1gb video card
4gb ram
Intel quad core processor

All components he is purchasing for this build are covered by manufacturers 3yr or lifetime warranties...


My biggest complaint over the years with Dell (PC and laptops) has been the quality of the hard drives they use. I went through 4 in one laptop and 3 in another PC... The computer I am replacing currently had hard drive issues due to constant heat soaking from the two hard drives being configured one on top of the other...
 

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wow, i guess i've been lucky, My acer laptop had a fan problem where the fan would not run and it would over heat, this was about 5 months after i bought it... One day my dad got pissed off at it and wipped it across the room... Worked great ever since, sometimes you just gotta talk dirty to it :D
 

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Just looked at the new Windows 7 machines this weekend see the Dell and the new Gateway played with them for awhile, seems Windows 7 might just be right for a change.

Iam in the same boat Dave running a Gateway from 06 and its starting to show signs of issues, iam kinda a big Gateway guy have had good luck with them like the Dell the GW has a ton of usb ports i think i counted 8 total .

The Unit itself is 725.00 i dont really need a monitor or the audio have a nice LG flat screen and a awesome speaker and woofer . Wish Best Buys would have had the GW hooked to a internet connection would like to see how it behaves on line.

Like JD Dave i have used a local mom and pop shop to build the last two for the shop both Noblis units and they have been good however for here at the office i would like a GW desktop and like you i can understand a cars ECU no problem but pretty dumb when it comes to a PC . The Dell i seen sure was a compact unit but like you said loaded with goodies .
 

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He is using:
500 watt power supply
I would go with a bigger Power Supply. 500W is "barely enough" to handle the video card and ram your throwing at it. When I built my last PC, I went with 1000W Thermaltake PS.

Take a look at this link:
http://educations.newegg.com/tool/psucalc/index.html

Dave,
You may want to look into going with a local computer guy. They will take better care of you then Dell or HP. My laptops are HP, my desktops are homebuilt. PC's are simple to DIY, just need the stones to try it lol :grinz
 

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Interesting.

My wife's 'puter is coming to a fast end after having an error come up every time she restarts it or Bill Gates sends out another update. :rolleyes:

Just looking at Dell's website and I am sort of pissed. Everything looks like a great deal until you get to the software to make it actually do something and the price goes waaaaay up. Have always had good luck with Dell other than trying to understand the turban head trying to help with problems.

Any suggestions on how to find a good, reputable local shop to build one if I go that route? Definitely not looking for anything as elaborate as Dave is.
 

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Interesting.
Any suggestions on how to find a good, reputable local shop to build one if I go that route? Definitely not looking for anything as elaborate as Dave is.
Mark,
I used to depend on the little ma & pa shops. They seem to help you out more than the larger companys. If you walk in and they tell you you have to buy this because it's the biggest and the best right now, then turn around and walk out. If they are willing to listen to your needs then stick around and talk.
Its sort of like buying your first plow, you ask around and talk with different people before making the decision.

Dave's elaborate computer now will be just another computer in 6 months. The last pc I built was in 07'. It was the fastest thing going, now it's slow compared to whats out there. Its just the way it goes :rolleyes:
 

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Thanks Earthscapes for the heads up!!! Much appreciated I will be in contact with my guy and ask him a few questions tomorrow based on what you have shown me!
 

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Have always had good luck with Dell other than trying to understand the turban head trying to help with problems.
you just said it :argue

a speech therapist can only do so much!:popcorn2
 
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