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Need help upgrading


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#1
scottkyn

scottkyn

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I would like to attempt to upgrade my computer a bit, but I have no idea where to even start. I can follow directions very well and don't usually have problems keeping up, but I just don't know what to do on my own.

Over the last few months, my computer has just been getting slower and slower. Doesn't freeze up too terribly often, but it does from time-to-time. I've run many anti-malware and anti-spyware programs every couple weeks, but even after the cleaning process my computer is still just as slow. I'm kind of under the impression that it's just time for an upgrade since there are two adults and three children that use the computer, and maybe it just needs to be sped up. I do a lot of picture editing also. Any suggestions would be appreciated though.

Also, I've been having trouble with my CD-RW drive. Sometimes it works fine and others not. Lots of times it just stops responding and won't even eject the CD that is in it when pushing the open button, so I have to go to D drive and click "eject disk" to get it out. Once it's out, it's still reading like the disk is in there yet even if a different disk is put in. I'm not sure where to even start to try to fix that, but I'd like to install a DVD drive, so figured I could just replace one with the other anyway.

If anybody has any idea what I'm talking about and is able to help, that would be greatly appreciated. Just let me know what you need to know as far as my computer goes.

I have a Dell Dimension 4550
Pentium ® 4 CPU 2.00 GHz
1.99 GHz, 256 MB or RAM

D drive is HL-DT-ST CD-RW GCE-8400B

Anything else that is needed, just let me know, and I'll try to find out any information I can.

Thanks in advance.
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#2
Titan8990

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The first thing to start with is a good dust cleaning. You will be amazed at how much dust your computer has sucked it over the years. Canned air sells at most computer and office supplies stores for about $5. If there is a lot of dust there you will want to remove what you can with your hand. Dust easily creates heat problems by clogging or unbalancing fans. This will cause the computer to slow and also in many cases freeze.

To check you tempatures you can download speedfan here: http://www.almico.com/speedfan.php. Tempatures are also usually displayed in the system bios ( del or F2 during startup).

I would definatly recomend a 512mb stick of RAM for upgrade. This is especially if you are running Windows XP. Installing RAM is as simple as snapping it in. You must make sure you get the right kind though. It will either be DDR 266mhz or DDR 333mhz speed RAM. The maximum your computer can support is 1gb or RAM.

I think with these two things you will notice a world of difference :whistling:.

I don't know a whole lot about troubleshooting CD drives. I know that prebuilt computer companies such as Dell usually dont put very good quality burners in their computers. I have had two CD drives that came in prebuilts go out on me.

Edited by Titan8990, 05 April 2007 - 03:27 PM.

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#3
scottkyn

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I cleaned the dust and then downloaded speedfan. I'm not sure if I"m doing something wrong though or if it isn't reading my computer, because it told me that fan 1 and fan 2 were both at 0 RPM and 0%, but it didn't give me any temperature readings. Any ideas?

Also, how do you know between DDR 266mhz or DDR 333mhz speed RAM? I ran crucial.com and powerleap.com to get check what was compatible. Between the two, there were DDR226, DDR333, and DDR400 listed that were compatible.

Thanks.
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#4
Titan8990

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This is the where I found compatable RAMs for your comp: http://support.dell....ecs.htm#1101572. After taking another look DDR226 is what you will want to get. Your computer probably is compatable with 333 and 400 but if you were to put one of those speed RAMs in your computer they would only run at 226mhz. RAM will only run at the speed of the lowest speed RAM.

If your fans are plugged directly into the PSU and not to the MOBO speedfan and your BIOS would display RPMs or have contol of the speed. I havn't heard of speedfan not displaying the temps though.

Try taking a look at in the BIOS. You may have to do some looking around. My temperature settings are under "Hardware Monitoring". Since you will be looking through many options it will be best to select the "Exit without saving changes" when you leave.

EDIT: Also you may want to consider posting a HiJackThis log on the malware forums. Even if you scan regularly it can't hurt.

Edited by Titan8990, 05 April 2007 - 04:36 PM.

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