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How far can I easily upgrade laptop: HD, ctroller, firmware?

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I just registered and this is my first post. I'm also NOT too hardware savy.

I have a Compaq laptop:

Model V2335US (purchased June, 2005)
System Board ID: 308F (probably not helpful info)
Phoenix BIOS: F.22 (is this specific to Compaq?)
Intel 82801 FB/FBM Ultra ATA Storage Controllers - 266F
Fujitsu MHU2100AT (4200 RPM)
System RAM is maxed at 2 GB
Windows XP Professional, all OS updates

First, I'd like to replace the drive with another 2.5" HD which runs at 7200 RPM. Suggestions, after accounting for the following issues?

Second, what specs should I require in a drive that will take most advantage of the Intel controller?

Third, is there firmware for the controller which is upgradeable, thereby improving my options when selecting a HD?

Fourth, are there drivers available (otherwise not available from Microsoft or Compaq/HP) that will improve performance?

Fifth, any other suggestions for maximizing the performance of this machine?

Sixth, is the best performance increase that I can realize (primarily 4200 --> 7200 RPM HD ?) worth the time, in YOUR estimation?

Thanks very much for any and all advice!


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Neil Jones

Neil Jones

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1) Replacing the hard drive with a 7200rpm should be possible however bear in mind these generate extra heat and most laptops would have no real way of getting rid of it. Most laptop hard drives run at 4200rpm by design.

2) The onboard Intel controller will be a bog standard one that will talk to any 2.5" drive you introduce it to. Anything you get from any decent computer shop should work, there is nothing specific you need to look out for.

3) The firmware of a hard drive is built into the drive. These do not need upgrading. The firmware for the controller is part of the BIOS.

4) Chipset drivers may help but do bear in mind laptops are slower than desktops so there's not a lot of point doing much research.

5) This depends on the state of the components more than anything else as well as the state of the Windows installation on it as well. Short of not actually using it at all, performance of Windows tends to do down on all systems as it gets used and abused.

6) Not really because it'll generate extra heat that the machine wouldn't be able to get rid of and it'll only die sooner from overheating.
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