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Need a bit of help

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Hi, we are looking at getting a computer for the office and need a bit of help with what hardware we need to run certain software that we want.

For the operating system, we want Windows XP ... along with MYOB, Microsoft Office 2007 and Microsoft Visio Pro. We also hope to grab one with a CD writer, Scanner and Laser printer. We are a small plumbing firm so not a huge business.

Just need some minimum specs required for the PC to run the above, ie; Processer, Memory, Storage, Display, Network Card etc... (we also are looking at getting a laptop for the Managers office so the Network Card would be have to a fast one.

Hoping you can help.

Brendon :)
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For what you are wanting to do something like a dell desktop computer would be the best choice for running application in a office environment. If you go to their web site or call them they can make a system that would fit your needs and it will be much more cost effective than building your own pc.
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it will be much more cost effective than building your own pc.

Hi there,

I have to disagree with your comment here. While it may be more time-effective from a business point of view (which is an important consideration), if you narrow down the quality/price comparison of a pre-made system vs. your own built system, I always find a home-built system comes out on top.


Nonetheless, to answer your question, Brendon:

For the tasks you wish to use this computer, you do not need a highly powerful system. I'm going to assume that you have the programs already, or are capable of purchasing them.

For the processor, a nice dual-core will be more than sufficient. I would suggest something like an Intel Core 2 Duo E4600.

For RAM, 1GB runs XP quite nicely, but 2GB is cheap enough and will keep you happy for a long time. Try and get fast DDR2 ram, like 800MHz (PC2-6400) or higher.

For storage, I'm assuming you mean hard drives - it really depends on how much space you need. How much data do you have, and by how much will that expand in the future? You might think a 250GB hard drive is huge, but it's not very much in this day and age of data-hungry applications and files. Also make sure you grab a backup hard drive, as I'm sure you don't want to lose valuable business data.

The network card will be integrated into the motherboard - choosing one of the latest motherboards will give you Gigabit Ethernet connection, otherwise you'll have to grab a discrete card if you need it. Otherwise you'll only have Fast Ethernet, which is probably more than sufficient for your needs, anyway.

A display (monitor) is really up to the person who's going to sit in front of it. Whatever they want to look at, that fits within the budget. A nice 19-inch widescreen will look really nice, but that's just what I would like to sit in front of if I was getting paid to look at it. :)

Do you have any IT infrastructure in the office at present? If not, a small network setup will be a nice choice. You could set it up so you can share data between the office PC and the Boss' notebook, both computers can print to the one printer, even run backups from both computers to the one backup drive.

Are you interested in building it yourself, or purchasing a pre-made unit?


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