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new workstation build


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#1
weepus

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my wife has a 9 gig MS outlook 2003 .pst file, she has 10 or so web pages open at a time.

she uses word, excel, and some non resource intensive proprietary applications.
my goal is to minimize her wait times, increase her machines ability to multitask and not crash or "... has stopped responding".

i have a 19 and a 22 inch monitor hooked up for her, she uses every inch.

i need some advice for a new machine. i build them myself, i just am behind on the newest and greatest parts.

Im not posting what she currently has since my goal is to just build a new system.
i have windows 7 64 bit to put on the machine so i can pile in memory.. but what kind.
i dont need a 1K $ CPU.. but i dont know if dual is as effective a quad or what ever the newest revelation is.

need advise on the mobo, power supply, video adapter ect. she uses about 5 usb plug type devices. some for external hard drive space, others for scanning devices, printer, card reader ect.. so just so you know.

i would love some feed back.. i just dont trust the computer mags. to steer me right.

thanks all.. looking forward to the build.
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#2
Neil Jones

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9Gb PST file? Are you sure? That'll be, like, literally thousands of emails.


If it seriously is 9Gb in size, you need to purge some stuff from it. No system you buy will be able to cope with a 9Gb file.
Also you need to tell us some details about the machine you have now. Make, model?
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#3
weepus

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Yes, seriously 9 gigs.

i've told her repeatedly to get rid of emails..
this is a work machine, we own our own business and she runs the office so she keeps many emails for future reference.

i've read that outlook can handle up to 20 gig pst but it cant be in asci format.. im not sure how to change formats though, and i've also read that max size is 2 gig.. which we obviously passed by.

i will provide what we have currently later tonight.. im still at work.
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#4
weepus

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i do not know what model the mother board is but its a gigabyte S series and no more then a year old.
the processor is a Q6600 2.4GHZ intel, and the GPU is a Nvidia Geforce 8600 GTS.
power supply is about 500 watt, more than enough to power the few items in the case.

the case itself is a large style case, with large fans on the top, front (bottom) and side of the case. the cpu has an enourmous heatsink with a fan also, the GPU has a fan on it and of course the powersupply fan as well. lots of cooling. I do not over clock but in not opposed to it either. i just dont want to add problems to a system that we rely upon. that and i dont know what im doing when it comes to over clocking.

c drive is 500 gig and 168 free
d drive is 100 gig and 50gig free

there is 3.25 gig of RAM.

there is a realtek gigabit nic card

i dont really think this system is out dated but im not sure its designed properly to maximize multitasking and general office functions.

what other info do you need?
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#5
Neil Jones

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Realistically for what you've said the machine is used for, you don't need an upgrade.
For mainly office work and internet use, that machine is fine as it is.

The 9Gb PST file is a major concern, because it's far too big and it's almost certainly that that's slowing the machine down if the slowness is caused by Outlook being open.
Just because Outlook can theoretically work with 20Gb files doesn't make it advisable to do so.

If the machine is a work machine, your best bet is to seriously consider archiving legacy emails. If that PST file has an issue you will lose the entire contents of it. General advice is to keep it as small as possible otherwise it becomes incredibly inefficient the bigger it gets.
By archiving the older entries, you can always add the files you archive to back into Outlook at a later date if you need them.

This has all the details you need:
http://office.micros...A001121610.aspx
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#6
weepus

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well, there goes my project.

i knew that was the answer, i just needed someone else to say it.

i will get the wife to archive the old emails, even though she swears that no email is older then 1 year.

i have compacted the file but that did nothing..

thank you all for your input. I will follow the link and take it from there.

Chris Mucho thanks
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#7
Troy

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Hi there,

PST obviously needs to be cleaned out (I tell my clients off for having anything over 2GB) but one upgrade you could do is an SSD for OS and apps (also for that PST). This by itself works wonders for minimising wait times.

Also you mentioned upgrading RAM, 4GB should be plenty but it is reasonably cheap so 8GB might be readily obtainable. If you don't know what type, head over to Crucial's website and run the memory scanner. It will scan your PC and tell you what type of memory you have, how much memory you have and in what configuration, and what the maximum is. It will also offer to sell you some RAM (of course), not necessary to purchase from them but Crucial is good stuff if you wanted to.

Cheers
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#8
weepus

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would you define SSD for me?
it probably means upgrade to Windows 7 since the mem max for xp is under 4 gig from last i knew.. is it that?
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#9
Troy

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Solid state hard drive. I thought this already was running 7 64-bit.

Just fix the PST as it's the obvious issue.

Perhaps organize archives by time, for example in financial quarters.
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#10
weepus

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is there a significant speed difference in solid state drives compared to like baracuda high rmp drives?
i will need to research how to Archive. do you have a link to a good resource for that other then MS site?
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#11
Troy

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Yes, SSD is significantly faster than any form of platter drive, including Barracuda drives and also Velociraptor (WD) drives. But when you check them out you will see that they are significantly more expensive.

I'm a bit confused about your request for a link though. Why would you want me to link you to help for a product where someone completely different has written it? But Googling "how to archive Outlook 2003" brings up plenty of results, some from Microsoft, some not. Take your time, read through a few links. If they all seem to be saying the same thing then there's a good chance it's probably right. (not always though... always take your research with a grain of salt... and if in doubt, ask here and we'll give you some opinions).

Troy
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#12
weepus

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Troy, many thanks for your input. i had thought that someone may have done a white paper on techniques in archiving a PST file. That being specific to what i was needing verses a MS FAQ on outlook functionality in general. I know MS can also go deep into details but often does not, and one ends up having to search for how to use their industry standard, world dominated and often very imperfect products. So, that was my thinking anyway..

thanks again for your help and guidance. i really do appreciate it.
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#13
Troy

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Microsoft TechNet often has lots of in depth information.
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