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7 yo PC still works, Should it stay or should it go?


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#1
Krissy82

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I have a computer that I purchased in 2004 that still works and has ALL original hardware installed. I would like to give it to my son for school/play and I was just wondering a few things:

1) Is it worth it financially to replace hard drive, upgrade RAM and graphics?

2) How much longer could it possible last? (i.e.processor, motherboard, etc)

3) If I do upgrade RAM & graphics will the motherboard be able to handle the newer hardware or will it poop out causing me to waste money?

Here are the system specs:

Manufacturer: Dell Dimension 4600i
OS: Windows XP Home Edition
Version: 5.1.2300 Service Pack 3 Build 2600
Processor: x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 9 Genuine Intel ~2793 Mhz
Graphics: Intel 82865G Graphics Controller
Audio: SoundMax Integrated Digital Audio
RAM: 512MB (Two 256MB)


Attached is the System Info from the PC in question. Attached File  SI3-2011.txt   328.15KB   201 downloads
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#2
beep9362

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It all depends how much money you have to spend, I havetwo 7 year old computers and I definitely doesn't want a new one until I can afford a good quality one.
I have XP and I wouldn't exchange it for Vista, but the new Windows7 supposed to be better. My daughter's Vista needs constant repair, re-install. If yours still work, keep it but I wouldn't put a penny into it, just my opinion.

Also depends how old your son is, can he do what he wants with Vista?
I'd rather by for myself a new one and give my son the one as is.
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#3
Krissy82

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Thank you beep9362 for responding so quickly. I don't really want to replace it because of the fact that it has XP. Just before Windows 7 hit the market I bought a new PC for me with Vista on it from Dell only because it came with the option for a free upgrade to Windows 7 when it was released and I love Windows 7. Like your daughter, Vista was always locking up and needing to be re-installed and I couldn't play games on it without it crashing and giving me a BSOD. I would NEVER go back to crappy Vista. Not even if Microsoft paid me, lol !! :D

My son is 10. He wants it for playing games on the Internet and to play a couple of PC games, like the Sims 2. The integrated graphics on it can't really support the sims 2 and it would need more RAM in order to support Windows 7. I really really want one of Dells gaming PCs but they are sooooooo expensive. I guess I'll just save up for one and then give him the PC I have now once the Dimension finally bites the dust.

I will give Dell props on the Dimension 4600 line :D . I've owned 2 Dell PCs over the last 7 years and NONE of them have come even close to lasting as long as my Dimension has.
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#4
beep9362

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Is it a desktop you have? I just put more memory into my old desktop (no brand name), it is easy, if I can do it, you can too, for games. My 7 year old grandson plays on it, Just to show you if an old woman can do it, then any young person like you should do it.
I checked out what kind of memory the computer needs on:
http://www.crucial.com/systemscanner/

I learned there, that one can not just buy any memory, but the one that the motherboard will accept and work with.
Laptops, I have a bit of a problem, too scared to take them apart and put even a memory stick in (RAM) I had one taken apart and had parts left over :D

For yourself, yes, a new computer would be lovely but I sure would not let a young child play with it, my grandson loves to click on everything. I do not know how Windows 7 works, if one can have a guest account, but I know in XP even a guest account can DELETE stuff. I am saving also for a new computer.
Good luck with your decision.
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#5
iammykyl

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Hi.

Here is a link to The specifications. >
http://support.dell....ecs.htm#1105974

An upgrade to the RAM may help the PC to run better. Spending on anything else is just not worth it.
Being quite small the PSU is the limiting factor for any other upgrade.
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#6
Troy

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RAM upgrade definitely. Upgrade it to 1GB but I wouldn't worry about upgrading graphics card.

The other thing that may help is a new hard drive and a fresh install of XP. Then install all the latest drivers from Dell website and also BIOS update if available.

To be honest with you, I have an older Dell computer that I use for my work PC. Not only am I Tech staff here, but I am also a PC technician by trade. The Dell I am using is 2006 model. So 5 years old. And literally, about 6 months ago I upgraded it to 2GB RAM and also a new hard drive, fresh install and set it up just nice. It replaced my old machine which died completely - and I mean old, like 2002 model... RIP :D

So the point is for your intended uses, it should be just great! Even if you don't upgrade the RAM it still should work a treat for your son as learning machine for him.

Let me know if there is anything we can help you with, I'll be glad to lend a helping, er, few words on the screen!! :D
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