PDA

View Full Version : Throw aways?


johnday
05-15-2006, 07:49 AM
Well, just ordered my third computer in 7 years. My first was a top of the line Dell, my present is midline, as is the nexet. With the technology going like it is, I can upgrade each time, for less than I paid for the previous one.
I've had this Dell, 4 years now. It's a Dimension 4400. Just got back yesterday afternoon, and started it up. This things making an electronic buzzing that's killing my brain, so I bought a new one. Maybe foolish in some eyes, but it's what I did. I've been having problems with this thing for the last 6 months or so. First, my cd/rw stopped working, can't even open the drawer. Then the sound is all screwed up. If I play a cd, all I can hear is the music, voices are all garbled, and forget the videos you guys put out, the sound is so poor, I can't make out the audio.
Are these things throw aways like a cheap car?
On my present outfit, I've got a lot of photos I'd like to save. Since my cd-rw wont work, how can I save these to my new computer. I know, I should have put them all on cd. Can I put them on a floppy? My new one doesn't have a floppy drive, but I could always get one of me buds to put it on cd for me. Hey, I'll admit I'm not computer friendly!:yum::tiphat::beer::beer:

REDDOGTWO
05-15-2006, 08:25 AM
A easy way to do it would be set up a home network and transfer the photo files between the the two pc's. I do this all of the time to save my photos in case of a hard drive failure.

johnday
05-15-2006, 09:02 AM
A easy way to do it would be set up a home network and transfer the photo files between the the two pc's. I do this all of the time to save my photos in case of a hard drive failure.

RD2, How do I do this? What other equipment do I need to connect the two?

As an aside, I can't get my printer to print either. It's on "c" drive. Could that be what's wrong? My "c" drive fried on me? I keep getting an error message to check my connections for the printer, it's all hooked up. :tiphat::beer::beer:

Doc
05-15-2006, 09:30 AM
If it boots up at all your c: drive is not fried. All you should need to network the two machines is a network cable (as long as they both have network cards built in, most do nowdays). This would be my prefered method. I network my home machines to share data, but also to backup key data so that no matter which drive fails, I'll have the data in two seperate locations. Minimal chance for loss of data. With XP networking a couple of computers is much easier than it used to be.

They also make HUGE thumb drives that plug into your USB port. I've seen them as big as 4 gig. If you don't want to network them you could copy the files to a thumb drive then copy from the thumb to your new system.

There are other ways to accomplish this but these are your best options to my way of thinking.

johnday
05-15-2006, 09:39 AM
Ah hmmmmmmmmmmm, a thumb drive. Never heard of that one. Would that be less expensive than going with a home network setup? The thumb drive, what exactly is it? Does it burn a cd or do you connect it between the two computers?:tiphat::beer:

bczoom
05-15-2006, 10:30 AM
Would that be less expensive than going with a home network setup?
As far as I know, you only need a crossover cable. They're about $3.00.

Plug into the ethernet card of both PC's and voila. They're connected.

If not already done, you will need to change the sharing for the current directories. Right click on the folder and open "Sharing and Security" to change it to be shared.

DaveNay
05-15-2006, 10:36 AM
John, you say you've had this PC for almost four years? Is it still the original "factory setup"? One of my key beefs with Microsoft Windows products, is that they accumulate "crap" over the years, and they tend to become very unstable. The symptoms are quite often exactly what you are describing. Strange error messages, corrupt drivers (video/audio/printer), plus a general slowness and "just not right".

If you have your new PC already, and AFTER TRANSFERING YOUR OLD DATA, I suggest finding the Windows disks you received with your old computer, and try to do a complete and clean installation of Windows. This is as simple as inserting the CD into the drive and booting from it, then following the directions.

As far as the CD drive being stuck, is it only stuck while the PC is running? Software does have control over the function of the eject button, and can cause it to appear stuck. Try re-booting the system, and during the boot process, you should be able to hit the button and see if the tray opens.

If you have had small children in the house, I would suggest cleaning the peanut butter and jelly out of the CD :yum:.

Dutch-NJ
05-15-2006, 10:41 AM
Ah hmmmmmmmmmmm, a thumb drive. Never heard of that one. Would that be less expensive than going with a home network setup? The thumb drive, what exactly is it? Does it burn a cd or do you connect it between the two computers?:tiphat::beer:

I also suggest the Thumb Drive. They're also called other names like Flash Drive, Stick Memory, etc.

They are relatively inexpensive, no moving parts, just about fool proof. They're about the size of a small penknife.

I use one to backup my daily data. Just slide it into and out of a USB port.... takes seconds.... no wires, no tools.

I use another to store photos, and another to store important letters and spreadsheets.

You can buy a Thumb Drive in any computer store, or order them from Dell.

Once you use one, you'll never use a floppy or CD for storage again.

Doc
05-15-2006, 10:44 AM
Ah hmmmmmmmmmmm, a thumb drive. Never heard of that one. Would that be less expensive than going with a home network setup? The thumb drive, what exactly is it? Does it burn a cd or do you connect it between the two computers?:tiphat::beer:

No, a thumb drive would not be less expensive. They are really cool though. They are a little gizmo about the size of your thumb. They plug into a USB port on your PC. No moving parts to it, it's pure memory. I have a 2 gig one that cost around $129.00 (not positive of the price unless i dig up the paperwork). But I just checked newegg.com and they have multitudes of them. The drives are also called 'flash' drives. Here is a link to a page with a bunch to choose from...and pics. Thumb Drives. (http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.asp?N=2010170522&Submit=ENE&Subcategory=522&Description=thumb+drive&Ntk=all)

They allow you to carry data between compurters. They are faster than CD drives (for writting and reading data). Think of them as much like the memory cards you use in digital cameras. Little solid state devices.


edit: they have 1 gig drives for 27 bucks, 1/2 gig drives for 12 bucks. Boy the prices have dropped on these things. Still not cheaper than a crossover network cable.

Junkman
05-15-2006, 11:11 AM
John....... send me your telephone number so we can talk. I have found a way to keep my 4 year old Dell alive and well by running some repair programs. Calling is free for me and I can walk you through it. Free is good... Junk...

beds
05-15-2006, 11:11 AM
Dell's are great, cheap machines. One drawback is replacing the parts.

This things making an electronic buzzing that's killing my brain, so I bought a new one.

This sounds like the power supply fan. Likely after 4 years it's getting a little worn.

First, my cd/rw stopped working, can't even open the drawer. 4 years is a good, long life for a CD drive - CD/RW or just CD/R. They are disposable.

Then the sound is all screwed up. If I play a cd, all I can hear is the music, voices are all garbled, and forget the videos you guys put out, the sound is so poor, I can't make out the audio. This does happen alot. The version of your soundcard may not support the version of the audio coder/decoder (codecs) on your machine. Often, a new software package will ship with new codecs. This is usually microsoft DirectX. However, your machine may not be compatible with the new Directx. Go to Microsoft and lookup DirectX compatability and find one, download it and install it on your machine. You can also go to your sound card manufacturer's site (Dell?) and see if they have any updates for your old soundcard. These would be free software downloads that you'd run on your machine and do some sound card driver updates.

johnday
05-15-2006, 04:21 PM
The brain eating buzz, is coming from the mother board!!! I was hoping it was the fan, but OH NO, wonder how much one of those run? If it's worth it, I'd like to repair this one so Jan would have one too. Magically, most of the problems have cleared up, for now.

I went out and bought a 1Gb Flash drive, and transferred all my photos to it. Thing didn't come with instructions, and I hope I did it right.
Now, the next profound wonderment. How do I save all my shortcuts, and bookmarks? Is that possible? I do have a floppy on this one, is there a way to transfer that stuff to a flappy?:confused::pat::pat::pat:

bczoom
05-15-2006, 04:36 PM
Now, the next profound wonderment. How do I save all my shortcuts, and bookmarks? Is that possible? I do have a floppy on this one, is there a way to transfer that stuff to a flappy?:confused::pat::pat::pat:
Well.... If you use the crossover cable and connect the 2 PC's, when you first start using the new PC (assuming Windows XP), it'll prompt you and ask if you want to move things to the new PC. It will offer to move e-mail (including all settings as well as your mailbox itself), internet shortcuts/favorites, desktop items, your actual files... Basically, everything.

beds
05-15-2006, 04:50 PM
The brain eating buzz, is coming from the mother board!!! I was hoping it was the fan, but OH NO, wonder how much one of those run? If it's worth it, I'd like to repair this one so Jan would have one too. Magically, most of the problems have cleared up, for now.

It could be something as simple as a loose screw. Truly. We built up a bunch of these and my brother, who had the experience, insisted on loctite on all the screws. There's alot of vibration with the power supply and case fans running, so it may be a loose screw. There aren't any moving parts on a motherboard that I can think of. Definitely, if it is not under warranty (which it's not), take the shell off the case and try to figure out where the humming is.

The new motherboard ain't gonna happen! Unless you found your machine for sale cheap with a crashed drive or something as a donor. I just rebuilt my old PIII 350 which was about 7 years old. To get a new motherboard, I also needed a new CPU and memory - which gave me a like-new machine, but cost hundreds.

johnday
05-15-2006, 08:48 PM
Brian, what does a crossover cable look like? I picture a USB cable plugged into the USB ports on each computer. Man, I don't know anything these things, if ya can't hammer it, wrench it, or drive it, I'm about lost.:tiphat::beer::beer:

johnday
05-15-2006, 08:53 PM
It could be something as simple as a loose screw.
Well, I've been guilty of loose screws before, for sure!!:pat: I'll take another look tommorow. What really puzzles me, is that when I shut the machine down last Friday morning, it wasn't making a sound. As soon as I turned it on yesterday, is when the buzzing started.:confused::tiphat::beer:

Doc
05-15-2006, 09:03 PM
John,
It looks just like a cat 5 network cable, but has the wires switched so that you can plug directly from one computer to another. With a regular network cable you would need to plug both computers in to a device called a hub. If your going XP too XP it should prompt you for moving stuff over. If both systems are not XP you could shop for software that makes it easy to copy files from one computer to another.

But, since you now have the thumb you should be able to copy the directory called bookmarks for firefox, and the dir call favorites if you have any IE favs. You can copy all that to your thumb. Just pay attention to the directory structure and put em in the same place on your new computer.

johnday
05-15-2006, 10:15 PM
Doc, another problem solved! Excellent! Now all I need is the new machine, should be here later this week. I'm working this weekend, so I may not get it up and running until Tuesday. This isn't near as exciting as a new tractor or impliment though.:yum::tiphat::beer::beer:

REDDOGTWO
05-16-2006, 02:48 AM
Gone planting the rest of the day, get home and all of your problems are solved.:D

I have a router set up with three pc's hooked up, either wireless or hardwire and it is the fastest way to transfer info from one to another. My daughter uses a flash drive at college to work on things in class and then brings them back to the dorm to finish up. The bad thing is that if you forget them in the pc, someone walks off with them. She says that is fast and if it works for you that is all that matters.:tiphat:

bczoom
05-16-2006, 09:42 AM
If both systems are not XP you could shop for software that makes it easy to copy files from one computer to another.
Doc/John,

Only 1 machine has to be XP. If you insert the XP CD into the old machine, it'll use that to move the files from the old PC to the new.

For the initial load of the machine, I would still use the crossover cable method over the thumb. It does everything pretty much automatically and can do a lot of things that you'll struggle with if you try to use another method. It's been awhile but if I recall correctly, it'll do all your printers, internet connection stuff, possibly some programs...

Doc
05-16-2006, 10:43 AM
Listen to BC on this John. It's been years since I've done one this way. I think they had laplink software which lets you sycronize PC's fairly easily and I used that...it came with the crossover cable and everything you need. Way before XP. Nice to know that feature is now built into XP.
Now I do a fresh build and move old files selectively.

johnday
05-16-2006, 03:35 PM
Ho kay now. I went out to Staples and got a crossover cable, the package labeling says CAT5e, crossover patch cable. If I read you guys right, this is all I need? I see it plugs into the "telephone" type jack in the back of the CPU's. Just plug each end into that port on the CPU, and I'm good to go? Both have windows XP, the old one has the home version, and the new one has the media version.:confused::tiphat::beer::beer:

bczoom
05-16-2006, 05:51 PM
Just plug each end into that port on the CPU, and I'm good to go?
Yep. :thumb:

When you get your new PC, as part of the setup it'll ask something like "do you want to import files and configurations from a different PC?".
When it does, answer YES and follow the prompts.

johnday
05-16-2006, 07:19 PM
EXCELLENTE!!!! Justed checked the shipping, and UPS says it'll be here tommorow.
Thanks for all the help and patience with the newbie type questions, but I'm completely lost on these things. Once I get the new one going, I'll see more of what I can do with the olde one.:tiphat::beer::beer:

johnday
05-18-2006, 07:17 PM
,,,,,, and the saga continues. Just setup the new machine without too much heartache, except for transferring the files. I couldn't get the machines talking to each other, so I said SCREW IT, and had to find all my websites all over, and make shortcuts for them. This 19" LCD flat screen is great! I really like it.

Now, more to the story. I replaced the harddrive in the old machine with an 8gig unit. Damn thing still buzzes. Installed Windows XP home version on it. That all went well. I got a wireless setup for it since Jan wants it upstairs in the loft. Now I can't get it to connect to the internet thru my cable modem.
Wish I was Tom, at least he hasn't been plugging away since Sunday with these geekgizmos. I've got some ideas that the problem now may be the floopy drive as far as the buzz. Also, I've got to load all my programs into it again. Could that be why I can't connect to the internet on it?:mad::1062::mad::1062::mad: