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OT: Computer Questions

Discussion in 'Single Player Forum' started by jrlafrance, Nov 14, 2006.

  1. jrlafrance

    jrlafrance IncGamers Member

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    OT: Computer Questions

    I was doing a HF run last night, using User Switching (XP), and my computer was running painfully slow. I finally got through it, and looked at the specs for my PC. I got to thinking about it, and realized I bought it almost 5 years ago.

    P4 1.9GHz
    1GB RAM (I added to the original about 6 months ago)
    80GB HD (how do you tell if it's serial or parallel)?

    After looking at the HD, I realized that 79.2GB were full. Would explain some of my slowness last night. Anyways, the gist of this is I am going to get a new (additional) HD, but don't know how to tell if I need a serial one, or parallel? Does it matter? Is it dictated by the mother board?

    Any help is appreciated.

    EDIT: I looked online at my local store, and saw this. Sounds like a good deal to me. Is it?

    EDIT2: @nebux: #DOH!:duh: I forgot to mention that I have a ton of digital pictures (mostly of my little girl), so this second drive will most likely be mostly dedicated for picture storage.

    EDIT3: Is the XMB buffer, essentially RAM on the HD? A temp storage space for files in use?
     
  2. nebux

    nebux IncGamers Member

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    that HD is good for you.
    older HD were ATA starting from 66, 100 to 133
    now the wibe is serial ATA
    also before buying a new one you should delete some pr0n
     
  3. Denton

    Denton IncGamers Member

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    Your PC being close to 5 years old, your motherboard has most likely PATA connectors only, so parallel it is. ATA 100 or 133, doesn't matter which one in practice because no hard disk will transfer more than ~60-70 megabytes per second continuously. Most PATA HDD:s are ATA 133 anyway though.

    As for that place you linked to. I would recommend looking for some other places, since that place only mentions a 1 year warranty, which is absurd. :shocked: All HDD:s should have at least 3 year warranty nowadays, and many have even 5(all Seagate HDD:s have 5). Try to look for one with at least 3 year warranty. Seagate, Western Digital, Samsung or Maxtor. Doesn't matter TOO much which brand you choose, as long as it is 7200 RPM and has at least 8 MB of memory.

    And the memory on HDD, it's a buffer memory, which allows for faster data read/write compared to no buffer memory at all. No files are actually stored in the memory; but some data could be lost if the HDD is transferring data when a power loss occurs, because the data that's been temporarily transferred to the memory will go poof. 8 MB is used for <250 GB HDD:s and many new drives with 250 GB or more have a 16 MB buffer memory. Benefit of going from 8 MB to 16 MB isn't very obvious though.
     
  4. jrlafrance

    jrlafrance IncGamers Member

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    Thanks for the reply Denton. Upon opening up my machine, and looking in, how to I tell if its parallel or serial? Is it the cabling from HD to MB?



     
  5. Denton

    Denton IncGamers Member

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    Information and a few pictures of PATA connector and cable: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AT_Attachment

    and same for SATA: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serial_ATA


    Yep, it's the cable between HDD and MB. I'd guess that the PATA cable inside your PC will look flat and wide, but there are "rounded" PATA cables too, which are - well, round instead of flat. The connectors are identical in form and function in both flat and round cables.

    There is probably one free connector in the PATA cable that goes to your current HDD, in which you can connect the 2nd HDD to. Just be sure to set the 2nd hard disk as "Slave" with the jumper switches on the back(the end with the connectors) of the HDD.
     
  6. Ashmer Amadeus

    Ashmer Amadeus IncGamers Member

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    Another potential solution would be to invest in an external HDD. I believe you can buy any high capacity HDD, and then just get an enclosure for it, making it an external. I've never used one, but I would assuming it connects to your PC via USB cable. You wouldn't have to mess around inside the computer, but it would be more expensive then getting an internal one. Just a thought
     
  7. Serdash

    Serdash IncGamers Member

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    I think one of the better methods, IMO, is to go out and just buy a CD or DVD writer. Install, burn crap to DVD, win at life, gg.
     
  8. Sir Lister of Smeg

    Sir Lister of Smeg IncGamers Member

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    Another remark on the PATA/SATA question, from the age of your computer it's extremely unlikely that it has a SATA connector. If you do notice however that your harddisk is connected to an expansion board, instead of to the motherboard, then it is likely to be connected either via SATA or SCSI.

    Anyway, just to be sure, you can do a search for the motherboard (assuming you know the model name) to see what connectors it has. If you have the manual for it, then you can see it in there.
     
  9. sawm

    sawm IncGamers Member

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    The size of the physical connection to the HDD will tell you whether it's a SATA or not. SATA drives have a fairly slim connector, maybe the width of your thumb, while PATA drives have connectors that are nearly as wide as the drive itself. Hope this helps.
     
  10. jrlafrance

    jrlafrance IncGamers Member

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    I've got another question for you computer geeks out there. I have figured out how to "unlock" my old hard drive so that I can access it, and hopefully recover any data on it. The file that I need to run to do it is to large for a 1.44 floppy, so I copied it to CD. The file needs to be run in DOS. I created a DOS boot disk, but I was unable to access my CD-ROM. I've spent most of the day today trying to create a CD boot disk, but my PC just won't have it (it won't boot from CD no matter what I've tried).

    My question is this: what do I need to do in the autoexec.bat / config.sys files to load CD-ROM drivers for an NEC NR7900A? I'm frustrated, and just want to access the drive from DOS.

    Thanks for any help!
     
  11. Dudzy

    Dudzy IncGamers Member

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    You already went into your BIOS and set the boot order to boot from CD right?
     
  12. jrlafrance

    jrlafrance IncGamers Member

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    Of course. I can be lame at times, but that is one of the first things that I changed. Currently the order is set as:
    1)floppy
    2)Cd
    3)Hard drive



     
  13. Dudzy

    Dudzy IncGamers Member

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    Ok, just figured id ask. What program are you using to burn your cds? If you use nero there is a setting to burn a boot cd.
     
  14. Delreich

    Delreich IncGamers Member

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    Maybe DOSBox could be a viable solution? If DOS really is what is needed...
     
  15. Dudzy

    Dudzy IncGamers Member

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    Im somewhat confused on what your trying to do. If i understand correctly you are trying to back up files from one hard drive to another. Why couldn't you just stick the hard drive into a machine with windows, set it as a slave and back up the files like that?
     
  16. jrlafrance

    jrlafrance IncGamers Member

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    OK, I didn't want to write a book, but here it is.

    My old HDD had Norton GoBack installed, but it was disabled. I recently got a new 300GB HDD, and WinXP was only seeing 127GB. The Seagate disk software told me to uninstall GoBack. In the process of doing that, my puter crashed, and the HDD was not booting for me. I took it to a shop, they installed the new HDD, and loaded WinXP for me. I looked on Norton website, and they had some documentation for fixing the problem. As I stated above, the file I need to run to "unlock" GoBack from the old HDD is on a CD, which I can't seem to get to from DOS.



     
  17. Dudzy

    Dudzy IncGamers Member

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    Your trying to do this with a computer that has XP installed on it already right? What might work is restart your computer keep pressing F8 until a screen with a bunch of options pops up. Choose safe mode with command prompt and when the user screen comes up choose the administrator. Then type in the letter of your drive as like E: or whatever letter it is. It should switch over to that drive. After that type dir and it will bring up all the files on the cd, type run *filename*.exe or whatever extension the file has. Thats should run it. If im still wrong then i don't no, but this is all i can think of.
     
  18. jrlafrance

    jrlafrance IncGamers Member

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    Thanks for the input guys. I finally got it figured out, and all the info on my old HDD is safe and sound!
     

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