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Windows 7: Sr. Citizen "Basic" Questions, Please

08 Oct 2009   #11

XP_Pro, W7_7201, W7RC.vhd, SciLinux5.3, Fedora12, Fedora9_2x, OpenSolaris_09-06

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Robert11 View Post
Some of the "old" software that I would like to be able to run are

a few shortwave radio control programs, swLog ...

I am "somewhat" PC literate as I'm a retired engineer.
Hi Bob, Welcome aboard.

You might want to be a bit more definitive here...

"SW radio control programs" implies (to me) that the computer is actually manipulating your "radio-box" to:
Power on-off, change-freqs, tune the antenna, whatever...

If so, do you need to "attach" the SW radio-box to the computer,
with some sort of cable, possibly RS-232, IEEE-488, HPIB, parallel, etc. ?

Since you are a retired engineer, with shortwave radio,
I'm assuming 'Electrical engineer' and you have some familiarity with these terms...

I would also suggest that you pay 'particular' attention to the quality of the LCD display.
This is what your new computer is going to "look-like", and you've got to be able to read the 'text' quite clearly...
Check around the shops, paying close attention to the LCD 'brand-name/model nbr.' that you like the most.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2009   #12

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I'm both a builder of PC and a buyer of Dell, HP and Acer in the past. I've had very good luck with my Dells and very good support from Dell at the last job that I had where we had well over 1,000 Dell workstations and laptops. My 2 Dells that I bought from home worked absolutely fine. Only problem I ever had was a power supply dying on a machine that was nearly 6 years old. I got another right from Dell for about $40 and it's going just fine to this day.

At the budget you are talking, $1,000 to $1,200 you are probably going to get more computer than you really want. I would think you could focus in the $600-$900 range and have a perfectly acceptable system that met your needs. (For example, Dell Studio XPS 8000, with Core i5 750, with 64-bit OS, 2 year In Home Warranty, 6GB DDR3 RAM, 750GB hard drive, DVD Reader and DVD burner, 20" Monitor, ATI Radeon HD4350, comes in at $999)

With respect to 64-bit's "unlikely" that you would get a non 64-bit version, but you can always look it up online. For example, the processor would be listed like a Core i7 860. So, a quick search on Google will turn up the Intel page on that CPU which will indicate whether it supports 64-bit or not;

If you are going 64-bit, go with 4GB of RAM. More is probably unnecessary for what you want to do.

Most applications are going to run just fine...unless they are very old 16 bit apps and they won't run at all. Windows will launch it just fine and will know which version it don't have to explicitly state it.

Hope this helps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2009   #13

Windows 8, Ubuntu 12.04 64bit, Pear Linux Triple Boot

I think questions have been answered fairly well, I just wanted to throw my 2 cents in. I have 3 Dells at my home and have no issues at all with any of them. I do agree with a previous post about there buisness class machines. I have an Optiplex and I love it. The only issue I ever had was an IDE cable going out.

Remember there are some of us who are running windows 7 on older machines with 1 GB of ram and have no problems. I am a home recording artist, and you can tell from my specs, I have no issues or lag what so ever. just a thought. I do agree that a $1000 machine might be more computer than what you really need, but then again if I had that money to spend I certainly wouldn't bat an eye to get a killer system

My wifes 64 bit syatem is awsome but we really have no 64 bit software. Another thought would be to go in the ballpark of $600 and then hop on craigslist and find an older set up to run some 16 and 32 bit stuff on. Just a thought though

My System SpecsSystem Spec

08 Oct 2009   #14
Microsoft MVP

No need to spend a lot

We have seven computers in our home networked wirelessly. We don't play a lot of games but use them for web surfing and keeping records. We have begun gradually replacing these computers which 7-10 years ago cost $1000-1500.

Three years ago we bought a Walmart HP special for $289, upped the 528 ram to 1.2 gig for $25 and my Pop is perfectly happy with it running Windows 7 Ultimate (soon to upgrade the old XP to Win7 Premium when released.)

Two years ago our old Gateway died and we replaced it with an eMachine T5234 dual -core processor 1 gig ram onboard NVidia 6050 graphics purchased at Office Depot for $349, doubled the ram to 2 gigs for $25. I run Win7 Ultimate on it fast as lightning.

Finally, my roommate Larry had a 10 year old $1500 VPR Matrix (Best Buy premium housebrand) with ATI 9050 graphics card, 1.2 gigs of ram and Pentium 4 processor, which he uses for gaming and also runs Win7 fine. It recently lost its power supply and when we went to Best Buy to buy one, he found an Acer dual core p.c. with 3 gigs ram, 32/86 bit, Nvidia 7200 onboard graphics chip that beats his older computer's ATI 9050 card. It cost $400. We bought a $25 power supply online and moved the VPR matrix to the office where it's considered an upgrade.

So, as this hopefully illustrates, unless you are an avid gamer (or even if u r somewhat of a gamer) you can get great deals on the fly and buy 2 or more solid, fast, top-name computers for what you were willing to pay for one.

RE: 64 bit vs. 32 bit. I have tried 64 bit on all our newer machines and all it ever affects is Internet Explorer which gets buggy. I think what should determine running 64 is what software you use and how it improves or not with its usage. You are entitled to both versions with your license, so you can try both and suit yourself. Learning how to reinstall your operating system is the surest route to becoming tech savvy, as is asking questions here just as you did.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2009   #15

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Kari View Post
...Based on your post, this HP computer is my recommendation....
I just built a system very similar to that one and it flat-out flies. HP is offering you a decent price for what you are getting. If a second opinion helps, I'd say that Kari gave you some good advice. :)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2009   #16

Windows 7 build 7100 x86

just my two cents on dell: don't count them out. my experience with them has been excellent, my laptop is great and the only thing that I had a problem with (the right speaker was crackly) was fixed without a fuss. Compared to other companies technical support, I would say they are excellent. HP on the other hand....

It does seem to me that 1000 bucks might be overkill. you could get a great dell system for much less, with a core2duo (which supports 64bit) and all the features that you need.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2009   #17

Win7 pro x64

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Snuffy View Post
Some of the "old" software that I would like to be able to run are a few shortwave radio control programs, swLog, and possibly the old version of Word and Excel that I like a lot better than Office 2007 versions.
Office 2003 works well in Win 7. - Office XP also. but not as well as Office 2010.
I am "somewhat" PC literate as I'm a retired engineer.
But, it's funny, I just don't want to mess with these things anymore like installing new HD's as I've done in the past, etc.
Now, at my age, I just want the thing to work !
Train Engineer or Bridge Engineer or maybe a Navy Engineer,?? j/k
I am 67, and I still prefer to custom build.

ditto. This board is full of do-it-yourselfers, like you were back in the day. 4GB and 64 bit is my recommendation, so that the machine will work into the future as applications evolve and use more memory and 64-bit dependance.

Also, 2-4 weeks after you get your system you will have changed it a great deal - adding your specific programs and customizing it to your environment. At that point do a system image backup using Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download so that if the system ever goes bad, you can recreate it
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Sr. Citizen "Basic" Questions, Please

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