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Old 02-16-2013, 05:41 AM   #31
rvijay
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This thread reminded me that before the 3.5" floppies there were the 5.25" floppies.

Also, there were the pocket organizers, the Palm Pilot the HP pocket PC, earlier versions of cell phones etc., They are all gone now. So are most of the older cell phones. Similarly, the more portable the technology and more the advancements in them, lesser the price, more they will be discarded it appears. This is just reality. Folks who try to reuse stuff are very little, otherwise there will be a lot more sites dedicated to such stuff.

Also, to be sincere, this thread was one of my last efforts to get support for my old PC, if I didn't get this support, then I would have probably recycled this PC also as some here had suggested.

Last edited by rvijay; 02-16-2013 at 05:44 AM.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 06:30 AM   #32
mjolnir
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frieza View Post
...sometimes people want old hardware because of nostalgia, sometimes people need the old hardware because they have specialized devices that would be TOO expensive to upgrade that aren't compatible with anything newer (yes i do know someone who has such a situation, he runs a machine shop and the software doesn't run well on anything newer than windows 98)...
That's cool. I wonder if your friend is using TurboCNC? not long ago I used Arachne on an antique :-) Win95/Dos laptop and my trusty old external modem to transfer a g-code file over dial-up from my XP machine to be used on TCNC in Dos for a robotics project I'm working on.

To get back on topic I still have a 386/12 megs of ram with Debian Slink on it I'm going to fire up again... one day.

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...4/#post4473668

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...3/#post2617746
 
Old 02-16-2013, 07:58 AM   #33
rvijay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjolnir View Post
That's cool. I wonder if your friend is using TurboCNC? not long ago I used Arachne on an antique :-) Win95/Dos laptop and my trusty old external modem to transfer a g-code file over dial-up from my XP machine to be used on TCNC in Dos for a robotics project I'm working on.

To get back on topic I still have a 386/12 megs of ram with Debian Slink on it I'm going to fire up again... one day.

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...4/#post4473668

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...3/#post2617746
Thanks. Lots of learning from this post.

TurboCNC:
http://www.dakeng.com/

DebianSlink:
http://wiki.debian.org/DebianSlink

As an aside, specially with mobile devices, once the battery life is over and the device can't even be used as a USB drive, then its life is over I guess.

Now I recollect, when I was very young, I have seen folks carrying punch cards they said that they used on Computers.

When I was in school, we had the IBM PS2, Vax/VMS and then the Macintosh came. There was no graphical interface in them all pretty much. However, they worked quite well. I had bought floppy disks then to use with them. We were given a one hour time limit as there was a queue to use them. I used to go to the computer center late friday evenings and early mornings on weekends as there was hardly anyone there then and we were allowed to use the computers as long as we wanted. They all didn't have the graphical interface and we could still use them quite comfortably: 1. Wordprocessing
2. Spreadsheet and 3. Usenet. These were the main programs that I used back then. If I could work without the use of graphical interface then, I must be able to do the same today with some practise, support if I came across a much older PC. By the way, back then, these computers were quite expensive.

Youtube is also good to recollect how things were back then. A picture speaks a 1000 words, a video speaks a lot more. Here is a video of a 386 PC that is still working well:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NMFDBxNqVQA

16Mhz 386 PC here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M7YxGEG6BAQ

Win 95 Promotion
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLqrpltv4UA

Unbelievable that I was considering discarding my Pentium 2 PC that is still working so amazing. With time, only the eye candy is increasing it appears when I see all these videos.

My special thanks to Peter again for this last post. I have one question: Peter do any of these OSes
have Live CDs or full install to hard drive only ?

This calls for some deep introspection.
How come, I am suggesting Linux to others, have this long thread but am not trying nCurses ?
When I look inside myself deeply, I am not theoratically dedicated to Linux. My main aim is
try and use hardware as long as possible, with as simple a linux distro as possible for now.
So, this is a practical approach.

The next point is, I have spent a lot of time in this regard, learning linux, learning older distros,
collecting old hardware, getting them up to screaming performance etc., So, I am quite exhausted.
Also, this is more of a hobby for now, rather than a Job. This limits the time greatly available
for this. However, this will be a good thing to try in the long term future if I have the time and
motivation for this. If one works for a PC Recycling company or a used IT items seller etc.,
There is certainly a wealth of info. here with practical applications.

On a different note on the economy, I said before that debtor prisons may make a come back.
Appears that they are already making a come back as per this article on the Tunnel people
in America:
http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/a...ets-of-america
Such people slip under the radar and are rarely talked about and do exist. A cell phone or even a tablet
PC is very vital in such a situation to look for job or get info. on any emergency assistance being offered.
This is what I mentioned before. Even a laptop becomes heavy and not worth it in this case. We are only
as strong as our weakest point. I encourage all to read this article, it is very informative. Now
if we go thru a bailout, then this number of tunnel people will only increase by n number of times.
How does this connect to Linux ? All these people ending up homeles means more unwanted hardware.
It will be very noble, if a service was offered by a business to take their old hardware and
provide a tablet or cell phone in exchange. This will be a green solution but I don't see that
happening for the most part. The returned old PCs can be used with a Linux
live CD for those who can use it. Otherwise, these will just simply get old,
gather dust and rust somewhere.

Laptop Overheating Problem. This is a common issue with a number of easy
fixes:
http://www.howtogeek.com/67660/how-t...eating-laptop/

If you know someone with an overheating laptop, suggest this link and try
to assist them sincerely. Chances are usually tho, they don't wish to do
anything with it anymore, at that time you can ask for it.

Also, came across another interesting distro for older machines:
http://crunchbang.org/

Wow, every time I feel everything has been covered here, something new comes up.

Article: IT work in Prison:
http://tinyurl.com/78es9dn

If one goes to debt prison in future they maybe sent to do IT work in prison.
Better use Linux on older PC and be debt free, than buy new PC etc., on
credit card. Also, from the article, it is evident that a lot of PCs come there,
atleast it is good that these are not discarded immediately. Hope, they use
Linux there. These are mostly business PCs I feel.

Anger and IT Stuff
It is best not to be close to IT stuff when angry.
They can cause serious injuries as they are heavy.
Stay away from PCs if angry. This is what I do.
A thrown desktop PC if it hits a person can cause serious
injury or even death.
Some interesting related links:
http://tinyurl.com/d7sqw5w
http://tinyurl.com/bl8pfyu
Facebook page for those who feel like throwing their PC
out of window:
http://tinyurl.com/cmywq7b
Quote on Throwing PC:
http://tinyurl.com/cuwhpha

Specially, saying this here as some get angry with older PCs
and their related issues. If you know someone who says this
about their PC, ask them if they will give it to you, if they
do, then take it.

Personally, for me an older PC is an amazing experience.
I almost feel it saying, please take me, care for me
and use me. I will work very nicely for you as I did the
first day. My P3 Tower is giving me amazing performance.

Reiser:
At one point I was eagerly looking to use the Reiserfs system and then decided not to.
Here is a wiki article on Hans Reiser:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hans_Reiser
Technical Interview with Reiser:
http://kerneltrap.org/node/5654
The above articles are interesting reads. Several may have given up on the
Reiserfs system mainly due to lack of consistent support I feel.

Today is a very grey, wet, snowy day outside with warning of
ice pellets.

My P3 Tower PC was making a wierd noise and now the floppy disk is not
mounting. Will have to look into this. I tried another floppy
disk and it didn't work either. Interesting, appears this floppy
drive itself has got damaged. Will have to reboot PC and see what
happens. Rebooting PC didn't help, the turning noise made by floppy
drive on boot is now absent. The green LED on it goes on during
boot or when I try to mount it with: mount /dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy
The above process continues constantly and never stops.
Also, clicking on the floppy icon gives the message:
Failed to execute child process "/root/.pup_event/drive_fd0/AppRun" (No such file or directory)

Now, I can only try to test further by removing this floppy drive,
putting it another PC and trying another floppy drive on this PC.
However, it is too much work and I am almost convinced that this
floppy drive is gone. This is one thing with older PCs, some parts
will fail with time. This is just one post after I wrote that this
P3 Tower is giving amazing performance. Funny but still not a disaster.

Last edited by unSpawn; 05-21-2013 at 04:44 PM.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 09:27 AM   #34
frieza
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvijay View Post
Now I recollect, when I was very young, I have seen folks carrying punch cards they said that they used on Computers.

When I was in school, we had the IBM PS2, Vax/VMS and then the Macintosh came. There was no graphical interface in them all pretty much. However, they worked quite well. I had bought floppy disks then to use with them. We were given a one hour time limit as there was a queue to use them. I used to go to the computer center late friday evenings and early mornings on weekends as there was hardly anyone there then and we were allowed to use the computers as long as we wanted. They all didn't have the graphical interface and we could still use them quite comfortably: 1. Wordprocessing
2. Spreadsheet and 3. Usenet. These were the main programs that I used back then. If I could work without the use of graphical interface then, I must be able to do the same today with some practise, support if I came across a much older PC. By the way, back then, these computers were quite expensive.

Youtube is also good to recollect how things were back then. A picture speaks a 1000 words, a video speaks a lot more. Here is a video of a 386 PC that is still working well:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NMFDBxNqVQA

16Mhz 386 PC here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M7YxGEG6BAQ

Win 95 Promotion
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLqrpltv4UA

Unbelievable that I was considering discarding my Pentium 2 PC that is still working so amazing. With time, only the eye candy is increasing it appears when I see all these videos.
believable, but sad, i myself used a Pentium 1 with redhat 6.2 as a file server alongside a pentium III (and even then, there were newer machines available), it finally died about a year before i bought my quad core AMD machine.

the beauty of Linux is, it does not rely on BIOS for drive geometry, so as long as your kernel is in a /BOOT partition in say.. the first 256 Megs of the drive, you can have a 500+ GIG drive attached to a 386 or 486 and use it as a file server.
who's gonna want to hack into a machine with such low power, like it would do them any good on a botnet?

Last edited by frieza; 02-16-2013 at 09:29 AM.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 09:40 AM   #35
rvijay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frieza View Post
believable, but sad, i myself used a Pentium 1 with redhat 6.2 as a file server alongside a pentium III (and even then, there were newer machines available), it finally died about a year before i bought my quad core AMD machine.

the beauty of Linux is, it does not rely on BIOS for drive geometry, so as long as your kernel is in a /BOOT partition in say.. the first 256 Megs of the drive, you can have a 500+ GIG drive attached to a 386 or 486 and use it as a file server.
who's gonna want to hack into a machine with such low power, like it would do them any good on a botnet?
Good point. Atleast your PC was well used before it died. Didn't you try to get parts for it ? Also, which part of it died ?

As an aside, I am a simple, small home user, have no printer even. So I have no personal reason to run a server.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 09:43 AM   #36
frieza
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvijay View Post
Good point. Atleast your PC was well used before it died. Didn't you try to get parts for it ? Also, which part of it died ?

As an aside, I am a simple, small home user, have no printer even. So I have no personal reason to run a server.
the motherboard, i accidentally killed it (forgot that AT power supplies don't completely shut off without flipping the switch and pulled out a PCI card with it still switched on, magic blue smoke ensued, though it didn't die immediatly i still somehow got another year or two even after that).

Last edited by frieza; 02-16-2013 at 09:44 AM.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 09:55 AM   #37
rvijay
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I found useful articles on how to get free, older PCs. Folks must be really dumping them:

http://www.recycles.org/computer/donation/free

http://techtips.salon.com/can-comput...ter-12066.html

This article gives an idea about the amount of eWaste.
http://thelastoutpost.com/video-4/te...puters-go.html
 
Old 02-16-2013, 10:29 AM   #38
snowpine
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Speaking personally for myself, the reason I do not use anything Pentium 4 or older is that I was able to get Windows-Vista era dual-core hardware for free from relatives and friends who were upgrading to Windows 7 machines. Now that Windows 8 is catching on, I'm sure lots of people will be selling at a low price or giving away for free their Windows 7 machines.

In other words I consider it a waste of my time to use old, slow hardware when a free upgrade is available to me. I understand that not everyone might have this luxury (although you might be surprised if you look around) so I have utmost respect for people who are stuck with older hardware and find creative ways to extend its lifespan---kudos for starting this discussion, it's an interesting read. Even people with newer hardware can benefit from the idea of running more efficient and less resource-demanding software.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 10:40 AM   #39
rvijay
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Looking from the other perspective tho, if folks didn't keep on upgrading software/hardware and kept on using their older PCs just a few hours a day until it died, then there will be many folks without jobs, most stores we know today will not exist and this is not good either. Also, there will be fewer stores selling PCs that are much slower at far higher prices. So, where is the balance ? It will be good to have a nice system in place to recycle older PCs very efficiently.

The folks who know me personally, have told me that the way I use my PC, it will last for ever and there is no need for me to upgrade mine.
 
Old 02-16-2013, 10:54 AM   #40
rvijay
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Debian older Distros. Debian slink is not even available anymore !! With time, the older OSes are expected to disappear from the net, specially if no one downloads them anymore.
http://www.debian.org/CD/faq/#old
 
Old 02-16-2013, 01:28 PM   #41
NyteOwl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvijay View Post
This thread reminded me that before the 3.5" floppies there were the 5.25" floppies.

Also, there were the pocket organizers, the Palm Pilot the HP pocket PC, earlier versions of cell phones etc., They are all gone now. So are most of the older cell phones. Similarly, the more portable the technology and more the advancements in them, lesser the price, more they will be discarded it appears. This is just reality. Folks who try to reuse stuff are very little, otherwise there will be a lot more sites dedicated to such stuff.

Also, to be sincere, this thread was one of my last efforts to get support for my old PC, if I didn't get this support, then I would have probably recycled this PC also as some here had suggested.
And before 5.25" there were 8" floppies, punch cards (still have some in the basement), paper tape ...

And I still use my Palm Pilot. It's a nice shirt pocket sized password safe and e-reader. It does e-mail in a pinch too

My old 8088 is still in use too

Another site that may be of interest to some: http://www.obsolyte.com
 
Old 02-16-2013, 01:43 PM   #42
rvijay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NyteOwl View Post
And before 5.25" there were 8" floppies, punch cards (still have some in the basement), paper tape ...

And I still use my Palm Pilot. It's a nice shirt pocket sized password safe and e-reader. It does e-mail in a pinch too

My old 8088 is still in use too

Another site that may be of interest to some: http://www.obsolyte.com
Thanks for that site. Impressive that you are still using your older PC and Palm Pilot.

The earliest PC I have seen on sale these days is a 1Ghz machine. I was wondering why I don't see too many old PCs trashed in Montreal. There are good commercial and nonprofit erecycling services here. I am sure they help a lot.

It will help to have a dedicated USB stick with software for older PCs, Manuals and How to tips, forums/groups online that assist with this, etc., Also, need to practice using these on an older PC. That way, when the need arises to use an older PC, it will not be a huge challenge.

Based on more research on the net, it is expected that most oldest PC to be sold currently will be about 1Gz CPU on average. (Even this will change in the next few years.) Anything else older is mostly disposed off by now, it is evident that several cities have considered ewaste and put systems in place to handle this. More Oses for older PCs will likely disappear down the road also. We may see more emulators tho of older PCs.

Very few PCs Older than a Pentium III are expected to be with folks gathering dust. Those few that remain are most likely being used, the remaining few being kept for sentimental reasons.

Helpful Summary for this thread:

This thread has taught me few basic stuff so far:
1. The older OSes are ok, it is more about using the right boot options and xsetup so that the OS works ok in the graphical interface.
2. It helps to keep an older PC updated promptly, resolve any issues and keep extra copies of the OS, applications etc.,
3. Revise using this PC every 6 months, look for any related updates on net etc.,
4. Be on lookout for cheap hardware upgrades and make use of them when available. This will also help if something fails, specially the power supply.
5. Assist others with older PCs to get better use from them.
6. DL and try using different OSes for older PCs. Don't relay on just one OS.
7. Keep a file with notes on any issues encountered, how they were solved, vital tips etc., Keep a printout of this file and also burn this file to CD/DVD.
8. Keep in touch with others who use such older PCs or start a forum, email list for this.
9. Retrocomputing - When folks are using such old PCs, it shouldn't be an issue to use PCs just a decade or so old.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Retrocomputing
10. If it really becomes junk and doesn't work, there here are some tips on how to let go of sentiments and declutter:
http://www.azcentral.com/style/hfe/decor/a...purge.html
I admit that I am sentimentally attached to this PC and from net can see that several others are also.
11. Minimalistic Computing:
For most basic routine tasks, older PCs are still ok. A very fast, latest PC is not needed.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minimalist_computing

Older Distros for older PCs:
http://www.pcworld.com/article/25559...rn_server.html
Slitaz Linux
Puppy Linux
http://hackaday.com/2011/08/19/insta...ld-pcs-part-2/

http://www.debian.org/CD/faq/#old

http://www.pcworld.com/article/25559...rn_server.html


Links about older PCs:
http://www.obsolyte.com
http://www.old-computers.com/news/default.asp

http://kmandla.wordpress.com/2010/10...-old-computer/



Useful articles on how to get free, older PCs. Folks must be really dumping them:

http://www.recycles.org/computer/donation/free

http://techtips.salon.com/can-comput...ter-12066.html

This article gives an idea about the amount of eWaste.
http://thelastoutpost.com/video-4/te...puters-go.html

http://kmandla.wordpress.com/2010/10...-old-computer/

Related Tips:
It will help to have a dedicated USB stick with software for older PCs, Manuals and How to tips, forums/groups online that assist with this, etc., Also, need to practice using these on an older PC. That way, when the need arises to use an older PC, it will not be a huge challenge.

Last edited by unSpawn; 05-21-2013 at 04:46 PM.
 
Old 02-17-2013, 08:03 PM   #43
frieza
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very nice and well thought out there

on a side note, computers aren't the only things worth keeping, i myself still have one of these puppies http://imprint.printmag.com/wp-conte...oads/we161.jpg

and an eight track player, both still work ^^
 
Old 02-17-2013, 09:43 PM   #44
rvijay
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It appears we are made to think that old stuff is no longer used/needed and the new things are needed. Floppy disk is one such and still several are using them as per this article:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/8651750.stm

There is a place for new tech. However, use of old must not be silently discouraged. I am sad now that I threw away all my floppy disks. They could have been used to run floppy Linux atleast.
 
Old 02-17-2013, 10:17 PM   #45
k3lt01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvijay View Post
This thread reminded me that before the 3.5" floppies there were the 5.25" floppies.
Funny you mention that. I have an old 5.25" floppy with a RP Game (Demons Winter) on it that I used to play back in the early 1990s. It was a good game but I stopped playing it when my dad's old PC gave up and I have not been able to locate a working 5.25" drive so I could save the game and play it on a FreeDOS partition I have on another laptop.
 
  


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