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Old 09-10-2007, 09:54 PM   #1
Registered: Jul 2004
Location: Tampa, Florida, USA
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 734
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Should I buy a new computer?

Hi there. I'm running a rather dated system currently and I'm wondering if I should upgrade.

A little background. I started using Linux (dual boot) about the summer of 2002, and 1 year later I deleted "the other OS" for good. I have never went back since, because despite the many Linux short comings, Linux has several several advantages as well (no drm, no viruses, powerful commandline, no forced upgrades, etc...).

Here's my dilemma though, since I've been on Linux, I've practically been able to upgrade purely on throw away machines. Thats 5 years now of living on other peoples garbage. Job, location and such have changed this past year though, and I'm not getting any more hand-me-down junk computers.

Here are the specs of my current system:
Floppy drive (no SD/Media card slots)
CD Writer
2 USB ports
Onboard Intel gfx card (no 3d accel)
300GB IDE HD (I actually bought)
800Mhz Intel
17inch CRT Monitor

(I also use a 8yr old POS logitech PS/2 mouse, controlled with a finger ball, but I love it. Although I'd like to have a wheel/button, I'm not giving it up. I love the fact that I can control the cursor easily and I never actually have to physically move the mouse. Easily saves 1 square foot of space on my desk.)

Anyway, my system usually works great, but loading some things take a while. Starting OOffice takes about 20 seconds. I can play videos online, but it seems to really lag when I try to play a video and also have a few other FireFox tabs open. I play a game once in a while, though obviously I can't play anything but simple 2d games. One thing I'm highly grateful for is at least my Linux system hasn't slowed down over time like some other OS's.

So now I want to know your opinion. You've seen my system specs and I've told you my situation. What do you think I should I do?
Old 09-10-2007, 10:43 PM   #2
Registered: Feb 2005
Location: Denver, CO
Distribution: Slack 12, tweaked just so (though I'm also a fan of Ubuntu)
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Speaking as a guy who uses Linux on an old 500MHz Celeron laptop with 192 Megs of RAM, sometimes, I don't think you necessarily need to upgrade just yet.

I see long load times, too, the first time I try to fire up OpenOffice, but instead of putting up with that, I just downloaded and installed Abiword and Gnumeric instead. Both work fantastically, and load in literally three or four seconds.

I'm like you - most every PC I own is a hand me down. None of them is newer than four or five years old. And every one of them runs like a champ with Linux, assuming I've got them tuned just right.
Old 09-10-2007, 10:58 PM   #3
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Location: Calif, USA
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Should I buy a new computer?
Buy one every other week if you can spare the cash.

Perhaps consider upgrading the mainboard, processor, and RAM (power source if needed, new video if desired). Add other ingredients as desired.


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