upgrading my old packard bell (total amatuer)

  roberrt 13:23 19 Oct 2008

okay so ive got a packard bell thats about 6 years old, and at the moment i just use it for msn internet browsing etc.

i've been considering building a computer myself but thought that it would be cheaper (and also have a working computer the whole time) to replace different parts of my packard bell over time.

i rang my brother who does computer science and he told me that theres likely to be problems just changing different parts on their own because its packard bell?? he wouldn't go into much detail.

can anyone explain help me out??

  spuds 13:38 19 Oct 2008

Your brother is correct about possible upgrades for a 6 year old computer. It all depends on what you have at present, in terms of memory, hard-drive capacity, motherboard and other items. The list can be extensive.New parts might not be at all compatible with some existing parts, which would add further problems.

Personally I have upgraded three 'older' computers, and in each case it didn't solve the issue of trying to turn old into new. Looking at some of the latest systems and the prices being asked, plus a 12 month or more warranty. Then I would suggest that you look at purchasing a new system, and perhaps using the older unit as a spare.

Do you know what your Packard Bell contains. If not, then download something like Belarc, Fresh Diagnose, SIW,PC Wizard 2008, CrystalDiskInfo (all free!), which should tell you what your computer contains. Then post the answers on the forum, so that other members can possibly advice.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 13:43 19 Oct 2008

"thought that it would be cheaper"

not nowadays

Also PBs contain too many propriety parts.

Don't waste your time and effort.

Get a barebones package from somewhere like Novatech and use your monitor and keyboard etc. at least then you will get a guarantee with it.

  roberrt 13:56 19 Oct 2008

well for now i just ran dxdiag, here are a few specs if they help:

XP home edition

  roberrt 13:57 19 Oct 2008

well for now i just ran dxdiag, here are a few specs if they help:

XP home edition
intel pentium 4 cpu 1.5 ghz
256mb ram
DX 9,0c
graphics card: nvidia geforce mx/mx 400 64mb

  roberrt 14:10 19 Oct 2008

Operating System System Model
Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 3 (build 2600) Packard Bell NEC P480402601
System Serial Number: 010970120106
Chassis Serial Number: 50424E
Enclosure Type: Desktop
Processor a Main Circuit Board b
1.50 gigahertz Intel Pentium 4
8 kilobyte primary memory cache
256 kilobyte secondary memory cache Board: NEC COMPUTERS INTERNATIONAL Intel i845 1.x
Bus Clock: 100 megahertz
BIOS: American Megatrends Inc. 1.0K 11/08/2001
Drives Memory Modules c,d
37.91 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
18.03 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space

IDE-CD R/RW 12x8x32 [CD-ROM drive]
3.5" format removeable media [Floppy drive]

ST340810A [Hard drive] (40.02 GB) -- drive 0, s/n 3FB26WVH, rev 3.34, SMART Status: Healthy 256 Megabytes Installed Memory

Slot '0' has 256 MB
Slot '1' is Empty
Local Drive Volumes

c: (NTFS on drive 0) 37.91 GB 18.03 GB free
Network Drives
None detected
Users (mouse over user name for details) Printers
local user accounts last logon
Henry 19/10/2008 13:45:59 (admin)
local system accounts
Administrator never (admin)
ASPNET never
Guest 19/10/2008 13:53:07
HelpAssistant 14/08/2008 11:05:10
SUPPORT_388945a0 never

DISABLED Marks a disabled account; LOCKED OUT Marks a locked account

Controllers Display
Standard floppy disk controller
Intel(r) 82801BA Bus Master IDE Controller
Primary IDE Channel [Controller]
Secondary IDE Channel [Controller] NVIDIA GeForce2 MX/MX 400 [Display adapter]
Packard Bell NEC CI A727 [Monitor] (15.7"vis, s/n TSMN13802151, September 2001)
Bus Adapters Multimedia
Intel(r) 82801BA/BAM USB Universal Host Controller - 2442
Intel(r) 82801BA/BAM USB Universal Host Controller - 2444 AC-Link 3D Game Enhanced Audio
Standard Game Port
Unimodem Half-Duplex Audio Device
Communications Other Devices
Smart Link 56K Voice Modem

D-Link DFE-500TX PCI Fast Ethernet Adapter (Rev HID-compliant consumer control device
HID-compliant device (3x)
USB Human Interface Device (2x)
HID Keyboard Device
HID-compliant Wheel Mouse
Generic USB Hub
USB Composite Device
USB Root Hub (2x)

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 15:00 19 Oct 2008

Ok its 6 yrs old and your thinking of upgrading.

What do you want to use it for?

If your not interested in the lastest graphics hungry games then add some more memory to what you have and it will fly along.

  spuds 16:03 19 Oct 2008

I could be wrong, but it looks like you have PC100/PC133 memory, which is getting harder to find and buy. PC World sell it, but at their prices I wouldn't bother. Try eBay, or perhaps a forum member might have a few sticks to spare!.

  roberrt 19:20 19 Oct 2008

i want to start by just making it faster and capably of running hungry programs like photoshop.

i want to eventually be able to play the latest games in max graphics but that isnt my main concern atm. what i want to do is make a start at a better computer, and do it as cheaply as possible.

is there any other way to check if your right about that p310 or whatever memory?


  woodchip 19:27 19 Oct 2008

After six years, I would tend to use it as it is, other than maybe up the Ram to What the Operating System and Board will take. if its Windows 9 no more than 512mb ram If XP is loaded you may be able to fit 1gb but don't think it would justify fitting it

  canarieslover 19:37 19 Oct 2008

If you want to eventually play games at max graphics then forget about trying to eventually upgrade this machine to do it. Every component will have to be changed on the way to achieving this and the main problem is that there have been changes to basic component specifications that mean you won't be able to mix 'n' match components on the way. You will be much better off saving your money until such time that you can afford a new base unit. Probably that's not what you want to hear but, as I have a base unit that is almost as old as yours, I have already done the research that shows me that the gradual upgrade is not really financially viable. I am now waiting for the January sales!!

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