June 29, 2021
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That cute little Surface Go I purchased a year ago fails the Windows 11 compatibility test. Although it has TPM 2.0, seems the processor is off by ten: I’ve got the Gold 4415Y, but the minimum is Gold 4425Y. The PC Health Check app now says coming soon, so let’s see what’s going on.
WTF, Microsoft, pony up and make your hardware compatible!
February 9, 2018
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I know that everyone hates updates, especially that ultra-pesky 1709 Creators update for Windows 10. But you gotta do them, just like exercising, dieting, eating healthy, etc. Please remember when an update says “DO NOT POWER OFF YOUR COMPUTER” it really means it.
Currently most every “modern” computer needs to have its BIOS updated for those also-pesky chip Spectre/Meltdown vulnerabilities. Most computer manufacturers and motherboard companies have Windows software that helps you perform a BIOS update. Apple calls these firmware, and handles the updates for you via the App Store. Just remember, these updates should be done attended, so that’s more for the itjerk to do!
August 10, 2009
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I've been thinking about rebuilding my linux box for sometime now. The old box was about three (3) years old (I know, ancient in computer terms), running a Pentium D 805 processor. Performance really wasn't that bad at all, but I was itching for something new, and something on a budget. The computer does two things for me: a) it runs my wiki-forever-in-construction for my progressiverock.com website, and b) runs my Slimserver (whoops, that's Squeezecenter now). I do a bit of CD ripping, sftping, and some desktop use as well. So no, I don't need a quad-core monster, and yes, energy efficiencey is a priority.
For a processor, I went for the Intel Pentium E5200, a dual-core model running at 2.5Ghz, but using a modest 65w of power. Microcenter had it on sale for a super low $49.99. For the motherboard, I had decided on the Gigabyte GA-G31M-E2SL. It's a "rock-solid" model using the Intel G31 chipset. Nothing too fancy, and carrying a $52.99 price tag (price matched with NewEgg), a nice low-end solution for the E5200 processor. Finally, I purchased a 2GB RAM kit from Cosair, $24.99 after rebate. Total spent: $140, including tax.
I always have a degree of nervousness when assembling a new computer from parts. Will they all work? Are they all compatible? Reading reviews at NewEgg.com about DOA parts, etc is depressing, especially if you have to mail back for replacements. But Microcenter had everything in stock, and as I mentioned, was even willing to price-match NewEgg on one of the items. I used the rest of the parts from the old box: Wizard case from Ultra, Western Digital SATA hard drive and Sony IDE DVD-RW optical drive, and an Antec Earthwatts power supply (80% efficient, 380 watts). I didn't get a video card; the old board had an AGP card, but I really didn't know what to get – so it's on-board graphics for now*. Good news, everything was quick to assemble, especially when you learn how to mount those Intel stock CPU fans, and I even had a bit of Artic Silver 5 for the heat sink. The computer posted on first boot, and I had a clean install of Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope in no time.
Next up, I'll post details about getting all my data transfered, software setup, and getting the box back into use.