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Building a new PC

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by beefums, Dec 31, 2006.

  1. beefums

    beefums Omnomnom

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    Ok, so I have been looking into buying a new PC. I have already decided on all the parts, but then I realized I need to buy an Operating System which puts me over budget.

    Does anyone know a decent "We Build PCs for You" company? I am not looking at Dell, Gateway or any of those. They are extremely over priced and their parts are non-interchangable.
     
  2. Wulfenite

    Wulfenite The King

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    Seems like there's a little collusion (or synergy if you prefer) where MS over prices their product on the retail market but sells it to the biggie computer mfgrs for cheep, which allows them to beat the price of the build it yourself guys who have to buy software retail.

    I know manufacturers like Compaq, IBM, and Gateway have been big into the propriatary parts thing, but my impression of dell has been that they're reasonably standard. If you're trying to work under a budget, you should try to price out a stripped dell box w/software, then up-grade as you can or need to. JUST DONT BUY A SMALL HARDDRIVE! LOL!
     

  3. beefums

    beefums Omnomnom

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    From what I understand you can only swap out dell parts with other dell parts. I am not ready to make that big of a commitment to Dell.

    I have issues with commitment :p
     
  4. lens

    lens

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    As someone who sold HW/SW for 13 years as an independent computer consultant, here's some insight:

    - Dell, IBM, Gateway, etc. pay in the order of $20 Licensing fee to MS per copy of the OS. These companies typically burn their own copies of the OS and pay the printing costs of any manuals (when they used to print them) as well as bear the burden of all tech supt calls.

    - As a MS Authorized Reseller, I could buy the OS for approximately the same cost as the Retailers sold the Upgrade version (e.g. XP Home OEM for ~$90, XP Pro OEM for ~$200!). This gross disparity makes it hard for the small guys to survive. I've all but given up on HW/SW sales and rely on consulting/repair and my Constable business for survival.

    - The "big boys" have the HW "customized" for them to cut costs. So an MSI motherboard in a name brand machine is NOT the same as an MSI motherboard that you can buy off the shelf in a computer store. This results in the need for some SPECIAL drivers that you must get from the system mfr's website, NOT the component mfr's website (as that might or might not work).

    - As a result, a lot of small shops bootleg the SW or sell counterfeit copies so they can stay alive in this business.

    HTH
     
  5. Sgt. Schultz

    Sgt. Schultz Annoying Member

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    Dell does not manufacture any of the parts in their computers ... they buy in bulk at the best price and put it together for you. You can use any brand parts you want when swapping them as long as they are compatible to your system.
     
  6. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    My understanding is Dell does use some bastard power supply, that you can only get from Dell. There was a post on this here not long ago.

    To the original poster, your best bet, is to Buy the OEM version of Windows XP Home(Linked below), its way cheaper than the retail boxed version, and is pretty much just the OS, and its basic components(Paint, .txt reader, etc.) and thats it. You'd be amazed however, at the free programs you can find on Majorgeeks, and various other parts of the web, that make up for stuff they don't include.

    Windows XP OEM http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=335878&CatId=672


    Buy the OEM version of XP Home(I'm assuming you wanted Home)
    1. AVG AntiVirus and Spyware http://free.grisoft.com/doc/1
    2. Open Office... http://www.openoffice.org

    Then you're set..

    IGF
     
  7. beefums

    beefums Omnomnom

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    Thanks IGF. I am ordering all the parts from Newegg, unless Tiger Direct is cheaper.
     
  8. Sgt. Schultz

    Sgt. Schultz Annoying Member

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    It doesn't matter what kind of PS they put into the system you do NOT have to use their PS ... you can replace the power supply with any that will fit into the box ... I've done it several times.
     
  9. Tennessee Slim

    Tennessee Slim Señor Member CLM

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    The building is not what’s hard, it’s selecting compatible components. Any doofus can plug the pieces together. But if you don’t take time to stay knee-deep in that stuff, you can find all you need to know about parts and compatibility and performance at web sites dedicated to gamers and overclockers. They’re mostly kids with too much disposable income and their social status hinges on their PC being the fastest bleeding edge technology. For the better part, they have no brand loyalty (except maybe that Intel VS AMD thing) and they’re mercilessly critical of any component they don’t find up to scratch. And you can Dogpile (I don’t google) for an online assembly guide. Here was the first one I found: http://www.pcmech.com/byopc/ (and it’s very detailed).
     
  10. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    Now again, my understanding of this might be off, but I was under the impression it did not have an ATX end, but a special connection on the motherboard for the Dell power Supply.

    I have a friend that went through this issue with Gateway also..

    IGF
     
  11. Sgt. Schultz

    Sgt. Schultz Annoying Member

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    I have worked on hundreds of computers of all makes (no Macs) over the last 15+ years and have only seen 3 different types of connections:
    AT Power Supply - still in use in older PCs.
    ATX Power Supply - commonly in use today.
    ATX-2 Power Supply - recently new standard.

    I routinely strip parts from "junked" computers for future use. I have salvaged parts for one computer to repair another for some customers ... Gateways, Dells, eMachine, Compaq etc ... I’ve mixed parts even PS's and I've never had a problem ... as long as the part was compatible and working.



    My wife’s Dell Dimension has a PS with a Dell label on it and a standard ATX connection … I just looked.

    Think about it, if a retailer such as Dell or Gateway did have power supply with "special" connections they would have to have both the PS and the motherboard specially manufactured for them ... this wouldn’t be cheap and they would have to pass this cost onto the customers ... meaning buyers would go elsewhere especially major corporations who's IT departments buy and repair quite a few.
     
  12. Wulfenite

    Wulfenite The King

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    Place I used to work the IT guys had very little say in what arrived or how it was configured. It really was pathetic. They had some sort of corporate agreement....so the IT guys would say what then needed in general terms...pas it up the chain to the corporate IT guys, who'd order when they had enough to make an order, then a while later it would get built and show up at the office. The whole process would take about a month and when you looked at the invoice in the box the price they paid for the machine was 25% over what Dell could have built and shipped to you in about 3 working days and about a hundred bucks more than you could have bought off the shelf same day at Frys. I'm pretty sure there was a hot Russian mistress for the IT VP somewhere in the deal.
     
  13. HAVOC

    HAVOC Remember CLM Millennium Member

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    I don't know if it's still the case or not, but at one time Dell was using PSUs that had the 20-pin ATX connector (and the board socket) wired differently from the ATX standard. All the stuff I find on the net is a couple years old, so I'm guessing that they stopped the practice, but it DID happens, starting in '98.
     
  14. beefums

    beefums Omnomnom

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    Hey, I decided to just build it myself. However, I still am facing a OS problem.

    I still have the keycode from my old copy of Windows. Is there a way I can use that still? I mean hell I did buy it. I just happened to lose the damn disk. And if memory serves correct you buy the license not the disk.
     
  15. Patrick Graham

    Patrick Graham Footlong Jr.

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    I believe you are right, you're legal.... Fire up bittorrent, lime wire and usenet .. grab some.. Newzbin returned 102 hits on "windows xp" for a 90 day old search of usenet.. so.. it's out there..
     
  16. Darkmage

    Darkmage

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    Dell quit the practice several years ago. It was cheaper to use industry-standard components than to try and force the user to upgrade through Dell. They found that most users would upgrade through Dell anyway because they didn't know enough to go through another vendor.

    Dell doesn't use proprietary stuff... but there are still some "gotchas" in their products. For example, if you buy the basic system for $500 or whatever, you get a POS power supply. I believe someone mentioned 305W. Well, if you decide to upgrade to a better video card or processor, you'll have problems if you don't upgrade the power supply. If you add more memory, chances are that it won't play nice with the memory Dell includes and you may have to chuck Dell's memory and buy the full 1GB or whatever. New processor = new heatsink because the cheap-*** one Dell includes barely can handle the low-end processor and so on and so forth.

    It's all industry standard stuff, but there are still some caveats to buying the basic system and upgrading piecemeal.
     
  17. lens

    lens

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    Well, there are a couple of issues here:

    - The Product Key for OEM will NOT work with a Retail CD. Likewise, a Retail Product Key will NOT work with an OEM CD. This is a design restriction.

    - The License for OEM OS has a caveat in it . . . you can NOT legally use it on another machine (it is legally bound to the first CPU that it is installed on), even if the original machine is destroyed/OS removed from the original machine/etc. It is a "one system" use License. That is the legal restriction . . . what you do is up to you.
     
  18. beefums

    beefums Omnomnom

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    Ok, well I have a 40gb HD with Windows already installed on it. Can I put it in a new machine and just use it to run office software/windows then run games and whatnot off the 250gb HD? Or would windows not work correctly?

    Also, would I encounter any performance problems doing that?
     
  19. coopal_131

    coopal_131

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    You cannot just transplant an HD with an existing OS to a new/different computer and expect it to work right. It might be more trouble than what it's worth.
     
  20. lens

    lens

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    WinXP won't transplant without rebuilding the OS. A different motherboard will cause the system not to boot properly, as all the drivers loading will be wrong.

    Win9x would operate but may cause problems.