sábado, 20 de febrero de 2016

Experimenting with Hardware

My desktop work station is an aging AMD system that I bought maybe four or five years ago.  With 2GB of RAM and a 250GB HD, it has been working and helping me despite KDE 4 seems to be way to heavy.

The other desktop computer in my house, a 500GB HD, 4GB RAM failed...Again!  Since I bought it, this system has been acting up, prompting me to send it to the repair shop at least once a year.

I am not sure what the problem was but, encouraged by my successful migration to Linux, I decided to venture-- for the first time-- into the unexplored world of hardware.

So, I opened the two boxes to put into my faithful AMD desktop some additional goodies, courtesy of the problematic box: a 2GB RAM, a new DVD writer, and (of course), a second HD.

The black box ready for transplant

For someone who has never opened a desktop to mess up with real hardware, the project was way too ambitious.

Yes, I can admit I was worried.  Perhaps my Swiss Army knife knows more about computer hardware than I do.

So, armed with the Swiss Army knife, a vague idea of what I wanted, and a million doubts, I started the operation.

Fortunately, the components were similar.  Nothing showed resistance.

Nevertheless, when I put back the power, screen, mouse, and keyboard cables, I was literally afraid.  I pushed the power button as if it were the detonator of a bomb.

The computer turned on with absolute disregard of my fears.  After pretty much the same lines that Linux shows upon start, my familiar GRUB2 greeted me, asking if I wanted to boot Mageia, PCLinuxOS, OpenMandriva, or Windows XP (the OS that I haven't booted in maybe three years).

I chose Mageia and the OS worked normally... only it felt snappier.  I checked and the additional 2GB of RAM were recognized.

I tested the optical media unit and it was working.  And the files on the other hard drive were accessible, too.

Despite all of my fears, my first hardware operation was a complete success!

Of course, in full honesty, Isay that Linux made it easy.  I cannot imagine doing the same and then hunting for drivers, licenses, and what not ....

I wonder if Windows XP will be able to boot at all now...

UPDATE:  PCLinuxOS and OpenMandriva also boot normally.  Windows XP also started normally, but failed to see the second hard drive.

3 comentarios:

  1. Although risky, experimenting with hardware and being able to solve a number of issues can also be rewarding.

  2. Hey, congrats on taking the chance. I was also afraid on my first time. Now after several years I build my own desktop machines, yet I am always kinda scared of static discharges. That's why I only touch the components on uncarpeted rooms, and if it's a lengthy procedure, I put on my anti-static wristband.

    You might want to try eventually (and maybe just for practice) add another harddrive, another DIM, or something of the sort. Yet always remember to do some homework to check compatibility or measure if current hardware can take on more components.