RevivingOlMachina.html 11 KB

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  19. <title>Reviving an ol’ machina</title>
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  87. <h1 class="p-name">Reviving an ol’ machina</h1>
  88. </header>
  89. <section data-field="subtitle" class="p-summary">
  90. The computing resources get older as years progress as new technologies evolve. The number of transistors increase
  91. per unit size and the…
  92. </section>
  93. <section data-field="body" class="e-content">
  94. <section name="9b13" class="section section--body section--first section--last">
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  96. <hr class="section-divider">
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  98. <div class="section-content">
  99. <div class="section-inner sectionLayout--insetColumn">
  100. <h3 name="4fb4" id="4fb4" class="graf graf--h3 graf--leading graf--title">Reviving an ol’ machina</h3>
  101. <p name="c74c" id="c74c" class="graf graf--p graf-after--h3">The computing resources get older as years
  102. progress, as newer technologies evolve. The number of transistors increase per unit size and the
  103. components get smaller and efficient (they call it the Moore’s law). So, this desktop was assembled in the
  104. year 2010 when I was in college. Needed a decent desktop for college projects (and gaming of course!)
  105. then.</p>
  106. <p name="4537" id="4537" class="graf graf--p graf-after--p">The specs when assembled were — AMD Phenom II x
  107. 4 945 processor up to 3GHz, Kingston 4GB DDR3 RAM, Seagate Barracuda 500 GB SATA HDD, Gigabyte
  108. GA-MA785GMT-US2H motherboard and ATI Radeon 4500 HD 512MB graphics. Now, this was decent configuration
  109. back in 2010 to run applications such as Netbeans IDE, Eclipse, J2ME emulator, play games like Mafia II,
  110. Fifa 10 etc. I would like to specially thank my college friend for suggesting these specs to me back in 2010.</p>
  111. <p name="1eb4" id="1eb4" class="graf graf--p graf-after--p">After couple of years this desktop was abandoned
  112. for a shinier Sony Vaio E series laptop. The assembled desktop started catching dust (for years to come).
  113. </p>
  114. <p name="631c" id="631c" class="graf graf--p graf-after--p">In 2019, I realize that it’s still got venom in
  115. it provided a few upgrades are made to its disk and memory. So these were the upgrades I made — Firstly, I
  116. installed 8GB DDR3 additional RAM to the existing 4GB to make it 12GB in total. This made running more
  117. applications possible and reduced the use of virtual memory access. Note that the arrangement of these RAM
  118. chips in the slots also matter. Had to check the motherboard <a
  119. href=""
  120. data-href=""
  121. class="markup--anchor markup--p-anchor" rel="noopener" target="_blank">manual</a> and arrange them in
  122. the sequence described there. Secondly, installed a new Western Digital Green SSD 240GB alongside the
  123. existing magnetic HDD. Usage of an SSD makes disk access faster and reliable. Although, the maximum speed
  124. supported by the SSD was 6Gbps, I had to satiate for half of its power as the motherboard supported SATA
  125. 2nd generation connections (3Gbps). Still, a 3x gain over older HDD. The operating system both GNU/Linux
  126. (Trisquel) and Windows were installed on the SSD with a dual boot option. One needs to be meticulous here
  127. in allocating disk space and also in assigning the sequence in which OS(s) are installed. Preferably,
  128. install Windows first and then GNU/Linux.</p>
  129. <p name="952a" id="952a" class="graf graf--p graf-after--p">There are other peripheral issues which needs to
  130. be taken care of in a desktop and if ignored can hamper performance. These are issues such as cooling and
  131. ventilation. Firstly, I had to unscrew the chassis and pluck out the CPU which was running at about 70º
  132. Celsius. The heat sink had dust accumulated for almost a decade which had to cleaned. A thermal compound
  133. paste was freshly applied on the CPU to reduce the temperatures. The metal heat sink was then carefully
  134. placed on the thermal paste. The trick here to avoid any air gaps between the CPU and heat sink is to
  135. apply the thermal paste at a single point in the middle. When the metal heat sink is placed on top of this
  136. paste, it distributes the thermal compound without any air gaps. Guess what? After doing this and booting
  137. my system, I was able to detect a 20º Celsius drop in the CPU temperature (as shown in the BIOS). This was
  138. a huge gain! (Check, this DIY <a href=""
  139. data-href="" class="markup--anchor markup--p-anchor"
  140. rel="noopener" target="_blank">tutorial</a>). Secondly, to keep it well ventilated I moved the cabinet
  141. from an earlier claustrophobic, beneath the desk to top of the desk near a window to get some fresh air.
  142. The SMPS fan also needed some dusting before I could do this.</p>
  143. <p name="75d8" id="75d8" class="graf graf--p graf-after--p">So, my desktop was ready to do some serious
  144. computing now. I also had two Dell Ultrasharp 24&quot; monitors — one newly bought and one a few years old
  145. which were connected to a PCI VGA slot and D-Sub respectively. The BIOS settings were to be set in such
  146. way that the on-chip VGA got initialized first. The two monitors provide an extended display. Comes in
  147. handy during programming. One can run a browser and the other could be rendering an IDE (like IntelliJ or
  148. VSCode). Reduces the time taken for programming considerably as everything we need is visible (no need to
  149. keep toggling between those windows!).</p>
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  154. </div>
  155. <figcaption class="imageCaption">With love and care things can be revived</figcaption>
  156. </div>
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