Hi, this is the first system I've put together in awhile so I would like your input. I will be doing mainly programming (big compiles), and some gaming. Going with a Dual monitor setup and dual boot linux/windows xp. I probably won't be doing any overclocking, but I want a system that will last without major upgrades. Would be willing to go up to $1000, but would like to stay in the $800 range. Here's what I'm planning on getting:
Nice start. All current systems use DDR2 memory. Since you are not overclocking, go with 667mhz value RAM, all you will ever need, speed wise.
One change on the HD drives, get a small drive to boot from, and then a data drive for your work and data. About 80/160gb and a 250/320 gb works well. Also you got the right brand but you want model 7200.10, make a few changes that are worth the effort to find.
Looks pretty solid. For dual channel to operate, you need a matching pair of memory modules (which is what you will get in that memory set). Otherwise, the motherboard will revert to single channel. Dual channel is faster. So, yes you do want dual channel, but any matching pair (same speed, same size, same latency) of memory modules would give you dual channel.