Desktop for Computer and Web Programming

How's it goin' guys? I'm looking for a tower to use strictly for computer/software programming (Using C++, Etc) and web programming (PHP, Java, JavaScript, Etc). I won't be doing gaming, I won't be listening to music, nothing else. Only programming and surfing the web. I'd love a computer that would be super fast at compiling the data. I'm looking to only spend around $600 on the tower and the cheaper, the better.

I've read you really only need a dual-core processor and 4GB-8GB RAM for this use. If this is true, I found a tower for $279. Specs: AMD Phenom II x2 4400 at 2.3GHz ; 80GB HDD (Will upgrade to 1TB or get external HDD) ; 2GB RAM (Will upgrade to 8GB).
The only downside is Windows XP Pro SP3 (I love XP though) and I'll be using a 27" Full HDTV (1080p). How would it look on this TV? Horrible? Decent? What?

Thanks in advance for the help guys.
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  1. get more ram.

    Especially if you need to try out your code, and it's java based and you need an eclipse IDE or various app/webserver software to run it on, you will appreciate having mountains of ram. You are on the right track; if you add this DIY yourselfwill save you a lot of dough


    good idea to get a large fast HDD. Go for a SSD if your budget allows
    That being said, your deal doesn't look too special. I think you can get equally as cheap computers on sale from Dell?

    I would suggest getting a real monitor. your eyes will go bad trying to do long hours of work on a tv.
  2. For your work profile, you are looking at
    - good monitor (really!!!)
    - that processor got only 128kb of cache! It's going to be slow. With your budget, you can target at least Intel Core 2 Duo setup, with a potential for upgrade;
    - as much RAM as you can afford (and get rid of XP, really), plus 64-bit OS. XP cannot support more than 4gb of RAM.
    - CPU with VT capability. You will want to run a couple of virtual machines in order to be able to test what you are doing (and install various software without fear that it will damage your working config)
    - that config with 80gb HDD - check that it has SATA interface.
    - how it will look on that TV, depends on the video-card.

    So, my advice would be - trash this offer, and look for something more modern.
  3. look for an i3-2120 it certainly blow the PIIx2 out of the water.
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