I have this computer just sitting around. It only has 256mb of RAM and was painfully slow, 5+ min. load times for just about everything, when we bought another computer last year one last year. I was planning on buying 1gb of rdram on ebay and then cleaning up the files and such so that it would at least be possible to use the internet and Microsoft Word. I am just wondering if this computer is so obsolete that it would be better to sell it and then buy another cheap computer to do these things. thanks
Strongly agree with you that another cheap computer would be a much better solution:
1. Modern operating system
2. Hard drive that is not at its end of life
3. You can find a used PC that is core2 based for the price of 1GB of RDRAM ($100US). (a random example, a q6600 system: http://www.ebay.com/itm/HP-Pavilion-Elite-m9040n-PC-Int... currently $113)
So if I added this, would it at least make it usable? I know upgrading would be the best option, but I currently cannot spend the money to upgrade, and the computer I am using to type this is performing fine for our needs, I was just wanting to have an extra computer to type papers and things like that.
And then just as a side question, would it be possible to sell it for maybe like $50 without the hard drive?
Easiest way to find out selling prices is to look for the Dell (or comparable computer) on ebay and see what other people are getting. Nice price on the RDRAM, I didn't know you could get it at anywhere near that price.
A quick look finds unsold Dell Dimension 8200s $50 and up on ebay, so $50 is not a bad starting price.
Okay, got the memory in and it is much faster. The only problem is that after about 20min and switching between users, the pictur squishes together and is all distorted and has a bit of that tv snow, but with color. Would this be the computer or the screen?
I would recommend you to buy a new computer. Preferably a prebuilt 300~ dollar desktop, but if you think you have enough experience, a custom would be fine. In this imaginary new computer, you would want 4 GB of ram, at least a 2 GHz processor (something like a mid to high range pentium or an AMD athlon/phenom), 160 GB HDD unless you are keeping your old one, and a DVD drive. All together, this would be somewhere in the $300~ range. Mind you, this is custom. A prebuilt would be more less the same, but with less customizability.
I have been looking into that, but at this time I cannot afford one, and frankly I don't need one at this time. I am currently in high school, and my parents had this computer sitting around, so I thought I'd use it for itunes and microsoft word. So i do hope that I will be able to build a custom computer soon, as it really interests me, but I kind of want to fix this one for now, because the screen problem is the only real problematic issue that I have with the system.
The squishy picture could be either the video card or the monitor or the cable.
Do you have a second monitor you can hook up ?
That PC has an older AGP bus. Modern video cards cannot be installed.
If you do not have another monitor some things you can try.
1. Temps could be a problem. See if a program like REALTEMP or HWMONITOR can pull a temp from your video card. Blow the dust out fo the card with a can of compressed air ($7 at staples or office depot) Do not use a vaccuum cleaner.
2. Re-seating the card might help. Unplug PC. Remove card. Put it back in. sorry I don't remember if AGP bus had a secret catch/release like PCIe x16 slots do. If the card doesn't come out don't pull too hard until you check for a catch.
3. Wiggling the cable. If the picture distorts when you wiggle the cable then their may be a partially broken wire in teh cable. Or it might not be firmly plugged in at both ends.
4. Some video card have two VGA connectors. See if yours does and see if you can switch which one you are using.
Well I tried to wiggle the cable, but that didn't work. So we were going to a electronics part store thing, so I took out the video card and took it with me. I told the guy there what was going on, and he said that since it occurred while switching between users, one of them must have a weird resolution, so when switching between them, it freaks out and gets messed up. So I re-installed the original video card, but I have not had a chance to check the resolutions and see what happens. But if it is still doing it I will definitely try some of your solutions, thanks.