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Upgrade choices advice please

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Anonymous
November 13, 2004 7:19:14 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

Hi,

I have Dell Latitude CPx portable. It currently has a 450MHz PIII cpu,
256Mb memory and a 6Gb disk.

I want to make it a dual-boot machine with Windows and Linux, and to that
end I'm am going to upgrade the disk from 6 to 12 Gb.
I'd also like to improve it's performance a bit, without investing too much
cash in it (otherwise it becomes more sensible to buy a new PC), so as to
get a bit more use out of the machine before it becomes time to get a new
one.

So, options are:
1) Swap out the CPU, or the motherboard and CPU. 750MHz and 650MHz units are
available, with 750 carrying a fair premium on the price.
2) Add more memory.
3) Both . ;-)

Uses for the machine are just general 'office' type stuff, Web browsing,
e-mail, and playing around with Linux (learning situation). I have another
machine for Linux as well, which will probably run 'server' type things, but
the portable would be a workstation.

One thing that occurs to me is that the disk is a slow 4200rpm unit, and so
any use of virtual memory would impose a big performance penalty. Getting a
5400rpm unit is not on as they are too expensive. So, would more memory be
better inas much as it would reduce use of virtual memory?

Reading some stuff on the web says that PIIIs above 600MHz are Coppermine
core, which has on-chip cache and gives roughly a 10% speed improvement.
Does this, along with the speed-up from the extra MHz, make a 650 or 750 a
significant improvement?

So, what advice would you give? What performance improvements do you think
I'd see from the CPU and memory upgrades? Which upgrade would be better
value?

Thanks, John

More about : upgrade choices advice

Anonymous
November 13, 2004 7:19:15 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

My advice would be to sell the laptop and buy a newer one. The cost to
upgrade is not worth it.


"John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
news:6uqld.711$F06.269@newsfe1-win.ntli.net...
> Hi,
>
> I have Dell Latitude CPx portable. It currently has a 450MHz PIII cpu,
> 256Mb memory and a 6Gb disk.
>
> I want to make it a dual-boot machine with Windows and Linux, and to that
> end I'm am going to upgrade the disk from 6 to 12 Gb.
> I'd also like to improve it's performance a bit, without investing too
> much
> cash in it (otherwise it becomes more sensible to buy a new PC), so as to
> get a bit more use out of the machine before it becomes time to get a new
> one.
>
> So, options are:
> 1) Swap out the CPU, or the motherboard and CPU. 750MHz and 650MHz units
> are
> available, with 750 carrying a fair premium on the price.
> 2) Add more memory.
> 3) Both . ;-)
>
> Uses for the machine are just general 'office' type stuff, Web browsing,
> e-mail, and playing around with Linux (learning situation). I have another
> machine for Linux as well, which will probably run 'server' type things,
> but
> the portable would be a workstation.
>
> One thing that occurs to me is that the disk is a slow 4200rpm unit, and
> so
> any use of virtual memory would impose a big performance penalty. Getting
> a
> 5400rpm unit is not on as they are too expensive. So, would more memory be
> better inas much as it would reduce use of virtual memory?
>
> Reading some stuff on the web says that PIIIs above 600MHz are Coppermine
> core, which has on-chip cache and gives roughly a 10% speed improvement.
> Does this, along with the speed-up from the extra MHz, make a 650 or 750 a
> significant improvement?
>
> So, what advice would you give? What performance improvements do you think
> I'd see from the CPU and memory upgrades? Which upgrade would be better
> value?
>
> Thanks, John
>
>
Anonymous
November 13, 2004 7:51:01 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

Tom,

Thanks for taking the time to reply, but you aren't answering my question.

I realise that *much* upgrading is not cost-effective. I am just thinking of
one or two small, inexpensive things to do to squeeze a bit more use out of
this machine.
A new one would be nice but the finances aren't up to it just now. Besides
that, I don't really push the thing that much so I don't necessarily need
the latest/greatest.

John


"Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote in message
news:er-dneCmmedBqAvcRVn-uA@comcast.com...
> My advice would be to sell the laptop and buy a newer one. The cost to
> upgrade is not worth it.
>
>
> "John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
> news:6uqld.711$F06.269@newsfe1-win.ntli.net...
> > Hi,
> >
> > I have Dell Latitude CPx portable. It currently has a 450MHz PIII cpu,
> > 256Mb memory and a 6Gb disk.
> >
> > I want to make it a dual-boot machine with Windows and Linux, and to
that
> > end I'm am going to upgrade the disk from 6 to 12 Gb.
> > I'd also like to improve it's performance a bit, without investing too
> > much
> > cash in it (otherwise it becomes more sensible to buy a new PC), so as
to
> > get a bit more use out of the machine before it becomes time to get a
new
> > one.
> >
> > So, options are:
> > 1) Swap out the CPU, or the motherboard and CPU. 750MHz and 650MHz units
> > are
> > available, with 750 carrying a fair premium on the price.
> > 2) Add more memory.
> > 3) Both . ;-)
> >
> > Uses for the machine are just general 'office' type stuff, Web browsing,
> > e-mail, and playing around with Linux (learning situation). I have
another
> > machine for Linux as well, which will probably run 'server' type things,
> > but
> > the portable would be a workstation.
> >
> > One thing that occurs to me is that the disk is a slow 4200rpm unit, and
> > so
> > any use of virtual memory would impose a big performance penalty.
Getting
> > a
> > 5400rpm unit is not on as they are too expensive. So, would more memory
be
> > better inas much as it would reduce use of virtual memory?
> >
> > Reading some stuff on the web says that PIIIs above 600MHz are
Coppermine
> > core, which has on-chip cache and gives roughly a 10% speed improvement.
> > Does this, along with the speed-up from the extra MHz, make a 650 or 750
a
> > significant improvement?
> >
> > So, what advice would you give? What performance improvements do you
think
> > I'd see from the CPU and memory upgrades? Which upgrade would be better
> > value?
> >
> > Thanks, John
> >
> >
>
>
Related resources
Anonymous
November 13, 2004 7:51:02 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

OK, here goes. I doubt if any of the faster processors will work, but will
defer to the experts. I would also be concerned that a hard drive over 8GB
would work. Memory, for your applications, might help, but might not be
cost justified.

I'd stick with it the way it was.

Tom
"John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
news:VXqld.2025$pt2.1665@newsfe3-gui.ntli.net...
> Tom,
>
> Thanks for taking the time to reply, but you aren't answering my question.
>
> I realise that *much* upgrading is not cost-effective. I am just thinking
> of
> one or two small, inexpensive things to do to squeeze a bit more use out
> of
> this machine.
> A new one would be nice but the finances aren't up to it just now. Besides
> that, I don't really push the thing that much so I don't necessarily need
> the latest/greatest.
>
> John
>
>
> "Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote in message
> news:er-dneCmmedBqAvcRVn-uA@comcast.com...
>> My advice would be to sell the laptop and buy a newer one. The cost to
>> upgrade is not worth it.
>>
>>
>> "John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
>> news:6uqld.711$F06.269@newsfe1-win.ntli.net...
>> > Hi,
>> >
>> > I have Dell Latitude CPx portable. It currently has a 450MHz PIII cpu,
>> > 256Mb memory and a 6Gb disk.
>> >
>> > I want to make it a dual-boot machine with Windows and Linux, and to
> that
>> > end I'm am going to upgrade the disk from 6 to 12 Gb.
>> > I'd also like to improve it's performance a bit, without investing too
>> > much
>> > cash in it (otherwise it becomes more sensible to buy a new PC), so as
> to
>> > get a bit more use out of the machine before it becomes time to get a
> new
>> > one.
>> >
>> > So, options are:
>> > 1) Swap out the CPU, or the motherboard and CPU. 750MHz and 650MHz
>> > units
>> > are
>> > available, with 750 carrying a fair premium on the price.
>> > 2) Add more memory.
>> > 3) Both . ;-)
>> >
>> > Uses for the machine are just general 'office' type stuff, Web
>> > browsing,
>> > e-mail, and playing around with Linux (learning situation). I have
> another
>> > machine for Linux as well, which will probably run 'server' type
>> > things,
>> > but
>> > the portable would be a workstation.
>> >
>> > One thing that occurs to me is that the disk is a slow 4200rpm unit,
>> > and
>> > so
>> > any use of virtual memory would impose a big performance penalty.
> Getting
>> > a
>> > 5400rpm unit is not on as they are too expensive. So, would more memory
> be
>> > better inas much as it would reduce use of virtual memory?
>> >
>> > Reading some stuff on the web says that PIIIs above 600MHz are
> Coppermine
>> > core, which has on-chip cache and gives roughly a 10% speed
>> > improvement.
>> > Does this, along with the speed-up from the extra MHz, make a 650 or
>> > 750
> a
>> > significant improvement?
>> >
>> > So, what advice would you give? What performance improvements do you
> think
>> > I'd see from the CPU and memory upgrades? Which upgrade would be better
>> > value?
>> >
>> > Thanks, John
>> >
>> >
>>
>>
>
>
Anonymous
November 13, 2004 10:07:17 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

Hi Tom,

Well, there's a documented upgrade that several people have done to upgrade
the CPU (MMC-2 module). I also know that it's possible to get a motherboard
from a later CPx model witha faster CPU already installed.
Later model CPxs came with a larger HD.

I agree that any significant amount of cash spent on upgrading would
probably not be worthwhile, but I am just investigating what can be done for
a small amount.

Thanks, John

"Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote in message
news:zLWdncfzkpdh0QvcRVn-iQ@comcast.com...
> OK, here goes. I doubt if any of the faster processors will work, but
will
> defer to the experts. I would also be concerned that a hard drive over
8GB
> would work. Memory, for your applications, might help, but might not be
> cost justified.
>
> I'd stick with it the way it was.
>
> Tom
> "John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
> news:VXqld.2025$pt2.1665@newsfe3-gui.ntli.net...
> > Tom,
> >
> > Thanks for taking the time to reply, but you aren't answering my
question.
> >
> > I realise that *much* upgrading is not cost-effective. I am just
thinking
> > of
> > one or two small, inexpensive things to do to squeeze a bit more use out
> > of
> > this machine.
> > A new one would be nice but the finances aren't up to it just now.
Besides
> > that, I don't really push the thing that much so I don't necessarily
need
> > the latest/greatest.
> >
> > John
> >
> >
> > "Tom Scales" <tomtoo@softhome.net> wrote in message
> > news:er-dneCmmedBqAvcRVn-uA@comcast.com...
> >> My advice would be to sell the laptop and buy a newer one. The cost to
> >> upgrade is not worth it.
> >>
> >>
> >> "John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
> >> news:6uqld.711$F06.269@newsfe1-win.ntli.net...
> >> > Hi,
> >> >
> >> > I have Dell Latitude CPx portable. It currently has a 450MHz PIII
cpu,
> >> > 256Mb memory and a 6Gb disk.
> >> >
> >> > I want to make it a dual-boot machine with Windows and Linux, and to
> > that
> >> > end I'm am going to upgrade the disk from 6 to 12 Gb.
> >> > I'd also like to improve it's performance a bit, without investing
too
> >> > much
> >> > cash in it (otherwise it becomes more sensible to buy a new PC), so
as
> > to
> >> > get a bit more use out of the machine before it becomes time to get a
> > new
> >> > one.
> >> >
> >> > So, options are:
> >> > 1) Swap out the CPU, or the motherboard and CPU. 750MHz and 650MHz
> >> > units
> >> > are
> >> > available, with 750 carrying a fair premium on the price.
> >> > 2) Add more memory.
> >> > 3) Both . ;-)
> >> >
> >> > Uses for the machine are just general 'office' type stuff, Web
> >> > browsing,
> >> > e-mail, and playing around with Linux (learning situation). I have
> > another
> >> > machine for Linux as well, which will probably run 'server' type
> >> > things,
> >> > but
> >> > the portable would be a workstation.
> >> >
> >> > One thing that occurs to me is that the disk is a slow 4200rpm unit,
> >> > and
> >> > so
> >> > any use of virtual memory would impose a big performance penalty.
> > Getting
> >> > a
> >> > 5400rpm unit is not on as they are too expensive. So, would more
memory
> > be
> >> > better inas much as it would reduce use of virtual memory?
> >> >
> >> > Reading some stuff on the web says that PIIIs above 600MHz are
> > Coppermine
> >> > core, which has on-chip cache and gives roughly a 10% speed
> >> > improvement.
> >> > Does this, along with the speed-up from the extra MHz, make a 650 or
> >> > 750
> > a
> >> > significant improvement?
> >> >
> >> > So, what advice would you give? What performance improvements do you
> > think
> >> > I'd see from the CPU and memory upgrades? Which upgrade would be
better
> >> > value?
> >> >
> >> > Thanks, John
> >> >
> >> >
> >>
> >>
> >
> >
>
>
Anonymous
November 18, 2004 8:38:14 PM

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

Update for anyone who's interested.

I got a secondhand motherboard and 750MHz CPU quite cheaply and put them in.
It seems to have made the machine a bit snappier, although it's not a
quantum leap forward.
Compute intensive tasks are nearly twice as fast, which I think is down to
a) the extra MHz, and b) the 750 is a Coppermine with on-chip secondary
cache, whereas the old 450 was a Katmai with off-chip cache, apparently.

I think the main bottle neck to performance now is the hard drive, which is
a notebook 2.5" 4200rpm unit. I'd like to get a 5400rpm drive but the cost
might be prohibitive for upgrading an old machine. We'll see.

John


"John Fryatt" <jrf1@ntlworld.com> wrote in message
news:6uqld.711$F06.269@newsfe1-win.ntli.net...
> Hi,
>
> I have Dell Latitude CPx portable. It currently has a 450MHz PIII cpu,
> 256Mb memory and a 6Gb disk.
>
> I want to make it a dual-boot machine with Windows and Linux, and to that
> end I'm am going to upgrade the disk from 6 to 12 Gb.
> I'd also like to improve it's performance a bit,
<snip>
!