About a week back, well slightly less than that in fact, I decided to change the hard drive on my Dell Inspiron laptop. This Dell Inspiron is getting old. It has been with me for a number of years and it has served its purpose very well. But the hard drive, which was a 320Gb Western Digital Blue, was starting to get slow. So I told myself…it is time I reloaded the operating system on this laptop as it has been about 4 years since it was re-loaded.
The first thing I did was to go to Sim Lim Tower to check out the prices of SSD drives. The results were not encouraging. The prices of SSD hard drives had ballooned. Remember I wrote a post about getting a SanDisk Plus SSD some time back? Well, that very same 240Gb hard drive that I bought for a steal for less than $100 now cost more than $100! And forget about the next step up, the SanDisk 480Gb drive that I saw was on sale for $179 some time back. It had now ballooned in price to $220! I really do not know what is causing the price to suddenly balloon. I suppose it could be something to do with demand out-stripping supply.
Anyhow, what I did was to get back home and then I remembered. Ever since I bought my MacBook Pro, my old Lenovo ThinkPad was not being used much. The reason it was not being used anymore is because the BIOS battery is shot and getting a replacement was not really something I wanted to get. So I told myself to use the old SSD hard drive that was in that Lenovo and load it into my old Dell.
Taking the Dell Inspiron apart was not that difficult, thanks in no small part to the various how-to videos on YouTube. After I switched the hard drives, I loaded Windows 7 Home Premium on it. That version of Windows came with my Dell laptop. After I installed the operating system, I installed the various drivers for it. I started to notice that the SSD was really causing my notebook to start and shutdown much, much quicker.
I must add that when I opened the casing, I decided to also change the BIOS battery with a new CR2032 lithium battery. That is when I faced an issue. The battery when it was removed from its receptacle, two tiny taps holding it in were broken. So what I did was to wedge in some bits of plastic and it worked a treat. Bloody Dell. I really hate booby traps like these!
So now this 5-year-old laptop has a new heart, a new 250Gb hard drive. I am very happy with it and my Dell Inspiron is more zippy now. It feels like I have been given a new laptop!
A few days back, on the eve of the eve of the new year, one of my clients had a problem with their ASUS wireless router. So we took the router back to the office and checked it. Router was fine but the power supply was dead. So I thought ok, no worries, let us get a compatible power supply and fix it. Then it hit me. Upon checking the dead power supply, I found out that the bloody thing was 19 volts DC.
I started to think to myself. Bloody hell. 19 volts? Where am I going to get an adapter like that? I had heaps of 12 volt DC power supplies and most of the Linksys routers (well, actually not all of them) take in a 12 volt power supply. The only power supply that give out 19 volts are the power supplies used by notebooks. How in the heck was I going to solve that?
So what I did was to come back home to check my spare parts box. I knew I had a spare power supply in there somewhere that I did not use anymore. So I took out an old HP one. Too bad. 20 volts. I took out an old Lenovo one but it was 18.5 volts. So I dug deeper and found an old ASUS one, rated at 19 volts. Where that one came from, I have no idea. I must have picked it up from somewhere. So I cut off the cable from the dead power supply and “grafted” it to the ASUS laptop power supply I found. Plugged it into the router and it worked a treat!
Moral of the story? Keep old junk. You never know when it might come in useful someday. As for ASUS, shame on you for making power adapters that break down like that.
I was at a client’s office the day before yesterday and I noticed that all the desks had this small computer hooked up as desktops. I was thinking to myself: of course! Why give people big, heavy desktops when all is available as a small footprint? Basically, the innards of a laptop in a desktop. The specifications are not too shabby either!
- Processor: Intel Core i5-4590T Dual Core Processor (4M Cache, 2.0GHz – 3.0 GHz) 35W
- Hard Drive: 128GB Solid State Drive
- RAM: 8GB DDR3 1600MHz RAM
- Optical Drive: None
I am looking at getting a new desktop for my home but I shudder at getting a big one. Everything is so small nowadays and with SSDs, wasted heat from hard drives is at an all-time low, this desktop makes perfect sense.
I currently have a Samsung 256Gb SSD in my old Lenovo ThinkPad x61 notebook. That notebook is old and the SSD drive just makes it go fast as anything and frankly, I am very, very pleased with it. I am thinking of getting a 512Gb SSD for my laptop computer because the hard drive is 3 years old and it should be starting to show signs of wear and tear. The only thing that is stopping me from buying this SSD is the price…it is still kinda expensive. I am waiting for Amazon Global to cut the price some more and whoosh…I will order it online and have it sent over. You can get these drives here in Singapore but honestly, you get better savings from Amazon Global. Trust me, if you can, go the SSD route. You will not be disappointed. Look at my 256Gb SSD in my old Lenovo…the thing just flies and there is heaps of space. So yeah…decisions to be made on this soon.
I have posted before, in a previous post, that I have a Lenovo Thinkpad x61 notebook computer that is getting on in years. So before it starts giving me issues with system time, I need to give it a new battery…a new CMOS battery that is. You can get one of these batteries fairly cheap on online site s and have it shipped to you. This is what it looks like above. The only thing I am not too chuffed about is the hoops I have to jump through to install it. Yes…I have to open the whole notebook to put in the new battery. That is going to be fun…NOT!
Whenever I start up my trusty Lenovo X61 notebook computer, the fan always rattles. I have a feeling that the fan is coming to the end of its very long life. Trust me, when I say that this notebook fan has had a long life, I am not joking. In any case, I came across this fan and heatsink that was advertised on Ebay, costing about US$39. The advertisement claims that it is an original. But I found another online for almost half that price. They say that its a used one however. I have a decision to make now. I suppose I will have to change it and change it soon. I like this notebook. It is good and sturdy and that is one of the main reasons why I want to keep it, as “old” as it is.
A couple of months back, I bought one of these drives for my laptop because it was running or rather, started to run pretty slow. So I bought a 256Gb drive, reloaded Windows 7 and wow – the speed of the old Lenovo laptop! Also, it does not get too warm now because the drive has got no spinning parts like the old 320Gb drive. I bought mine from Amazon and got it for less than $200 dollars. get one if you can. It will bring some new life to your PC!