Project #1.. a Compaq Presario M2305NR
These started to get reviews around December of 2005 which puts the machine firmly in the XP era. Weighing in at 6.5lbs, it was regarded as eminently portable, and it was well built, a real brick. Equipment includes a built-in fax/modem, 24x CD-RW, and WPA2 G wireless capability.
That was then, and this is now..
It is all 32-bit and is kitted out with a stunning 512mb RAM and a PATA 60Gb hard drive which is on its way out. I don’t like running XP as it is severely out of date, so I decided to install Linux Mint 17.3 onto it.
The machine has no ability to boot from USB. It is Floppy, CD/DVD, internal hard drive, network and that’s it. One Linux Mint installation DVD later, created on my big machine, and we were on our way, almost. I actually re-installed FOUR TIMES, once where it would not accept username and password and three times because it completely locked up while installing drivers for wireless, and would not boot into Mint when restarted. There was just this nasty black screen. Some upgraders to Windows 10 will know how I felt. 🙂
Finally, I managed to get it all up and running, wireless too, and I am now waiting on a cheap RAM upgrade which will push it to its capacity of 1Gb. At least it is running a current OS now, not a dinosaur OS from it’s first days.
Project #2.. An HP Pavilion DV2700 Entertainent PC
Two years approximately after the M2305NR, the HP DV2700 appeared on the streets, a rework of the DV2500. It is a nice machine, a world away from the Compaq, and back in 2008/9 would have coped well with pretty much all tasks. Alas, it was and this one still is saddled with Vista, and has no support for Windows 7.
I am having problems with the error ‘Windows can’t check for updates’, a common enough error during the Vista era and still difficult to fix without resorting to a complete re-install. Worse still, the problem can come back to haunt. I am also wondering if it matters thah much with Vista these days.
I will advise the owner to use a browser other than Vista’s Internet Explorer and see how it goes. There is a possibility of a new PC arriving soon, and this DV2700 will be finally pensioned off. The hard drive, not in the best of health, will finally be able to rest easy.
I have to say that I am glad to not be using computers from the above era anymore. By today’s standards, they are painfully slow and incapable of doing what we expect of computers today.
Having said that, it has been an interesting journey back into the past..