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General advice on computer upgrade requested


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#1 Jongo123

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 01:21 PM

Hi, my computer is several years old, It's a general purpose PC, I use it for word processing, spreadsheet, internet, etc. I'm not looking for a games computer or anything like that. It's mostly good enough as it is, except that sometimes it freezes up while loading a web page, or something. I'm considering upgrading the memory and CPU. I don't mind buying old/ used parts off eBay.

I am not currently in the market for a new computer.

I've had a little experience adding components to my computer. I've added an internal hard drive, and a card for extra USB slots, so I'm not totally in the dark here. I could definitely fit the memory, and probably fit the CPU, but I don't know what to buy.

I have downloaded a couple of tools that show me system information. One is called Sysinfo, the other is called Speccy.

The computer is a HP Pavilion

The Motherboard is a Nance.

MEMORY

I have determined that I currently have the following memory:
2.00GB Single-Channel DDR2 301MHz (5-5-5-15)

I have two slots, one is used with a 2GB card.

My motherboard supports up to 8GB.

My OS is Vista Basic, which I understand supports up to 4GB, is that correct?

I see that there are different types of memory, including
DIMM 168-pin
DIMM 200-pin
DIMM 240-pin
FB-DIMM 240-pin
SO DIMM 200-pin

I don't know which one I need. How do I determine this?

Is there a maximum amount of MHz my motherboard can handle? If so how do I find out what it is?

A larger number of MHz means that it accesses the memory quicker, right? So it will make the computer run faster? Or have I misunderstood?

CPU

My processor is an AMD Semipron 3400
Speed 1800 MHz
FSB 200 (I don't know what that means)


I do not know what type o0f socket I have. How do I find out?

Is there a maximum number of cores, or a maximum clock speed that my motherboard can handle? If so, how do I find out what it is?


- TIA.



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#2 _JackF

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 01:29 PM

Crucial's website has a great tool for this. As long as your machine is an off-the-shelf computer (i.e. not one you built from scratch yourself) you can input your make and model number and it'll tell you exactly what RAM you'll need. Once you've put in the make & model, they will give you links to the matching RAM they sell; so you can either then buy it directly from them (as they make fairly good RAM) or just Google the specs of the RAM that they (Crucial) told you that you'd need.

 

Here's a link: http://www.crucial.com/usa/en/memory



#3 hamluis

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 01:29 PM

Since you already have Speccy installed...please Publish a Snapshot using Speccy - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic323892.html/page__p__1797792#entry1797792 , taking care to post the link of the snapshot in your next post.
 
Louis



#4 Jongo123

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 02:34 PM

My Speccy scan

 

http://speccy.piriform.com/results/1UTkGlYftJQKVvQ7TaYsTPH



#5 hamluis

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 07:25 PM

Motherboard Support Webpage

 

The motherboard is always the key to any "upgrade" options for a system where there is no intent to replace the motherboard.

 

Replacing the motherboard provides users with the greatest amount of options, providing the opportunity to get faster/better processor and  RAM, but inflicting additional costs.  Often, it's also wise to employ a new PSU with the other new components.

 

As you can see...your options are severely limited by your motherboard.  IMO, the output of money would not be justified by the result.

 

Louis



#6 Jongo123

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 09:29 PM

Okay, that's helpful.

 

Motherboard supports the following processor upgrades:
  • Athlon 64 X2 with Dual Core technology (64 Watt only)
  • Athlon 64
  • Sempron
So, would these be compatible?
 
 
Do they meet the "64 watts only" requirement?
 

IMO, the output of money would not be justified by the result.
 
If I got one of those, it would only cost a few pouinds, and would make my PC run a bit faster, right? And stop it freezing up sometimes?
Would that not be worth it?
Or have I misunderstood something?


#7 jonuk76

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 07:09 AM

Unfortunately there are a huge number of processors using some variation of the "X2" brand which cover different processor sockets and generations of CPU.  The ones branded "Athlon 64 X2" are listed here.  The Energy Efficient Windsor and Brisbane models are mostly 65 watt CPU's which are perhaps the most likely to work.  There are also one or two lower powered (35 watt) parts like this.  There are no 64 watt models.  It's a pity that HP don't give a specific processor support list, as I wouldn't feel entirely confident about suggesting which ones will work

 

The first eBay link is for an Athlon X2 7450, which is a later K10 (Phenom) based AM2+ processor.  It has a TDP of 95 watts.  It's extremely unlikely to work in that motherboard.

 

The second eBay link is for a Socket 939 Athlon 64 X2, which is the wrong socket type, and it's an 89 watt CPU.  You'd want an AM2 socket processor.


Edited by jonuk76, 14 July 2014 - 07:23 AM.

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#8 jhayz

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 07:37 AM

Have you also considered scanning your system with antimalware and adware softwares with regard to the freezing problem?


Tekken
 


#9 Jongo123

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 07:39 AM

Jonuk76, Thank you for the advice.

 

jhayz, I do that regularly.


Edited by Jongo123, 14 July 2014 - 07:42 AM.


#10 jhayz

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Posted 14 July 2014 - 07:27 PM

It's mostly good enough as it is, except that sometimes it freezes up while loading a web page, or something. I'm considering upgrading the memory and CPU.

 

I'm reading just between the lines here so my thoughts is, it's possible the problem occurs only on a certain point or a general issue, there is a hardware or software problem or will it addressed by certain changes on some components. Your current setup is enough for your daily activities but with the freezing problem at hand undoubtedly requires a different attention despite the minimal upgrade as a good course of action. Does the computer needs upgrade to meet CPU/RAM resources on current applications running and hopefully resolve the freezing problem? Does it need to be clean installed so it will work flawlessly since day one and confirm its not a hardware problem? The freezing problem covers a lot of area from the motherboard, hard drive, PSU, dusty, thermal events, loose cable and RAM.


Tekken
 


#11 dikbozo

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 11:04 PM

The Speccy report listed your drives. One I looked into was the 160GB Western Digital WD1600JB. Specs for that here:

 

http://wdc.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/search/1/a_id/893#

 

The first thing I noticed is the page had last been updated in 2011, some 4 years ago. The IDE interface in the diagram gave me pause as I have installed exactly one of those type drives in the past 5 years. The 3rd thing is the 5 year warranty was still in place back in 2011.

 

I have the feeling your drives are slowly giving you a hint that they may be failing. 4+ years on an IDE drive seems pretty good service to me.

 

I would tend very strongly to agree with Moderator Louis and suggest gently that you probably need a new(er) box. The old drives should be fine for long term storage if using a drive dock or compatible USB dongle for short term access and careful handling procedures. (I speak on this from the tears of 10 IDE drives failing due to ESD).

 

The small amount you could save with a replacement CPU would probably be wasted when some other component of this system failed, and something most certainly will. Save your sheckels, simoleons, drachma and rubles into a biggish pile and in the meantime start looking for something.

 

Good luck.






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