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Cecilectomy

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4th March, 2008 at 07:06:52 -

i need some help. you dont need to read this long story but it would help if you knew what ive been through up to now.

recently my laptop started acting funny. it had a message that said there were inconsistencies on one of my drives and recommended i to a system check. it then proceeded to do a system check without my permission and subsequently cancelled it as well. then booted vista. this went on for about a week and then i noticed my dvd drive wouldnt read any disks. i got on dell chat (dont say anything about dell cause i've alreaedy heard it and dont care) and have spent at least a good 7 hours cumulative talking chatting and remote chatting with 3 different people probably stationed in india or something. the first person concluded it was my operating system (Vista) that was the problem after he attempted a firmware update to my dvd drive and deleting the upper and lower filters in the registry. (i had already read about and tried this before and it didnt work). the second person tried a few various things and then told me to run the dell utility partition diagnostics system tests. except i have formatted my hard drive and split it into 4 partitions with linux and vista a swap partition and a media partition for all my stuffs. so i couldnt do his tests. the guy that called me back was a third dude who after talking and having me do some obscene tests that would seem to have nothing to do with anything, said to reseat the optical drive. he's going to callback on friday to see if things have inproved and take further action if not. he has been the most helpful so far. but i highly doubt it will personally be him that calls on friday so it may not matter. reseating the optical drive did nothing. and further more, after playing around online and looking for help elsewhere, i cant even boot vista anymore. i barely even get a blue screen of death. it pops up for a split second not letting me read what it says and reboots the computer.

so heres the challenge. can anyone help me fix, solve, restore, etc. my computer without the need of a dvd drive.
impossible? maybe.

guess whos getting a sony vaio! me thats who. screw you dell. screwwwww you. never again will i purchase from you.

 
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4th March, 2008 at 13:00:48 -

I learned my lesson after like 4 tries: never to buy from HP (and Compaq) or Dell. Their laptops slow down to a halt after a year of use.
Buy a macbook--you can install windows on it and it works like a charm. You can use bootcamp or Parallels (which lets you run windows on mac, and import windows-only applications, etc. I don't find it practical, but MMF runs in mac--though it's more like an imported window from windows).
Since I've had it (like 1.5 years ago), it hasn't slowed down a bit. It runs HFA at full 65fps, all the time.

 

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4th March, 2008 at 13:04:43 -

Agree with Alonso there are few manufacturers I trust. Dell for monitors (ANY problems with it, even just 1 dead pixel, say you're a designer and need a perfect display and they'll ship you a new one. In my case a whole new model too), Apple and Sony for computers, Apple for MP3, Canon for cameras. Oh and Microsoft for peripherals (except keyboards). It's a hodge podge setup of various brands but I've never had a problem with any of their products for years.

 
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4th March, 2008 at 14:13:53 -


Originally Posted by Alonso Martin
I learned my lesson after like 4 tries: never to buy from HP (and Compaq) or Dell. Their laptops slow down to a halt after a year of use.
Buy a macbook--you can install windows on it and it works like a charm. You can use bootcamp or Parallels (which lets you run windows on mac, and import windows-only applications, etc. I don't find it practical, but MMF runs in mac--though it's more like an imported window from windows).
Since I've had it (like 1.5 years ago), it hasn't slowed down a bit. It runs HFA at full 65fps, all the time.



I will never use a Mac based piece of hardware unless I know I can have at least Windows XP installed. You make it sound possible, so you've got my interest, but unless it is, I wont buy.

At the moment, I'm basicly running a custom built computer inside of an eMachines case. I bought the computer around 3 years ago, and since then my motherboard went bad, and replaced it, then replaced it again for DDR2 Ram support. I use a different video card, different sound card, new hard drive, new ram, new PSU, etc. So for all intensive purposes, this computer is a custom built. Just never bothered to replace a case that I never really ever look at.

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4th March, 2008 at 17:01:17 -

Thanks, Alonso. I'm also interested to hear about running Windows on a Mac. I know it's possible, but are all applications compatible?


Originally Posted by Dr. James
there are few manufacturers I trust.



I honestly don't completely "trust" any manufacturers, because there's always a chance that you can end up getting a duff product from anywhere; it's the returns policies and after sales care that make more impact with me. In other words, I don't ever see myself getting to the point where I'd blindly make a buying decision just because of the manufacturer's supposed reputation. I don't think think that's pessimism, just bring realistic. Everyone has stories, or knows someone who has stories of how they tried to return product X and the company shut the door in their face. Apple, although I'd love to bitch about them for so many other reasons, have excellent customer service in my experience. On the other hand, contrary to all the positive talk of Sony here, I know someone who's now on their 4th Sony laptop in 3 years, and they refused to take back any of them. My PC is neither "Dell" or "Sony" of any of the others and it's been going strong for 3 years.

As for Cecil's original plea - sorry, I just don't know a lot about computers when they go wrong! Hope you find help from somewhere.

 
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4th March, 2008 at 23:57:36 -


Originally Posted by BrandonC

Originally Posted by Alonso Martin
I learned my lesson after like 4 tries: never to buy from HP (and Compaq) or Dell. Their laptops slow down to a halt after a year of use.
Buy a macbook--you can install windows on it and it works like a charm. You can use bootcamp or Parallels (which lets you run windows on mac, and import windows-only applications, etc. I don't find it practical, but MMF runs in mac--though it's more like an imported window from windows).
Since I've had it (like 1.5 years ago), it hasn't slowed down a bit. It runs HFA at full 65fps, all the time.



I will never use a Mac based piece of hardware unless I know I can have at least Windows XP installed. You make it sound possible, so you've got my interest, but unless it is, I wont buy.

At the moment, I'm basicly running a custom built computer inside of an eMachines case. I bought the computer around 3 years ago, and since then my motherboard went bad, and replaced it, then replaced it again for DDR2 Ram support. I use a different video card, different sound card, new hard drive, new ram, new PSU, etc. So for all intensive purposes, this computer is a custom built. Just never bothered to replace a case that I never really ever look at.

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You can install XP or Vista on it, it comes with the drivers and everything on the OS X install disk .

 
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5th March, 2008 at 03:00:28 -

Yes, you can split your system (system partition) giving x amount of memory to Mac and y to WIndows. I'm not sure how it works, but I know Ben has one.

 
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5th March, 2008 at 04:11:12 -

A while back I was an intern in the IT department of a business school. I spent 3 months working with Dell laptops (they had a service where students could buy Dell laptops cheap through the school, and our IT department offered free support on the laptops purchased).

The school received a new bunch of laptops for the newly started students. These were laptops with 2 GB of Ram (as far as i remember) Intel Core 2 Duo 2 GHz CPUs and the whole shabang.

But not long after students had gotten their new Dells, they would come back complaining about it being really slow. At first I dismissed it as people just being impatient, but after the first couple of laptops I couldn't deny it - they were extremely slow. They could take 10 minutes to boot Windows XP, and another 5 to log on to the domain.

We started playing around with the laptops to try and figure out the problem. In the end, we did a clean install not using the Dell discs.

Without the all the bloaty crap software that usually ships with computers they were actually quite fast.

I think also in a lot of cases, computers slowing down is due to people being totally ignorant about how to treat and maintain a computer. I mean, my 1,3 GHz laptop that's really old is the computer in my house that boots the fastest and the others i live with have Core 2 Duo computers and stuff.

 
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5th March, 2008 at 04:53:51 -

Get a mac.............................................................................They need to make MMF2 for mac, that's what pisses me off.

 
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5th March, 2008 at 05:55:36 -

Yea of course you can instal Windows on a Mac now. Vista or XP SP2 (or with a little hacking any Windows I think). No compatibility issues since it's just the same hardware only with an emulated BIOS to get XP booted up. Everything runs natively, no slowdown, no emulation. You're even provided with the drivers and everything required to instal Windows. Just need OSX Leopard DVD and an intel Mac.
Basically you boot into OSX. Run Boot Camp installer. Allocate a certain amount of HDD space to each system. It partitions (being careful of course, OSX can resize and partition itself without format any number of times but I don't think Fat32 or NTFS can do that). Insert XP/Vista disc and reboot. Tadaaaa.

 
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5th March, 2008 at 05:59:00 -

I repartitioned my NTFS drive without formatting and now disk access takes a long, long time.
Though I changed the file system of two 60GB drives from NTFS to FAT32 without formatting and those are both fine. I should probably reformat my main drive at some point...

 

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5th March, 2008 at 07:24:47 -

I could do that, but I bought a mac to get away from windows!
I don't want to have to install a whole operating system just to install MMF2.

 
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5th March, 2008 at 07:31:42 -

Install Parallels or Crossover (yea I don't like them either).

 
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Cecilectomy

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5th March, 2008 at 18:06:16 -

sorry for not posting for awhile. been setting up my old emachines as well so i can do my homeworks.

i will never buy a mac. if i have to do any kidna of modding or emulating to get something to run, i will not have it. linux is the exception with wine.

my dell has worked fine for the...8 or 9 months ive had it. since last july. no slowdown. but maybe thats cause the first thing i did was system restore and delete everything but the OS from my hard drive. no problems at all. it has been quite good to me, and so has dell hardware suppoert chat... the one time i used it before to get my wireless n card to work.

ive heard some bad stuff about sony for computers. are they reliable and fast? or are people just bitching about the cost for the little of what you get. they are damn expensive laptops for some general stuff. a couple hundred more than my dell for nearly the same specs.

one kid in my computer science class had an ASUS G1 notebook and it looks sweet and he likes it and has had no problems with it. its only about $1600 - $2000 and its specs kick ass. i can't find a lot on it tho. reviews and ratings or what not.

as of now my dell wont boot, wont read dvds or cds, and gives me a blue screen of death. btw the tech guy fixed the blue screen lol. it actually shows the whole error now. glad they fixed SOMETHING. im waiting for a senior technician to give me a call. if he cant do shit for me im requesting on site tech support and/or replacement of my laptop. this is stupid. inspiron was supposed to be a good laptop, and so many people say its actually a good laptop as far as dells go.

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5th March, 2008 at 20:04:08 -

I don't think we said enough

There is no modding or emulating. Nothing to break warranty, nothing to go horrible wrong. The only emulation (which I only recently found out) was the BIOS kick start or something. The first 2 seconds before the XP load screen starts up. Heck Vista uses a Mac's EFI so there's no emulation at any single point there!

Windows is not emulated. Which you can't say for Wine

 
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Cecilectomy

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5th March, 2008 at 20:39:33 -

wine is just an envorionment to run windows based programs in using wrappers. only reason to use wine is if you have a windows program you just CANT live without (most of which have replacements that are free under GNU license that are made specifically for linux). which for me is games. which i use windows for anyway.

answer me this ONE question and i may just buy a mac. if i dont get the resuilts i want from dell.
can you boot linux on a mac? mac is a unix based OS as is Linux. so if i can boot linux and windows without having to have mac OSX installed on the hard drive then i will definitly be considereing a mac. i know their plenty powerful and a bit cheaper than pc notebooks so id be down with that.

update. just got off the phone with a senior technician from dell and theyre shipping me a new DVD optical drive. hopefully not the same one. but if it is and it works, ill be fine. heres to hoping.

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5th March, 2008 at 20:45:26 -

Yea Dell are great like that. Like I said if you're in the "right profession" you can get anything fixed or repaired. I was a student at the time but I told them I was a graphic designer - they replaced a single dead pixel monitor (did have backlight bleeding though).

I dunno about Linux since I've never tried it. Any x86 or 64bit version will work. There are unix options within the bootcamp installer. Dunno about removing OSX though. I suppose its possible if the linux distro supports EFI.

 
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Cecilectomy

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6th March, 2008 at 01:51:16 -

well i guess i got some research today. cause i'm looking at acer, asus, or sony at the moment. all of which ive heard better things about than dell. better specs although a little bit more pricey. and apparently my dell was supposed to have 256mb dedicated video card but my system only tells me its 128. but it also says its got like 800 odd mb of total memory. i think my comp is just whack yo.

 
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6th March, 2008 at 03:52:56 -

I'd recommend Sony or Asus. Sony are a bit like Apple and Alienware though, you pay a premium for high quality components. Bonus is they look purdy and usually get a very long battery life.

My next laptop will be that Sony ultralight laptop since the MBA doesn't have a DVD drive -..-

 
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6th March, 2008 at 08:01:57 -

Welcome to the world of Dell. I've owned three of them and they've all been worthless. Desktops are made using low-quality parts and weak power-supplies, hard drives fail, etc. The laptop I owned started getting vertical lines through the display in less than 2 years.

I've got to side with a few other posters in suggesting a MacBook (Pro?) laptop. My MBP runs Windows XP flawlessly, and in all the tests CNET ran last year, they found the MBP to be the fastest Vista laptop among all manufacturers. Don't buy Mac desktops though. They're next to impossible to upgrade. Instead, stick to smaller boutique shops like Velocity Micro. You'll pay a little more, but you'll get retail parts rather than OEM, better technical support, and a lot less bloatware.

 
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Cecilectomy

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6th March, 2008 at 10:53:26 -

thanks guys i will look into those more.

 
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Cecilectomy

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7th March, 2008 at 16:55:19 -

IT LIVES!!! got my dvd drive today. that was fast. only took a day. put it in and reinstalled vista. vista crash dumped the first time i booted but sees to have fixed itself and is running fine for now.

my warranty runs out june 30th this year. so would it be worth it to buy a warranty extension? i'm not sure whether i want to spend 250$ just so i can have parts replaced. or should i save the money and if something happens again after its expired just go buy my new laptop?

 
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21st April, 2008 at 17:46:42 -

From my opinion on people saying computers go slow:

Windows is only as slow as the person using it. I've never had a single problem with Windows and I've never been aware of having a virus or any other software.

Macs aren't actually any faster and all they achieve is a system which you can't really do much with.


Edit:
Oops... dunno how i came across this post but i assumed it was new :S sorry about that.

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21st April, 2008 at 18:55:55 -

From personal experience, if you get a MacBook for Windows, use Windows XP. The newer ones running Windows XP are fantastic. Along with that, make sure it's not a first or second generation Core Duo one, as from personal experience I can say it runs horribly. The drivers on the Core Duo machines are very buggy, and cause excessive slowdown.

You can run Linux on it just fine. I've done it.

The thing is, Macs are not unique. At all. The only difference is that they have a TPM module that allows OSX to run (OSX checks for it's existance and hacks are required to circumvent this check). It is just a generic PC in a rather fancy-looking case. The audio is just sigmatel. The WiFi is just atheros. The video (in the macbook) is just Intel X3000 integrated graphics. the Mouse and Keyboard are just USB. The iSight camera is just USB, and has drivers. Nothing in it is unique except for the OS. You can run Mac OS X on most Pentium 4 or newer computers as long as you have compatible hardware (The Dell 4700c is a great match).

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23rd April, 2008 at 04:20:28 -


Originally Posted by Dr. James
Windows is not emulated. Which you can't say for Wine


WINE = Wine Is Not an Emulator. It emulates only a few spots, but most of it is just recompiled / wrapped.

 
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23rd April, 2008 at 04:50:04 -

I'm getting an iMac soon, and I found out you can rig it up to a PC and use it as the screen (provided you have the IP). There's some program you need from the net though.


 
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23rd April, 2008 at 06:30:24 -

You need to go through the internet for it?! That seems like an odd idea, since it's right there and all.

That can't possibly run all that well can it? You'd do a lot better picking up a cheap screen for your PC, 20" screens are getting to just a couple hundred dollars (AU).

 
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23rd April, 2008 at 08:15:15 -


Originally Posted by DaVince [Ectoprods]

Originally Posted by Dr. James
Windows is not emulated. Which you can't say for Wine


WINE = Wine Is Not an Emulator. It emulates only a few spots, but most of it is just recompiled / wrapped.



Hence the ""
Is there a performance cut with Wine, or any other limitations? Just saying there's none with bootcamp on a Mac but it's a totally different thing altogether with different solutions for different needs - it really is just Windows running on a PC designed by Apple. Wine is ran from within your current OS.

Zigzag; what do you mean exactly? There's no video-in for the display on an iMac. You could get it to work as another monitor or TV by using a zero-latency breakout box or an EyeTV box.

 
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24th April, 2008 at 02:25:30 -

I'm not sure how it works, but some IT guy I was talking to did it. Its probably terrible complex and not worth doing coz I already have an OK screen. But its slightly too small for standard resolutions ;_; 14.9 inches or something, so bits get cut off.

 
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5th May, 2008 at 05:27:05 -


Originally Posted by cecil

guess whos getting a sony vaio! me thats who. screw you dell. screwwwww you. never again will i purchase from you.



Um... hate to say this, but the sony vaio is far more likely to break down than a dell. Let me know if it still works in 4 years. I hate how 80% of the electrical things I have which breaks down are Sony products. Half of the Sony CD-drives I use shatter the CD. Literally shatters them. My Walkman's battery cover broke off, making it useless without a piece of tape to hold the battery. The speakers have a loud humming sound. A monitor that sparked and died was made by Sony. And their headphones are priced twice as much as a 'unbranded' headphone that had better sound quality.

Don't know if it's only the Sony products that are sold in Malaysia, but I'm telling you guys to never, ever buy a Sony product. It's our responsibility as consumers to complain about crappy products that we pay too much for

 
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5th May, 2008 at 06:00:39 -

My Sony MZ-R91 had problems 1 year after I bought it. PS1 needed a replacement laser. First PSP had more dead pixels than I care to remember. Had some random mid-range Sony speakers in the late 90's which needed a replacement tweeter. Sony DVD player gave up the ghost, which funnily enough was 100 more than another DVD player we bought (X-Wave) but the video output broke. X-Wave still going after 9 years!

I don't feel comfy around Sony stuff. Good for short term like you say Muz. A shame they see themselves as a high-end a/v brand when their products are middle of the road in quality and design and should be priced as such. Alongside Goodmans, Hitachi et al.

 
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5th May, 2008 at 08:44:21 -

Lower spec? The Macbook Pro had the highest Vista rating for a long time, they have a deal with Intel to get new chips before other manufacturers. Just their non-pro hardware line doesn't have excellent graphics cards.

 
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5th May, 2008 at 08:50:24 -

I have a Toshiba laptop and it's pretty good IMO.

 
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5th May, 2008 at 18:32:52 -


Originally Posted by -Adam-
I have a Toshiba laptop and it's pretty good IMO.



My Adam has a Toshiba laptop too

 
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Jimbob

Possibly Insane

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  12/07/2002
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5th May, 2008 at 23:03:53 -

My Acer laptop has just about four and a half years to its name and has suddenly decided that half of its memory doesn't exist (it's definitely in there, but Windows says only half is). Fortunately, that should be upgraded in a few days so hopefully I can whip a year or two out of it yet It still manages to play Trackmania Nations Forever on 256Mb though somehow! Which is all that matters at the moment...

As a side note, the keyboard is a bit pants and the 'l' keeps falling off.

 
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noPE

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I am an April Fool
6th May, 2008 at 02:58:49 -

windows is a moron. it tells me i have things i dont have and gives me wrong information on a lot of things.
your ram is definitely there, windows is just too retarded to understand.

 
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Muz



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  14/02/2002
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6th May, 2008 at 05:34:22 -


Originally Posted by JonWoG
If you want a decent Laptop, you need to pay good money for it.
My friend has a Dell laptop (not even top of the range) and it has been working perfectly for 4, yes FOUR years. Longer than another friends toshiba, longer than my Sony (which was expensive :S).
Dell, as well as other manufacturers install pieces that they can get cheap so you get a cheap laptop. Sony's and Macs generally have lower spec but better quality hardware hence why they last longer and are more expensive for the same spec as a Dell.



Yeah, my sis had a mid-line Dell laptop (plenty of added RAM, bluetooth, network stuff but no proper gfx card). Got it 4 years ago and it still works.

But I disagree that you need lots of money for a good one. My dad has an Acer laptop which came with one of those Geforce 7 series for laptops or something. Plenty of RAM, memory, comes with a free laptop backpack. Only at about $600. But it uses a generic AMD processor instead of a generic Intel one.



I don't feel comfy around Sony stuff. Good for short term like you say Muz. A shame they see themselves as a high-end a/v brand when their products are middle of the road in quality and design and should be priced as such. Alongside Goodmans, Hitachi et al.


Heh, if I had a choice between an unnamed brand and Sony, I normally pick the unnamed brand, just because it's cheaper. By the time it dies, there's usually something with far better specs on the market.

 
Disclaimer: Any sarcasm in my posts will not be mentioned as that would ruin the purpose. It is assumed that the reader is intelligent enough to tell the difference between what is sarcasm and what is not.

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Muz



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  14/02/2002
Points
  6499

VIP MemberI'm on a BoatI am an April FoolHonored Admin Alumnus
6th May, 2008 at 05:35:22 -


Originally Posted by JonWoG
If you want a decent Laptop, you need to pay good money for it.
My friend has a Dell laptop (not even top of the range) and it has been working perfectly for 4, yes FOUR years. Longer than another friends toshiba, longer than my Sony (which was expensive :S).
Dell, as well as other manufacturers install pieces that they can get cheap so you get a cheap laptop. Sony's and Macs generally have lower spec but better quality hardware hence why they last longer and are more expensive for the same spec as a Dell.



Yeah, my sis had a mid-line Dell laptop (plenty of added RAM, bluetooth, network stuff but no proper gfx card). Got it 4 years ago and it still works.

But I disagree that you need lots of money for a good one. My dad has an Acer laptop which came with one of those Geforce 7 series for laptops or something. Plenty of RAM, memory, comes with a free laptop backpack. Only at about $600. But it uses a generic AMD processor instead of a generic Intel one.



I don't feel comfy around Sony stuff. Good for short term like you say Muz. A shame they see themselves as a high-end a/v brand when their products are middle of the road in quality and design and should be priced as such. Alongside Goodmans, Hitachi et al.


Heh, if I had a choice between an unnamed brand and Sony, I normally pick the unnamed brand, just because it's cheaper. By the time it dies, there's usually something with far better specs on the market.

 
Disclaimer: Any sarcasm in my posts will not be mentioned as that would ruin the purpose. It is assumed that the reader is intelligent enough to tell the difference between what is sarcasm and what is not.

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AfterStar



Registered
  08/06/2002
Points
  403
7th May, 2008 at 18:15:51 -

You can read what the blue screen error is,if you press F8 at boot time and click the option to disable automatic reboot on error,it will do so until your next reboot.
You can also do this through the system properties in Vista :
http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/help-troubleshoot-the-blue-screen-of-death-by-preventing-automatic-reboot

The only decent laptops in my opinion for their price if you are considering DELL, I believe are the customisable Vostro1700 with 1920x1200 res. Truelife screen.
For approx. 900(uk P) inc. vat you get a very good desktop replacement and you are labelled as business customer,which is better for support .
If you are using Windows Vista,you will need 3GB to run it smoothly,which this laptop has.

Image Edited by the Author.

Image Edited by the Author.

 
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noPE

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  19/03/2005
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I am an April Fool
7th May, 2008 at 19:14:34 -

yeah i know about that. not only are you a little late in the game but i already got it all fixed up.
and im getting a macbook after my dell dies permanently.

 
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AfterStar



Registered
  08/06/2002
Points
  403
8th May, 2008 at 03:51:10 -

Well you said this
"i barely even get a blue screen of death. it pops up for a split second not letting me read what it says and reboots the computer. "
so I thought to mention the way to see the message.

Anyway glad you sorted your problem.

 
Surrender is not an option!

Cecilectomy

noPE

Registered
  19/03/2005
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I am an April Fool
8th May, 2008 at 05:41:11 -

i also said "btw the tech guy fixed the blue screen lol. it actually shows the whole error now."
damn dell technitions always taking forever to do anything.

thanks.

 
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Hill Gigas

Reviewing Madman

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  07/06/2004
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8th May, 2008 at 11:47:42 -

Listen, the solution is simple:

Find Bill Gates' home address. Go to his house and poo in his yard.

 
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