New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

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I am all over this today with various questions. LOL

I am getting a new PC
soon and will have my almost six year old Dell
Dimension 2400 kicking around. So
I may sell it if it is worth the
One thing I will want to do before
hand though is repace the hard drive
through fear of bank details and stuff
being retrieved in the future.

So, simple question, which Hard Drive should I
go for? I am in the UK


Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.


From what I can tell from the manual and technical specification the
system uses
an IDE drive which is of an older standard on the verge of
being extinct.
Unless your local stores are well stocked you might have to order a new
from a web shop.

Either way... As long as it's a 3.5" IDE drive you can get whatever
size you

'Here' ( ) is a link to the manual of your
displaying how to swap a harddrive.

/ Ani

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

Keeno wrote:
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Assuming you are a Windows user, don't get a new machine until Windows 7
is released.

now as to your old machine:

all you need to do is get a utility called   "dban"

it will completely erase the drive

then use your factory restore CD to reload the original operating system

there is no way your original data can be retrieved after that.

However you may want to just keep your old machine exactly as it is
and put it in storage for use as a backup machine

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

philo wrote:
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The program dban is a good one to completely wipe out the information stored
on a drive.   Just make darn sure hard drive you want to clear is the only
one physically attached to the PC as it will actively seek out other drives,
IDE, SATA, USB and will try to erase them ALL.

I volunteer at a charity where we receive computers from companies and
people who upgrade to something else.  I always run dban on the machines
prior to repurposing the computers.  We then rebuild the computers for use
by others who are glad to have access to these (older) machines.  Check out
your local charities, not just those with a "resale" store.  Most will give
you a tax write off form to use in April for your donation.

Many people are advising to wait until Version 7 is delivered to the stores.
Might not be a bad idea if you are a serious gamer needing bleeding edge
hardware just about top of the line machine will be able to run it.  You can
always put a copy of the Windows 7 test program on a disk and ask the store
to run it while you watch.  That will tell you if it will work with System 7
before you purchase it.  If they won't run your copy have them download it
while you wait and run it.  Any total refusal to prove their machine will
support System 7 or an option for a total money back guarantee, in writing,
is a clear indication of a company you want to stay away from.

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

GlowingBlueMist wrote:
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I also do volunteer work for a local NPO
and rebuild a lot of machines.

If you can get on the Microsoft Authorized Refurbisher program...
XP or Win 2k licenses can be obtained for $5 each (with a minimum order
of 20)

If the machine is less than 400 mhz or so,
I use one of the lighter Linux distributions.

Still not a ton of interest in Linux...
but it's been increasing over the last few years

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Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

philo wrote:
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Philo, you might want to check out the site at
They also help provide stuff in support of charitable organizations.  The
charity has to be registered with them before anything can change hands but
one can still look around to see if it's worth it.

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

GlowingBlueMist wrote:
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Yes thank you

we are a member

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

GlowingBlueMist wrote:
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I've given several items to my local Goodwill Industries. They maintain
a separate computer store in Austin, and I've also bought a few things
there--strange cables for instance. I also gave them a couple of weeks
ago a tube of 16K memory chips for the first IBM PCs, for their Computer

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

Thank you all very much for your time.

Yes I will wait until Windows 7 comes out I think to purchase my Dell
PC. They
have an option for a free upgrade once October 11th hits, but I
would rather
have it all nice and installed for me by them.

My Friend who is an IT Teacher assures me that there wont be any nasty
on Windows 7 once it is released. He has used a test copy and
says it is ace.

I posted in another Forum about if my Fujifilm Finepix S5500's Software
work with the new Windows 7 ok, it is five years old. I hope it

Re: New Hard drive for a Dell Dimension 2400 needed.

Keeno wrote:
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You can still find a few ribbon cable IDE drives for sale. Apparently
the Dim 2400 comes with an 80GB drive, so this is the same size. I have
a couple of these in my current collection of drives.

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST380215A 80GB 7200 RPM 2MB Cache IDE Ultra ATA100 3.5"

I found a 160GB IDE drive here. Using one of these is likely seamless,
if the version of Windows is at the right minimum service pack level.
WinXP SP1 or later, supports drives larger than 137GB (so-called
48 bit LBA support). If you know for a fact, that the restoration
image is at that level, then you could use a larger drive. I'd
probably just search for a drive smaller than 137GB, such as 120GB,
80GB, 60GB and so on. You might also be able to install the "clip" jumper
in the jumper block area on the back of this drive, and make the 160GB
drive into a 33GB drive, which would also make it smaller than 137GB.
So if the Dell restore CD won't play nice, clipping the drive,
temporarily or permanently, might be a workaround. Finding a smaller
drive to purchase, just makes this easier.

It is quite possible, that the major manufacturers have stopped making
IDE drives, and what we're seeing at retail, is dwindling stock piles.
The shop I use locally, for hard drive purchases, no longer carries
IDE, and I was warned six months ago, they were having trouble
getting them. They've removed them from the catalog now.


A day will come eventually, where all you can buy are SATA drives.
The difference is, the data cable has seven connections, the power
has 15 connections (five rails times three pins each).

If you bought a SATA drive, you could use one of these IDE2SAT
adapters, to convert the connector to the 40 pin ribbon cable.
The black thing at the bottom, plugs into the back of a SATA
drive. The 40 gold pins on the other side of the adapter, go
to the ribbon cable connector in the computer. This adapter
adds a bit of depth to the drive, so in tight spaces, there may
not be room for it. The ribbon cable can also be harder to
(safely) remove from this adapter, and may require more effort
when changing or moving drives around. But for someone repairing
computers, this might be used when IDE drives are no longer


Erasing the original drive, is also easy. It helps to boot a second
OS, to work on the disk. I use Linux for that (Knoppix or Ubuntu
LiveCDs would work). I use the "dd" command in Linux extensively,
for stuff like that. This would erase the C: drive, assuming the
C: drive is the first partition of the drive in question. Linux
naming conventions for drives are different than Windows, and
/dev/hda is the name of a raw drive connected to the computer.
/dev/hda1 would be the first partition of that drive. If the
recovery data was in /dev/hda2, this would not erase that
section. So you can erase any particular partition on the
hard drive, that you want to.

    dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda1

The DBAN program, erases the whole drive, recovery partition and all.
So you'd want to make sure your restore CD or DVD, was in good shape,
before doing that.

Inside the hard drive, there is actually a command available to erase it.
This program executes that command. I recommend reading all the
documentation, before usage. The beauty of this command, is
you can set it, and the hard drive will not respond, until
erasure is complete. For example, if it takes 30 minutes to
erase the drive, and you shut off power to the drive after
15 minutes, the drive still knows it is in "erasure state"
and will continue erasing when power is restored. You wouldn't
be able to access the drive, until the drive has
completed the erase procedure. Then, it will start responding
again, like a normal drive.

The last two options above, are for when you want all data
on the drive removed, and aren't interested in preserving
any recovery partitions. So you definitely want your
recovery/restore CD or DVD, if using either of the last


As for new computers, you can get machines with "upgrade rights".
To smooth the transition to Windows 7, some computers ship with
Vista now, and when Windows 7 ships, you get a DVD from the computer
manufacturer, to upgrade to Windows 7. So you don't have to wait
for Windows 7, to get Windows 7. You can get a Vista computer
now, and when Windows 7 ships, it comes separately to you, and
you can then remove Vista.

One other tiny detail, for which there doesn't appear to be a lot
of visibility right now. Windows 7 has a "WinXP mode", but that
requires processor support. In the table here, the "Intel
Virtualization" column is the important one. If there is a
check mark in that column, then the processor would be suited
to how Microsoft is implementing their WinXP mode in Windows 7.
I'm a bit annoyed, that the processor I bought, does not
support Virtualization. I expect there'll be a few more
suckers like myself, who will discover this later.

If you look hard enough, you can find machines with AMD processors
which won't support Virtualization for the WinXP mode as well.

So before you order the new computer, you may want to vet the
processor used in it, and check its credentials.


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