New to building computers, and just have some general questions

Do you have a question? Post it now! No Registration Necessary.  Now with pictures!

Threaded View
I have an older computer that will not recognize the hard drive and
gives an error "floppy disk errors (40)."  I have swapped out both the
hard drive and floppy drive, so i believe it is the motherboard.
Question is, would it be worth it to purchase a new
motherboard\processor or start from scratch buying a new computer.  I
know the motherboard would cost about $200 but I am unsure of if that
will fix the problem or if I would have to invest more money for
different parts.  I believe my HD is still good, but just won't
recognize, and i have a cd drive and floppy, and a new power source,
but just wondering what else i might need and if it is worth it.

Question 2.

I have another computer that i bought for myself when the last one went
down.  Works very nicely, but my power source blew out on the last one
killing everything, so I was wondering how to protect myself from this
in the future.  I believe it is a 300w power source, but the fan does
seem to go on and it kills certain processes.  Should I upgrade the
power source and change heat sinks or invest in different cooling
devices I see on hardware websites.  I want my computer to be as quick
as possible and still have it protected against overheating.  Any other
general tips on upgrading my computer would be appreciated as well.  I
can give specs if necessary.  Thanks.

Re: New to building computers, and just have some general questions

Quoted text here. Click to load it


you may have the cables hooked up wrong...
or possibly to just need to reset the bios on the mobo...
but chances are your mobo is still good.
at any rate a new mobo would not cost anywhere near $200

Quoted text here. Click to load it


put the machine on a UPS...
while nothing can give 100% protection...
a UPS will improve your odds quite a bit

Re: New to building computers, and just have some general questions

  That is what diagnostics and the 3.5 digit multimeter is
for.  You have few facts - too few to have been replacing
anything.  First, if power supply voltage is not within
specific values, then numerous 'good' peripherals will fail
strangely.  Second, diagnostics tell you immediately if the
problem should be analyzed in software or hardware.  Any
responsible computer manufacturer will provide diagnostics for
free with the machine or on their web site.  Otherwise, you
must download diagnostics, one at a time, from component
manufacturer's and third party sources.  Note each above
solution is about stepping through the problem.  Breaking the
problem down into parts for separate analysis.  Finding facts
long before replacing anything.  Identifying a defect before
fixing it.

  Meanwhile, if any power supply failure causes other hardware
failure, then the problem is directly traceable to the human
who bought that power supply on price and never first learned
what important functions must be inside that power supply.  
One function that any minimally acceptable supply will provide
is Overvoltage Protection so that power supply will never
damage other computer hardware.  OVP is often a first function
'forgotten' when selling to bean counter types.

  Also the UPS would not provide hardware protection.  This
also obvious when one first learns what the hardware and UPS
actually do.

  First off, a power supply containing minimally necessary
functions will sell for about $65 retail.  Second, the power
supply manufacturer will provide a long list of numerical
specs.  No numbers is necessary to dump power supplies onto a
large market of bean counters masquerading as computer
literate technicians.  No numbers is necessary when the power
supply is missing essential functions.  Just two factors that
any minimally acceptable supply will meet.  A very abridged
example of what that power supply will claim to do - in
Quoted text here. Click to load it

  What's in your power supply?

brboyle wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

Site Timeline