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June 8, 2007, 5:43 pm
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I finished a 2 day "learning experiment" putting together a system
from some parts I had bought.
I would be very interested in any suggestions/feedback on anything
that make future efforts easier.
I built the system from two Del GX1 and 110 systems. Completed system
had a P-3 770 Mhz as opposed to the older 485 Mhz. (I was amazed at
how much faster it ran - 2X)
These are a few things I observed/encountered:
Had trouble with BIOS recognizing HDs, one had some bad sectors.
AFAIK, they all worked fine before
Had to use a Win98 floppy boot disk with it's utilities to format one
of the drives
I have it set to boot c: , CD, and a:
Anyone know if my system can support a 120 MB HD?
Will a USB 2.0 card work in it ?
Re: Fun building
It's not surprising that such an old drive has bad sectors
at this point/age, being a mechanical device it is usually
best to replace them every 3-4 years, as the cost of doing
this is slight, and offsets having system downtime or to
recover data (or lose some) at an inconvenient time.
Since it started out at (485MHz? That's an odd #, but in
this ballpark...) it's probably an Intel 440BX chipset
Around that era 128GB was about the upper limit, though some
might need a bios update to achieve that. After installing
a 120GB drive, if the bios doesn't recognize it, update the
bios. You might want to go ahead and get the bios updates
anyway, sooner or later Dell might not offer them anymore
(if they still do now). HOWEVER, depending on the specifics
of your CPU upgrade, it is possible that the last few bios
updates (assuming it's an Intel chipset and the "770MHz"
(which is another odd number?)) could interfere with use of
Coppermine CPUs, which is what a roughly 770MHz P3 would be.
Another alternative would be a PCI ATA133 or SATA controller
card. The system likely has integral ATA33, "Maybe" ATA66
support so the PCI card would likely result in higher
performance as well as allowing much larger hard drives (to
overcome a limit if 120GB won't work, or as large as they
Yes it should.