Computer Rules of Thumb

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Dominus Atheos
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Dominus Atheos » 2011-10-23 07:14am

No, it is just a security measure. As you may know if you delete a file from the Recycle Bin you can still get it back for a while. Wiping your free space just makes it so those files can never be recovered.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby charlemagne » 2011-10-24 02:30am

Free space never has an impact on speed, unless the disc/partition your swap file is on is full. So always having a couple gigabytes of free space on the main partition is a good idea.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby phongn » 2011-10-24 11:33am

charlemagne wrote:Free space never has an impact on speed, unless the disc/partition your swap file is on is full. So always having a couple gigabytes of free space on the main partition is a good idea.

I think he was talking about something else (wiping free space versus having free space). However, you don't want to have only a few percent of your drive free: modern filesystems don't like that.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Joviwan » 2011-11-04 06:25pm

random question. i haven't been very informed about current tech ssds vs platter drives. How do ssds compare to, say, WDs current raptor drives for speed and.reliability?
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby phongn » 2011-11-04 07:17pm

Joviwan wrote:random question. i haven't been very informed about current tech ssds vs platter drives. How do ssds compare to, say, WDs current raptor drives for speed and.reliability?

SSDs blow away any conventional hard drive, including enterprise-grade 15K drives. There remain some firmware issues, unfortunately, even Intel drives (which are probably the most reliable).
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby MKSheppard » 2012-04-13 08:26pm

Update on optical media: I was in my staples lately, and checked place of manufacture for some Memorex brand DVD+Rs, and found them to be made in...India.

Taiwan seems to be the new (as of 2012) 'standard' for decent quality now.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby phongn » 2012-04-13 11:11pm

MKSheppard wrote:Update on optical media: I was in my staples lately, and checked place of manufacture for some Memorex brand DVD+Rs, and found them to be made in...India.

Taiwan seems to be the new (as of 2012) 'standard' for decent quality now.

The Japanese plants might be shutting down and I don't know about the ones in Singapore (the two last bastions of quality) :(
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Edi » 2012-05-06 04:08pm

The second rule of optical media backups like CDs or DVDs is that you should not trust them to be readable after more than two years at the outside. The shinies in the discs are subject to degradation, depending on how much exposure they get and can degrade to being unreadable in surprisingly short order.

The cheaper it is, the faster it will go. I had some several CDs worth of stuff (fortunately none of it very important) backed up from the bad old days of small hard drives and it's all gone due to this phenomenon. They don't get recognized even as empty discs.

The first rule of optical media backups, which is derived from the second, is that you should also have an alternate backup or preferably two on a standard hard drive or flash based media like a USB stick.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Enigma » 2012-05-06 07:51pm

I'd like to see a list here of reputable companies that make quality computer components and a list of those to avoid. Doesn't have to be long but a Top\Bottom 5 or 10 to give us an idea as who to go for in a purchase.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby phongn » 2012-05-07 05:58pm

Enigma wrote:I'd like to see a list here of reputable companies that make quality computer components and a list of those to avoid. Doesn't have to be long but a Top\Bottom 5 or 10 to give us an idea as who to go for in a purchase.

This shifts over time and by product line.

Edi wrote:The second rule of optical media backups like CDs or DVDs is that you should not trust them to be readable after more than two years at the outside. The shinies in the discs are subject to degradation, depending on how much exposure they get and can degrade to being unreadable in surprisingly short order.

Well, you can trust them so long as you treat them properly and buy high-quality discs.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Terralthra » 2012-05-07 06:04pm

Enigma wrote:I'd like to see a list here of reputable companies that make quality computer components and a list of those to avoid. Doesn't have to be long but a Top\Bottom 5 or 10 to give us an idea as who to go for in a purchase.


My standby brand for performance at a reasonable cost with exceptional reliability is Asus.

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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Mr Bean » 2012-05-07 06:33pm

Terralthra wrote:My standby brand for performance at a reasonable cost with exceptional reliability is Asus.

Asus has put out some terrible motherboards in the past, there is no company that puts out 100% quality anything and that only applies to their video cards which come with outstanding warranties and service because they are pretty much free since EVGA cards work for five years pretty reliably only their 7000 series had any duds and then only one particular set where the over-clocking was to aggressive for long term usage. EVGA also makes motherboards (Mixed bag) and Monitors (More mixed bag) so the only company I know of that I automatically think best default production is EVGA and then ONLY for video cards.

Antec makes great power supplies except for the ones that are not. Likewise Coolmaster (Good cases and PSU and horrible ones mixed together).

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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby MKSheppard » 2012-05-11 12:33pm

Edi wrote:The first rule of optical media backups, which is derived from the second, is that you should also have an alternate backup or preferably two on a standard hard drive or flash based media like a USB stick.


Flash media degrades too. :x
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby MKSheppard » 2012-05-11 03:48pm

Basically a not too expensive USB 2.0 drive can transfer about 32,000~ files and 28+ GB of data in about an hour or so; which is somewhat credible. A USB 3.0 drive might be a bit faster; but I don't know how much faster.

I disconnect my external hard drive via turning off my computer and waiting for the drive to power down -- since external HDDs seem to have problems with windows "unplug media" USB thingy. Or at least they did several years ago when I first tried this whole 'external hard drive thing'. I then basically keep my External HDD disconnected from my computer and it's power supply until I need to back up some more stuff. This reduces the cycles the hard drive goes through; and provides security against bolts out of the blue like lightning strikes, etc.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby MKSheppard » 2012-05-11 03:53pm

From December 2009:

MKSheppard wrote:I'd estimate that somewhere in 2010, we will see credible flash USB stick manufacturers offering about 64 GB flash sticks for about $50-70; which would be equivalent to about sixteen DVD-Rs, or more than enough to back up your collection of various uh, things :mrgreen: and still be affordable enough to buy two of them for a primary and secondary backup.


Well, that took longer than expected. Staples now offers SanDisk Cruzer 64GB USB 2.0 USB drives online for $59.99. Took long enough.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Mr Bean » 2012-05-11 04:46pm

MKSheppard wrote:
Well, that took longer than expected. Staples now offers SanDisk Cruzer 64GB USB 2.0 USB drives online for $59.99. Took long enough.

You forgot the SSD boom boosting flash chip demand like there was no tomorrow. Next year those 64 gig sticks will be 29.99$
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Zaune » 2012-05-16 12:45pm

MKSheppard wrote:
Edi wrote:The first rule of optical media backups, which is derived from the second, is that you should also have an alternate backup or preferably two on a standard hard drive or flash based media like a USB stick.


Flash media degrades too. :x


I think the rule of thumb to be derived from all this is, whatever backup media you decide on, test it frequently.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby madd0ct0r » 2012-05-27 06:34am

query- I'm guessing i've picked up some nasty stuff - frequent slowdowns, mozilla hanging ect. (my other computer has massively frequent DNS lookup failures on chrome , but I suspect that's not my computer's fault..)

free avast is installed and dosen't see anything.

any options beyond a complete nuke and pave? I don't have legitimate windows, it came from the shop that way.
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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby TheFeniX » 2012-06-04 02:12pm

I didn't know where else to put this, but I figure this information might be useful for people hopping on the SSD bandwagon. If you're an idiot like me and forget to set your SATA for AHCI support before installing Windows, a quick change to the registry can get you running in no time. My load times in Skyrim were reduced even more since this change and windows booting is also much faster.

On another note: my SSD is only 120GBs. My Steam folder can get well over that alone with all my games. Since all games have to be installed into the Steam directory, it can make your drive worthless for anything but windows and your standard applications. It can also be annoying for other games if you want them to run quickly for a while, but also have the option to not uninstall them if you want to move them to your larger HDD to make space for new games.

Mklink is the perfect command to use for this. I installed Steam and Diablo 3 on my 1TB HDD, then cut/pasted the folders for D3 and Skyrim onto my SSD, used mklink to create a link, and was up and running with no issues. When I get done with them, but don't want to uninstall, I can just move the folders back after deleting the links. Steam has no issues with the links as the last Skyrim update downloaded and installed with no issues.

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Re: Computer Rules of Thumb

Postby Chrislove22 » 2012-12-31 09:26am

Enigma wrote:I'd like to see a list here of reputable companies that make quality computer components and a list of those to avoid. Doesn't have to be long but a Top\Bottom 5 or 10 to give us an idea as who to go for in a purchase.

I sort of hate reading posts about that subject because it seems like failures come in batches and are very unpredictable. Pick any brand of of DVD R discs, for example, and google them. You'll have one guy saying "I hate [brand x]. 48 out of 50 failed. never buying again. the CEOs should all rot in hell." and another customer saying "I've used nothing but [brand x] for 35 years and never had a problem. I keep my children's health records stored on a single backup disc and have never had any reason to suspect anything but perfect performance."

There have been people who actually test reliability with a valid sample size, but like phongn said, these results are only valid until a company opens a new factory or makes changes to its supply line.

My rule of thumb: you get what you pay for.
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