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[personal profile] whitedove01s
So, I've spent a bit of time lately rearranging my desktop (and turning one of my monitors int a single-use bugzapper by accident) to try to get a nice layout for when I managed to get as much aS I can up and running and sharing out the digital workload for better efficiency. Or at least the ability to watch videos or play games while doing surveys and keeping up with RP, while making room to learn Unity programming and do fabric graphics for Spoonflower and maybe room for... well, you get the picture. I need a setup that works with my chronic scatterminded multitasking. And it doesn't work for me to do one task at a time and close the other down to get back to it, because what will happen is that I'll forget just where I am on the other task and by the time I remember it and get back to it I might have to start all over. This memory issue sucks in so many ways, and I'm sick of redoing the same things. Two screens let me keep reminder windows and txt-file notes where I can see them, which has been an extreme help. Expansion may mean more progress in my case, especially if I can delegate easier and/or offline tasks to other computers to spread out the processor load.

Anyhow, I got sidetracked on why I'm doing this when I meant to do a rundown of what I have so far just in case I forget what needs to be done with something. A lot of this I've mentioned in bits before so I'm putting it behind a cut. It's mostly so I'll have a workload reference if my brain gets fuzzy and so I won't have to keep looking up models of things or what ram each laptop uses (I have all three types of DDR in play here!). Here we go with my pile of salvage, both working and non:

HP W2081d monitor - I just got this one after the bugzapper incident. It has the older connector port instead of the newer HDMI port, but that's just fine as my laptop has both. I currently have seven file folder windows, four text files, and a browser window for viewing online video open in it. Of all of them, I hope to eventually shuffle video over to another system, the files to network-attached-storage, and the text/html reference files I'm editing also on NAS but with one of the 'offline' computers set up to video them, thus freeing up this whole screen for surveys, rp, and other online things where I may need to type.

ASUS K55N Laptop "Quatre" - AMD A8-4500M APU processor with Radeon HD graphics runs at 1.90 GHz. 8 GB ram that I expanded myself. Set up to dual boot latting me choose between Windows 8 and Linux Ubuntu at startup (In case of a problem, I greatly prefer Linux to Windows Safe Mode). This is my current 'main' computer. The keyboard is having an issue with a defective I key which may just be a pinched wire but I'm not taking chances since taking it apart is such a hassle. I already have a replacement keyboard, but I can't recall how to completely disassemble the thing to get to the keyboard (can't just access from the top on this one). As an added note, it uses DDR-3 RAM. The nickname is because this was my first quad-core computer.

Insignia USB keyboard - this is a recent addition too, just arrived in the mail yesterday (I think) and I'm still adjusting to it. It's meant as a temporary replacement until I fix the laptop keyboard and then a more permanent solution for other computers.

Alldaymall (generic Chinese) A88X android tablet - WARNING! DO NOT BUY ONE OF THESE! It came witha trojan pre-installed and I've intentionally soft-bricked it while I try to find a firmware image that's a match for one with a TJ-Q88-V5.0_20150606 motherboard and Allwinner A33 Quad Core processor.

Samsung SyncMaster 204B Monitor - aka the accidental bugzapper. It's just the power jack that's fried, but I'm likely to end up having to replace the whole power board. Still, under $25 to get this screen back on.

Coby Kyros MID7036 Tablet - bought for $5 on amazon as nonworking but the screen is intact. I managed to get it to try to power on briefly (probably because I was living inside a big EMF field effect until recently). Disassembly has shown that the power jack has broken off the board. Very neatly. 5 minute soldering job and I think this one will be just fine.

Skytex E-Reader - this thing is ancient by computer standards. It has no connectivity options, but it can play (some) videos and read PDF files if they're loaded on a micro-SD for it. Load times can be slooow tho. I'll probably use it for opening text-based PDFs on the side of other work. Also, it works fine. So far.

Insignia (generic Chinese) NS-15MS0832 Windows tablet - my only system with Windows 10. It also had the Ghost Touch issue that seems to plague capacitative screens. I managed to disable the touchscreen in settings to curb the issue during diagnostics. I opened it up to find that during original assembly the wires to one of the speakers got caught in the casing and one is severed. So that's waiting on me re-learing soldering skills to where I can fuse some really REALLY thin wire. I'm not turning it back on with an obvious broken wire for safety reasons.

Coby Kyros MID8065 - another from that same seller that hands these out for $5 on ebay. This one has sticky residue from duct tape on the back, and cracks through both the digitizer layer and the LCD screen beneath. It was sold as powering on, but I haven't been able to check yet as I need to get a Coby power jack. My other tablet jacks apparently don't fit these. Given that this one also has a HDMI port, I actually plan to permanantly connect it to a monitor to make a sort of frankenstein All-In-One for media viewing.

Coby Kyros MID8042 - yes, I really spent $15 on busted tablets. I think they've already made up that in educational value. This one has cracks in the digitizer but the underlying LED screen is ok. It was also sold as powering on, but with a bad battery. Again I need a power cord. My current plan for this one is to just disable the digitizer on the software side, and connect it to a little USB keyboard and mini mouse and use it like a mini laptop without a touchscreen. It might be good for handling some of my survey load like that.

Generic Tablet Case-With-Keyboard - this is the mini keyboard I was using until my current one arrived in the mail. Works great, but it's tiny and something of an irritation to type a lot on. Current plans are to pair it with the above Coby.

Dell 1703FPs Monitor - bought off ebay as working, arrived with bad backlight causing a bit of drama at the time. I have plans to rig this one together with the Coby with the completely busted screen and an LED replacement for the backlight, possibly in some new case I'll have to rig up.

IC Power CM2015 Monitor - generic wallworld monitor, but it lasted for years - the Evil Overlord claimed it for a while for her security cameras and then I got it back when it refused to turn on after a surge. Despite the internet claims that popped capacitors are the MOST common cause of monitor death, this is the first and only one I have with that problem. It needs two 1000uF 16v capacitors replaced. They show up on ebay in 10-packs for $1. And, of course, I'll have to learn to properly solder (and desolder to remove the old ones) to do the actual repair. Soldering at all even for learning is on hold until spring so I can have decent ventilation for it.

Dell PP08S Laptop "Ratchet" - Sent to me by an online friend who was otherwise going to chuck it, this one had started turning itself off randomly. I found a quarter-inch thick dustbunny in the heat sink. It reminded me of cleaning out a dryer lint trap. This one survived a lot of problems, from a hard drive crash to a nasty virus I couldn't kill without reformatting the whole system. I owe it for introducing me to Linux Ubuntu as an alternative operating system. I don't know how long I kept this one limping along before it finally failed to turn on one day. I retired it that time rather than try to fix it again as it was starting to have problems with flash-heavy websites due to sheer age. Under current circumstances, it's back out of the pile of computers that I kept in the back of my closet (I refused to just throw them away and there's no way to safely recycle them in my current situation, which is why I still have nearly every computer for the last 15 years or so here XD) I'm really hoping I can get this grouchy old klunker going again, but I haven't diagnosed the problem yet. So old it uses DDR ram (not -2 or -3 XD). Named by previous owner.

Dell PP29L Laptop - got this one off ebay. It starts to boot through bios but the screen doesn't come on and it claims there's no ram even when there's good ram installed. Could be a bad motherboard... but I got it really cheap because I loved the case. It's silver, with silver keys, and the top is a dark blue rubberized coating with little glitter flecks. If Ratchet's motherboard is still functional and could fit in this one I think it's earned dibs. It also still has a hard drive, and ram, (DDR-2 in this case). Odds are Ratchet won't fit as the case is skinner, but I definitely want to do something special with this one (or at least the salvageable parts of and case) just because it's so pretty.

Dell Optiplex DHP "Farmer" - finally to the desktops! It's been so long I'm not sure which of these work or not. I think most of them just got slow and old and started having trouble opening the internet's progressively more flash-heavy pages without getting 'script has stopped responding' errors. Using them for offline tasks should be fine, tho. No diagnostics yet because I need to have a third monitor up and running first to be able to hook to them. Statwise it's a pentium 4 with 4 ram slots. I think it uses DDR, and has a max capacity of 4gb. It had Windows XP Professional on it, ifthe HD still works/wasn't taken out and wiped. DVD rom and floppy disk drives (Good, I have a stack of those I need to try to salvage data from and get rid of). Lost of USB ports, lan port, old style PS-2 Keyboard and mouse ports, and at least one empty card bay. Two if I remove the dialup modem. I'll have to open up to check on more, like whether I left the HD in. Nickname was because of playing Harvest Moon on it back in the day, realizing I had a 'farmer in the Dell', getting tickled, and having it stick...

HP Pavillion 6735 "Pavel" - another desktop I'll have to open up to have a real look and make sure the HD is in there, but again with a lot of potential expansion space for drives and usb connection if nothing else.

AST Advantage Desktop - I think this one is a 486, I can't recall if it ever had a nickname, it's too old to have USB ports and lacks a lan port, but has SO MANY card slots in there I might be able to fix both pretty easy. This is the one likely to end up Network Attached Storage.

Unknown early Pentium parts - I got this one at a yardsale, but it was pasword locked, buggy, and probably viral. The evil overlord complained about it taking up space and it ended up disassembled in a plastic crate with the case tossed. (It actually takes up MORE space that way!) That was when I started putting my computer stash in my closet so she wouldn't insist any others be scrapped. It did power on, but for the most part it's parts now... just in case any of the others need em. Same box also contains a brand new in-box desktop PC fan, and a stack of hard drives of uncertain condition. I put the laptop replacement drive in there too, and a ps2-port keyboard that was stuffed back in storage and might not work, just in case it does and I need it for the desktops.

Also in my closet and not part of this are a TRS-80, and an early IBM 'portable' (that looks like a full sized suitcase complete with handle and weighs 50-lbs!). Both worked fine last time I powered them on, but honestly they need to go to a computer museum or something! And this list does not count things like the devices to play mp4s on an analogue TV, tv dvd players, vcr, N64, two old playstations (I have NO IDEA where the second one came from), PS1, etc. I'm still looking for my NES, SNES, gameboys, atari, and pong machine.

And I almost forgot the two new additions on the disassembly area of my desk! a BOGO deal on Ebay for Dell Laptops, only $1 and shipping ($15 total), I thought they'd be good parts or cases if nothing else. Only arrived yesterday.

Dell Inspiron 5100 laptop - good screen, missing a shift key, pretty silver and blue case (no, this is not the other silver one and blue one XD The blue here is a good bit lighter, closer to azure than midnight). No hd or RAM, uses DDR, not DDR2 or 3, nice big easy-access case. Came with battery of uncertain condition but no power cord. Power jack is wierdly nonstandard and has a bent pin, and my other dell cords will not fit. Opening the case up today to get a better idea of what I'm working with.

Dell Inspiron 5160 laptop - these look nearly identical with the exception of this one being all silver and a different placement of the dial-up model phone jack. Someone, I think, has been dumpster diving because this one's clearly been dropped. It has a busted screen, and a spot with a chip out of the case (tho not really that bad, I could fix it if I wanted, and I like these easy access cases). There's no ram, and the hard drive (now removed) sounds like a baby rattle for nerds - the plates are completely shattered. (Note: I do not advise ever giving a bare HD to an infant, this was just a comment on the sound). However, one of my dell power cords fits this one just fine, and I was briefly able to get it to try to boot up as far as Bios. However it promptly crashes into shutdown again. Like the other, opening it up today to get a better look. They have very similar form factors so I have hopes that between the two I might manage to get a working laptop.

Yes, I can be a horrid packrat, but on the upside... I have lots of stuff! (If I can get it to work.)
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