Friday, October 17, 2008

New Rig

Seymore, my new computer, is up and running, logged onto the internet, and blazing fast only 53 hours after placing the order for his bits and pieces. Cameraphone proof:

Not a moment too soon!

Parts ordered from noon, 10/15
Total out of pocket: $315
Mail-in rebate: -$40
Trips to Radio Shack: 2
Radio Shack cost: ~$5
Trips to Fry's Electronics: 3
Fry's cost: ~$5
Packages delivered 5:30pm, 10/16
Computer operational 2:47pm 10/17
Computer online 5:13pm 10/17

Grand Total $ Amt: $285
Time from order to online: ~53 hours

  • Case was a 'retail' purchase, but still arrived very barebones. It had a little baggie of screws tied up inside, and that was about it. The motherboard was also 'retail' and came with a manual. No indication of how to mount a mobo in the case, though. Solution - Reference existing device, note spacers in screw bag, line up mobo and mark appropriate mounting holes.
  • Power supply has one SATA cable and I have 2 SATA devices (hard disk and optical drive). Solution - Fry's is the nearest store with Molex (4-pin power connector) to SATA converter. The one I saw online was Molex to dual-SATA (Y-split), and I looked for one in-store in case RAID arrays catch my interest in the near future, but no luck. Dolla-fifty for the cable, $3.50 for chips and soda from the queue.
  • Fans and disk drives spin up, but no signal to monitor. Solution - This one stumped me, and apparently I'm lucky not to have produced the Magic Smoke. But I asked about it and followed the suggestion that my mobo was underpowered. Flipped the 110/220 switch on the power supply, and shazam!
  • Salvaged wireless card detected, network information provided, but still no WWW. Solution - Call service provider. They reset the WEP key on my router, then again to a pass of our choice. The Ubuntu documentation for wireless is fairly sparse, which was frustrating if understandable; it's set up to 'just work.' Eventually, it did.

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