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  1. #1
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    Default PC power supply and related ?s

    I've been griping about the 2005 Celeron POC I bought from my son 4 yrs ago so he could buy a better machine. In fact, it crashed yesterday, about 6 months since the previous crash. Today, he surprised me with a new 2 yr old Dual core processor PC, wireless keyboard/mouse and new monitor. Happy Father's Day!

    My old junk has crashed for the last time. I've pulled out the harddrive which I bought new a couple of years ago, Western Digital 160 Gb. I've mounted it beside the existing HD in my new unit. I want to salvage My Docs and some programs, and transfer data if possible, or just run it as an XP alternative to Vista. The new E-machine is Vista, which I have on my laptop.

    Question: the cord from the power supply has only one hard drive power plug that fits either but not both HD's. Will I jeopardize the power supply by adding a plug salvaged from another chassis? Can I power up both hard drives, is what I'm asking. For now, I'm leaving the old XP HD unconnected, but there is a connector plug for it. See the pics. Ignore that Motorola car radio.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    You don't need to solder anything, they make y-adapters to connect 2 drives from one cable

    Files can be moved from any drive to another easily enough. Point your camera software to the external drive when transferring, or if you use Windows Explorer, just select the correct drive and folder. Learn how to "copy & paste", it will save you lots of time.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    Most E-Machines are very low end units. Meaning the power supply is not large enough to run extra drives. (that's why they don't come with a multiple output connector). Check the label on the power supply then use this calculator to see what you need for wattage.
    eXtreme Power Supply Calculator

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  4. #4
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    Jul 2009
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    Lanham, MD
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    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    One option would be to pick up an external USB drive case for your old drive. Then you would not need to be concerned about the old power supply being sufficient. You would then be able to transfer files to/from the drive easily as well as having it available for a backup to your new machine. Best Buy or any local computer store should have these in stock. I use several of these to rotate backups of my desktop PC.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    Thanks, Dom. I'm not offended, you don't know me. I learned to cut and paste when Windows ran on a floppy. I just need to learn my way around Vista, which trys to do it all without my help.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Rowe View Post
    the power supply is not large enough to run extra drives. (that's why they don't come with a multiple output connector). Check the label on the power supply then use this calculator to see what you need for wattage.
    eXtreme Power Supply Calculator
    Thanks Ken. I estimated some of the devices and such and came up with 247 watts for 2 HDs. My PS delivers 250 watts. I think I'll play it safe, and just run one HD at a time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Saville View Post
    One option would be to pick up an external USB drive case for your old drive. Then you would not need to be concerned about the old power supply being sufficient. You would then be able to transfer files to/from the drive easily as well as having it available for a backup to your new machine. Best Buy or any local computer store should have these in stock. I use several of these to rotate backups of my desktop PC.
    Good idea. Thanks, guys.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  6. #6

    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    Guys - it's really a waste of time and effort to run old dodgy equipment. A new desktop running Windows 7 64bit can be had for a pittance. Not long ago I replaced a five or six-year-old XP machine with a new Lenovo 3.2 GHz AMD dual core rocking 3 GB of RAM (recently increased to 8 for about $60) and a terabyte hard drive for $300 DELIVERED! Essentially this machine does everything I ask of it with no problems. I even play some relatively high-end video games online with it. I also added an additional internal 1 TB drive plus a couple of external 500 GB drives. According to one of the programs I'm testing for backup purposes, I have 6.7 TB of available storage! All of it running off this cheapo machine.

    A little careful shopping with TigerDirect, NewEgg, or even Fry's electronics will get you a machine that is an order magnitude better than your old clunker.

    I understand being frugal but one must also consider that you are in business and your livelihood depend on maintenance of your records and being able to manipulate photos etc. etc. Trying to make do with POS is nothing but a disaster waiting to happen, usually at the worst possible time. Man up and spend a few bucks and buy a decent machine.

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    Thanks, Dana. I have my rockin' desktop now. PC's have improved a bunch and yes, they are cheaper than ever.

    Update here. I chatted up a couple of computer geeks, did some surfing and decided to go the simple route.
    I clipped a double power plug from an old power supply and made a y-adapter for this new machine. I burned a recovery disc for just in case, then booted the PC with the old HD installed as a slave.
    Windows Vista opened, immediately found a driver for the slave and took it all in stride. All my old files were sitting there, but the old XP OS folders are said to be empty. Whether they died in the crash or were deleted by the new OS, no matter. I simply renamed my old doc folder and sent it over to the new HD. It arrived safe and programs all work fine.

    I will now format this extra drive and use it for an auxiliary backup along with my external. The power supply seems to be fine with the extra load. Thanks, all, and happy computing.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  8. #8

    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    John.....
    Glad to hear you stepped up to the plate and swung for the fence. The fact that the computing market is moving more towards tablets and touchscreens has driven the price of desktop computers into the cellar. You really can find some amazing deals!

    I love tablets and owns several and then contemplating buying a new one myself. Really looking strongly at the new Android OS tablets that are coming out. That being said, I still do probably 95% of my inspection report work on the desktop that has the stones to handle the high-end graphic work in multitasking that I do. I am a bit of a geek and typically have multiple programs running at the same time and am working with dual 22 inch monitors. Dual monitors is really a huge "bang for the buck" production booster.
    You can find a decent 22 to 24 inch flat-panel monitor for under $150 these days and your productivity will vastly increase when using them.

    While most home inspection software has some rudimentary photo editing capability and the ability to annotate photos with text, arrows and boxes and such, I find them to be cumbersome and insufficient for my aesthetic needs. I always process and annotate all of my photos prior to even opening my inspection software. Given the vast amount of storage I have, I have no problem keeping all of the original photos, typically 80 - 100 per inspection, And creating a separate folder which I call "edits" for use in the report. These edits have been resized / optimized and annotated.

    Once all of this is done, I can open that folder, set the "view" to large thumbnails and be able to consult all of my photos while I am building my report on the other screen.
    Without dual monitors, and large ones, this would be difficult and cumbersome to do. You have to keep clicking back and forth between different applications on a single monitor and that always adds confusion to the process and the possibility of an error. Having everything open and visible, side-by-side at the same time is the way to go in my view.
    Good Luck,

    True Professionals, Inc. Property Consultant
    877-466-8504

  9. #9
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    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    Yes, for IR work especially I can see where dual monitors can be a huge improvement.

    Just this year I'm seeing tourists walking around with tablets, actually taking pictures and filming video with them.

    I'm watching for a tablet that is designed for old greybeard HI's with bad eyes. It has to be self-levitating so it doesn't smash when you let it go off the roof.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  10. #10

    Default Re: PC power supply and related ?s

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    Yes, for IR work especially I can see where dual monitors can be a huge improvement.

    Just this year I'm seeing tourists walking around with tablets, actually taking pictures and filming video with them.

    I'm watching for a tablet that is designed for old greybeard HI's with bad eyes. It has to be self-levitating so it doesn't smash when you let it go off the roof.
    Well, you can count me in that group. At 67 and with a grey beard to boot, the eyes are not what they used to be.

    During inspecting, if I do take the tablet out, it does not go on the roof or under the house in any case. With the new 7" form factor tablets from Android such as the new Nexus 7 from Google / Asus, portability is improved. I use Home Inspector Pro and they have just released a new cloud based service that is compatible with Android.

    This free add-on to the latest version 3.2 allows you to "sync" any template you want to the device, take it into the field and work up the data and then sync it back through the cloud to your desktop via the internet. I trialed it on my Android Bionic phone and it works well. Obviously, screen size is an issue on the phone but it did work as advertised.

    As for portability, it would not be hard to rig a chest mounted case setup for a 7 incher to protect the tablet but keep it accessible for use. Keeps your hands free for tools and camera but is still available for data entry when needed.

    True Professionals, Inc. Property Consultant
    877-466-8504

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