donnato

Old Dell Dimension E510

Well this is interesting. I noticed the other day that a tennant here had set a computer outside their door... i wondered why. today I caught her at her door and asked what she was going to do with it. She said that she was going to throw it away. I asked if I could have it and she said yes. Now... this is an old PC for sure. I have no illusions about fixing it to use for gaming but maybe... if I can get it going .. I can use it at work.

I went online and got a lot of info about it such as... it seems to have come with a single core pentium cpu.  http://support.feelpcs.com/pc-spec/DimensionE510/specs1.htm 

Soo... what do you think? I won`t know what`s  wrong with it until I crack it open, clean it out, check all connections , and plug it in.

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What do you do at work on the computer?

You realize that machine is around a decade old? P4 single core, probably at best 3ghz...... Max 4gb RAM..... and can you find drivers for Win7, or newer? (although, I don't think running 8, or 10, on that would even be an option. No drivers to be found....)

 

There IS a PCIx16 slot..... So, you could put in a vid card that would WAY outpower the CPU...... prolly need a better power supply though. (or, just get something that doesn't require additional power, it will still be head and shoulders better than the intel integrated thing.)

 

Even if you manage to get it running, a decent OS installed on it, it is still going to be slower than grandma on her worst arthritis day....... if fact, it'll prolly make grandma look positively speedy. :)

For your next trick, depending on what software you want to run...... I am thinking you better pick up a side order of patience with that as well. :D

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:rofl: ... Thanks HY  .. I knew this already. At work I have a stupid HP terminal that is way slower than my grandma on her worst arthritis day.

I have no idea what`s wrong with this machine. I don`t even have a power cord yet. Thing is... If I can make it work and.,... if work will let me use it... it`ll at least have some on board memory and storage. This means that I could get away from having to use MSpaint to make drawings. Also with an actual HDD I could have programs like blender and such with out having to bulk up the company server capacity.

I`ll have to order that side of patience without salt , :P

Also... I haven`t been able to find out what the cpu socket is..

As to what I do at work...I do machinist drawings and design. It`s good to have a 3D vision of what I need made.

Edited by donnato
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Probably LGA 775.....

That machine is going to seriously struggle with ANY 3D app. :) Might be better than your terminal, but, I wouldn't hold my breath. :D

Hook it up, see if you can make it go. Take it from there. :D

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Hey Don, don't spend any money on that machine. Tinker with it but don't put any money into it!

 

I'll PM you with the reason. :dance:

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Yup, thank you Grondo, got it. I didn`t have high hopes for this. I mainly wanted to do just that...tinker with it. Now though, things may be looking up. :D

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Ok, update. I finally found a power cord and had a few minutes before end of shift. I just had time to set the pc on my work bench and plug it in. I didn`t have a monitor,mouse, or keyboard hooked up. When I hit the power button , I saw a series of numbers light up, 1-4 , at random , coming on and off as if it were doing an internal diagnosis. All numbers were green and stayed that way until the sequence finished and they all went out. What I think is a hard drive icon was blinking at random intervals and the power light remained on and steady. Disc tray operated properly and there was air flow from the fans.

Maybe I`ll go in on saturday and hook up my monitor, mouse, and keyboard to get a better idea why this was discarded.

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Probably just got replaced...... Or, windows has an issue. I don't recall at what point Dell started putting recovery partitions on the hard drives, but, it it has one, might be able to solve most of it's problems by just doing a factory reset. All has the bonus of nuking all the previous owners files and such.

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Aww.. but I`m nosy and wanted to see what they`ve been up to. :rofl:  Actually .. I won`t mind doing that since it would probably nuke any bugs too??  If that becomes an option, I may need some help figuring just how to do that. :D

 

Edited by donnato
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Should be able to go to dells' site, give 'em the service tag, or express service code, and find out EXACTLY what it came with stock.

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Never thought of that HY, thanks. Too bad I left it at work, I really didn`t want to go there tomorrow.. :doh:

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Ok, before the boss comes back tomorrow I took some time at the end of my shift to plug up this PC. I used the card VGA for my monitor, a rear USB for the mouse and (a questionable) key board. Now the fun part. POST proceeded and ended up showing me a very nice , flowery, wallpaper showing what I think is an icon showing no internet connection (I`m not crazy enough to plug this unknown into our company server). Start button did nothing, so I tried the enter key. Damn thing is passworded. I have no chance of getting the password.  There was an option to change the p/w so just for fun I clicked it (actually, I down arrowed to it since the cursor was not yet visible), this told me I needed to plug in a removeable storage device, like a thumb  drive. I didn`t have one handy. Long story short-er ... I powered down to move the keyboard to a front USB because it seemed wonky but, this time .. no POST and a black screen with the monitor power light amber. Now the PC front panel showed the #s 3 & 4 lit and solid. Looking in the manual (link posted above) this shows a memory fail.

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Reseat the memory first, and blow out the slots, and contacts on the memory itself. Try again. Might just have wiggled loose. If that still doesn't help, and there is more than one stick in there, yank one, try again, if still no soap, swap 'em out, and try yet again. See what happens.

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Thanks HY, I read that in the manual linked above and after popping off the side cover, I poked around inside a bit. I will have to do a good cleaning inside but, I did yank one of the 2 cards to see what I had. They`re Samsung 512 MB cards... :doh::lmao: I also slipped out one of the 2 HDDs. They`re 1160 GB 7200 rpm units. The PSU is a Dell unit rated at a whopping 305W @ 110V . Boss came in then so I had to button it up and go back to work.

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Bosses do tend to pick the least convenient times to show up. Didn't he know you were BUSY??????

Probably DDR2 RAM??? That stuff is starting to get rare, and expensive.....

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True that HY  .. Luckily I have a donor who has upgraded his Dell and has offered to send me stuff.. I`m more concerned about getting past the pass word. I don`t care what`s on this unit... I just want to fix it.

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There is a Linux utility you can get, burn to a dvd, boot from that, and nuke the password. :) Check out the directions here.

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Wow thank you HY that`s awsome ... scary, but awsome. First I`ll have to fix what is wrong though.  While testing I did have another oddity. When the monitor was plugged into the tuner card, I got a clear screen showing a nice wallpaper and the password request. I realized that was as far as I could go at that time and shut down. I then moved the monitor to the mobo vid out. It went all wonky and showed a grid pattern with rectangular areas highlighted in light gray ... looking kinda like a maze design. I suppose that, at this stage, that could be caused by any number of issues so I`ll begin by getting the diagnosis lights to give me the ok. Now they`re showing a memory failure so that`s where I`ll start. Luckily I don`t have to spend $ on this. A friend has updated his Dell pc and has offered to send me the parts he replaced but which are still functional.

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Check in the system bios, and see what the priority for video is. You may be getting that 'test pattern' simply because the add-on card is set to 'first'.

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Thanks, I`ll have to see how to boot into the bios. I know that on my pc I get a note during POST to press Del to enter system bios. I figure it`ll be different for the Dell though.

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