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View Full Version : Decent Dirt cheap system for my dad's office?


FastRedPonyCar
01-31-07, 03:51 PM
My dad's office has 3 or 4 machines that are old and need replacing.

I've built several machines for him in the past often using a few of my own spare parts but I've gotten rid of most of my extra stuff save for a few cables and screws and misc small hardware and some fans.

He needs these machines replaced and while I know I could probably get away with some little rinky dink asus shuttle micro pc and be done with it, I'd like it to be a little better so it won't be out of date AS soon.

They're not doing anything major on it. Just web browsing, email, word processing.

So far I've got this.

Coolermaster case w/430W PSU - $75
ASUS A8N5X 939 board - $73
Mushkin 1 gig PC3200 - $103
AMD Opteron 148 - $110
WD 160gig SATA 3gb hdd - $63
NEC floppy drive (I know.. their clients STILL prefer floppy disk) - $6
Samsung DVD burner - $30

All said and done and shipped is $489.

I know it'll probably be fine and I poured through the newegg reviews for the ram and mobo (the only 2 I wasn't 100% sure about since I've never dealt with either).

Is there anything glaringly off with this list that should be substitued for something else?

Remember, I want the cheapest NICE stuff. I trust WD and my samsung dual layer drive has kicked butt for months now. The other systems I've built for him used the same coolermaster case and it was nice and painless to build.

SlieTheSecond
01-31-07, 03:58 PM
Web browsing, email and word? Thats it?
Why do you need a 160GB hard drive, and a cpu that fast?

What are they currently running?

FastRedPonyCar
01-31-07, 04:01 PM
Their accounting software supposedly taxes the system (hahah no pun intended) and they have huge amounts of client data that is held on the machines.

that and for the price:performance ratio, that 160 gig drive is a sweet spot compared to the other WD SATA drives with 16mb cache.

I'm sure they do other stuff with it but if they do, I don't know what it is so I don't want to hand them something equivalent to an E-machine and it be obsolete after a year. Yeah making money building them is nice and all but I can't screw over the old man like that.. especially since his dells they're using have been there for at LEAST 5 years.

J-Mag
01-31-07, 04:16 PM
You aren't including operating system costs...

I have found it cheaper to buy pre-configured dell / compaq RIGs for office worker bees. The OS usually pushes a component build over the top, not to mention you don't have to waste your time building it.

On the other hand, High end work Stations cost significantly more when they are pre-built.

FastRedPonyCar
02-01-07, 07:36 AM
I've got fully licensed copies of all the software they need already so I only have to price out the components.

The reason he's coming to me to do this is becuase in the past, they've had components fail in their proprietary machines and been forced to wait for the company's tech support (which he admits was quite shoddy) and they were also forced to use THAT company's parts which were often much more expensive than other brand's.

He and his partners would rather just spend mabey a little more money and let me do it since he knows A) it will get done right B) they can get tech support whenever they need it (from someone who speaks perfect english no less!) and C) they won't be limited to overpriced proprietary PC manufacturers hardware if they need to upgrade or replace something.

For instance, last year, a power supply went out in one of their dell machines. A tell tech came to their office to diagnose the problem and said it was the power supply but since it was out of warranty, couldn't get a replacement since they weren't made anymore :rolleyes: The solution? Buy a new dell :thumbdwn: That's when he said no thanks and called me. I was able to buy an inexpensive case, motherboard and PSU and reuse all the other components and he said it was running better after that than it did brand new from dell.

So after dell tried to screw his business and I saved the day (and data), they've got a new tech.

That and they know that little extra bit of $$ in my pockets helps me out a lot.

J-Mag
02-01-07, 01:40 PM
Well if you are providing tech support and the OS software is already licensed it can only be a win for your pops...

ynnek
02-02-07, 11:03 AM
Okay, just be careful.

Last thing you want, is to be picking up a girl on a Friday afternoon in your Mustang to spend an extended weekend at the shore(mountains, or whatever you have in AL ;) ), and have your dad call you up all frantic saying that their main computer is down, and they need it up over the weekend so that they finish X task for a client by Monday morning.

FastRedPonyCar
02-02-07, 01:29 PM
hahaha some other company manages their servers so I'm not liable for any data crashes or anything like that. These machines are for employees. All data is backed up 2 times a day to the servers so in the event that a machine crashes they can just go grab their old machine, log in and load their last used data.

Oh and in Montgomery, we have nothing exciting to do. Chances are, on a friday night, I'll be at band practice until the wee hours of the morning so dad can wait until saturday.

ynnek
02-02-07, 01:47 PM
hahaha some other company manages their servers so I'm not liable for any data crashes or anything like that. These machines are for employees. All data is backed up 2 times a day to the servers so in the event that a machine crashes they can just go grab their old machine, log in and load their last used data.

Oh and in Montgomery, we have nothing exciting to do. Chances are, on a friday night, I'll be at band practice until the wee hours of the morning so dad can wait until saturday.


Okay, you just want to make sure both sides agree on expectations then. Are you absolutely _sure_ in an emergency your dad is willing to wait until Saturday?

Things like this can burn you in the real world unless you get it in writing.

ynnek
02-02-07, 01:49 PM
hahaha some other company manages their servers so I'm not liable for any data crashes or anything like that. These machines are for employees. All data is backed up 2 times a day to the servers so in the event that a machine crashes they can just go grab their old machine, log in and load their last used data.

Oh and in Montgomery, we have nothing exciting to do. Chances are, on a friday night, I'll be at band practice until the wee hours of the morning so dad can wait until saturday.


Okay, you just want to make sure both sides agree on expectations then. Are you absolutely _sure_ in an emergency your dad is willing to wait until Saturday? What happens if you had plans on Saturday too?

Things like this can burn you in the real world unless you get them in writing.

FastRedPonyCar
02-02-07, 03:44 PM
yeah he's really cool about these things. These machines are for low level employees. Their work, although important, is trivial compared to what most do.