02 July 2011

Before you throw out your old PC...

Consider some of the following options.

Reuse it in your home or office as network storage device/file server to keep shared use files and large files like videos on. It's not that hard to set-up a file server like that.

Install a light (in terms of system resources) linux distribution and use it as work computer for things like word processing, spreadsheets, web design or programming/development.

Use it with Linux as a learning platform to learn more about computer technology, go play around in BASH, learn how to use the command line, learn how to set-up routing, set-up a web server, learn some programming. Have fun and learn skills that can be useful at work and avoid you needing to pay a computer technician in the future.

Strip it down for parts- That DVD-RW drive is still good, so is the power supply, hard drive and PCI cards. Use them in your new PC or keep them as spares. Bring the stripped out carcass to a household hazardous waste depot for environmentally friendly disposal.

Give it someone who is less able to get one themselves, be it a child in the family, an senior who just wants to surf the web and keep busy, or someone living in poverty who your gift might make the difference to learning skills and finding a job, or staying in poverty.

Donate to a project like freegeek, who will refurbish the computer, dispose of any electronic waste in a safe way, and sell the refurbished PC for a low price to enable access to technology for everyone. They'll also 'nuke' your hard drive to destroy any data you had to protect your privacy.

Donate it to a charity store like goodwill, where it will be sold cheaply and where the revenue will do some good for the world.

At the very minimum, bring it a hazardous waste depot, there is a lot of lead and such in a PC and it should not go right into a landfill.

We hope you will consider these options next time you have an 'obsoleted' PC to deal with.
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Before you throw out your old PC... by DD-49 network is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada License.
Based on a work at network-computer-info.blogspot.com.

30 June 2011

A tip on how to possibly prolong the life of and increase the performance of your CPU

I was talking with some fellow techies today, and we where talking about maintenance or refurbishment of PCs. I raised a point about thermal creep, and thermal failure, and why I liked to, on a PC of a few years age, or one used a lot. (such as a server that is going 24/7) that I liked to pull the heatsink and CPU as part of the routine maintenance or refurbishment. 

The for it originally was I noticed that the heat-sink would seem to be improperly seated and that the thermal paste was always brown and dried up. So I'd pull em, clean the CPU die and the sink surface, put on some fresh stuff and than make sure it was seated properly when I re-installed.

I've personally noticed that on computer's where I did this, they seemed to have less CPU failures and a little better performance.

I guess it makes some sense. The thermal paste does more then just transfer heat, it also acts as seat of sorts for the two surfaces, smoothing out the imperfections in the surface of each to assure a close mated bond. That close bond is ESSENTIAL to heat transfer.

So after a bit, when that heat grease dries up, you don't have the close bond any more.I'd also suppose that fresh thermal paste is a better conductor of heat then old, dried up stuff.

As we all know, a cool CPU will last longer and give better performance than an overheated one will.

I know it's a little of a pain to pull the CPU out. (or more so, to remount the heat sink) But in my opinion, it is worth it. Thermal paste is not that expensive, so be generous with it and coat the CPU die nicely.

One warning: Where the heat sink mounts directly to the CPU socket with a steel clip on plastic nibs, be careful not to shear the plastic nibs off. But with that the only caution, I do highly recommend that re-pasting your of your chip every now and then.
Creative Commons License
A tip on how to possibly prolong the life of and increase the performance of your CPU by DD-49 network is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at network-computer-info.blogspot.com.

28 June 2011

What is an Internet exchange?

You may heard the term "Internet exchange" or simply "IX" and wondered what it is. Will I am going to write a brief answer. An Internet exchange is a building1simply put is major network that has been assigned an AS number by ARIN. They tend to be mostly Internet service providers. As for peering, that means internetworking their networks to facilitate the transfer of data between the two. (i.e.. I'm chatting with you on my ISP and its network, your on another. They have gap somehow) True peering is free, its reciprocal transfer of data. There are also IP transit companies like hurricane electric and global crossings, who charge for transmitting data, but have such a huge network, they can get away with so doing, because they can deliver data nearly anywhere on earth.
But in essence an Internet exchange aggregated all the connectivity in a region and allows the networks to share data. I will wrote on peering, IP transit and autonomous systems at a later date