Author Topic: Computer obsolescence  (Read 2521 times)

ian

  • why would any decent person have such thoughts?
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #25 on: 23 May, 2022, 06:54:35 pm »
For general use, a decade-old computer is probably fine, it's only when webly things start to not work that its prognosis negative. For laughs, I'm writing this on the 2009 Mac Mini - most websites still seem to work fine, other than the average local newspaper site, which will kill anything.

Mobile OS are of course, reliant on app developers continuing to support older apps (and the financial model beyond hobbyist apps doesn't encourage that).

Games need right-there, right-now performance so they push the envelope. Dealing with hi-definition video is still a load, especially at 4k and above, though with modern graphics cards you can mostly do this is in real-time without too much sweatbreaking. Print and digital imagery isn't even an effort – and I remember the good old days when applying a Photoshop filter meant you could go make a cup of tea, drink the tea, have a chat, make another cup of tea, pop to the shops to get some more biscuits, and come back to see it was still at 78%.

We do bigly data science which mostly requires a lot of memory, a machine that moves data quickly, but only reasonable processing power, but then it's generally down to how long do you want to wait for it to complete and is it worth paying more to not wait so long.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets, the Putin of pandas

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #26 on: 23 May, 2022, 07:08:50 pm »
[snip]
My current work laptop is 3 years old and due for replacement. Not due to speed issues, but because the battery controllers are crap, the batteries overheat and rupture. (it is a Dell, btw)  It will be out of warranty after 3 years, so I get a new laptop.

If it weren't for that defect, there is no reason why I couldn't keep using it for another couple of years at least.

[snip]

If a replacement battery is not available, it can be still be used plugged into the mains, and also be used as a desktop with an external monitor and mouse.

Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
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Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #27 on: 23 May, 2022, 07:28:24 pm »
The only reason I pensioned off the media PC in the Great Hall – which IIRC dated back to ~2016 – was because the noise it made whenever it broke into a canter was driving me nuts.  Otherwise it'd have been fine to keep doing what it was doing until Microsith pulls the plug on Win 10.

The fanless replacement job does generate some alarming numbers on CoreTemp when jibbling video, mind.  I presume SCIENCE will throttle it back before it executes the HCF instruction.
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Satisfying the Bloodlust of the Masses in Peacetime

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #28 on: 23 May, 2022, 10:04:00 pm »
[snip]
My current work laptop is 3 years old and due for replacement. Not due to speed issues, but because the battery controllers are crap, the batteries overheat and rupture. (it is a Dell, btw)  It will be out of warranty after 3 years, so I get a new laptop.

If it weren't for that defect, there is no reason why I couldn't keep using it for another couple of years at least.

[snip]

If a replacement battery is not available, it can be still be used plugged into the mains, and also be used as a desktop with an external monitor and mouse.

Err, I think you missed the 'overheat and rupture ' bit

It is best not to be near a lithium battery when  it does that
<i>Marmite slave</i>

Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
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Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #29 on: 23 May, 2022, 10:10:04 pm »
Is it one of those dimbo laptops that won’t run from the mains unless there's a battery installed?  AIUI some are less fussy about that sort of thing.
External Transparent Wall Inspection Operative & Mayor of Mortagne-au-Perche
Satisfying the Bloodlust of the Masses in Peacetime

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #30 on: 24 May, 2022, 11:26:36 am »
Is it one of those dimbo laptops that won’t run from the mains unless there's a battery installed?  AIUI some are less fussy about that sort of thing.

It is one of those dumb designs where the battery is soldered in place, under the mousepad part.

Replacement involves Dell paying for an engineer to come to my location to do it (while under warranty).

So when the battery starts to go, the case bulges. I doubt very much it would run without a battery.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

ian

  • why would any decent person have such thoughts?
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #31 on: 24 May, 2022, 11:39:56 am »
I have told you about the time my Dell caught fire and forced the evacuation of the building and the exciting presence of the entire local fire department. It was less of a fire, more a slow smoky smoulder. Being the US though, the FD would only approach it in full breathing gear and hazmat. Being British, I was just standing there in office casual and pointing unnecessarily toward the offending item.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets, the Putin of pandas

Beardy

  • What’s this do?
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Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #32 on: 24 May, 2022, 11:58:43 am »
Given that Big Business ™, not renowned for spending money on useful stuffs, generally has a 4 year refresh cycle on middling hardware running the nearly latest versions of Seattle software, I would say anything over this is a bonus for mostly just working. If you have the wherewithal and tuits to fiddle, you can invariably get longer from kit, but it is a cycle that follows the law of diminishing returns.
Sorting my life out, one shed at a time.

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #33 on: 24 May, 2022, 03:20:46 pm »
I have told you about the time my Dell caught fire and forced the evacuation of the building and the exciting presence of the entire local fire department. It was less of a fire, more a slow smoky smoulder. Being the US though, the FD would only approach it in full breathing gear and hazmat. Being British, I was just standing there in office casual and pointing unnecessarily toward the offending item.

Dell seem to have form here.

How do you put out a lithium ion fire?

Seems powder extinguisher will do it.

So if stuck with a battery on fire, dump a packet of bicarb of soda on it.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

ian

  • why would any decent person have such thoughts?
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #34 on: 24 May, 2022, 03:26:43 pm »
If I recall, they picked it up with tongs and dropped into a big bucket of sand and took it out into the parking lot. Made a fair amount of smoke, though not much flame, but was obviously burning as the plastic was melting and charring.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets, the Putin of pandas

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #35 on: 24 May, 2022, 03:46:17 pm »
I have told you about the time my Dell caught fire and forced the evacuation of the building and the exciting presence of the entire local fire department. It was less of a fire, more a slow smoky smoulder. Being the US though, the FD would only approach it in full breathing gear and hazmat. Being British, I was just standing there in office casual and pointing unnecessarily toward the offending item.

Dell seem to have form here.

How do you put out a lithium ion fire?

Seems powder extinguisher will do it.

So if stuck with a battery on fire, dump a packet of bicarb of soda on it.

I expect Dell have "form" mainly due to the degree of market penetration they've achieved.

As to putting them out, I found this.

"How to Extinguish a Lithium-Ion Battery Fire
Despite their name, lithium-ion batteries used in consumer products do not contain any lithium metal. Therefore, a Class D fire extinguisher is not to be used to fight a lithium-ion battery fire. Class D fire extinguishers, which contain dry powder, are intended for combustible metal fires only. Since lithium-ion batteries aren’t made with metallic lithium, a Class D dry powder extinguisher would not be effective.

So, how do you choose the right fire extinguisher in this scenario? Lithium-ion batteries are considered a Class B fire, so a standard ABC or dry chemical fire extinguisher should be used. Class B is the classification given to flammable liquids. Lithium-ion batteries contain liquid electrolytes that provide a conductive pathway, so the batteries receive a Class B fire classification."

https://resources.impactfireservices.com/how-do-you-put-out-lithium-ion-battery-fire
We are making a New World (Paul Nash, 1918)

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #36 on: 24 May, 2022, 03:54:30 pm »
Used to be a fair trade in old computer equipment at a corporate I used to work at. Cages would appear with stuff that had been replaced.  You were free to take what you wanted, to update your existing corporate setup, for instance to add a second monitor, grab a laptop docking station for home, or to take anything else home and use as you wanted.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #37 on: 24 May, 2022, 08:08:19 pm »
How do you put out a lithium ion fire?

Unless you're on a plane or something, you contain it with the Explosion Containment Pie Dish™, chuck it out the nearest window or simply run away.

(AIUI the main fire-fighting approach is to try to keep adjacent cells cool enough that the thermal run-away doesn't spread.)

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #38 on: 24 May, 2022, 11:58:46 pm »
How do you put out a lithium ion fire?

Unless you're on a plane or something, you contain it with the Explosion Containment Pie Dish™, chuck it out the nearest window or simply run away.

(AIUI the main fire-fighting approach is to try to keep adjacent cells cool enough that the thermal run-away doesn't spread.)

I believe the first thing to do in the event of a Lithium ion battery fire, is to start filming it...

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #39 on: 25 May, 2022, 12:09:12 am »
I have had great success with installing Linux on out-of-support Chromebooks. They can all do web browsing, youtube etc.

A ten year old PC is still a beast.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #40 on: 25 May, 2022, 12:33:16 am »
The BHPC's former Official Jam-Filled Babbage Engine is one of those indestructible Toshiba laptops, 2012 vintage.  It runs Windows 10 surprisingly competently (for now), and is entirely usable for basic web browsing and vaguely normal Officey things.  Even the race timing software ran more or less okay, mainly through being designed in a way that all the time-critical stuff takes place on dedicated external hardware.  The main problem was a lack of driver support (the WiFi chipset doesn't support WPA3, and the wired Ethernet doesn't support not randomly dropping packets), combined with our habit of doing lots of number-crunching very inefficiently in Excel.  We decided to replace it before an unfortunately timed Windowsupdate permanently broke something important.

Plus we wanted a new one so we could use another software package that maintains a ring-buffer of uncompressed video in RAM for time-travel purposes.  A screen that we can actually read outdoors in daylight is a bonus.

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #41 on: 31 May, 2022, 01:59:23 pm »
I have a collection of four Lenovo Thinkpads I got fro free from a customer that was throwing them out due to upgrades. Swapped the HDs for SSDs and stuck an extra stick of DRAM in a couple of them and now they all run Linux really well. The screen resolution on a couple is not up to modern standards but for a bit of Email, web browsing or document editing they are great.
I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that.

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #42 on: 31 May, 2022, 04:11:44 pm »
I'm still happily using a 2012 Macbook Pro.  It does (almost) everything asked of it but naturally won't work with some of the latest software.  Still, a very capable machine with retro-fitted SSD and 16gb RAM (this is the last model that allows user upgrades ::-) which is largely why I've hung onto it  ;)).
The sound of one pannier flapping

Morat

  • I tried to HTFU but something went ping :(
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #43 on: 01 July, 2022, 09:19:56 pm »
I have a galaxy sII I bought 3 days after uk release that can still be used. If I could get a third battery it would probably last a week between charges, like new. Not sure I'd want to. You do tend to get used to hardware and software improvements on stuff from that era. Much later on then I'm not sure that's the case.  I reckon the latest iPhone and top Samsung phones are not really significantly better.  Law of diminishing returns I reckon.  Certainly as the prices of high end phones went significantly higher I went down the ranges and have been quite happy with what I've got.

IIRC, the S2 had a screen that wasn't surpassed for some time. Being an AMOLED+ (according to Samsung's somewhat random nomenclature) it didn't have the Pentile pixel arrangement of later screens but a conventional RGB layout that made it look nice and sharp.  The camera was a bit bollox though, when I compare old photos with ones I've taken on my newer phones.
Everyone's favourite windbreak

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #44 on: 01 July, 2022, 11:46:14 pm »
The camera gave me pretty good results. Better than the nikon coolpix digital camera I had from about the same time. For a phone camera it used to surprise my mate's with the quality.

I was part of a walking group and we used to share photos from walks and social gatherings for the online blog.  They often used my phone's images despite some keen photographers with good dedicated cameras.  My phone still didn't have the outright quality of their kit but it got the photos they missed purely by being easier to get out and get the images.  It's why phone cameras have taken over from the more basic digital cameras. For its day the s2 was still a good camera.

Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #45 on: 02 July, 2022, 03:45:19 pm »
Original from 2010:- CPU i7 920 now overclocked to 3.5Ghz and motherboard with 6x2Gb ram.
Upgraded my vid card (9800->1050->1650), monitor (27"->43"), OS (XP->7->10) and changed from HD to SSD.
Various fans have also been replaced when they started to "chirp".
Still runs everything I want it to.

Luck ........... ;D

HectoJ

  • 45 to go
Re: Computer obsolescence
« Reply #46 on: 12 July, 2022, 03:49:30 pm »
As a Mac user, I had to dish out €699 to get a 2018 Mac Mini (Intel) when the M1 chip came out. My 2014 Mac Mini was not able to keep up with what I was using it for (Affinity creative suite etc), it only had a 250GB SSD anyway, which meant I was running out of space.

Other than that, I have a cheap PC I bought at Aldi for less than the mac mini (has a killer graphics card), and a tiny Acer knee-top that I installed MX Linux on (it originally had only a 32GB little flash drive, but I bought the necessary cable and installed a 250GB SSD). Runs incredibly well!

So, any Windows PC that is aging, you could install a lighter version of Linux and extent the life of the machine for many many years to come...