Author Topic: Old boxes  (Read 2354 times)

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Old boxes
« on: 03 June, 2021, 09:40:58 am »
How old are your computers?  My main box is 11 years old and the one I use for pootling about at program development dates from 2002.

Here's a rather good article about old computers in science: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-01431-y.

Nice to know I'm not alone.
But they never got to Carcassonne.

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #1 on: 03 June, 2021, 10:41:24 am »
My main iMac hails from late 2015 (it doesn't seem that long ago I bought it). If Apple get around to releasing a new version (there's some 32-inch behemoth in the offing) I'll probably upgrade, especially if they do a version in hot pink, but it works fine so I'm not in a hurry. The mothership Macbook is about the same age and needs replacing but I've yet to work up the wherewithal to deal with IT procurement.

I have a 2011 Macbook Air that I use for boring meetings and a 2009 Mac Mini (with an SSD upgrade) that works as a server for the printer and backups. Even the 2009 machine, when taken for a spin, is quite spritely and quite capable even with bloated modern web pages, though it wouldn't be your first choice for transcoding 4k video.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
  • Custard Wallah
    • Mr Larrington's Automatic Diary
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #2 on: 03 June, 2021, 11:24:28 am »
There’s a 2009 laptop around somewhere but it ent been switched on in a couple of years.  T'other laptop is 2014 vintage, the big one in the Estate Office is ~2016 and the Great Hall one 2020.  Although the latter's keyboard dates from 1990.
External Transparent Wall Inspection Operative & Mayor of Mortagne-au-Perche
Satisfying the Bloodlust of the Masses in Peacetime

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #3 on: 03 June, 2021, 11:39:01 am »
I've still got my first ever computer somewhere – a 1995ish Canon laptop. It was working until I tried to demonstrate the fact and the screen fell off due to plastic rot.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #4 on: 03 June, 2021, 12:22:16 pm »
2008 24" iMac with a replacement SSD here.  It does everything I need, but the screen has some burn in/bleed through.     I'll be looking to replace it soonish, but want to see if Apple are offering a larger display later in the year. 
Not fast & rarely furious

tweeting occasional in(s)anities as andrewxclark

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #5 on: 03 June, 2021, 03:34:09 pm »
~2004 G5 tower, now sleeping with the fluff under my desk.
2012 iMac running a power PC processor - to make programmes from the dark ages work and has all of my music on it, plus an ancient version of iTunes which isn't actual  torture to use.
2015 iMac SSD conversion. My everyday machine.
2020 MacbookAir-mostly gets used when I'm in bed.
2020 Asus laptop of somesort -bought cos I needed a 64bit windows machine to run something. I've never really used it.

ETA - Akshually the 2012 iMac is using an Intel Core i5 - but it will run Power PC processor programmes - sometimes....

The Mac Pro Tower I use at work dates back to 2008, runs on a spinning disc, and most of the time is used for running Creative Suite stuffs and streaming radio quite happily. Firefox on it won't run CycleChat  - but I remain to be convinced that that is any sort of loss.
They won't buy me a new one because software subscription.

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #6 on: 03 June, 2021, 03:40:19 pm »
I do have a G4 tower in the summer house. I keep it because it looks cool, though not cool enough for me to be allowed to clutter the house to it. I stole it from work (they made me redundant, so I took everything).

I last used it several years ago when some obscure reason that necessitated the sending of a fax presented itself. Modems, remember them?
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #7 on: 03 June, 2021, 07:56:21 pm »
There's a G4 tower down there.  Hasn't been plugged in for a while.
<--

Of a similar vintage is the S3 motherboard in our no-longer-in-use router, which was retired in favour of a PCEngines embedded thing a couple of years ago.  It's been sitting around as a cold spare pending me needing the rack space for something more important.

Honourable mention to the Official BHPC Jam-Filled Babbage Engine™, which features a DVD drive, WiFi that doesn't work with WPA2, wired Ethernet that doesn't work properly in Windows 10, and a "Designed for Windows XP" sticker.  It's a Toshiba laptop of the vintage that stubbornly refuses to die.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #8 on: 03 June, 2021, 08:25:14 pm »
I have a ca 2003 12-inch PowerBook G4 on 24/7 on cron duties, which has a bona fide IDE SSD. It probably burns enough power each year to pay for the Raspberry Pi / NUC / whatever it should be replaced with.

Main machine is a 2015 MacBook Air bought when Apple were refusing to acknowledge the keyboards on their current machines were shite.

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #9 on: 04 June, 2021, 11:17:47 pm »
My Windows desktop is about ten years old. Took a few goes to upgrade it to Windows 10 (in the end, I needed a new monitor because no driver was available) but, apart from that, I don't really see the point in replacing it.

TheLurker

  • Goes well with magnolia.
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #10 on: 05 June, 2021, 06:47:12 am »
I've got a 23 year old BeOS box sitting on the shelf which I *will* fire up and play with again, unless I finally get around to sticking Haiku* on what was my Win7 lappie.  There're also two or three XP boxes that have been waiting for their trip to the tip for far too long.




*Only 20 years to get to R1, second β.  It'll be worth the wait.
Τα πιο όμορφα ταξίδια γίνονται με τις δικές μας δυνάμεις - Φίλοι του Ποδήλατου

MikeFromLFE

  • Previously known as Millimole
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #11 on: 05 June, 2021, 08:31:30 am »
Does "sitting boxed up in the loft" count?
If so I've got Mrs M's original Open University Amstrad PC1512 up there, complete with printer. Possibly c. 1986
Too many angry people - breathe & relax.

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #12 on: 05 June, 2021, 08:49:56 am »
Right enough, I have a thing called a Oric Atmos "up there".  Dates from around 1984-5.   It was my son's first computer. The programming manual is still up on the shelf in my office.
But they never got to Carcassonne.

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #13 on: 05 June, 2021, 10:23:19 am »
I believe I have a Spectrum in the loft. And a Cambridge Z88, which still worked last time I tried it.

Downstairs there is a PowerBook 1400 with a G3 chip upgrade, and a PowerBook (Pismo) - the most glorious of Mac portables until the Unibody Aluminium ones.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

StuAff

  • Folding not boring
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #14 on: 05 June, 2021, 09:31:08 pm »
Replying to this on my 2009 MacBook (2 Ghz Core 2 Duo, 4GB RAM, 500GB spinning rust drive). Starting up involves rather a lot of that spinning beachball, but it's mostly OK in use. Will finally be retired and replaced with something with Apple Silicon, perhaps launching as soon as WWDC…

Main system is a 2010 Mac Pro 5,1, bought end of 2019 to replace the dead 2009 4,1 I bought in 2013 (it befuddled repair technicians). 32GB RAM, startup SATA SSD on PCIe card (Mojave), 3TB HD (Mac data), 500GB SSD (Windows 10), Radeon RX580 8GB, USB 3.0 card. Old, but gold. Still in use is my Mac Pro 1,1 bought new in 2006, hooked up to a 2007 BenQ monitor. Waiting for the AS Mac Pro or a slightly-less-extraordinarily priced 7,1.

And a lot of the peripherals are old too. I still use an original (beige, and somewhat yellowing) Microsoft Intellimouse Optical (my first one died after a year or two, this one I think is 17 or 18 years old....). My HP Deskjet 959C dates from 2001, original cartridges no longer seem to be widely available but remanufactured ones are no problem. Scanner's an Epson Perfection V500. Most recent speaker purchases: two Creative Labs Inspire 5700 sets (2003) from eBay. Bought the first a couple of years back, it packed up after about 18 months. Bought another, that broke too, sadly...they sounded great when they worked. I'll be buying something Not Creative to replace them.

Prior to the 1,1 I had a G4 (Mirrored Drive Doors, dual gig). The 'Wind Tunnel' machine (got a lot quieter with the Apple replacement PSU).

StuAff

  • Folding not boring
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #15 on: 05 June, 2021, 09:41:24 pm »
I've got a 23 year old BeOS box sitting on the shelf which I *will* fire up and play with again, unless I finally get around to sticking Haiku* on what was my Win7 lappie.  There're also two or three XP boxes that have been waiting for their trip to the tip for far too long.




*Only 20 years to get to R1, second β.  It'll be worth the wait.
An actual BeBox? Ooh. Nice. I still have a live BeOS CD  (x86) somewhere or other. Very pretty, technically impressive, but not a lot of actual use.…managed to get Haiku running on VirtualBox a while back.

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #16 on: 05 June, 2021, 10:37:39 pm »
I would think people have old computers but do they use them?

My main computer is a crappy Samsung netbook dated Nov 2011 with a SSD running Linux. It's my newest computer and it was low spec even in 2011, and just shows how modern OSs are over bloated.

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #17 on: 06 June, 2021, 08:25:03 am »
I would think people have old computers but do they use them?

My main computer is a crappy Samsung netbook dated Nov 2011 with a SSD running Linux. It's my newest computer and it was low spec even in 2011, and just shows how modern OSs are over bloated.

Yeah.  My software-pootling box runs on XP. It used to take about 10 minutes to get up & running but since I took it off-line and cleared out all the load-on-boot stuff it's up and chirpy in under a minute.

I have a couple of similarly agëd XP boxes that got their balls in a knot after I fired them up connected to the Internet and AVG did an update.  At some point when I CBA I'll put Slax or similar on a USB stick and have a go at their registries.
But they never got to Carcassonne.

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #18 on: 06 June, 2021, 08:25:52 am »
I believe I have a Spectrum in the loft.
We have a ZX81 ::-)

TheLurker

  • Goes well with magnolia.
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #19 on: 06 June, 2021, 08:44:41 am »
Quote from: StuAff
An actual BeBox? Ooh. Nice.
I should be so lucky.  Nah, it's a *very* low end x86 running BeOS 5.  Which was a fun installation/upgrade from 4.5  The idiots at the pressing plant had labelled CD 1 as CD 2 & vice versa.

Quote from: StuAff
... Very pretty, technically impressive, but not a lot of actual use.
Can't say for the live CD, but a real live machine was very handy and it was my machine of choice for a year or two for leisure/fun programming.  Simple web server out of the box (Poorman), came with gcc and its performance running multiple animations *and * sound simultaneously on said low-spec box was *stunning* esp cf MS Windows.  Proper file association based on MIME type rather than file extension and a crashed application didn't kill the box.  Oh and start from cold boot on a spinning rust box was blisteringly* quick, not as fast as this SSD box, but it left MS Windows for stone cold dead.

Of course it was a single user OS and I daresay the security viewed in current light would be regarded as pitiful, but I still think it a great shame it didn't make it as a commercial offering.

*Not joking, it wasn't quite like switching on a BBC B, but it was almost, "turn around and you've missed it."
Τα πιο όμορφα ταξίδια γίνονται με τις δικές μας δυνάμεις - Φίλοι του Ποδήλατου

StuAff

  • Folding not boring
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #20 on: 06 June, 2021, 10:40:38 am »
Quote from: StuAff
An actual BeBox? Ooh. Nice.
I should be so lucky.  Nah, it's a *very* low end x86 running BeOS 5.  Which was a fun installation/upgrade from 4.5  The idiots at the pressing plant had labelled CD 1 as CD 2 & vice versa.

Quote from: StuAff
... Very pretty, technically impressive, but not a lot of actual use.
Can't say for the live CD, but a real live machine was very handy and it was my machine of choice for a year or two for leisure/fun programming.  Simple web server out of the box (Poorman), came with gcc and its performance running multiple animations *and * sound simultaneously on said low-spec box was *stunning* esp cf MS Windows.  Proper file association based on MIME type rather than file extension and a crashed application didn't kill the box.  Oh and start from cold boot on a spinning rust box was blisteringly* quick, not as fast as this SSD box, but it left MS Windows for stone cold dead.

Of course it was a single user OS and I daresay the security viewed in current light would be regarded as pitiful, but I still think it a great shame it didn't make it as a commercial offering.

*Not joking, it wasn't quite like switching on a BBC B, but it was almost, "turn around and you've missed it."
Yup, Be managed a few clever tricks that no other OS has matched. And it was nice to play around with. It's hard to argue that Apple didn't make the right choice going with NeXT (Jean-Louis Gassée agrees)- as much work as it took to get from NextStep to OS X 10.0, BeOS would have been considerably harder. But, the computing world would have been better had it survived and thrived.

SoreTween

  • Most of me survived the Pennine Bridleway.
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #21 on: 06 June, 2021, 10:07:22 pm »
My main desktop and server are both 2008 vintage, quad core in the former dual in the latter.  Perfectly speedy for everything except video transcoding.  Linux natch.
To be honest though they are severely Trigger's Broom.  Both have maxed out 16Gb ram, raid 1 ssds on proper Adaptec raid controllers (throughput exceeds a single drive manufacturer bs theoretical max) and moderately recent graphics cards so really it's only the cpu & chipset that old.

Both my laptops are also 2008, core 2 duo built for XP. They too are maxed out at a rather more modest 4Gb and single ssd. One runs Win7 fine, the Mint one is ok except the vertical scrolling is sluggish, Mint 19 stuffed up the ATI driver. Both perfectly usable but mostly never replaced because I loath 16:9 with a passion. These days, now sensible aspect ratios are again available I've no need.

In the corner is a 486 kept for commwatch porpoises, 2 real com ports :-) In that crate over there is a 386 laptop, ditto. (Ya cannae do timing on a usb fake port)

In the loft I have 2 or 3 BBC B ( one is My Original that I shall be buried with), the guts of a Zx81 (working and attached to a sensible keyboard) and one other 8 bit era I forget the name of.

Newest 2 machines in the house are both Mrs Tweens, both Windows and both utter shite despite ssd upgrades.
2020 targets: None
There is only one infinite resource in this universe; human stupidity.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #22 on: 06 June, 2021, 11:45:08 pm »
I would think people have old computers but do they use them?

My Psion 5mx came out relatively recently for serial terminal duties.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

CommuteTooFar

  • Inadequate Randonneur
Re: Old boxes
« Reply #23 on: 07 June, 2021, 12:17:43 am »
I have an AMD Athlon x3 that was introduced in 2009 but I think I bought it a little later when it was cheap. I decided a long time ago to keep it alive in case there was some data I might want to get back. As time passes I am regretting that decision.  The big Akasa box Eclipse case that I bought is taking up too much space, it gats in the way of the vacuum cleaner.

Re: Old boxes
« Reply #24 on: 11 June, 2021, 03:20:41 pm »
Nothing that exotic.

Nearly everything here dates from around 2011/2012 and is largely still going strong. That includes a couple of low power Xeon based servers and numerous laptops. Most of it acquired second hand.
The Xeon-D hypervisor is a bit newer, its motherboard dating from about 2015-16.

Had to buy a new laptop last year for work from home as the old laptops were taxed with video conferencing.
And there's a new silent AMD build which just needs a CPU (chip shortage be damned)
A Few Apples Short of a Strudel