Uses for this old PC

7254278

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 11, 2004
2,365
0
NYC
Sorry for starting another PC thread but i need some advice.
My friend just got a new PC and he doesnt need his old one anymore. I'm a computer buff so I dont want him to throw it away! So I offered to take it of his hands.
I dont know what to do with it its pretty old, all I want you guys to do is to list what uses you would have for such a computer if you got it.

HP Pavilion 8515

Pentium 3 500-700mhz(one of the two forgot which one)
64-128 MB RAM (forgot which of the two :p )
8 MB Vram
DvD rom
20gb HD

Windows 98 and XP

Sorry for being vague about the stats :p
 

Pierre Films

macrumors member
Nov 6, 2004
33
0
It can still be used as a good MP3 and DVD machine. I wouldnt call it a great gaming machine though. I had one with much lower specs that I used for MP3s and DVDs for quite a few years before I upgraded finally :p . My mom had one of similar specs although it had a CD-RW drive. It can be good for an everyday PC.
Hope this helps a bit.

Pierre Films

P.S. Please check your PMs....please :(
 

Rocky3478

macrumors regular
Mar 7, 2005
115
0
Hey, that's ok. First thing I would do is take Windows XP off of that machine, its to intensive for it. You could maybe play some of the old DOS games or other old games on it.
 

Tech^salvager

macrumors regular
Mar 2, 2005
121
0
Portland, TX
up the ram if possible to 512 if not 256, keep windows XP on it, get rid of 98, if you have a extra better vid card around use it if possible. You can still play some good games on that and windows XP should run fine on it with 256mb ram.

OR

Give it to me :p
 

DavidLeblond

macrumors 68020
Jan 6, 2004
2,197
286
Raleigh, NC
Toss Linux on it and use it as a file server or even a webserver. My webserver runs off of a old 450MHz Dell. Only one or two people ever hit it at once so it does the job quite nicely. I wouldn't something like Amazon.com off of it tho :p :)
 

7254278

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 11, 2004
2,365
0
NYC
DavidLeblond said:
Toss Linux on it and use it as a file server or even a webserver. My webserver runs off of a old 450MHz Dell. Only one or two people ever hit it at once so it does the job quite nicely. I wouldn't something like Amazon.com off of it tho :p :)
Im not very experienced with linux but what linux version would you suggest as easy to use and which runs fairly well on the specs above
 

Bibulous

macrumors 6502a
Jan 19, 2005
716
0
Rocky3478 said:
Hey, that's ok. First thing I would do is take Windows XP off of that machine, its to intensive for it. You could maybe play some of the old DOS games or other old games on it.
I'm running XP on an old P2 350 with 256 mb ram and it works fine. If and when it gets overwhelmed with spyware or a virus, i'll reinstall XP and start over.

XP is not that bad. It runs itunes, firefox, recognizes my shuffle, burns CDs easily and is cheep. My pbook is my main computer for anything important, but if you have it, give it a try.
 

DavidLeblond

macrumors 68020
Jan 6, 2004
2,197
286
Raleigh, NC
Patmian212 said:
Im not very experienced with linux but what linux version would you suggest as easy to use and which runs fairly well on the specs above
I have Fedora Core 2 installed. It installed pretty effortlessly. Mandriva (formally Mandrake Linux) is an excellent distro as well.

I would recommend getting Knoppix Linux to try out, but I'm afraid it may not run on your machine... its worth a try if you have a faster box around. It is a LiveCD meaning you pop in the CD, boot it up, play with it and then go back to Windows without having to install a single thing.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,777
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
DavidLeblond said:
I have Fedora Core 2 installed. It installed pretty effortlessly. Mandriva (formally Mandrake Linux) is an excellent distro as well.

I would recommend getting Knoppix Linux to try out, but I'm afraid it may not run on your machine... its worth a try if you have a faster box around. It is a LiveCD meaning you pop in the CD, boot it up, play with it and then go back to Windows without having to install a single thing.
Knoppix ran on a K6/2 that we have with similar specs. Damn Small Linux is probably a better bet, though.

But to be honest, every time I've embarked on one of these projects, I've eventually decided it wasn't worth the bother and moved on. Unless you have a user in mind, getting it to run happily on Linux or somesuch is really just a chance to play around. If you have use for a fileserver, that might be a different story. But then again, getting a network hard drive that plugs into your router will be a lot easier...since you'd need a bigger drive anyway.
 

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,239
4
slooksterPSV said:
Put Linux on it, and learn it well. The industry is moving that direction as we all know. But it'd be good for a file server of MP3's
how would one go about setting up a machine like this to be a file server for MP3s?
 

dotdotdot

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2005
2,381
33
Use it as a network server if you have one...

i.e., keep XP and setup your network to access the PC so you have a 20 GB Computer for music, movies, etc... and you can store stuff on it and hook stuff up to it...
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,777
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
dotdotdot said:
Use it as a network server if you have one...

i.e., keep XP and setup your network to access the PC so you have a 20 GB Computer for music, movies, etc... and you can store stuff on it and hook stuff up to it...
If you use XP, is it hard to get around the fact that MacOS will not write to NTFS partitions? Do you have to repartition your HD so that you have a FAT partition?
 

mduser63

macrumors 68040
Nov 9, 2004
3,038
30
Salt Lake City, UT
If the two computers are networked, it doesn't matter what format their hard drives are in. When you access files on the other computer through the network, the other computer takes care of the low level hard drive access, so it makes no difference if the drive in the XP machine is NTFS or FAT32. It works the other way too. Windows machines can't write to (or even read) HFS+ (Mac) formatted hard drives natively, but networking is no problem.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,777
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
mduser63 said:
If the two computers are networked, it doesn't matter what format their hard drives are in. When you access files on the other computer through the network, the other computer takes care of the low level hard drive access, so it makes no difference if the drive in the XP machine is NTFS or FAT32. It works the other way too. Windows machines can't write to (or even read) HFS+ (Mac) formatted hard drives natively, but networking is no problem.
Ahhhh, gotcha. That makes sense. The only computers I've really run mine off network with were running Win 98. :eek:
 

840quadra

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 1, 2005
8,169
3,435
Twin Cities Minnesota
Put any Open source software on it..

Play around with making it a File server, and or a Share server for Music that your Macintosh computers can connect to..

I have a Pentium 2 300 MHZ in my network that I use as a Firewall.

It works great!!
 

wdlove

macrumors P6
Oct 20, 2002
16,568
0
My suggestion would be to use the PC to help MacRumors and gene research into disease treatment. Please see my signature.
 

savar

macrumors 68000
Jun 6, 2003
1,952
0
District of Columbia
Patmian212 said:
Sorry for being vague about the stats :p
Donate it to a non for profit organization, like an after school program or something. Also, lots of hobbyist clubs and workshops like having old machines around for parts...you could donate to one of those as well.
 

superbovine

macrumors 68030
Nov 7, 2003
2,872
0
savar said:
Donate it to a non for profit organization, like an after school program or something. Also, lots of hobbyist clubs and workshops like having old machines around for parts...you could donate to one of those as well.
In my expierence most schools want the full working computer i.e. keyboard, mouse, licesened software, and case. Although in casese a monitor as well. Just a heads up.
 

Mitthrawnuruodo

Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
13,805
174
Bergen, Norway
Install FreeBSD on it, play around with that, try setting it up as a ftp/web/file server and learn a bit about handeling a *nix system from scratch... an added bonus is that you will learn what's driving OS X at the same time, since FreeBSD and Darwin are really close relatives... ;)
 
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