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Old 07-21-2009, 02:00 PM
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It was through Dell directs employee purchase program. Even though I am retired I still can use the TVA discount.

I have a full-sized Dell laptop as well as two MacBooks too. Yes, I know. It is silly to have so many computers. We also have three desktop machines.
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Old 07-21-2009, 03:29 PM
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Dave I think optical drives will be gone before long. Flash drives, Ipods, ect will replace them.

Yes in many way XP is my prefered system also.
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Old 07-22-2009, 07:08 AM
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Unfortunately, we don't have the MSDN at work or I could be testing Windows 7. There are a few that have downloaded the Beta version and are quite happy with it. I've been using Vista for about 2 years now. It's fantastic for installing drivers, but a pain in the neck for other things. So far, knock on wood, I've not received the BSOD (blue screen of death). However, I had a student machine that decided to crater. I finally got it back to safe mode, but it had to be rebuilt. I can find my way around Macs, but have to say, I'm lost without my right click and my scroll button. In many ways, mac is very good and stable, but very proprietary. I guess since Windows has kept me employeed for so many years, I'm kind of partial to it.
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Old 07-22-2009, 07:40 AM
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Quote:
It's fantastic for installing drivers, but a pain in the neck for other things.
Penny I would not place the pain so high..if you know what I mean
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Old 07-22-2009, 08:06 AM
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Quote:
I can find my way around Macs, but have to say, I'm lost without my right click and my scroll button.
Macs can use a standard mouse. In fact I have a Dell two-button scroll mouse on this computer (PowerMac). I even get a menu by right clicking. I don't know why Apple slavishly kept to those single button mice for so long, and still have them as the mouse pad for their laptops. I can manage with them but even with the MacBook I use a standard PC scroll mouse. They finally brought out a Mac scroll mouse (Mighty Mouse) which doesn't have buttons but acts like it does just by pressure being applied left or right. But it is quirky and I gave up on it. Apple is perhaps the most innovative computer company out there but some of their decisions are really odd. They do defend their propriety - almost as zealously as Disney and Harley-Davidson.

A friend of mine told me about his family printing business in Oklahoma. He was working there during a school break in the 1960s when a guy in a suit came in. He pulled out a piece of stationery the family store had sold...it had Mickey Mouse on it. As I recall him telling it, it went like this: "Did you print this?" "Yes." "Where is your approval from Disney to use their trademark?" "We don't have one." The guy then pulled out some legal papers and served them. "You have 24 hours to destroy all stock with our logo on them, any printing equipment with our logo, and are hereby ordered to cease and desist or we will sue you."

I also recall reading about a woman who had knitted some pot holders which had the H-D logo on them. She sold them at a flea market. Same thing happened. A Harley lawyer showed up and shut her down.
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Old 07-22-2009, 02:07 PM
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I have an HP Pavillion zd8000. It's 17". Looked beautiful when I got it, great altec lansing sound system..which I usually have muted.
Way too big to lug around. And the pentium 4 processore runs so hot that it's now turning off on me all the time. And the battery life was much too short and I never coughed up the 100 bucks to replace it.
I HATE COMPUTERS!
I'm leaning toward a Dell too. Fresenius Medical care also has an employee discount.
My son has a refurbished model that we got for dirt cheap. Go figure.
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Old 07-22-2009, 02:23 PM
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I've had great luck with refurbished computers. Both of our MacBooks are refurbs we bought direct from Apple. The G5 PowerMac I am typing this on was a refurb - actually it was one of the 1100 units they used at Va. Tech a few years ago when they linked them together into a supercomputer. This is "Node 1005" according the the sticker on the back and my letter of authenticity. It has been running almost continually for over 4 years. Nary a problem.
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Old 07-22-2009, 04:29 PM
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I also have had great luck with refurbished items, Computers, mowers, TV, ect they all work great. I just got a refurbished Canon 40d it was less than half price and works great.
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Old 07-24-2009, 08:34 AM
 
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I have been working for years - inside and outside the office - on my Toshiba Satellite, XP SP2, Explorer 7.
I bought it in 2003 ... day after day I'm aware it was a big deal.

A bad day in late december 2008 my Toshiba didn't work at the usual speed, there was something real wrong ...

I had seen some new notebook somewhere in a Carrefour or Esselunga or Conad (these are the Wal-Mart - likes in northern Italy), so I decided to buy a new Lenovo.
Huge RAM & Hard Disk.

But, as I turned it on ...OMG.
The keyboard ... some of my usual keys were missing, my fingers felt displaced.
No owner's manual, neither in the packaging or on line.
The only one I downloaded was a 200 pages "assistance manual" ... completely unuseful.
The system ... Vista.
I downgraded to XP.
Then I tried to load my Excel, Word, and so on but ... impossible, they were too old, cannot run.
I'd have to buy a whole set of new softwares ...

I needed to complete some work within the year, so ... I went and bought (50 EUR) a brand new Hard Disk, that was the fault.
I did it by myself and in a few minutes everything was OK again.
Er ... few minutes if you don't count reloading XP, downloading SP2, refusing SP3, validating Windows, and all those boring things you bump in when you reinstall everything from the very beginning ...

However, my old Toshiba works better than ever, my old Word and Excel run at their best.

The other notebook - reinitialized to Vista: it's resident and you just have to press a button. That's good - has been immediately recycled as a Christmas gift to my 17 y.o. son, who's very proud of his new tool: very fast, very good in playing games, OK in Facebook and MSN Messenger and all other stuffs.

(Thank you Toshiba).
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Old 07-24-2009, 09:00 AM
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One thing I can't emphasize enough is the need to back up your computers. I have both on-line and local back up. There is an external HD connected to my main computer and it backs up every night. It is also a bootable backup. I also have a Mozy account which backs up each night. Why both? Well, Mozy (just like Carbonite) is great but it would take a while to get all your files downloaded. It took two weeks for the initial upload. So if the normal HD crashes I have everything already backed up locally. Mozy is there in case the house burns down or we get burglarized. It is cheap insurance.
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