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Monthly Archives: June 2006

I came to know about WordPress when I search for alternative to Blogger. I find Blogger not so customizable to my taste. First and foremost reason is Open Source of its nature. Then Categories and ability to create additional pages. These two and other nice features brought me here. Though I wanted to migrate to wordpress, the Import tool option in wordpress realized my wish in a few minutes. Just like that able to migrated to wordpress from Blogger. All my posting and comments were imported to wordpress without any hassles. Hats off to WordPress!

WordPress, you have impressed me!

I am hunting for good motherboard for my dream PC. In this process I came to know about a lot of recent happenings in hardware side. Based on my requirement I have drafted this motherboard selection guide, which may help you also.

My requirement:
A powerful PC with latest features at budget around Rs. 50K. The usage of this PC will be mostly browsing, office suite, multimedia, image and simple video editing, email, education software, good racing games (not hardcore game PC) and linux distribution installation/testing. Future expansion of features also considered.

Base decisions:
Based on analysis and test reports from various internet sources (especially http://www.anandtech.com), I decided to go for AMD 64 bit Dual Core Processor for better performance. The socket AM2 was decided since it supports DDR2 RAM and virtualization in better way.

For motherboard chipset side, I decided to go for nVidia based chipset with on-board graphics. The reason for on-board graphics is the good review about performance of nVidia on-board graphics; and another reason is that I don’t require very huge graphical hard core gaming in my PC. In future PCI-E x16 (Enhanced PCI) slot can be plugged in with more powerful Graphics card, nowadays popularly called as GPU (Graphical Processor Unit). I have included motherboards without on-board graphics also in this guide for those who opt for that. I have not considered nVidia’s latest SLI chipsets, since I am not interested in dual VGA.

Other basic requirement such as 1GHz FSB (Fron Side Bus – connects CPU with NorthBridge Chip of Motherboard), SATA II standard with RAID, IDE, atleast 5.1 channel Audio, DVI-D output (better monitor support), TV-out, USB Ports, 1Gbit Lan (for internet – router/modem connection) and expandable PCI-E/PCI sockets are ensured in this guide.

Considering these requirements I found GeForce 6150 / nForce 430 combination from nVidia would be best fit. Here GeForce 6150 is the Northbridge chipset and nForce 430 is the Southbridge chipset.

I don’t know when I am going to assemble such PC, but this guide may be helpful for others in the mean time.

For more details:
http://www.nvidia.com http://www.amd.com http://www.asus.com http://www.msi.com.tw/index.htm

Here is the motherboard selection guide in JPEG format with prices from http://www.anandtech.com as on 28-Jun-2006.

Motherboard Selection Guide

Life is now quite different for me without a Computer in my home after around 5 years. Some times it is irritating and some times I find good time in helping my loving wife and enjoying the times with my cute 4 months old baby.

I dream for a PC with the following configuration at the minimum, which should not cost above 50K. Do you think impossible for this price? let us see..

Configuration of proposed Dream PC:

  • AMD Athlon 64 X2 >4200+ (Socket AM2)
  • Motherboard ASUS M2NPV-MX or MSI K9NGM2
  • 1GB RAM DDR2 – 800 MHz
  • Seagate 200GB SATA HDD x 2 (RAID 0)
  • Viewsonic Wide screen 19″/20″ LCD monitor
  • Sony DVD-RW 4x
  • Speakers min. 5.1 Channel with woofers
  • Good Microphone
  • Wireless Keyboard cum Mouse
  • APC 500VA UPS
  • Bluetooth dongle
  • Infrared dongle
  • ATX Cabinet with SMPS

Multiple OS Configuration of proposed Dream PC:

  • Ubuntu Linux with GNOME (>= 6.06) – For productive Home PC for everyone @ home (and also to have a feel of Debian)
  • Gentoo Linux with Fluxbox/WindowMaker – For serious Linux learning purpose (a lot of compilation/optimization/configurations)
  • Fedora Linux with XFCE/Enlightenment – For updating me with the Industry leader Redhat’s way and upcoming beautiful enlightenment desktop
  • OpenSuSE with KDE – To know the Novell’s effort in Linux
  • Mandriva Linux with KDE – To keep track of what is going on here
  • FreeBSD – To have a feel about BSD systems – no serious work, just to weigh the OS
  • OpenSolaris based distribution – Want to have live feel of how this evolves
  • FreeDOS – To have this OS to have a feel of old DOS and mostly for DOS based games (I don’t know whether this DOS will work on latest hardware configuration)
  • Test Partition 1
  • Test Partition 2 – These two partitions are meant for testing different Linux/BSD/Solaris distributions.

Applications of proposed Dream PC:

  • A basic office suite such as documents/spreadsheets/slides for home
  • Base System programming development platform
  • Audio/Video such as MP3/Audio-CD/VCD/DVD Playing
  • Image and Video editing of my kid Udhaya’s photos and video clips downloaded from Kodak C310 camera
  • Internet and email
  • My web site and blog maintenance – HTML authoring tools
  • Various Linux distribution downloading/installing/learning and keep in pace with them
  • Education Software and games for my kid Udhaya
  • My mobile Nokia 6610 backup/restore
  • Nice strategy and Racing games.
  • I want this machine to be my all time favourite…. it should server for every purpose in my day to day life.

It will take some more time for me to spend for my dream PC. Till then to work, I am planning to rebuild my legacy PC. I have a faulty motherboard (Tomato board with AMD K6 Processor, 400MHz) given it for servicing. I have not yet collected from the service guy for more than a year. Since it is reported that it is not repairable, I have to get an alternative board of good old cheap one. I hope to build a simple PC, based on this old configuration. I have most of other peripherals. It seems to be economical to go for a good second hand PC, instead of rebuilding this PC. But since it is my first PC, which I assembled it for more than 3 months, buying a part of components every month – I have a sentiment of retaining, rebuilding and keep it alive for ever.

Configuration of proposed Legacy PC:

  • AMD K6 400MHz
  • Legacy motherboard with AMD/USB/SDRAM support (to be bought)
  • 32MB SDRAM min. (to be bought)
  • 10GB IDE HDD
  • Yamaha Audio Card
  • SiS 1MB Video Card
  • Cheap Speaker/Mic
  • Legacy 14″ Color CRT Monitor (to be bought)
  • Keyboard
  • Legacy Mouse (yet to be bought, if possible repair the current faulty one)


Multiple OS Configuration of proposed Legacy PC:

  • Damn smal Linux (>= 3.0) – Ideal for legacy PCs
  • After assembling my dream PC, I can make use of this legacy PC for my hands on work on system programming and OS development kind of nice dirty works.


Hope to update you with my experience on legacy PC @ home by next month!

This month I have faced a lot of changes with smile (Who moved my Cheese?). I have given my Home PC to my loving brother. And also I have handed over my official HP nx6120 Laptop to T & B International, as a part of my relieving from T & B. I have joined HCL Technologies Ltd, Chennai on 15th June. Now I don’t have any personal PC or Laptop. Hope to go for some nice futuristic Configuration of my dream PC! Till then I will move this blog with something I think, I experience in my office workstation, my wish….!

I use to enjoy using Linux as end user as well as power user. In either way, I am a well-satisfied user. I have not come to this opinion in a day or two. It has been maturing for the last one and half a year. Now I am full-fledged Linux Home PC user. It is around 9 months before; I had tried most of the major and active Linux distributions. Nothing gave me the satisfaction of making my home PC, **Linux Only** system, so that I need not depend on MS-Windows for my homework. During this search (thirst indeed) I found Ubuntu. It seems to be okay kind of distribution initially. But after started using for more than 2 months, I came to know that I lost myself in this wonderfully designed operating system based on GNU/Linux. The major features I enjoy are,
1. Well-integrated applications available in one single CD along with OS.
2. Excellent Hardware detection
3. Stable applications and services
4. No unnecessary services running by default, which is a security risk as well as load on system.
5. Unique look and feel.
6. The wonderful, dead easy software update and installation tool, synaptic.

But, I donโ€™t like Ubuntu 6.06. You know why? It is working in my HPnx6120 Laptop, as it should be in a system automatically. Whatever the issues I faced during beta version installation, have been fixed (Suspend and Hibernate works like anything!). I donโ€™t get chance to tweak to make some thing working. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ˜ฆ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ˜ฆ