|Sr. Guapo||Help me out. I am trying to expand my computer knowledge beyond Dell/Pentium/Windows. I know other alternatives exist, I just want to know about them.
I have never used anything besides Windows, so I know nothing of Linux or Mac OS. I don't plan on switching, but I was curious about the pros and cons of each alternative.
I have also never used anything but a pentium chip (excluding my Gateway 486 and Commodore 64...). What is the difference between a Pentium and say, an AMD chip. I think AMD started out just offering cheap copies of pentiums, but I don't know what they do now.
Last, what alternatives are there to Dell PCs nowadays? Gateway's bankrupt, so IBM? Compact? I do not think either of those can compete.
I was just a little curious and wanted to drag the blinders off my eyes...|
|sdw||I'm sure you could find pros and cons of Windows vs Linux on many forums and sites. But in my opinion, Linux is more for business (any kinds of servers and stuff) and Windows is for gaming (because majority of games are DirectX windows only). You'll hear it over and over that Linux is far more stable than Windows and an over all better OS than Windows. I don't know anything about MACS except they're simple and stable (because of unix based stuff).
Pentiums can have a greater clock speed than AMD and they also have hyperthreading technology (or something like that). AMD is cheaper, keeps cooler, and is better suited for graphics and games. The majority of gamers will use AMD.
You can always build your own computer. But if the thought of that scares you then you can be like me and get a HP/Compaq. I've had good experiences with HP so i continue to use them.|
|EACam||i've got a dell...their service is really great...but I'm not too impressed with the computer itself...then again, I got it as a BIG Christmas deal...so i'm not surprised.|
|masterbooda||I prefer putting my own together, because when you buy it as a full package, you usually get stuck with some real crappy parts... also you can find deals on individual pieces and save yourself alot of money... Of course I'm a computer repair technician part time so I'm always in the loop of what is new and improved...
As far as chips go... If you want compatibility, Pentium is your best bet... but if you want to fool people into thinking you know what your talking about... get an amd... because speedwise there isn't enough difference to even tell unless you have built in precision timing in your head... For example I was in a pc repair class with a guy who kept saying only amd for him... I asked him why and he said that is what the expert's say... I then asked who are the experts, and he stared at me blankly... Bottom line, Pentium = compatibility.... pay the extra buck for a better chip... plain and simple... of course this is just my opinion....
And as far as operating systems go... the majority of people I have met who run linux... have some sort of disturbing grudge against M$.... You can go with linux, and you will hardly be able to find any software you need or any games that run on it... let linux stay where it belongs, out of homes and in businesses... and Windows does crash and burn alot... but If you regularly maintain your system... ie. defrag, frequent virus scans(use avg), and other little necessities... you will run fine...
Sorry for my little rant... of course this is just my opinion on matters.. DaBooda out...
P.S. And the best thing anyone can do for themselves is do alot of research online, before making and investment into a computer... trust me.. I learned 90% of everything I know online...(Even though this doesn't mean much)...|
|cjb0087||linux is the best for servers (apache + php + mysql, all free and good) cause its stable. windows xp is strictly gaming only, because it crashes bad (disk needs formatting) so dont put work on it. best OS for work is 2000pro, cause its stable, ive used it for a couple of years and not one crash
p.s. dont go to my site (u wern't anyway) cause it got "hax0r3d"|
I never heard of that before. Is it something that just happened to you once, or is it a known re-occuring bug? I've been generally pretty impressed with windows XP proffesional as far as stability goes.
More on topic, you might be surprised how many games will work on Linux. Alot of them will need something like winE to work, but some ( Unreal Tournament 2004, Dominions II, etc.) will work without any extra stuff.
Not that I'm recommending Linux, but I think it has come a lot further than most people suspect.
windows xp is strictly gaming only, because it crashes bad (disk needs formatting) so dont put work on it.
|VBBR||"mounted" PCs like Dell's, Compaq's and HP's are bad because usually they have all the graphics, sound, network, etc. on-board the mainboard so if you want to change something you will lose money, sometimes lose the support, and some (very) incompatibilities may show up.
I just go with "choose everything you want and mount your own PC, and if you don't know how to do it, certainly you do know anyone that knows or you do know someone that knows someone that knows" if it's not very confusing.|
|Sr. Guapo||I ahven't had too many problems with Win XP either... I just do not like how the "home edition" makes everything so idiot friendly (Hiding the contents of the WINDOWS folder, asking five times if I'm sure I want to delete a file, etc.). That is why I prefer Pro.
Also, I was more interested in a laptop for college. I am pretty sure you can't buy a laptop frame and build yourself though, so I'm at a loss... And a custom designed one would be even more expensive than the best ones I can find.
I was mainly curious because, like daBooda said, most linux/Mac users have a grudge against M$, and it is a similar story with AMD.|
I disagree with this. There are loads of games and software which run on Linux. Chances are that anything you find on Windows is available for Linux, with the exception of some commercial games. Also Linux is based on open source, so it's probably better for a programmer to use. Not to mention Linux comes in many flavors and is free to download.
I think the grudge against MS comes from that fact that they're closed source, they make everythig their own, and they charge you money for everything. I run a dual boot myself because I like Linux but I also need my games from Windows :)
You can go with linux, and you will hardly be able to find any software you need or any games that run on it... let linux stay where it belongs, out of homes and in businesses...
|VBBR||Same here [:D]|
|Sr. Guapo||My only real adventure outside of Windows was taking CS 1 at a nearby university. I had to learn java for a Unix system (yuck). not fun...
Anyway, I could never understand why people say Windows crashes all the time. I have never had a seemingly random crash (that wasn't caused by a game of mine)... My only problem with Windows is the size! Win XP is huge (The folder itself is > 2 GB). I had to buy a new hard drive to fit in on while I replaced my good old (obsolete, another problem) 98. I realize most of that is all the cute graphics and help files for the computer challenged crowd (politically correct), but why doesn't M$ sell a stripped down version?|
|masterbooda||ok....ok.... I am biased here, because the last time I messed with linux was in 94' when it was in its infancy... and if you liked to play MUD, that was your only real choice in the game department... I've been reading up on linux, and it has come a long way... but I was just pointing out alot of people seem to bash window's when to me window's does everything I need it to do... so why would I look for anyother OS... Window's does not crash on me, I keep the viruses out, and the harddrive defragged and everything runs ok....
P.S. There is one problem with window's that I do have.... It does not utilize your memory as well as linux does.... there is alot of win programs that don't clean up after themselves, by realeasing the memory back..... but maybe linux has this problem.... I think programmers should be put in jail for writing programs that don't clean up...|
|cjb0087||yeah they should, i think windows xp developer does something like catch memory leaks for you, but with others versions, the programmers should be shot|
|Almar Joling||I prefer Win2k for development. I can't just live with the fact thast the Intertoys look is build in Win XP and taking up my valuable HD space. [:)]|
|CodeImp||No to mention system memory and render time required. Those are relatively much worse than several extra MB's at your HD. But XP was never meant to be fast or effecient, it is built for userfriendlyness to those people that do not have much experience in computers. For professionals, its just frustrating, thats what 2000 is for (btw: XP has the same kernel as 2000, it doesnt even have a new major version number because the kernel is so much the same)
Linux is a complete different area. It is meant for servers and is not a good choice for a workstation at all since it doesnt work as easy as Windows. Take a diskette for example... to use it you first have to 'mount' it in Linux after you inserted the disk, and when you are done you have to 'unmount' it again or your new data will be lost. Now we dont use diskettes today anymore really, but its just an example which shows what Linux was meant for. Its a good choice for a box or server that you never touch and has to be stable, but for a workstation I would even prefer XP over Linux.
|Sr. Guapo||The problem is, the massive user-friendly beast is going to become the minimum requirement for all new programs one day. So even if your favorite version is 2000, eventually it won't run the "brand new" programs(games mainly).|
|cjb0087||dosnt XP run games a little but faster than 2000 becaused its not as heavely based around NT|
True. and any O.S that will have that digital Rights Management in it is not going to be on my computer. Bah, I don't need "someone elses permission" to launch a program. I'd better start learning C soon I guess, so I can use it in linux :)
Originally posted by Sr. Guapo
The problem is, the massive user-friendly beast is going to become the minimum requirement for all new programs one day. So even if your favorite version is 2000, eventually it won't run the "brand new" programs(games mainly).
I hear a lot of people say this, but I haven't heard anyone give any examples. Everything I ever did with 98/2000(which, admittedly is not a real lot), I know how to do easily with XP. I would really like to hear some examples of what you can do with 98/2000 that you can't do easily with XP. I'm not trying to start another IloveXP/IHateXP war, but I assume that the things you are referring to are practical, useful things, and I kind of wonder what I'm missing out on.
I don't like how WinXP Professional is still user-friendlied to the point that it becomes difficult to mess around with your system even if you know what you're doing.
|Sr. Guapo||XP is Win 98/2000, plus some extra stuff. There is nothing (that I know of) that you can do in 2000, that cannot be done in XP. The main reason people advocate 2000 is because it is supposedly more stable than all the other versions. Also, XP is designed for a virtually computer illiterate audience.
To answer you're question, XP Home is much worse than the Pro edition, though they both have some problems. The home edition will only allow "System Administrators" to install and uninstall programs, and will not display any hidden files or folders. I realize all of this can be disabled, but it takes alot of searching for the right check boxes. For Example, XP doesn't have the little bar of icons at the bottom for easy acces to programs (though this can be enabled if you search far enough and check the correct boxes in the correct order).
Also with the "user-friendliness": XP has so much graphical asthetics, that it takes up massive amounts of space on the hard drive, and also runs much slower than it should/could. One example is the dancing dog that "helps" you search for files. Another is the "cute" borders around the windows, and the more cartoony 3D buttons. I have turned all of this back to the normal settings (like on 2000), but it is still installed on my hard drive.
I can understand M$ reasons fpr doing this (though it still annoys me). I used to know a person that, in order to free space on his hard drive, deleted the System32 folder, because he didn't recognize any of the files in it as being impoortant. Not pretty... [:p]|
|Peter||Well, some of the functionality of 98 is hidden under a few more buttons to press and menus that you have to go through, like to get to the device manager you have to go to start ... control panel ... system ... hardware ... device manager, but other than that its similar to 98.
I was talking more about DOS and Linux. It would be great if in an OS labelled "professional" you could actually mess around with the guts of the system instead of running wizard after endless wizard hoping that it will magically fix something, and this has been a problem ever since Windows 95.
I dont mind the Windows XP interface. If you make an upgrade it might as well look better than the last version. Its not like the extra 0.8 gb of hard drive space is going to hurt you in the realm of 20+ gb harddrives.
When I have 19 GB of various games and unfinished projects, it does... J/K
Anyway, Windows it speciffically designed for non-programmers, not someone who can rummage around in a System folder without deleting WIN_XP.exe... [:)] It would be nice if M$ gave the pro version alot more access to those things though...
Its not like the extra 0.8 gb of hard drive space is going to hurt you in the realm of 20+ gb harddrives.
|cjb0087||no, dont learn c, learn c++|
As someone else stated here the 2000 and XP kernels are the same.
Originally posted by cjb0087
dosnt XP run games a little but faster than 2000 becaused its not as heavely based around NT
|Lachlan87||XP does have a fair number of advantages over 2000, but most people dismiss them out of hand because they find the dis-advantages so appalling. XP comes with a lot of drivers. This means it can automatically recognize a lot of hardware. However, it by no means has all the drivers in the world, and it does increase the amount of disk space you are required to have to install. XP is also far better at playing old dos age games. I had never dreamed I would be able to play games that were made when a 286 was considered a powerhouse on my 3Ghz computer. XP also has a lot of littler features I really appreciate, like fast user switching, hidden taskbar items, grouping items on the taskbar, etc. I won't go into all of XP features here.
A lot of people love to complain about XP's "cartoony" interface. Sometimes they even make up somewhat dubious arguments about performance, but really, you can switch back to win 2000's interface easier than you can change your desktop picture. Activation is the only real concern that comes to mind(not that there are no others). Yes, it is not at all difficult to activate, but a lot of people consider activation to be against their principles.
For those of us who already have XP, you might be interested in this tidbit I found on the net. Note that I have not actually tried this yet.
A contributor to the LangaList says that the way to get around Microsoft's pesky WPA after performing a full reinstall is to copy the C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\WPA.DBL file to a floppy disk or a safe place on your hard drive. Reinstall XP as you normally would. After you've reinstalled XP, either boot to a DOS floppy or start in XP's Safe Mode/Command Prompt (i.e. hit the F8 key when your system "beeps" during the boot process). Then copy your original WPA.DBL from its safe location back into the C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32 folder, and then reboot. Because nothing on your system has changed -- it's the same BIOS, CPU, RAM, etc., and because you're installing the same copy of XP that was previously installed, the "old" WPA key should be accepted as valid, saving you the hassle of re-activating the software.
|Peter||One cool thing about C++ and Linux is there is a very good free IDE thats almost as good as VC++. I forget what its called though ;)|
|sdw||Kdevelop and Dev-C++? KDevelop is based around Qt though.|
|Sr. Guapo||I just don't like how hard it is to use c++ in windows. Anyone can make a DOS program in C++, but windows programming, ha. That is why I like C# so much better.|
|VBBR||Well I prefer VB then [:)]|
|Sr. Guapo||Well, yes. But I was comparing the other languages. I thought it went without saying. [;)]|
|VBBR||I knew, I was just kidding [;)]|
|Sr. Guapo||I have another question. Why is VB always slower than other languages - I could never understand it. In .NET, could you conseivably convert it to VC++, then compile it? Will it run faster then? I can understand it running slower in the IDE vs. other languages, but not after compilation (when its an exe file).
I just figured since this is the key complaint against VB programmers, I should understand why...[:)]|
|2dcoder||Depends what you are doing. VB can be very fast, but alot of coders are lazy and don't declare thier variables correctly in VB. For instance...
Dim a,b,c,d,e,f as long
Guess which are longs and which get initialized as slow variants?
|cjb0087||all the .NET laungaes are nearly the same except for the syntax|
|Lachlan87||I admit I haven't used C# nearly as much as VB.Net or VB6, but as far I can tell so far the only practical difference between VB.Net and C# is that C# has pointers and a more idiotic syntax. I'm willing to bet that if VB.Net had pointers (after somthing I saw on the net, I not sure it doesn't), it would run at approximately the same speed as C#.
Generally most of VB's problems seem to be by design. . . but then, I'm no expert.|
|Sr. Guapo||"Dim a,b,c,d,e,f as long
Guess which are longs and which get initialized as slow variants?"
I never realized that (I guess that 'f' is the only long)... that is kinda weird...
Could you use:
Dim a as Long, b as Long, c as Long...?
Also, about the pointers. I know when you pass arguments to a function, they can be passed ByRef (as opposed to ByVal). I don't know if that is the same as a pointer, but it looks similar...|
|2dcoder||"Dim a,b,c,d,e,f as long"
Yes, only "f" is a long in this example. The rest are slow variants. This is the oldest common error in the VB book! You would need to "dim a as long, b as long," etc.
|Eric Coleman||Only in old versions of VB. That line in VB.net would declare all the variables as a type of "Long."|
|Peter||I recently upgraded from 98 to XP. So far it is more stable, but I dont like how WinXP Professional is still user-friendlied to the point that it becomes difficult to mess around with your system even if you know what you're doing. It would be great if the pro version gave you more access to your computer, since it is meant for professionals, administrators etc.
But C and C++ will always be faster than VB, no matter how organized and well-written your VB code is. Especially since if you can write fast VB code, you can write even faster C code. VB is more high-level, so everything you do goes through more abstraction, other functions, subroutines, DLLs etc than C does. The advantage of that is it doesnt take a hundred lines of code to create a simple window and you don't get memory leaks or stack dumps and other nice things that can happen if you mess up in C.
The illusion is that if you're making games you can write them faster in VB. In my experience, thats not really true, since by using DirectX or OpenGL you're pretty much not using the features of VB that make it a rapid development language for business apps.
There isn't much difference in development time between
dim a as integer, b as integer, c as integer
and you really begin to miss unary operators when you're using VB. Like +=, -=, ++ etc.
But VB does have a much nicer syntax and is more pleasent to program in.
|VBBR||Just a side note... hehe... instead of WIN_XP.exe, to be more specific, the person should delete ntoskrnl.exe [:D]|
|cjb0087||maybe they should delete C:\Windows\System|
|Sr. Guapo||Don't laugh, but that has happened. My mom does customer supprot for a small software company, and one customer deleted the System32 folder, then tried to get their money back for the software, because it did not run properly... [:)]
What is "ntoskrnl.exe", anyway. I do not know all the individual files in my WINDOWS folder... [:D]|
|VBBR||I think it's the main windows kernel executable... One day mine simply stopped working and I needed to re-install the OS...|