Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The New/Old Set Up

Since my old monitor started getting blurry and I decided to replace it I've been trying to make a few other new upgrades to my computer system over the last two weeks.

After finally getting the monitor to work after finally uninstalling the software it came with (it would have been neat to grab the screen and turn it to a portrait view but, really, do I need something like that to work?) I've also tried adding some memory and RAM to my old (four year old) system. What I'm finding funny is that four years in terms of computers these days might as well be ancient and I'm looked at like a guy beating two rocks together in the woods to make fire when I tell people what I'm using.

So, I bought myself a 2 terabyte back up drive so I'll probably never need to worry about space for music, art, or videos ever again. I still have a 200 gigabyte back up drive that I haven't even half filled since I bought it but it does feel nice to have all that space behind me while I'm doing my work and not watching the space on my hard drive dangerously fill up.

I've also learned a lot more about RAM than I ever wanted to know in the last few weeks. I started out by simply buying some 8gb RAM chips to pop into my computer. I had no idea if they would work or not and, as usual in situations where you leap before you look, they didn't work. So, I did some research, found the right kind of chips I needed to buy and bought 4gb of RAM. I plugged those into my computer and, even though I had 4gb of RAM installed my computer only read 2gb of RAM. Still, not bad. I knew something like that might happen but I still took the chance that 4gb might work. And, 2gb was better than the 1gb I've been running for the last few years.

Things sped up a little bit but nothing that really blew my mind. Still, I figured if everything was working and I was getting 2gb of speed out of my RAM than all was well.

Well, it didn't stay that way. Not long after replacing the RAM programs like Photoshop would juts lock up in the middle of working or not open at all. I tried pulling one of the two 2gb RAM chips so it would still run 2gb of RAM and left it that way for a few days. Things seemed OK for a bit but, just when I needed Photoshop to make some client revisions the computer started freaking out again. Photoshop would close, not open files, or simply stop working right in the middle of me painting a file.

So, I tried a few fixes this morning and finally pulled out the 2gb of RAM and put back in my old twin 512mb chips to get my system back to 1gb of RAM. It's a little slower but it's working like a champ. No weird program glitches or stops.

And, in the end, I can wait a few extra seconds to make sure everything is working right.

I'm sure I've gained a few new gray hairs dealing with this stuff over the last few weeks but, as long as my work gets done and looks good, that's all that matters.


Jeff Hooper said...

Shawn, I know we've talked about this before, and its scary i know, but seriously, think about the macs. I will never own a PC again after having had a mac. Just sayin' man.

Jeff Lafferty said...

Yeah dude get a Mac, it’s the answer to all your problems!

I thought you just bought a new laptop … am I right or did I imagine that …wasn’t I over at you house and you were streaming stuff on to your TV with it or something?