Building a new tower ???

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by andy4, Jun 29, 2002.

  1. andy4


    Hi all, especially those who have computer knowledge,

    I've finally got some extra money available, plus my kids have just too much stuff loaded on the computer I'm presently using.

    Right now I'm looking at a new custom tower, here's what they're looking to put in it. Please any other info' or expertise would be most welcome. This is purely just for my trading.

    Here goes,

    Thunderbird 1.4G p-266 oem

    Thunderbird fan

    Abit kR7A-133

    DDR 512mb p-266

    64mb ATI 7500 radeon AGP

    Mitsumi 1.44

    Wd 40.0 G 7200rpm ata-100

    Mitsumi 54X

    S.B. 128 PCI

    Aopen 56KV90 pci

    10/100B pci net

    Now please bare in mind I really have not too much idea what most of this is, I really just explained to the guy , what I wanted it for, pointing out that it needs to be fast over the internet. I was also going to use my own windows 98, I just like it and kinda know how to use most of it, the learning curve in the trading keeps me busy enough. I only use 2 monitors and am quite happy just keeping two going.

    I hope this is enough info', by the way they want between $650-700 for it including keyboard and mouse :)

    Thanks in advance for your time.

  2. chisel


    Hi Andy4,

    If you're doing much trading during the day, I'd use Windows 2000 Pro and also add another hard drive. That's what I did. I use System Guardian/XC 2000 to back up my hard drive every night. If my primary hard drive ever crashes, I can be up and running in a few minutes using the backup one.

    I built my own computer in January, but my biggest headache was finding a quiet fan for the heatsink. If you're trading alone in a quiet environment, it's important.

    Good luck.

    System Guardian is at:
  3. Andy 4

    That system looks overpriced and old. Dell always has a an advertisement featuring a pentium 4,1.8 ghz processor . I think u can get it without monitor for 650 delivered. The best place to get the ATI radeon is on Ebay.

    The best alternative would build the unit yourself. I find the best prices for parts at a place called Newegg located at . Motherboards featuring via 133 is old by today standards. Via just brought out the 333 rendition. Their supposed to bring out the 400 very soon.

    I just built a friend a Athlon 1800+ machine with a MSI kt3 333 motherboard and dual monitor card by Visiontek(gefore 4) for around 670 bucks. Its a beautiful machine. That nvidia geforce card craps all over ATI Radeon!!!

    Take Care

  4. David I

    David I

    hard drive:
    I like two hard drives as well. I've got two 30 GB drives. One is used all the time as my main hard drive. The other is also on-line all the time but I use it for backup. I backup the programs and data from the main drive onto the backup drive and it's super fast and easy. I also back up another smaller computer onto this extra drive via my network setup.

    I personally have no use for modems and my current system doesn't have one. Many people may still have need for one or want it for a backup connection to the internet via a dial-up ISP service. For me if my cable modem connection goes down I am done trading and have alternate plans for exiting trades or getting flat. Modems are cheap though and it's a fine thing to have as part of your backup internet connection plans so keep it if you want.

    If you use Interactive Brokers or think you ever might then specify that the net card be a 3COM or other net card vendor certified by Interactive Brokers. Some net cards and their TWS software do not behave well (brings your system to it's knees!) so spend the extra few dollars to get one of the recommended net cards. 3COM is one they have listed as good. There are others. Search their site if you want other brands they say have tested ok.

    Windows 2000 Pro if you can get it. Otherwise Windows XP Pro would be my second choice (not Windows XP Home Edition). I'll explain my XP Pro vs. Home Edition preference in a minute. First though ... Windows 98 is NOT what you want to keep using if your serious about getting the most from your system and not having to deal with the major limitations that Windows 98 (and Windows ME, Win95, Win3.1, etc.) have with the limited resources (System, User and GDI) you have to work with. You can have the best hardware and tons of memory but if your using one of those OS's and your applications are consuming the limit of resources that those OS's have there ain't nothing you can do about it. It's a software (read OS) problem and Windows 2000 Pro, Windows XP, (and the old Windows NT) operating systems don't have those limitations and you will not have those kind of problems. My Windows 2000 Pro system can run for weeks on end without need to reboot, restart and without crashes. My Windows 98 system however could never go that long. In fact if I'm using my Win98 system I make sure I do a bunch of tender loving care to make sure hardly anything is running on it but the few things I really want to run, do regular maintenance to keep it 'lean, mean and clean' and do a fresh restart before using it for serious work.

    As for Windows XP - Home Edition vs. Pro:
    For me I would get the Pro version (assuming I can't get a copy of Windows 2000 Pro over XP) but read why as it might not be appropriate or necessary for you. Also note that while I have supported a Windows XP Home Edition system I do not actually have that OS (or the XP Pro edition) on my own network. For me I have several computers networked together and sharing resources (files, drives, directories, printers) on a LAN hooked to the WAN via router/switch. Windows XP Pro gives me the tools I'm used to and need to accomplish the networking I need and want to do where as the XP Home Edition is much more difficult for me to accomplish this task. Also the Pro edition provides me with the security and access tools that I'm more used to with Windows 2000 Pro where as the 'home edition' has made things 'easier' for the average user and has in the process hidden these capabilities or removed them.

    I would agree that for the average home user Windows XP Home Edition is probably the way to go (and Windows 98 was great as well in this area) and that I'm not the average user.

    If you really want to stick with Win98 then try it out. You can always upgrade/replace the OS later. And when you do - what OS you get might best be selected based on who you can get to help you do things with it!

    Good luck and sorry for the lengthy and opinionated reply!

    - David I



    Sterling is right. Go to, buy all your parts and do it yourself. You will save hundreds and have a much better machine. If you can't build it yourself you will probably still save money by just having someone else put it together for you.



    One more thing, whatever you do, DON'T GET AN APPLE-MAC!
  7. andy4



    sooo much stuff to digest, but thanks guys, lots of great info' especially concerning 3com and IB, (who I use at this time) and also about Win' 98. I'll keep rereading what you all wrote for a while before I go out and get the new system.

    Really, thank you all again, as you can see you all probably saved me heart ache and a few bucks :) (one less trade I have to make:)

    i'd swap the athlon for an athlon XP (packs a ton more punch) / get win2k pro or XP pro / and get a dual head video card from matrox.
  9. David I

    David I

  10. just build your own PC :)
    #10     Jun 30, 2002