Jan Leow's Blog Page

Home PC Projects Log 2021

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― 06/12/2021 ► Dell Vostro 15, I think hardware is ok. Ran Ubuntu MATE without issues. Most likely bad/corrupted Win OS/driver. Decided to reinstall Windows on Dell Vostro 15. May as well upgrade to Windows 11.

― 20/10/2021 ► Bought new Dell Vostro 15-3515 AMD Ryzen5 laptop. ⟿ PC unstable ⟿ BSOD from day 1.

― 03/10/2021 ► Dismantled Dell 15R N5110 to salvage parts ⟿ Seagate 500GB 7200RPM, DDR3-1333MHz Samsung 2GB + Hynix 1GB RAM. Maybe DVD drive can be reused. CPU looks complicated to extract for souvenir. Can the display be reused using LVDS connector?

― 01/10/2021 ► Finally Dell 15R N5110 laptop finally kaput. Ordered new laptop Vostro 3515 AMD Ryzen 5 3450U CPU. Takes one month to deliver!

― 06/09/2021 ► B75M-D3V sometimes revert to backup BIOS, which can't handle nvidia GT710 & hang. Decided to fix it by copy Main BIOS (F13) to Backup BIOS (F6 old). Done!

― 28/08/2021 ► Installed Windows 10 in the old Inspiron 530s with upgraded Intel E6500 Dual-Core 2.93GHz. Not as lag as I thought, took time to load and some screen tear/jerk when moving windows with content in it. Confirmed forum discussion these old PCs still possible to run W10. 🤗 Using W10 version 21H1.

― 27/08/2021 ► Damaged my old 2008 WD MyBook enclosure while trying to fit in WD500GB HD. ⚠️ Oh, well... it lasted as long as it should. Time to get a proper external HD enclosure.

― 23/08/2021 ► DDR3 4GB RAM 1333MHz (used) for B75M-D3V, installed and working fine! Now total RAM=8GB.

― 21/08/2021 ► Dell N5110 laptop for my son's online class. ❌ Internal sound+mic failure ⚠️. After 2018 lightning strike, still hanging on. Using USB sound+mic. Decided to wipe OS & start fresh. Installed original W7 Home x64 ⟿↑ upgrade to W10 Home x64. All drivers self-installed. ❌ Can't shrink NTFS partition to less than 50%. 🤔 Strange, bcuz I could do it for my SSD. USB port cranky, wireless mouse sometimes unresponsive. Still sudden shutoff after a number of hours of usage.

― 19/08/2021 ►
(a) W7 still can get free upgrade to W10. Decided to start fresh with 64bit W7 Ultimate ⟿↑ W10 Pro. All drivers self-installed. Tested on a separate HD, after succeeded, cloned to SSD. Now waiting for 4GB-DDR3 RAM to ↑ Gigabyte PC ⟿ 8GB RAM. That should speed up this good old PC! (^_^) 🤗
(b) Also swap out cranky DVD with another one. DVD+/-RW-RAM. Retested several old DVD players; only one can RW all 3 formats. Others: 1 SATA DVD+RW only, no -RW, no -RAM. And 1 PATA-DVD is +/-RW no-RAM. Hmmm...
(c) Readyboost no longer needed (W10x64 refused to allow it) because it is fast enough! It's like a fresh new Gigabyte B75M-D3V PC!

― 18/08/2021 ►
(a) Gigabyte had dual BIOS, if reverted to secondary backup BIOS (still in ver F6), PC will crash. Probably due to W10 update. Pulled out GT710 card to restore, then put it back again, kinda troublesome. May need to use BIOS QT Flash to update secondary BIOS.
(b) Copy/cloned WD500GB to SSD480GB. ⚠️ Clonezilla not working. Using Gparted to copy/paste partition instead. SSD won't boot because MBR not copied. Fixed MBR by using Linux dd copy command.
(c) No need to buy SATA3 cables. All existing SATA cables capable of SATA3 transfer speed.
(d) GA-B75M-D3V feels speedier a bit. However W10 still 32bit, not full RAM utilized. Need to figure out how to update license to 64bit before buying additional 4GB DDR3-1333MHz RAM. If can still free ↑upgrade from W7⟿W10, better to install fresh.

― 14/08/2021 ► Installed graphic card MSI GeForce GT-710 DDR3-2GB (RM255) in Gigabyte GA-B75M-D3V(rev1.1). BIOS hung & cannot enter it. Also it took awhile for W10 to boot (I thought it hung!). W10 self-installed drivers (2017 version). Updated BIOS from ver F6 to F13 (last ver available 2013-Nov) & it fixed & working! Finally updated nvidia drivers from nvidia website (latest 2018 version with game ready drivers).

― 25/07/2021 ► Pass the weekend installing old Windows games (MW, SC, DF, D2) with No-CD patch or RIP ver. Installed in XP in Inspiron 530s & ASRock. MW4Merc rip ver has error in XP, won't run, but ok in W10. Also made ISO backup of old games, some with read errors.

― 17/07/2021 ► CPU i5-3570 3.4GHz for Gigabyte PC, after install, display became pixelated/unstable. Idle CPU temperature also jump to 65°C! Revert back to i3-3220 3.3GHz, and display back to normal with idle temp at 45°C. Returning CPU for refund RM195.

― 24/06/2021 ► HAIKU OS: itchy finger, tried to install Haiku in Inspiron-530s. Won't even boot CD. Hung halfway. In Dimension-3100, Haiku run so super slow, it takes forever to install, gave up.

― 21/06/2021 ► Dimension-3100, 2nd HDD WD40, Chrome OS won't boot. Make into FAT32 data disk using GPT in MBR. Ext3/4 troublesome for permission.

― 20/06/2021 ► Insp-530s 2nd HDD 160GB, installed FreeDOS (MSDOS can't install, something about can't find 1st partition?) & Kali Linux. Balance space for storage.

― 13/06/2021 ► Inspiron-530s, put in another 160GB HD. Found out I've installed some OS when it was in Dimension-3100.

― 09/06/2021 ► Tried MSDOS after redo MBR but still failed. Something about can't find starting partition. Gave up. 📦 Installed FreeDOS instead, so can't have Win3.11. Installed Win XP. Updated GRUB2 to include these. 🖥️ Also gave up Chrome OS, removed HDD. To prevent HDD crashing for PATA cable. Seems it worked better with only one HDD. 😎⭐

― 05/06/2021► Install WinXP crashed MSDOS6.22, won't boot. Why? DMA? PATA Cable? Motherboard cranky? WinXP also don't work after attempting to reinstall MSDOS. Also tried FreeDOS, nothing worked. 🙆🏼‍♀️🙆🏻‍♂️🤦🏼‍♀️⚠️

― 02/06/2021► MSDOS6.22 won't install in WD40. Installed FreeDOS & worked. Attempting Win3.11 in FreeDOS. Very difficult. This time managed to overcome EMM error by using Windows Himem.sys. Also found out FDOS uses FDCONFIG.SYS instead of CONFIG.SYS. Another error showed up, PageOvercommitError. Sigh. 🤦‍♀️🥵⚠️

― 01/06/2021► Replace faulty HD, moved both WD40 from D915GEV to ASRock. Remove RAID card, no need. Board can handle two PATA HD. Setup Chrome OS, done. 🤗

― 31/05/2021► Yikes! ASRock HD 40GB kaput! Installed another fan to the front to keep PC and HDD cooler. Found BIOS entry to enable SMART for PATA HDD, now can see temperature in linux sensor app! 🥵

― 26/05/2021► Swapped CPU from Biostar to Dell-530s; from Pentium Dual-Core E2200 [2.2GHz 1MB L2 800FSB Q4'2007] to Pentium Dual-Core E6500 [2.93GHz 2MB L2 1066FSB Q1'2008]. Linux benchmark shows Dell to be faster nowthan ASRock Core2Duo after upgraded CPU. 🏃🏼‍♀️🏃🤔 Hmmm...

― 20/05/2021► (a) Just received Cooler Master thermal paste and changed ASRock to this new grade. I think it is more efficient. Temperature hovering at 45°C during idle, peak at about 60°C. New paste seemed better with 10°C lower than other paste. (b) Funny sound and difficult detect for 40GB WD via RAID card resolved after fiddling with cable. Must be bad cable connection. ⚡✨

―15/05/2021► (a) Finally swap CPU between Intel D915GEV ↔P4-630↔P4-521↔ Dell Dimension 3100. Speed increase not noticeable, but it's there! (b) Also swap bigger heat sink to ASRock Core2Duo, now have better efficient cooling (below 70°C at peak). But now Intel D915GEV CPU suffering - gets very hot >95°C! 🔥

―15/05/2021► ASRock CPU gets very hot! Hitting up to 85°C! Cooling is not sufficient or efficient. Cleaned out old thermal paste and applied new paste, cooling looks a bit better. This paste very liquid, getting a proper Cooler Master brand, then have to redo again for all the CPU.

―22/03/2021► Inspiron-530s/Fujitsu hard drive kaput. No detect by PC. ❌⚠️

―20/03/2021► Dell-15R-N5110 laptop cranky for sometime. Suddenly turns off. Today check with Linux, shutdown won't complete, just hang. Some minor Seagate hard disk error. Possible error: (i) BIOS damage (ii) motherboard damage. 🤔⚠️

―20/03/2021► Dell-3100/Zorin ⟿ To make it more useful, must install software: Synaptic Package Manager, then install Gnome-Tweaks & Gnome-tweak-tool, XScreenSaver. Use the Gnome-Tweaks to run XScreenSaver upon boot-up. Zorin uses Gnome desktop launcher. 

―13/3/2021► Vostro/Zorin ⟿ NVidia sometimes didn't detect Panasonic home theatre system. Maybe TV HDMI port problem, changed the cable & change slot helped a bit. If sometimes no detect, reboot will solve it, but not all the time. Could also be driver issue. Hopefully not graphic card issue.

―3/3/2021► AMD Radeon RV-710 VGA card removed from ASRock because display kept freezing/hanging. Possible cause: Radeon graphic card faulty eversince it overheated some years ago. Probably reason D915GEV sometimes hung. 

―28/02/2021► Zorin 15 Core installed in Vostro 200. Seemed to have less settings available for tweaking, although very polished. Has built-in Nvidia drivers. 😁

―25/02/2021► Linux Lite 5 installed in Toshiba Dynabook SS-MX27A. Didn't like Peppermint OS. 

―20/02/2021► PCIex graphic card AMD RV-710 Radeon HD 4350/4550. 512MB DDR2-RAM. Vendor code 1002 = AMD, device code = 954F. Installed in ASRock G31M-VS2. MX Linux can't detect new graphic card, reinstalled OS to fix (which also fixed the swapon during boot). Also extended USB front panel with DuPont jumper cable in order to use it.

―09/02/2021► Acer Aspire Switch 10. Yes! Finally managed to install MX linux. Using MX19 distro. 😊

―4/2/2021► D915GEV sometimes still hung. Could be video card issue. Could be faulty OS install from bad memory... Finalized all the light OS on sdb2 (fossapup, porteus, slitaz, slax, tinycoreplus, kolibriOS, sysrescue) PC temp gets hot! MB 55°C CPU 65°C! 

―3/2/2021► New IDE-SATA adapter received, checked Hitachi laptop HD, found it to have bad sector in DOS boot record (DBR) sector. Maybe somekind of special MBR DBR sector lock from Toyota Estima audio system. Considered it as kaput as unable to reformat. D915GEV PC freezed up. Found out MB RAM slot faulty. Reconfig to 3 slot with 2GB RAM. 

―31/01/2021► Super multiboot OS for Dimension-3100 & ASRock! Very time consuming! Fedora didn't mix well with multiboot, replacing with Zorin. Fossapup own grub4dos bootloader & chainloader didn't work, have to place files in root and use standard menuentry to boot. Kolibri worked. Coreplus working. 

―28/01/2021► Cleaned up Vostro-200 & Dell-3100. Having a backache from doing it!

―26/01/201► Cleaned up Dell-530s, added Fujitsu 40GB HD [23-Jan]. Redo OS & partition → ¹WD160: LibreElec, Win XP, Linux Mint, Kali, Fossa, Slax. → ²Fujitsu: Neverware Chrome OS. Failed to install Porteus, Slitaz & Haiku (DVD won't boot for Haiku) [24-Jan]. sudo update-grub could find Chrome OS, but better to F12 & select drive for booting. Manual install with grub2 for Porteus & Slitaz ⟿ so difficult to get it right! [25-Jan] Managed to add grub2 entry to boot SystemRescueCD ISO file & also added memtest86+ for Dell-530s. So all these manual OSs also added to ASRock  😊

―21/01/2021► Dismantled old kaput DVD drive to lighten weight & to be used as dummy to cover PC DVD slot in casing front panel.

―20/01/2021► Toshiba Dynabook MX27A ⟿ Giving up UAPack for laptop since got one in ASRock. Tried to install IndianaSolaris, didn't work. Not sure why. Only live CD worked. Then installed Peppermint OS, suppose to be good for laptop. 

―21/01/2021► Transfered / swapped power supply unit for ASRock / Biostar. PC for ASRock is now quiet! Biostar MB battery for CMOS seemed not working. Need to check connection. Also removed WD1TB for Rebecca. So now just barebone MB PC! [19-Jan] ◄― CR2032 battery dead, changed & ok 

―17/01/2021► Gigabyte GA-B75M-D3V, power supply clean up & general internal dust cleaning, cleaning of various USB & audio contacts. Put a bit of lubricant oil in power supply fan to reduce start up noise. Much quiter now and better audio sound ✓

―12/01/2021► IDE PATA SATA converter for Intel D915GEV CDRW. Working. ✓

―10/01/2021► ASRock is almost ready for use! [10-Jan-2021] ✓✓✓⟿ Next idea is to exchange Biostar power supply for ASRock for quiet usage.

―10/01/2021► sudo update-grub ◄― fossa not detected, finally found GRUB2 entry. Boot with error message. But it's OK! ✓

―10/01/2021► Attempt to install DOS6.22 + WFW3.11 in 40GB then move to Sil680 RAID card ◄― finally success! ✓

―09/01/2021► Many old DVD player not working! Install one by one to check condition & for disposal. Only one good DVDRW player! Using it for ASRock, no DVD for Biostar and faulty DVD (reads CD only) for D915GEV & to cover front panel casing hole. 

―09/02/2021► Install multiboot OS onto ASRock system FossaPup, UAPack, MX19, RPi, Haiku. DOS having problem with 320GB HD, to try on 40GB HD.

―08/01/2021► Install Intel D915GEV to ASRock casing. Smaller space so 2 HD only. Fan at rear blow in, and front for HD cooling. ✓

―03/01/2021► Remove Dell 2400 motherboard, install ASRock MB+Power Supply into Dell PC Casing. Front panel cable short, extend with jumper cables. ✓ 

―25/12/2020➤ Reviving old PC Motherboards 🤖😊

⟿ Vostro 200 - Core 2 Duo

⟿ Inspiron 530s - Pentium Dual-Core

⟿ Dimension 3100 - Pentium 4 (521)

⟿ Intel D915GEV - Pentium 4 (630)

⟿ Rebecca's + Daphne's Old PC repurpose & harvest parts

⟿ ASRock G31M-VS2 Core 2 Duo ⟿ is powerful for reuse but power supply fan is very noisy! Super dirty with 10 years worth of dust! 

⟿ Biostar G31-M7-TE Pentium Dual Core ⟿ MB speed is faster, but CPU is 1st gen dual core, so overall it is slower. The casing has weird layout. Very quiet power supply. [7-Jan-2021]

⧟⇝《Project Transfer & Transplant》⇜⧟ 👾

Project Log List

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