VOGONS


First post, by ildonaldo

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my most hated task is ...

... definitly cable management!
I am quick at selecting and assembling the components, but when it comes to cable management it takes ages till I pick myself up to finish that job.

my most feard task is ...

the first time to fire up a new build.
Because there is always the risk that all the time and money you put into carefully selecting old parts is wasted and you have to go through a painful search whats broken or incompatible.

Building my own PCs since 1991 - for my retro builds it's "no CF-disks, no Floppy emulators, no modern cases etc.", only the real and authentic stuff whenever possible.

Reply 2 of 86, by jheronimus

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Replacing DIP cache chips. I prefer late 486/early Pentium boards, and some of those boards can have up to 2MB of cache, 17 DIP28-DIP32 chips. I can't count the times when I had to straighten the chip legs. Same story with BIOS chips — they are often located in tight spots (light between two expansion slots or next to some big passive components).

MR BIOS upgrades catalog
Unicore Award upgrades catalog

Reply 3 of 86, by Errius

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Yes, when a computer has been in storage a long time it typically doesn't work. You have to reseat all the cards and memory modules and power connectors and sometimes even the CPUs. Annoying. Also wears out connectors. (i.e. makes the original problem worse.)

Protagonist: Robot

Reply 4 of 86, by Meatball

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1- Recapping…

2-Going back and forth with the seller when something isn’t working or wrong part altogether.

***->WINNER, 1ST PLACE<-***
2022 #QUAKE3totheMAX -560.5fps-
Brain Drain Retro LAN https://discord.com/channels/799008837918261328
Windows ME
NForce2 A7N8X-E DLX
Athlon 848/154MHz
DDR@411MHz (2-3-3-3)
GeForce 256 DDR@144/344MHz
ESS Maestr0-1

Reply 6 of 86, by Meatball

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ildonaldo wrote on 2022-07-22, 12:03:
my most hated task is ...

... definitly cable management!
I am quick at selecting and assembling the components, but when it comes to cable management it takes ages till I pick myself up to finish that job.

my most feard task is ...

the first time to fire up a new build.
Because there is always the risk that all the time and money you put into carefully us selecting old parts is wasted and you have to go through a painful search whats broken or incompatible.

I love cable management. It’s one of the most satisfying endeavors of PC building.

2nd one, I’m with you 200%.

***->WINNER, 1ST PLACE<-***
2022 #QUAKE3totheMAX -560.5fps-
Brain Drain Retro LAN https://discord.com/channels/799008837918261328
Windows ME
NForce2 A7N8X-E DLX
Athlon 848/154MHz
DDR@411MHz (2-3-3-3)
GeForce 256 DDR@144/344MHz
ESS Maestr0-1

Reply 8 of 86, by JustJulião

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Testing after a purchase. When it's described as working it has been usually very poorly tested and I need to know if it's actually working in a reduced amount of time.
And when something is wrong, i need to make sure it's not my fault or something else that causes the issue. And it has to be ruled out quickly too.

Last edited by JustJulião on 2022-07-22, 14:31. Edited 3 times in total.

Reply 9 of 86, by Shponglefan

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My most hated task is fiddling with drivers to get something to work. Hardware stuff I am fine with, but having to fiddle with different drivers, rebooting, etc., is just annoying.

I don't think I have a feared task.

YouTube channel (retro game music)
Ultimate Windows XP build
286 Epson build

Reply 10 of 86, by Sombrero

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Hated task: dealing with lousy descriptions that all too often say nothing about has the item been tested to work, when and preferably also how while looking for stuff for your build

Feared/Hated when it happens:

Meatball wrote on 2022-07-22, 14:18:

2-Going back and forth with the seller when something isn’t working or wrong part altogether.

DOS/Win98SE: Abit BX133-RAID / P3 650MHz / Voodoo3 3000 / 128MB SDRAM / SB Live! / Orpheus
WinXP: Asus P5K / P4 HT 651 3.4GHz (65W) / 6800 GT / 2GB DDR2 / X-Fi
WinXP/7: MSI Z77A-G43 / i5-3570 / GTX 960 / 8GB DDR3 / X-Fi

Reply 11 of 86, by Joseph_Joestar

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Most hated:
Probably cleaning old coolers/fans and dirty components in general. Most of the retro parts that go for reasonable prices tend to be full of dust.

Most feared:
Running the initial test on newly purchased retro hardware. Especially if it's something that I spent a considerable amount of money on. For example, my pulse was racing while turning on my Roland SC-155 for the first time, but that fear soon turned into excitement after hearing the Duke3D intro song play in all of its glory. 😀

PC#1: Pentium MMX 166 / Soyo SY-5BT / S3 Trio64V+ / Voodoo1 / OPTi 82C930 / AWE64 Gold / SC-155
PC#2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / Voodoo3 / Audigy1 / Vortex2
PC#3: Athlon64 3400+ / Asus K8V-MX / 5900XT / Audigy1
PC#4: i5-3550P / MSI Z77A-G43 / GTX 650Ti / X-Fi

Reply 12 of 86, by TrashPanda

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Hated
Resource conflicts with no indication of what resource is the source of the problem, worse still you have little to no documentation about the part to help.

Feared
Windows 95 OSR 1 floppy install with unverified media.

You can bet balls to bones that it’ll be the second to last disk with the bad block read errors.

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁

Reply 13 of 86, by ildonaldo

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JustJulião wrote on 2022-07-22, 14:27:

Testing after a purchase. When it's described as working it has been usually very poorly tested and I need to know if it's actually working in a reduced amount of time.
And when something is wrong, i need to make sure it's not my fault or something else that causes the issue. And it has to be ruled out quickly too.

Oh, I know this ones that are sold as "tested, but just to bios because I have no proper keyboard available" 😉
In translation, this means "Mainboard has battery damage and Keyboard controller is dead"

Last edited by ildonaldo on 2022-07-22, 15:39. Edited 1 time in total.

Building my own PCs since 1991 - for my retro builds it's "no CF-disks, no Floppy emulators, no modern cases etc.", only the real and authentic stuff whenever possible.

Reply 14 of 86, by debs3759

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I hate IRQ conflicts, closely followed by IO conflicts. Both are easy to fix though, just takes time. Nowadays I don't usually have complex audio setups (not worth it with my dodgy hearing), so it's less of a problem.

My biggest fear is finding that the one thing that doesn't work is that £100 part I bought just too long ago to get a refund.

See my graphics card database at www.gpuzoo.com
Constantly being worked on. Feel free to message me with any corrections or details of cards you would like me to research and add.

Reply 15 of 86, by AppleSauce

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Hated: seating ISA cards gives me a scare every time , I'm always paranoid ill damage pins when I hear a creaking noise , cant imagine how scary it is installing VLB or Zorro III cards.

Feared : would be using something that I've just swapped into the pc and having it be faulty or not working.

Reply 16 of 86, by Intel486dx33

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#1 )Cutting my hands on sharp cheap sheet metal cases.
#2 ) Cutting my hand with ISA cards scratching and poking my fingers.
#3 ) Cutting my hands holding ISA motherboards ( Solder points under motherboards are sharp )

This is My FEAR when working with Old Computers. I tried wearing gloves but its hard to work with gloves.

Reply 17 of 86, by Vynix

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I have a few that I greatly dislike, in no particular order (warning: long wall of text inbound, it's 11PM where I live as I'm writing this 😂 so please excuse any typos)

  • When you buy a system and find out it needs parts that are hard to find and/or expensive (hello 128MB FPM/EDO 5V DIMMs)
  • Proprietary parts, 'nuff said. Combine that with #1 and you got the very culmination of "Ouch, my wallet!" or if the part is practically unobtainium and actively necessary: "Darn... I really looked forward to use this... Guess that's another project for later."
  • Cable management... I already struggle with normal cables, but with ribbon cables, this becomes a exercise in patience and frustration.

Now for the dreaded things:

  • Brittle plastics, as someone who owns two old Macs with the most brittle plastic that Apple could get their hands on (iMac G3 and Power Macintosh 7500/100), this is something I dread a lot. And I really mean it. Imagine you're trying to take apart a case to clean the chassis throughly and then *SNAP!* a tab holding the front panel snapped off, and then another, and another... (speaking from experience, I broke a front tab on my Lian-Li PC-7Plus...)
  • CPU jumpers, when I swapped my Pentium PC's P133 for a P233, I had to triple, no, quadruple check if I had misconfigured a jumper, just the thought of setting a voltage jumper the wrong way and blowing something up... (look at the end of my post for a little debacle that I had with said system...)
  • In a lesser vein, IRQ jumpers... I was born way after PnP became the main standard, and to me IRQ/DMA/Address jumpers are still somewhat arcane to me, finding which IRQ is taken and which ones are free... I never did it, but I know it's going to take me a loooong while to learn how all that stuff works *looks nervously at the CT1350B that sits on my shelf as I don't have a system to put it in*
  • CPUs with exposed dies, especially Socket A CPUs, just the thought of cracking the die trying to put the heatsink on.... That's enough to make me shudder just by thinking about it. Oh and speaking of heatsinks...
  • ...CPU heatsinks that clip on the socket... Pretty much all I have to say about them... I'm always worried of cracking a die or when removing the clip, having to resort to use a screwdriver to lift the tab, in fear that the screwdriver slips and severs a few traces.
About the "P233 jumper debacle"

Oh and just for fun, I did find out I got a jumper wrong, one that raised the vcore voltage slightly enough to cause my P233 to act iffy (RAM corruptions, constant SCANREG when I booted up Win98, and when trying to reinstall Windows for the nth time getting slapped with SUWIN errors), wheras my P133 shrugged off that extra voltage... I laugh about it but it did send me onto a wild goose chase that had me stumped for a year and a half! LOL anyways, that's when I saw a post (I forgot who sent that... Alas) mentioning that P54 chips can take a bit more voltage than they're rated at without much trouble.. That's what lead me to reskim over the manual for my Shuttle board and found out about a jumper that when open would raise the CPU core voltage, and upon closing it, voilà! It booted just fine!! Sorry, I got a bit carried away on this one but I felt like explaining why. haha

Proud owner of a Shuttle HOT-555A 430VX motherboard and two wonderful retro laptops, namely a Compaq Armada 1700 [nonfunctional] and a HP Omnibook XE3-GC [fully working :p]

Reply 18 of 86, by MarkP

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TrashPanda wrote on 2022-07-22, 15:25:
Hated Resource conflicts with no indication of what resource is the source of the problem, worse still you have little to no doc […]
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Hated
Resource conflicts with no indication of what resource is the source of the problem, worse still you have little to no documentation about the part to help.

Feared
Windows 95 OSR 1 floppy install with unverified media.

You can bet balls to bones that it’ll be the second to last disk with the bad block read errors.

The same goes for IBM original OS/2 installation floppy disks. 🙁