Wednesday 25 March 2009

Work Authorisation Issued

I got a notification this afternoon from BUNAC that my work authorisation letter has been received from the Canadian High Commission. Only took 3 weeks to get approved.

Now I can start organising my trip, the plan is to go in June, July at the latest.


Friday 13 March 2009

Couple of Tips & Bye Bye Shorts!

As I’ve been cleaning out the Shorts section of my site, I’ve come across a couple of tips that I wanted to keep. Until I started using Delicious I used to blog useful links in Shorts, or as it was called for a the time my SideBlog, but now that I use Delicious for all my bookmarks, there didn’t seem to be any point in keeping the Shorts around any longer. The URL will just redirect to my Delicious page from now on.

Disabling The Information Bar in IE7:
1) Go to the Custom security option for the Internet Zone and then do the following…
2) Turn off the Information Bar for file downloads, in the Downloads section of the list, under Automatic prompting for file downloads, click Enable.
3) Turn off the Information Bar for ActiveX controls, in the ActiveX controls and plug-ins section of the list, under Automatic prompting for ActiveX controls, click Enable.

Sending Ctrl-Alt-Del Via RDP:
Since hitting the three fingered salute works on the local machine only, you have to press Ctrl-Alt-End to send the keystrokes to the remote desktop.

Wednesday 04 March 2009

My Brother’s New PC And My PC History

After recently upgrading my processor, RAM and graphics card, I had decided to sell the old hardware to my brother. He has been in desperate need of an upgrade for a while now, his current PC being a “hand-me-down” from me from years ago.

Some time in 2002 I upgraded from a Pentium III 600MHz to a brand new Pentium 4 Northwood 1.8GHz. That chip was an excellent overclocker and has been running at 2.4GHz pretty much from the moment I bought it.

I can’t quite remember when I bought it, probably in 2002, but I moved away from Intel with my next PC, and got an AMD AthlonXP 1700+ with an Abit NF-7Sv2 motherboard. I gave my brother my P4 Northwood based PC, which he’s been using ever since.

The 1700+ was another brilliant overclocking CPU, but it was soon replaced in 2003 by a Mobile AthlonXP 2500+ (Barton) which was even better. I believe the only upgrade at that time was the processor.

Then in mid-2007 I went back to Intel when I built a PC based around the Core 2 Duo E6750. This was quite a major upgrade for me as so many of the old standards had been replaced by newer ones such as SATA instead of PATA and PCI-Express instead of AGP, and the slow death of the molex. Definitely a learning experience.

Since I first built my Intel based PC, I have replaced the CPU with a Q6600, the 2GB RAM (2x1GB) with 4GB (2x2GB) and the 8600GTS with a 9800GTX+. As I said earlier I was going to sell the spare stuff to my brother, so all he needed to buy was a new power supply, motherboard, hard drive and heatsink. I gave him a list of what he needed and he went off and purchased it. I do love Scan and Ebuyer, as they both delivered everything really quickly.

I spent a good amount of time yesterday putting the bits together on the dining room table to make sure they all worked, and once I was happy they did, I set about my old Lian-Li PC60 which had been housing my old AMD 2500+.

I stripped out all the old hardware, and gave it a good clean as it was a bit dusty. Then I started installing my brother’s new components into the case and powered it up when I was done. Everything seems to be working great so far, but there is still more work to do. I have to migrate his old XP over to the new hard drive which can be a messy task as all the hardware has changed and driver issues can raise their ugly heads (blue screens galore!). I will then install Vista 64-bit as a 2nd operating system so he can get the best out of the new hardware.

He also plans to replace the blue LED fans I used to have in the case with red ones, but that’s a job for another day.

The next big job will be to take everything out of my brother’s old case and use it to build a server for my dad using the AthlonXP 2500+. Nothing ever goes to waste around here.

Sunday 01 March 2009

My New Q6600

I upgraded my PC to an Intel Core 2 Quad last night. The Q6600 G0 to be exact.

After removing the Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro heatsink, I used some Akasa TIM-Clean to clean off the old thermal interface material from both the bottom of the heatsink and my old CPU.

I applied a thin layer of Arctic Silver 5 to the heatspreader on the Q6600, slotted the chip into the CPU socket, and re-attached my heatsink.

While I was fiddling around in the PC, I used a can of compressed air to clean out the fins on the heatsink and removed as much dust from the inside of my PC as I could. In the process, I managed to stab the tip of my finger with the R in the GeForce logo on my graphics card. That thing is damn sharp!

Now that my PC is up and running again, I have to burn-in the chip and arctic silver compound. That should take a few days, but once it’s done I can start overclocking again.

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