After trawling the net for numerous weeks, I finally took the plunge and decided to go ahead. The initial strategy was to find and find my motherboard serial number and computer version. Secondly, with a generic PC by major computer companies HP, Dell, Packard Bell, you may find accessing all options in the BIOS on startup severely limited, as they are re-written to accommodate the many motherboard chip configurations dependent on the many models issued. So an update may be necessary to enable dual core use. This was determined to be the case here. More on this later.
Definitely the easiest way to obtain the serial number, would be to delve in the PC, always taking the precaution of removing all the ability cables and ancillary add-ons. Additionally, wearing an anti-static wristband to’earth’yourself is very important to safeguard your new CPU and internal semi-conductors investment. The motherboard serial number is found, usually involving the PCI slots or around the edge of the board. This information may be obtained by utilizing various software packages and the windows system info option, but we want to keep this’bombproof’and cheap don’t we? Visually checking the hardware is going to do this and provide practice in overcoming driving a car of’operating’in your PC. As of this stage we are only looking aren’t we? The manufacturers website is generally forthcoming with hardware information once you’ve pinpointed your model, and this can be crosschecked along with your physical findings scrap Pentium pro CPU. The old addage’measure twice – cut once’is extremely apt in doing anything to your PC. At this time finding your BIOS chip is also useful, taking note of producer and serial numbers. You might have a report label which must be gently peeled back again to reveal the information.
Ok, so the next stage was to obtain the fastest CPU recommended by HP in this instance, for the motherboard. The single core AMD 3700+ had never given me problems previously but I discovered it increasingly difficult to use Photoshop CS5 (32bit) with any speed. The setup was OK in preferences, CS5 Bridge however, was taking forever in opening images from my external hard drive. Continue to keep your irreplaceable files off the key PC! The fastest CPU designed for the motherboard was an AMD x2 4800+ (socket 939, check your socket is compatible!) Having read very favourable reviews on the CPU (top of the product range on release, but price prohibitive originally $1001) I endeavoured to locate one on Ebay. Low and behold, several used and new items were available at a tenth of the initial price and one was secured. I am aware a lot of you may be thinking these are old chips now and don’t hold their particular compared to the state of the art CPU’s currently on the market. Financial firms an update for an ageing PC (5years old!) remember, and for anyone on a restricted budget, the good qualities of upgrading outweigh the cons of purchasing a fresh PC.
Armed with the brand new chip I eagerly put on my wristband, removed the ability supply plug, removed the medial side panal, located the fan and heatsink spring and removed them. Good opportunity to provide them a great clean using a quality decorators brush. I removed the CPU after releasing the retaining arm fully and dropped in the brand new CPU. Job done I thought, now we see if the BIOS really does need an upgrade. Power cable inserted, monitor attached, and fired up. Oh dear! Fan on overdrive, blank screen, wouldn’t even POST. Pulled the ability and replaced the CPU with the’old’one and reassembled. Just a note here, there is a lot of heatsinking paste left from the final installation. This was re-applied in every cases by having an old charge card to assure a slim film and correct heat dissipation. The heatsink clip was fiddly- the rule- don’t force anything! You could damage the motherboard. Deep breaths and patience required.
BIOS update. The language themselves bore deep into the soul and promote fear at ab muscles thought. If anyone has been doing this before and killed their PC then I will understand the trepidation. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it’is a superb rule but in this instance, there is no option. I had been there 4 years ago and luckily the PC was still under warranty. New motherboard and CPU. Now, I was on my own. However, I’d just bought a CPU, so I was out of pocket there. I’d downloaded what I deemed to be the best BIOS update from HP. I’d also thought better of it and downloaded two bios updates from BIOSAgent.com for a demand of $37. Surely they had sent me the correct one ?.I’d given them the serial numbers and my upgrade intent. Was it really the BIOS or had I bought a duff CPU? Only one method to find out. There is no solution, short of going back, and I’d committed myself. An update wouldn’t give my old CPU a challenge, installing the incorrect BIOS though, would completely screw the entire PC. I sat on the theory for at the least 3 days. Everything boiled right down to this. Can I live with the fact that I could have a computer doorstep, or a great PC upgrade for the utilization I wanted. For some inexplicable reason one friday night, your decision was made. I could live with the decision.
I’d the decision of 3 updates. I dismissed my own, personal free download because it couldn’t be verified. From the 2 purchased, I clicked on the HP BIOS. Before I’d chance to doubt the risk of updating through windows XP, the job was done! A restart proved an update from phoenix award (vers 6.00PG) 3.4 to 3.47, no problems whatsoever. I couldn’t believe it!
So now, after replacing the old CPU with the brand new dual core, everything worked beautifully. BIOS recognised the CPU, and CS5 was better.’Let’s push things a little further’I thought. I have recently purchased a laptop for work and have already been very impressed with the 64bit Win 7 OS. What if I upgraded the old desktop OS? Afterall, it had been gathering god knows what rubbish on the’C’drive and a lot of the programs weren’t used. A spring-clean was needed, and a clean drive would have been a great start.
I’d been diligent to keep my PC regularly defragged, registry cleaned and generally up to par, but I hankered after 64bit CS5 and the capability of an increased workflow. I debated using windows transfer, but I would only be transferring garbage, wouldn’t I? I used it to backup to an ext. hard disk, it took forever (4days!) but did not transfer the files back. A clean install of windows 7 64bit from a purchased disc, was so clean I hardly remember it. I are in possession of only the programs I need. Gather your discs and any download.exe files and reg. keys beforehand! They all run beautifully. I work with a 16GB’ readyboost’flash stick, have 4GB ram installed and the entire system runs almost as fast as my new laptop AMD Turion II N530. Photoshop CS5 runs so quickly, the opening images in bridge are almost instant and I will utilise the ram to render in record (for me!) time. I utilize the empty internal partition’D’drive for the CS5 scratch disc use.