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Bang for Buck 3-user config

By keith ·
At this time I have an old 133Mhz Win98 computer with cable Internet service. I now want to purchase a high-performance desktop to be used as my primary computer. I would also like to enable computer access at at least two additional points in my home incorporating the old Win98 133Mhz, the new high-performance PC and possibly an old 100Mhz laptop I have.

What is the best most economical method\configuration to link to a high-performance PC from two other sites within a home and utilize many of that one computer's high-performance characteristics, such as its processing power and memory resources, at the two other computing centers in my home?

I would like to utilize my existing old 133MHz computer and a minimum of other harware (and related cost) at the two locations away from and attached to the high-performance computer I purchase?

I understand three computers could be networked but a simple file server would not share much of its processing power or speed.

Perhaps I should consider a terminal server setup but if the 133Mhz were made a terminal would it gain access to the server's CPU and memory? What speed would applications run at when accessed through the 133MHz PC terminal?

What are the options you would consider and their advantages and advantages?

What, if any, are the advantages of a computer with multiprocessors (dual P4 processors) running on a non-networked PC? How would you compare the performance of a dual 1.0 GHz with a single 2.0GHz processor machine? Does a dual processor server provide significant performance boost over a single processor server when running office productivity applications?

Future Anticipated Computer Functions:
Voice Recognition for Office Apps
Expanded Database Functionality - Fusion
Integrated Telephone Services
CAD\CAM
Digital Picture & Video editing
Internet Streaming Video
Future Internet Capabilities & Offerrings

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Bang for Buck 3-user config

by TheChas In reply to Bang for Buck 3-user conf ...

Keith. there is no good way to share the power of the new PC with the older PCs.

The only thing that you can realistically share, is the hard drive space, and some periphials.

It may make sense to use the new PC as the primary PC, and have at least a common printer run off of it.

As far as connecting things together, the lowest cost way to go is a cable router/hub and wired networking.
For around $100, you can have all 3 PCs networked.

At the low cost of PCs these days, it does notmake any sense to try and beef up the 133.
You can get a used PC with 3 times the power for under $100.
Or, you can get the new Walmart PC for $200.

As far as multi-processors, for your small network, they would be a waste of money.
Mutli-processors help out if you are running a LOT of tasks simultaniously. For the typical 'office' tasks, the CPU spends most of it's time waiting for the user to type.

Chas

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Bang for Buck 3-user config

by keith In reply to Bang for Buck 3-user conf ...

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Bang for Buck 3-user config

by timwalsh In reply to Bang for Buck 3-user conf ...

Home interconnectivity: the cheapest method would be running Ethernet cable to the locations you want to connect from. However, this creates an aesthetics issue with ugly cables running along your baseboard and up and down walls around doorways. This can be somewhat overcome by buying inexpensive cable raceways that would at least partially hide the cabling. The aesthetics issue can be totally overcome if you have basement/attic access and don't mind drilling holes and fishing cable throughyour walls. The only other method open to you would be wireless. However, you are probably looking at $500+ in equipment, with no guarantee that wireless would work in your particular environment.

A Terminal Server setup by its strictest definition implies that you are running Server software on the primary computer. This would incur much added expense. Instead I would go this route: Run Windows XP Pro on your "high-performance" computer and enable Remote Desktop (which is essentially asubset of Terminal Services as included with Windows 2000 Server). The client for this can be installed on any computer running a version of Windows newer that 3.1 (i.e. Win95 or newer). The computers running this client would essentially be "dumbterminals" (i.e. all programs (other than the operating system on the local computer) are installed on and all processing takes place on the "high-performance" computer).

Dual processors will only work with software specifically designed to take advantage of dual processors. Very few (current) mainstream office productivity software packages are designed this way. For software that is designed to take advantage of dual processors, you will see a significant performance boost.

Hope this helps.

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Bang for Buck 3-user config

by CG IT In reply to Bang for Buck 3-user conf ...

I'm gonna just put up a link to an article on Hardware Central about dual processors.
http://www.hardwarecentral.com/hardwarecentral/editorials/3039/1

Mac's are using dual processors BUT most of the reason why is the high end graphics programs for creating movie industry FX benefits from dual processors. Software such as 3D Studio Max or other high end digital graphics design programs because the programmer isn't sitting around waiting for the computer to compile and process.

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Bang for Buck 3-user config

by LordInfidel In reply to Bang for Buck 3-user conf ...

Just a word on terminal services, if you decide to go with that sort of route.

Yes the processing takes place on the server side, but you will still be limited by the speed of the client side.

Also Term Services in 2K requires several things.
A Domain Controller
A Machine that is the license server (can be installed on the DC)
And the Terminal Services server (can not be on the same machine as the license server and can not be installed on a DC)

Also, you have to register the license server with MS clearing house. And you have to install licenses which means you have to pay for them. You can't get around it.

Even with xp's remote desktop, you are really not opening up seperate sessions. You are just sharing the desktop so if you have 3 people trying to access the desktop at the same time, well then your screwed.

Now when you sat Streaming Video, Or you hosting video or you just want to be able to receive streaming video, there is a big difference there.

And Iam lost by the intergrated telephone services. Voice recognition (dragon naturally speaking) runs on mosts win platforms, same with CAD\CAM products.

Video editing, a dual processor machine is actually not necessary since most editing programs such as windows media and real are not multi threaded. However, You should stock up on as much memory as humanly possible.

Ghz is all fine and dandy, but most apps can't keep up with the speed yet. Your best bet, especially if there is a big price differene, is to go with a 1.4/1.6 with at least 512 of memory, the more mem the better. If you are getting into video editing and you have the cash, splurge for a gig of ram.

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