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Computer Question

8/17/2003 8:50 AM
Steve A.
Computer Question
I'm trying to upgrade my P3 "internet" computer by installing the two hard drives in a brand new 2.4ghz P4 mobo. While I've done fresh installs on my music computers for this one I don't want to have to recreate my working environment by reinstalling everything from scratch.  
I was hoping that choosing the [R]epair option from the W2K CD would help but the computer locks up when W2K is examining my hardware.  
Question #1: If I reinstall W2K in the same directory will all (or most) of my programs still be installed in the registry? I don't mind having to reinstall a few programs that don't work anymore but I don't want to start over from scratch.  
Steve Ahola  
P.S. My configuration is non-standard and I think that I've worked out most of these bugs:  
-the two hard drives are/were connected to a Maxtor Ultra ATA 100 controller card (I got them to work connected to the IDE controller on the new mobo)  
- I had GoBack installed and active on my old computer... duh! You need to switch it off before installing/reinstalling an OS, etc.  
- GoBack writes its own code to the MBR so I used MaxBlast 3.0 to clean up after GoBack
8/17/2003 11:02 AM

The problem you'll have with that is that Windows and other programs are looking for hardware and settings from your old computer. Sometimes it will think you just changed a component, and it can change it automatically. Other times, it's gonna look for something that ain't there, or it will find something it doesn't know how to deal with. I believe(?) that even the order in which you installed programs on the old system can wreak havoc with a new, because it changes the registry every time you install a new program.  
I've tried the same thing, and never really got it to work. At work, we clone computers from a master, and if one peripheral card is in the wrong slot, or a different brand, Windows starts trying to reorganize and reinstall EVERYthing. If you DO happen to get it working, you're gonna have all kinds of unnecessary garbage on your system that may cause problems.  
You may end up spending more time, and more frustration, just trying to tweak it back to working, than if you just back up all your files (I create directory trees that look exactly like where they came from so I know where to put them back), format your main drive, and reinstall everything from scratch. The minus is that it is a PITA to do that. The plus is that the machine and programs will probably run more smoothly, and you will have gotten rid of a LOT of garbage that the internet and other things create. I completely redo mine at least once a year, regardless, if I have a weekend to kill. ALWAYS runs a lot better after. I do have a list of which order it seems to have liked programs and peripherals to be installed, so I just stack up the CDroms in order of install, and go. I have also learned at what point it's good to change certain settings. (For instance, ALWAYS turn off "auto-insert" of CD first, tweak swapfile settings, turn off certain processes, and adjust video properties and turn off screensavers and power-down stuff directly after Windows is installed). Just stuff like that that make life easier for a tedious weekend of installing and tweaking. BTW, Anything that I didn't have backed up to CD, and that I need to backup before reinstall, I just put it on the second hard drive, work with it after installing that hard drive and getting Windows running, then backup and delete them from that when I'm finished. Faster than a CDrom.  
Good luck,  
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8/18/2003 10:01 PM
Steve A.
Question #1: If I reinstall W2K in the same directory will all (or most) of my programs still be installed in the registry?  
    Well, reinstalling W2K into the same directory is entirely different from Win98— it will overwrite the entire \WINNT folder (along with My Documents).  
    While the W2K Repair Console had no problems finding my existing W2K installation, when I tried the more automatic repair options the W2K installation couldn't be found. :(  
    I copied all of my partitions to a new hard drive and installed W2K to a different partition- I am messing around with that right now. I may try using PC Relocator to move some of my installed programs to the new computer.  
    One other trick I might try is to patch the W2K installation CD with the service packs. (There is a web site that explains how to do that- you copy the entire CD to your hard drive and then run the service packs with a switch to patch the files- I just gotta find it again! ;) )  
Steve Ahola
8/20/2003 11:54 PM
Steve A.
    Whilst moving my two old hard drives back and forth between my old computer and new computer a few times one of the W2K system files got trashed... they booted up just fine the first time I moved them back into my old computer.  
    I did get a new 200GB hard drive and was able to copy everything from the old hds to the new one... but I need to reinstall and configure all of the programs I intend to use. :( After reinstalling Cool Edit Pro I see that all of my custom presets are gone (ouch!) but I think that I can get them back by copying the old configuration files into the program directories. (I had to reinstall CEP so that the program was recorded in the Windows registry.)  
    One thing that screwed up this project was using the WRONG drivers for my Maxtor ATA 100 controller card. The dl from Maxtor is supposed to work for both the ATA 100 and ATA 133 cards, but that driver did not work right when I was trying to repair the W2K installation on my old computer (with the old hard drives put back in). I dug up the original driver which came with the card and THAT worked just fine... only by that time the WINNT\system32\config\system file was already trashed. :(  
    On the bright side, I'm sure that W2K will work better with a fresh installation and I really did want more hard drive space.  
Steve Ahola
8/23/2003 1:22 PM
Steve A.
Looking for a good sound card
    This computer is not my DAW (digital audio workstation) but I use it for editing and processing stereo sound files so its important that the sound card work properly.  
    With Cool Edit Pro 2.0 I'm getting intermittent glitches on playback, especially when I move my mouse around to select menu items, etc. With my old computer I would get noises if I used the scroll wheel in IE while playing an audio file, but most of the time it was glitch-free.  
    On my new computer I tried disabling the on-board AC97 audio and plugging in the $50 Hercules Fortissimo II card I had been using in my old computer but that didn't help much. I've tried changing the settings in CEP2 and in Control Panel but that doesn't help either.  
    I have less problems if I run Sound Forge 6.0 but I prefer the user interface of CEP (which incidentally has been bought out by Adobe and is now being marketed as Adobe Audition). I also have less problems if I run CEP full screen, but I like to run it in a window so I can switch to the Windows volume control quickly when I'm working late at night.  
    I've been considering the Sound Blaster Audigy or Audigy 2- do you think that getting one of those would help, or does this have more to do with how I have set up Windows? Is it better if I disable ACPI before installing W2K? Here is how my IRQ's stack up:  
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    Any thoughts on whether I ought to just bite the bullet and switch over to WinXP for this computer? My new mobo and CPU supports hyperthreading, which I heard will only be supported by WinXP.  
Steve Ahola  
P.S. My new computer is a real SCREAMER... 800mhz FSB, 1GB of dual channel DDR400 RAM. The plug-ins for CEP run about 2 to 4 times as fast as they did with my 1GHz P3...
8/23/2003 2:20 PM
steve m

I just bought a SB Audigy 2 at CompUSA, they were on sale for $50 off retail, I ended up paying $85 including tax. I remember seeing the same deal at either the Creative or Soundblaster site, they had a $50 mail in rebate.  
I'm happy with mine so far, it is better than the integrated card on my Dell. I'm running XP.  
8/24/2003 10:32 AM

Did you turn off everything that you don't need running? ANYthing that runs in the background MAY cause glitching if the computer polls it during an audio playback. Turn off CD Auto-insert, any screensavers, any unneeded services(can't remember how to do that in W2K...but if it's like NT or XP I think there's a "Services" icon that you can get into), turn off your NIC (I noticed it's sharing the same IRQ as the soundcard). Did you format your audio hard drive to use larger chunks? Depending on the size, it may format it into pretty small (4KB-64KB clusters). This makes the files spread out more across the disk in smaller chunks, and causes the heads to seek and read more often instead of just cruising easily from one to the next. Here's a link to "Tuning XP", and most of this stuff has a similar way to do it in W2K. You may want to play around with it before buying another soundcard. Then again, if you have done, or are going to do, all this stuff, and it's still stuttering, maybe you do need a different card.  
In Google, you might wanna search for "Win2000 tuning tips", "computer Audio", stuff like that, and see if you can find more tips.  
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