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Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type

by littleroo / November 26, 2004 12:24 AM PST

I feel like my parents asking this question, but....

I bought a pc for my kids about 3 years ago, and have forgotten if it was a Pentium or Pentium 2, etc.

Is there a DOS command or Windows command that will tell me what processor/RAM/ etc. is on the PC? I'm about to replace a disk drive, and wanted to evaluate getting a new machine vs. buying a drive.

Thanks in advance!


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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by python / November 26, 2004 12:36 AM PST

If you hold down the Windows and the Pause and Break key at the same time the information should come up showing the processor you have.

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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / November 26, 2004 8:34 PM PST

That's what I like about these forums. I learn something everyday.

Like, I never knew about the Windows + Pause + Break keys option, Happy

Although on mine the Pause/Break key is the same key.


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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by bigtuna01 / November 26, 2004 12:40 AM PST

Depends on your operating system;, but I would guess that it probably is Windows 98 SE or lower. In that case go to START>PROGRAMS>ACCESORIES>SYSTEM TOOLS>SYSTEM INFORMATION. The first screen (default) should identify the processor type as well as allow you to browse throught all sorts of goodies currently on your system.

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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by littleroo / November 26, 2004 12:45 AM PST

Thank you both for the fast answers! Damn if I don't have a boat anchor sitting there....

64 MG RAM, Intel Celeron processor. This is bad news right?

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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by Kees Bakker / November 26, 2004 1:14 AM PST


Try running DXDIAG (Start>RUN>DXDIAG, or find dxdiag.exe with Explorer and doubleclick). Most probably it will tell you on the first screen how fast your Celeron is (in Mhz). There are older slower and newer faster, so it is not necessarily bad news at all.

64 Mb is way too little to run Windows XP. But it isn't difficult to buy more RAM, and Windows 98 would profit from an extra 64 or 128 Mb also.

The only reason to buy a new hard drive is that it's full with things you don't want to throw away. You don't tell anything about that. How big (20 Gb, 40 Gb) and how full (10%, 50%, 90%)? And how many Gb can be freed by the Disc Cleanup Wizard and throwing away stuff nobody ever wants to see (or hear, if it's music)again or can be burned to CD for just in case?

The only good reasons to buy a new machine are:
- the old one is too slow for what the children are doing with it and adding extra RAM doesn't help
- the children want/need to do things that can't be done with Windows 98 and can be done with Windows XP and old machine is below twice the minimum system spec.

You'd better explain a lot more here, or go to a trusted computer shop for advice. And don't believe the sales person that only wants to sell you a new machine if he can't convince you that it's really better.

Hope this helps.


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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by littleroo / November 26, 2004 3:09 AM PST


This is great help, thank you. I have a 433Mhz Intel Celeron processor. I think I have a 1 Gig HD, since it's showing 9800Mg free space(?).

Part of the reason I'm thinking of upgrading is cost to replace the CD-ROM drive (mostly labor if I can't do it myself, which I'm betting I can...) vs. paying $570 for a Dell 3700 which would take us through the next 5 years of tech evolution <snorts loudly; guess we're in the amphibian branch of the evolutionary tree>

I guess my best move is to get a drive and try to replace it myself, see what happens, and if that fails, replace the machine with a newer faster one. A lot of the games my son wants to play require more RAM than we have too, so I would need to add some RAM, and I give myself only 50/50 odds of being able to install RAM....

Thanks again for such great advice, and taking the time to write with such detail!


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Re: replacing drive, don't bother.
by ChuckT / November 26, 2004 11:25 AM PST

A 433MHz Celeron is about the bottom (not the very bottom, but close) to what should use to run WinXP.

If you have 9800 MB free space, that is 9.8 GB of free space (1000MB = 1 GB) and it is plenty to run WinXP, with a lot of applications loaded as well.
Plus, if that is your free space, then your drive is something bigger than just that 9.8 GB. My guess would be you probably have a 12 to 15 GB drive. But that doesn't matter; you have plenty of free space.

If you do want to consider replacing the computer, then look into deals at some of the bargain lead websites, such as GotApex. There are others too. Bargain lead websites do not sell computers; they only clue you into some fantastic deals you otherwise might not have had any idea about. For example, there is a Dell 3000, 2.8 GHz Pentium 4, 512MB of memory, 80GB hard drive, and a CD-R/W drive available for $349 (after rebate), and it has a 2 year warranty from Dell. Check it out.

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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by zardozfl / November 26, 2004 10:04 PM PST

Installing RAM is probably the simplist upgrade you can make, and the most cost efficient. Jus be sure you get RAM that is compatible with your motherboard. If you need help we can walk you through it.

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Re: Big sigh, really dumb question about processor type
by justchillin / November 26, 2004 9:15 AM PST

the simplist way:

right click the My Computer icon on your desktop and go to Properties.

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