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Upgrading for Vista -- is any of my old Dell Precision 530MT worth transplanting?

Posted on 2006-07-03
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I have a Dell Precision workstation 530MT with dual Xeon processors at 2.1GHz, 1GB Ram, two SCSI drives, a CD RW burner/DVD reader, a Sony double layer DVD burner/reader, an Audigy 2 soundcard, and a nVidia 128MB dual graphics card.  According to MS, this ought to be adequate for Vista.  However, the machine is old (about five years now) and is increasingly unreliable.  Memory seems to be the problem.  The power supply has also been a repeated problem; this is about the fourth one in the machine.  Time to upgrade.  But I hate leaving behind the SCSI disks and the burners/readers.  What are my chances of successfully transplanting that equipment to something like a Dell Precision 690 or an XPS Extreme box?  Any suggestions on whether to go with the Precision line or the XPS line?  I'm even receptive to the suggestion of forcing a couple of more years out of the 530MT; it will be under an extended service agreement until April 2007.

Dell is having a sale on "select Precision workstations" that ends 7/5, so there is some urgency to this, which is why I have assigned it 350 points.  It's not difficult, just of some priority (at least, I think it's not difficult).
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Question by:TollandRCR
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3 Comments
 
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jamietoner earned 1400 total points
ID: 17034748
if you want to swap over the scsi drives i would suggest the workstation 690 is has 2 pci-x slots, 1 pci slot and 2 pci-e slots 16x and 8x(8x size but will 4x speed), the xps only has pci, and pci-e. The optical drives and the sound card will work in either system, but the video card and ram will not work in either system. Anither thought would be to keep the system together(get dell to fix the ram issue) and use it as a second system and if you get the 690 and the 530 dies and is out of warranty you can swap over the scsi controller and drives.
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by:rindi
ID: 17037978
Moving the SCSI drives and Optical drives should not be a problem, as those are very standard components and should work with any OS. Prblems might arise with special or old grafic cards etc, but for those it is yet too early to say what will work when m$ eventually will release vista in 20 years or so... Anyway, I don't at the moment see any good reason for having to upgrade to vista as soon as it comes out.
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Author Comment

by:TollandRCR
ID: 17039425
Good reasons for choosing the 690 over the XPS machine.  Good suggestion of keeping the 530 struggling along until it dies a natural death.  As I recall, the SCSI controller is on the motherboard, not a separate card, in the 530.  So I may end up having to buy a SCSI controller card; not a big deal, as I don't need RAID (or, I need it but cannot afford it).  I also have a Dimension for my grandkids when they visit; I may try the graphics card and the sound card in it.  Thanks.
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