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07 October 2005 @ 06:47 pm
Lecktricky computar machine  
Okay, I've taken the computer out and popped it open. There are two large bays and four small bays: one large bay is taken up by the CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive, and three small bays are taken up by the hard drive, various sockets (like for headphones and USB), and a bunch of memory card slots. The last I find kind of irritating, because while it's something I might've liked to have had just for "extra geegaws" bonus geek points, it's not something I'd ever actually use (I have no digital camera and, with my swanky SLR, no real desire for one) and it takes up a valuable spot where I could put a hard drive. I could take it out, but the case is designed so there's a hole for it (fucking made-for-a-single-configuration cases) and it doesn't come with a flat replacement faceplate. The other option is to buy some sort of adapter for fitting a hard drive in a large drive bay—but that would put that drive right next to the CD/DVD, which probably runs very hot.

This is sort of pissing me off*, since I'd been looking at cases with several internal drive bays, which had the sockets next to them so they didn't take up any bay space.

I really shouldn't be this annoyed by a gift like this.

EDIT: *Just to clarify, I'm not pissed at my parents. I'm pissed at Compaq for not using more configurable cases.
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The All-Purpose Guruallpurposeguru on October 9th, 2005 04:06 am (UTC)
The CD doesn't run any hotter than a Hard Drive-- as a matter of fact, since it's not used as often, it's probably much cooler, unless you watch lots of DVDs on your computer.

You can also find larger capacity, faster drives in the 5 1/4" form factor-- and they will be cheaper than the equivalent 3 1/2" or 2" drive. Seagate had a whole line of the things, and they were around 30% cheaper than the so-called 'standard' 3 1/2" drive. The smaller a hard drive gets, the more it costs to get faster speeds or large capacity.

If you already have a 3 1/2" drive, you can either buy a 5 1/4" adaptor for it, or you can buy a faceplate to replace the memory card slot bay-- it should be a standard size.

I'm assuming the memory card slot bay just cables up to your USB ports inside the computer. I've been looking at ones in the store and the ones at Frys hook up that way. I've never seen a 3 1/2" one, though.



gwallagwalla on October 9th, 2005 07:53 pm (UTC)
Point taken on the CD heat. I was mainly worried about CD writing, since I was under the impression that that tends to run hot. I'll probably stick the 3rd drive up in the spare 5 1/4" bay then.

I'm pretty much limited to 80GB drives anyway, unless I want to replace the HD that came with the computer: you can't make a RAID-5 array out of devices of different sizes (well, you can, but the space used on each device is the size of the smallest device: the rest is wasted). I suppose I could partition them so the excess is swap space, but I don't really forsee needing 40GB of swap.

I think you're right about the memory card slot bay just using USB internally. I wasn't paying that close attention when I was poking around inside. It's kind of weird, though: it uses a 3 1/2" mount internally, but a 5 1/4" faceplate. Ah don' geddit.

One of the nice things about this box is that it provides a metric buttload of USB ports: 4 in back, 3 in front.