Saturday, June 28, 2008

Vista 64 bit (x64) on the Dell Inspiron 530

So, I had to replace my regular system due to a power supply failure. In many cases, you would simply pitch the PSU in favor of a new, and preferably working one. Since the PSU in question was in a system consisting of an Intel 2.4GHz Northwood, this was a bigger problem. The CPU is so old (got it in 2003, I think, and it was "old" then) it doesn't even support hyper-threading, let alone the multi-core setups we have now. Getting a PSU that supports the older motherboard connections (including the secondary CPU power rails) and a ton of IDE power connections (I have no SATA items) wasn't something I wanted to deal with. Anything that would support that stuff would be cheap (I like getting nicer units, and those have gone to current power topology) and probably something I wouldn't feel confident in. Besides, who wants to put $50-$100 into a system that old?

Enter Dell, or rather, and their cool deals. After a week of fiddling around with various coupons, I got the following:

  1. Intel Core2 processor Q9300 (2.50Ghz,1333FSB) w/Quad Core Technology and 6MB cache
  2. 4GB DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz
  3. Dell USB Keyboard
  4. Dell Optical USB Mouse
  5. Video ready option w/o monitor
  6. Integrated Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3100
  7. 500GB Serial ATA II Hard Drive(7200RPM)
  8. Dell 19 in 1 Media Card Readerincluded in Dell Bluetooth Package
  9. Microsoft Windows Vista SP1 Home Premium Edition, English
  10. Mouse included with Keyboard purchase
  11. Integrated NIC card
  12. No modem requested for Dell Dimension
  13. 16X DVD+/-RW Drive
  14. Roxio Creator 10 Dell Edition
  15. Integrated Audio
  16. No Speaker Requested
  17. Dell 19-in-1 Media Reader withBluetooth 2.0

Now, while I got Vista Home Premium, I already have licenses for Vista Ultimate and I wanted to put on the 64-bit version. This is desire is what caused me a few problems. It seems that the chipset may be crippled and limited to 4GB of RAM (a lot of RAM, but I wanted 8GB at some point) and seems to have setup this system for 32-bit OS only. Once I formatted it and installed Vista Ultimate x64, my life got a lot more complicated. The Dell website doesn't "officially" support 64-bit software and drivers for this system, even though the CPU (all 4 cores) do. Once I installed the OS, I needed the following:

  1. NIC driver (that's the most fun, since you usually can't get anything else until that's up)
  2. Chipset driver
  3. Video driver (even though it's embedded)
  4. Bluetooth module driver
I am going to throw up the links to get stuff started in case I need it again, and for those unfortunate others that are trying to do the same thing I did. So you know, the system is AMAZING with Vista x64 on it, and I run VMware Workstation 6 and virtualize Windows Server 2008, XP, and a Linux VM right now. It's great with 1080p video that I've downloaded (some movie preview), but I plan on getting PCI-e adapter with HDMI (and HDCP) support for my Samsung 4671 in the next few months.

NIC driver
Binary location 1
Binary location 2

Chipset Driver
On CD, or get from Dell using 32-bit (x86), since it will also create a 64-bit directory

Video Driver*%20Ultimate,%2064-bit%20version&lang=eng

Bluetooth Module Driver
On CD, or get from Dell using 32-bit (x86), since it will also create a 64-bit directory

Suprise! JD Power loves the Honda Fit

Or rather, the people that were interviewed do.

Yay me.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Top 11 Most Pointless Celebrity Products

This was given to me at the beginning of class today, and now I pass it on to all (both) of you, my adoring fans:

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Working around TCP/IP limits in Vista

I ran into an issue tonight where I had a torrent going, and even with the limited connectivity of it I started having problems streaming a movie to my XBOX 360.  Once I checked the logs, I saw a 4226 error regarding a limit to TCP/IP connections.  What's strange is that I don't recall having such an issue with WinXP Pro SP2, and I was downloading a lot more stuff.  I've found this, but haven't tried it yet.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Like Top Gear?

Well, it's back this Sunday.  Which means it's back all over the world, this Sunday, via Torrent (  However, if you feel like flexing your driving might, check out this game.

I saw it earlier, but didn't get around to posting it until the Top Gear newsletter hit my mailbox this morning.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

More stupid comments from me, about stupid things

So, you can't get enough of me but you're not sure where to go.  Fret not, as you can simply go to my Engadget profile and see what I've posted about.  You will be the envy of, eh, forget it.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Honda loves your dog, and money

Right, so I can't read it either, but over here
( they have
a write-up covering what it's about. It seems they drafted up this
site to show Honda's current (and prospective) owners how they can
load up their vehicles efficiently with pets, and how to clean the
vehicles when things go all pear-shaped. Pretty cool.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

So, I took the Fit for an Autocross

Today's the day I took the Fit out for a spin, but not just any old drive: I went to an autocross. The event was at an old airport, and we ran on the concrete apron. Sadly, while I used to be quite competitive with my WRX in STX (even winning overall with PAX) my Fit and I are hopelessly outclassed while the Fit is in H-Stock (HS). I have no reason to believe that R-comps would have made that much difference on this course, as the brakes performed wonderfully even with street tires.

All that stated, the Fit is absolutely amazing while going through slaloms and offsets, and handles pivots (sharp hairpins) incredibly well. The only real issue is just that it's slow. Very, very slow. Body roll was noticeable, but not terrible since the car didn't generate enough speed to make it excessive.

Since this is the Sport version with the automatic, I get the super-cool paddle shifters. These worked amazingly well and were very quick. The only thing you have to do is stay aware of requested downshifts to make sure it was able to complete them. What is cool is that you can shift into first when it's ready (and it's got a wide tolerance) and if it didn't make it you can downshift again as you exit (or while you're still turning the wheel). I saw a review complaining about the shifters being attached to the wheel and how one can be "confused" or find it "hard" to find the right paddle while spinning the steering wheel. I didn't find any problem with it, as the wheel has a profile to it and paddles have different patterns behind them to denote one from the other. Suffice to say it wasn't a problem for me. :-)