The doctor tackles Post-Upgrade Blues, Drive Order, Upgrading an XPS 700 , and more
Question: I upgraded to Windows 8 on my laptop. Can you tell me how to reinstall Windows 7? I tried restoring the system from Windows 8 but did not have any luck. Is there a way to use my recovery discs or will I need to purchase a copy of Windows 7?
The doctor tackles CPU Temperatures, Dual-Booting Windows 7 and 8, Hybrid Drives for Gaming, and more
Will My GPU Support Touchscreens?
I want to build a PC based on your Midsize Menace (Build It, June 2012), except with 32GB of RAM, an Asus GTX 670 DirectCU TOP video card, and Windows 8. My questions revolve around the touchscreen user interface. Will the Asus GTX 670 drive dual touchscreen monitors with the ports it has, and what is the difference in types of monitors?...
This month the doctor tackles XP vs. Windows 7, Upgrading from LGA1366 and PhysX on AMD
Question: My laptop is an Asus G74SX-TH71. It has a GeForce GTX 560M with 4GB of RAM, a 2GHz Core i7 CPU, and 12GB of RAM. It has two 500GB hard drives in it, one for OS and games and the other for videos. I was wondering if I should upgrade my laptop to a desktop. I have about 500 dollars and I’m looking for a good budget gaming computer with a monitor. Can you suggest a computer or a way to upgrade my laptop, maybe an SSD?
Note: This article first appeared in the Holiday 2012 issue of the magazine.
This month the doctor tackles ram errors, RAIDing different drives, and more
Five years ago, I built a computer that has performed without problems. I put in an Intel DP965LT 775 motherboard, Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 processor, EVGA GeForce 8800 GTS videocard, two Western Digital 500GB drives, two Toshiba DVD drives, and two sticks of Crucial 1GB DDR2/667 memory. By today’s standards, the machine is ancient, but it has been fine for my needs...
Note: This feature was taken from the December issue of the magazine.
I recently built an HTPC with a Gigabyte GA-MA785GM-US2H mobo and AMD Phenom X2 550 processor, with 64-bit Windows 7.
Everything runs like a top. I have the HTPC connected to my 46-inch Samsung UN46B6000 via HDMI (input 1), with only one problem: The video output displays onto the TV with black bars all around it, about an inch on each side. When viewing cable stations, watching a Blu-ray movie (via HDMI input 2), or playing Wii over the component connection, the display fills the full screen, no problem.
I’ve tried switching HDMI inputs around, using different HDMI cables, even switching from the Gigabyte motherboard’s onboard HDMI port to using a Radeon HD 4650 with HDMI out. The problem persists. No settings to adjust this are found within the ATI drivers/settings. Windows display settings are set to full 1920x1080. When connecting the HTPC to the TV via the analog connection, it does use the full screen, but the colors don’t seem as bold as with HDMI. I really would like to utilize the convenience of audio and video on one HDMI connection.
The TV itself does have “zoom” features that will stretch the picture out or make it bigger than 1080 pixels, but then it’s cutting off edges! We still use it for our Hulu viewing and day-to-day use, and everything works fine, but it’s a nuisance having those black bars around the screen.
I have been putting off building a home file server for more than two years now. I have been patiently waiting for the 2TB SATA hard drives to be surpassed by 2.5TB SATA drives, in the hopes that prices for 2TB hard drives go down to $80 per unit. Needless to say, my patience is running short. It has been more than two years now and hard drive manufacturers seem to have stalled at a 2TB capacity limit for all SATA hard drives.
What do you think is causing the stall in hard drive capacity growth? Is it this bad economy? Is it due to Windows XP’s inability to read from hard drives that exceed 2TB? I would really appreciate it if you can provide any insights on when you think this long-standing 2TB capacity limit will be broken with the introduction of 2.5TB hard drives.
Read the Doctor's advice for Ivan after the jump.
SUBMIT YOUR QUESTION Are flames shooting out of the back of your rig? First, grab a fire extinguisher and douse the flames. Once the pyrotechnic display has fizzled, email the doctor at firstname.lastname@example.org for advice on how to solve your technological woes.
I have an older Dell with an Intel Pentium 4 CPU. As you know, it’s not easy to track down specific hardware configurations for old Dell machines. Can you direct me to a source for info so I can find out if it’s even possible to get an updated BIOS and/or a better CPU for my PC?
Are 6Gb/s SATA ports on the newer motherboards backward compatible like USB 3.0 is with USB 2.0? I’m eventually going to purchase either an Asus Crosshair 4 Formula or a MSI 890FXA-GD70 motherboard.
I need to know if my two Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 1TB hard drives will work in these motherboards’ 6Gb/s SATA ports. I won’t be using any RAID configurations. The first drive is for Windows 7 64-bit and programs. The second is going to be for the Documents, Downloads, Music, Photos, and Videos folders.
Also, when are 6Gb/s SATA hard drives for desktop computers going to be available?
Read the Doctor's answer for Keith after the jump.
My current rig is an HP Pavilion M8530F with a Viola-GL8E motherboard. The CPU is a 2.2GHz Phenom X4 9550. The board is AM2+. I asked HP for a copy of the mainboard’s user manual hoping it could tell me what AM2+ chip I could drop in. However, I find myself even more confused. I think a 2.6GHz Phenom 9950 X4 will work even though it is a 125-watt chip and my current 9550 is a 95-watt chip.
I’d rather not spend the money only to be proven dead wrong and be stuck having to borrow my fiancée’s Vaio laptop. It may be nice, but it’s not my desktop. So far, the only change made to my rig in the two years I’ve had it was the addition of a graphics card cooler, of the intake variety. I’ve done research and the more questions I have answered, the more confused I get. If I could, I’d just buy/build a new rig, but that’s not an option. Some newer games, like BioShock 2, require AMD core speed in excess of 2.2 GHz, and mine barely meets the requirements. Even the budget upgrade article in the July 2010 issue is vague on whether I can upgrade. Doc, please steer me in the right direction, lest I crash on the rocks of inaction.
Read the Doctor's advice for Lucas after the jump.