Life (life cycles) of a DOS PC (12+ hr. day)

March 27, 2011 at 10:50:51
Specs: DOS, 64mb
I'm trying to get info on how long a DOS PC-server, is viable to use (how long before considering replacing). The equipment has no maintenance (no one cleans it) and is under air conditioning 25 degrees Celsius (77 Fahrenheit). with a load of 9 hours of use.

The pc is old 64mb ram pentium 1, bought around 90-95

when should i consider replacing this dinosaur.

(No maintenance suggestions), its not mine.


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#1
March 27, 2011 at 12:50:03
I strongly suggest the owner of that machine starts as soon as possible to setup a virtual machine inside a Windows 7 box to port DOS environment under e.g. MS Virtual PC, VirtualBox (both free) or VMWare before a hard disk crash vanifies any attempt. This catastrophic event may be just around the corner due to the years of usage. Of course the HD may survive for years to come but in my opinion the case reported is higly risky.

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#2
March 27, 2011 at 13:58:04
Yeah, problem was fixed using a xp machine with oracles VB, still person whants to sue me since he had to buy new equip. Was gatherring some info to support my case but haven't been able to gfind anything from. A valid information sourcer so I decided to ask my good friends of the prog community.

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#3
March 27, 2011 at 20:30:56
I rarely had a bad P-I motherboard and it certainly seems you get more failures with newer boards. I think the eventual failure of that system will be the power supply or hard drive. Dos has no power-down utilities so any energy saving (life extending) functions are limited to whatever the bios has.

Obama's a 2012'er. That explains EVERYTHING..


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#4
March 28, 2011 at 18:38:10
I agree with DAVE. Few old motherboards have failed on me; those made past about 2003 have shown about a 50% fail-rate...

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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#5
April 16, 2011 at 09:48:18
HDD's that old are prone to crashing, especally when you DON'T CLEAN IT. otherwise, I would look in second hand stores for a old computer (not older) with maybe an 95 or 98 Op Sys. as those have a "restart in DOS mode" button on the shut-down screen to run legacy and normal applications. also, most newer MB's crash earlier because of their built -in capabilities (i.e Ethernet run by MB instead of card) and cause more load on everything in general. trust me, those built-in everything boards suck.

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#6
June 8, 2011 at 09:41:32
The oldest machine I own is a Gateway 4DX2-66 from 11/24/1993. It's still humming along using a 340MB hard disk drive with DOS 6 and Win 3.1. That's along with a 1995 P5-133XL and a 1996 G6-200 (Pentium Pro).

All are still running with the original hardware including hard disk drives. I should also note that all were assembled in the United States.

"Few old motherboards have failed on me; those made past about 2003 have shown about a 50% fail-rate..."

That's because most are made in third-world countries. In my experience all new mass-produced PCs are crap and you should expect to get no more than 5 years use out of one, if you're lucky. My opinion is that 1) technology changes so quickly these days that manufacturers don't bother using "the best" components, and 2) if computers lasted as long as they used to manufacturers wouldn't make money because people wouldn't need them repaired/replaced as frequently. Computers aren't what they used to be. Build one yourself from the highest quality components and you will do well.

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#7
June 8, 2011 at 10:14:59
"That's because most are made in third-world countries. In my experience all new mass-produced PCs are crap..."

I'd say also that a lot of the problems also started with the "bad-cap" issue from '99, with a large majority of the problems showing up starting around 2003. I personally have never owned (and used routinely) a machine with this issue but I've seen plenty.

"...and you should expect to get no more than 5 years use out of one, if you're lucky."

Oddly enough, the current "fast" machine I own was bought in 2006 (for a whopping $239 new) and I haven't (yet) had any hardware trouble at all. The same goes for the oldest machine I still use routinely---a Compaq Portable II from 1986.

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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#8
June 10, 2011 at 00:26:09
I haven't (yet) had any hardware trouble at all.

I love your disclaimer, LOL, made me laugh.

I also should have clarified that with new machines, you shouldn't expect to get more than 5 years out of the hard drive, as this is the most common failure. I've replaced enough hard drives in the last year to know "they ain't what they used to be".

iMac G5 1.8GHz "Hero" PowerPC
2 x 1GB DDR PC3200 SDRAM
160GB WDC WD1600JD-40GBB2
Mac OS X Leopard Version 10.5.8

http://sdfox7.com


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